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  #41  
Old 13-06-2018, 06:52 PM
Donald Trump Donald Trump is offline
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Originally Posted by PROCNA2018 View Post
Honestly, I think there is very little that is.

However, I would question why anyone would want to deliberately go out of their way to intentionally, and proving it, offend a substantial number of adherents of a faith, where that would presumably need to be in the 1,000s???, by insulting something held sacred by that faith.........there is no reason TO do THAT.

Edit - but it still gets away from wanting a referendum on it and the real reason behind it.
You're saying this is s distraction from real issues?

I agree, if so.
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  #42  
Old 13-06-2018, 08:37 PM
poulgorm poulgorm is offline
 
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They can't just hold a referendum on blasphemy. The turnout would be less than 5% - my guess.

All this fiddling with the constitution. Why not have a referendum to abolish it and be done with it?
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  #43  
Old 14-06-2018, 10:42 AM
nozzferrahhtoo nozzferrahhtoo is offline
 
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Originally Posted by PROCNA2018 View Post
It is practically impossible to be charged with it and was made that way on purpose.
Then that alone is a good argument to remove it entirely. Is the text not complicated and problematic enough without it also containing unworkable and superfluous nonsense?

Without any other argument, that alone is a reason to vote yet to it's removal.

However there are other useful arguments to make that render it a little more than the "waste of time" you describe it as.....

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Originally Posted by PROCNA2018 View Post
The offence consists of uttering material "grossly abusive or insulting in relation to matters held sacred by any religion", when the intent and result is "outrage among a substantial number of the adherents of that religion". How can you possibly prove intent?
.... for example such a law creates an incentive for offense and outrage. Given the preponderance of people already overly concerned with the concept of being offended in our current snow flake generation, do we really need laws that will create incentive to be offended or to express outrage? We have seen the display of outrage in response to the publication of cartoons for example even in a normal society. Why compound that by giving them access to a law that only comes into play when outrage is on the table? Rather than working against such abhorrent displays of outrage, which we should be doing, we are instead making it a pre-requisite for them!

Another issue is that it has what has been called "a chilling effect" on our media. Which is that our media, despite being somewhat aware the law itself probably could never be prosecuted, still self-censor in an effort not to get mixed up in any rigmarole related to it.

A third issue is this concept of "Substantial number". This is for me very problematic. What does that mean? Does it mean substantial in terms of quantity? In which case what is that quantity? And does this not disenfranchise those religions that do not have the numbers to make that cut-off? Making it effectively a catholic protecting law in a pluralist country? Or does it mean substantial in terms of % of that religion? In which case it is the same problem from the other direction. Given there is only a handful of muslims or wiccans in Ireland, a single person constitutes a larger % of adherent than a single catholic.... thus giving them a disproportionate power under that law.

A fourth issue is with Muslim Extremists pushing for blasphemy laws in other jurisdictions. They point to Ireland as an example of a western country who have enacted a new law on the subject in the 20th century. Thus undermining any attempts to argue against the moves they are making. I think it was in 2009 that Pakistan proposed a blasphemy law to the human rights council that was almost verbatim a copy of ours. A country where at the time the punishment for it was death. How are we to campaign against the death penalty for people like Asia Bibi while at the same time creating our own blasphemy laws?

A fifth issue is with the inclusion of a clause on what constitutes a defense against prosecution as part of the text. Making it a step towards being one of the few (only?) laws in the country that is going towards guilty until proof of innocence, rather than innocent until proven guilty.

Sixth is that such a law gives the impression that some ideas or images should be protected from publication, critique, ridicule, mockery or discussion. No idea or concept should be above these things, especially the unsubstantiated and often harmful nonsense of religion. Very little speech, in my view, should be curtailed at all. Let alone by the state. And if and when it IS the right thing to do to curtail it, we best have very good reasons for doing so. These laws for denying the holocaust we have seen internationally for example..... are bizarre to me. And now we have laws mandating the use of gender pronouns? We can worry "where does it all stop" or we can also worry "where did we let this kind of shit start?"

Seventh is that incidents like what happened with Stephen Fry really do make a joke of our country on the international stage. And could even make it less likely that foreign personalities, stars, politicians, celebrities, thinkers or speakers will be less likely to want to come to our shores to ply their trade. And I am not sure that is what we want.

Finally as you said yourself it is ridiculous to think that we can mediate on intention here. How can one prove intention or even test for it? For example I have received, and occasionally continue to receive, everything from legal threats to death threats for an article I wrote some years ago. I can not imagine how anyone at all would go about measuring, demonstrating, and proving in a court of law what my "intentions" were at the time of writing that article.
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  #44  
Old 14-06-2018, 10:56 AM
Roxetten Roxetten is offline
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We need tougher anti-blasphemy laws imho, a cursory glance at some of the threads on here will tell you that.
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  #45  
Old 14-06-2018, 11:43 AM
CaptainSensible CaptainSensible is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nozzferrahhtoo View Post
Then that alone is a good argument to remove it entirely. Is the text not complicated and problematic enough without it also containing unworkable and superfluous nonsense?

Without any other argument, that alone is a reason to vote yet to it's removal.

However there are other useful arguments to make that render it a little more than the "waste of time" you describe it as.....



.... for example such a law creates an incentive for offense and outrage. Given the preponderance of people already overly concerned with the concept of being offended in our current snow flake generation, do we really need laws that will create incentive to be offended or to express outrage? We have seen the display of outrage in response to the publication of cartoons for example even in a normal society. Why compound that by giving them access to a law that only comes into play when outrage is on the table? Rather than working against such abhorrent displays of outrage, which we should be doing, we are instead making it a pre-requisite for them!

Another issue is that it has what has been called "a chilling effect" on our media. Which is that our media, despite being somewhat aware the law itself probably could never be prosecuted, still self-censor in an effort not to get mixed up in any rigmarole related to it.

A third issue is this concept of "Substantial number". This is for me very problematic. What does that mean? Does it mean substantial in terms of quantity? In which case what is that quantity? And does this not disenfranchise those religions that do not have the numbers to make that cut-off? Making it effectively a catholic protecting law in a pluralist country? Or does it mean substantial in terms of % of that religion? In which case it is the same problem from the other direction. Given there is only a handful of muslims or wiccans in Ireland, a single person constitutes a larger % of adherent than a single catholic.... thus giving them a disproportionate power under that law.

A fourth issue is with Muslim Extremists pushing for blasphemy laws in other jurisdictions. They point to Ireland as an example of a western country who have enacted a new law on the subject in the 20th century. Thus undermining any attempts to argue against the moves they are making. I think it was in 2009 that Pakistan proposed a blasphemy law to the human rights council that was almost verbatim a copy of ours. A country where at the time the punishment for it was death. How are we to campaign against the death penalty for people like Asia Bibi while at the same time creating our own blasphemy laws?

A fifth issue is with the inclusion of a clause on what constitutes a defense against prosecution as part of the text. Making it a step towards being one of the few (only?) laws in the country that is going towards guilty until proof of innocence, rather than innocent until proven guilty.

Sixth is that such a law gives the impression that some ideas or images should be protected from publication, critique, ridicule, mockery or discussion. No idea or concept should be above these things, especially the unsubstantiated and often harmful nonsense of religion. Very little speech, in my view, should be curtailed at all. Let alone by the state. And if and when it IS the right thing to do to curtail it, we best have very good reasons for doing so. These laws for denying the holocaust we have seen internationally for example..... are bizarre to me. And now we have laws mandating the use of gender pronouns? We can worry "where does it all stop" or we can also worry "where did we let this kind of shit start?"

Seventh is that incidents like what happened with Stephen Fry really do make a joke of our country on the international stage. And could even make it less likely that foreign personalities, stars, politicians, celebrities, thinkers or speakers will be less likely to want to come to our shores to ply their trade. And I am not sure that is what we want.

Finally as you said yourself it is ridiculous to think that we can mediate on intention here. How can one prove intention or even test for it? For example I have received, and occasionally continue to receive, everything from legal threats to death threats for an article I wrote some years ago. I can not imagine how anyone at all would go about measuring, demonstrating, and proving in a court of law what my "intentions" were at the time of writing that article.
In fairness Nozz that is funny, your experiment and article I mean.

I guess if some nutters do get annoyed about it, it just goes to show the futility of trying to have any reasonable discussion when it comes to faith v logic, because whether something is proved or disproved it is unlikely to make any difference.
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  #46  
Old 14-06-2018, 09:47 PM
BBJ BBJ is offline
 
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Originally Posted by Vindicator View Post
"the last few years there now have truly blown the bugle of a freedom from scourge, fear and repression., and the nation is beginning to breathe the sweet air of true liberty.
Really?
Alas, I doubt it.
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  #47  
Old 14-06-2018, 10:52 PM
BBJ BBJ is offline
 
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Originally Posted by Vindicator View Post
Now, now..be of good cheer.

The only attempted prosecution since 1855 was in 1995–1999,[1][47] when John Corway brought private prosecutions against three publications for coverage of the 1995 divorce referendum, specifically an article in Hot Press and two editorial cartoons,(Wiki).

How odd that a newly freed Republic would seek to secure in law a charge of Blasphemy within the newly created Republic where one might expect a defiance of such repression to be a call to liberty to protest peacefully agin any God not just call his name in vain.

It'd grand to see those who would have us still in fetters and their gnashing of teeth at their loss of power and sway over a very civil people, I believe some people call their pain "karma" at their loss, howling as if they were giving birth to stillborn hedgehog.
Being a Capricorn, I'm naturally pessimistic!
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  #48  
Old 15-06-2018, 10:18 AM
nozzferrahhtoo nozzferrahhtoo is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainSensible View Post
In fairness Nozz that is funny, your experiment and article I mean.
Comedy was indeed part of the original motivations.

Genuinely performing scientific experiments for their own merit however was another. I genuinely enjoyed doing it. Learning how to double blind myself and my process and results for example. But that tends to be the LAST motivation people even guess at, let alone believe.

The general first guess people make is to assume, 100%, that my main.... even ONLY.... motivation was to cause offence.

Their reactions to that offence are amazing. Some people have threatened my life. Others have likened my possession of consecrated hosts with phrases like "Well how would you like it if I came to your house and kidnapped your wife and daughter and kept them in my basement?". Meaning they find some level of equivalence between my possessing a CRACKER that I was FREELY given..... with the kidnap and illegal incarceration of living breathing thinking human adults and children against their will.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainSensible View Post
I guess if some nutters do get annoyed about it, it just goes to show the futility of trying to have any reasonable discussion when it comes to faith v logic, because whether something is proved or disproved it is unlikely to make any difference.
Perhaps. Sometimes I do feel despair when confronted with the kidnapping stuff above, or similar flights of unreason.

However I think some people are beyond reason and discourse. But I do not think all that many. Others SEEM to be, but if the right discourse happens, in the right way, at the right time.... minds do change. I can not make myself believe the number of people actually entirely beyond reason, is all that large.

What we do not need however is pointless laws, protecting against victimless crimes, which seek to curtail, end, or even preclude human discourse. Even if we only have the "chilling effect" and no actual prosecution ever.... that alone is a detrimental effect worthy of removing the law.
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