20th April 2012

“It's very important to smack down every attack on free speech and secularism when they appear, because religious fanatics are getting louder and crazier and more violent, and capitulating only energises them.”

Graham Linehan

10 Responses to “20th April 2012”

  1. archaeopteryx Says:

    I agree – trying to placate anti-secularists doesn’t work.

    Also, Mr Linehan is the co-creator of the wonderful television series Father Ted, which did much to undermine the untouchability of the roman catholic church in Ireland. A religiously-inclined acquaintance of mine once described the show – quite seriously – as the work of the devil!

  2. Sinjin Smythe Says:

    Religious belief has undermined everything that potentially might provide relief from suffering, cure from illness, and foster growth in character of individuals for a exceedingly long time.

    The time to depend on religious belief to “save” or otherwise assist humanity in any fashion has long since past.

    The time for humanity to step out into the light of day, to realize religion isn’t capable of fulfilling its promises, and to dismiss all religion as bad answers to life’s questions is long overdue.

    It is simply time for all humans to grow up.

    If there is an optimistic view of “religious fanatics getting louder” it might be something similar to the last dying flips and turns of a fish out of water for too long, moments before its head is chopped off, then filet’d, fried, and consumed by the hungry future.

  3. Xhim Says:

    The thing that worries me here is: doesn’t “smack[ing] down every attack on free speech” come dangerously close to being an attack on free speech?

  4. Dan Says:

    Xhim,
    Let me get this straight – you agree that we should respect everyone’s right to free speech, AND we should allow the right to disrespect some peoples’ rights to free speech?!?!

    Wow. You have no problems then with hypocrisy, hm?

  5. Jeff Says:

    No, Dan, Xhim is quite clearly of the school of thought that says, “I may hate everything that you say and stand for, but I will give my life to protect your right to say and stand for those things.” A school in which I heartily join. However, I think that the kind of “smack[ing] down” which Mr. Lineham refers to is the kind that comes with a rebuttal, not the denial of their right to be wrong at the top of their voices.

    In that sense, I support Mr. Lineham’s thesis completely.

  6. Defiantnonbeliever Says:

    I agree with the quote, and think all free speech advocates should assist or they show that they are of the enabling camp that by inaction encourage those who would censor rational thought and behavior. ‘Smacking’ them down as in strong negative messages, of all non violent types(mockery, reasoned anger, disgust at repression, etc.) are needed to prevent the insidious message creep that censorship turns to more violent coercion, repression, and terrorism.
    Well said Sinjin.

  7. Defiantnonbeliever Says:

    Sinjin- can I quote you on that? Would you want it to be autonomous or credited?

  8. Defiantnonbeliever Says:

    anonymous, darn spell check x-(

  9. Dan Says:

    Jeff,
    Really? Because Xhim seemed to say that we should refrain from all out criticism of attacks on free speech.

  10. Defiantnonbeliever Says:

    The right to heresy is the only ‘sacred’, perhaps. Isn’t science built on the right to ‘heresy’ the ‘accepted known’? Of course people should be allowed to criticize free speech, and equally they should expect to be subject to it. The battles of science are not easily won nor above challenge.