August 4, 2010

International Blasphemy Day, 2010

This crime called blasphemy was invented by priests for the purpose of defending doctrines not able to take care of themselves.

Robert Green Ingersoll
BlasphemyPeople are always asking me how I am planning to celebrate some obscure occasion or another, and I often find myself saying I would have if I had heard anything about it until it was far too late to do anything about it. I accept some of the responsibility for this - I'm chronically disorganized and not always very observant. But I think it is equally true that some of these occasions are publicized quite poorly (if at all). I think that International Blasphemy Day should be an exception. It is too important.

International Blasphemy Day is September 30. It is an international campaign to promote free expression, and it focuses on the sort of free expression that it most often curtailed.
Blasphemy Day International is a campaign seeking to establish September 30th as a day to promote free speech and to stand up in a show of solidarity for the freedom to challenge, criticize, and satirize religion without fear of murder, litigation, or reprisal.
This campaign, supported by the Center for Inquiry, is not just for antitheists; it is for anyone who believes that religion should not be immune from criticism. It is for anyone who supports the right to express disagreement with others on matters of religion.

Here is how Justin Trottier, executive director of the Ontario chapter of the Center for Inquiry, put it in an interview last year:
We're not seeking to offend, but if in the course of dialogue and debate, people become offended, that's not an issue for us. There is no human right not to be offended.
For those of you on Facebook, check out the campaign's Facebook page. And for those who avoid Facebook like the plague, you can find more information on the Center for Inquiry's Campaign for Free Expression.

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