A minute ago I learned on the BBC international news broadcast that a court in Russia has ordered a group of artists to pay a fine and face possible jail time. Their crime? They did an art exhibit on censorship which included pictures of Mickey Mouses’ head superimposed on Jesus’ body. They were found guilty of “inciting religious hatred” and the exhibit on censorship was censored. I feel like I could explode right now. They had some orthodox clown on the radio saying how he supports freedom of speech, BUT, you can’t insult other people. That’s not fucking freedom of speech!!!!! No! You DO NOT support freedom of speech you tyrannical asshole! Freedom of speech means people can say whatever they want (no matter how offensive) as long as they are not infringing on other’s rights! If I wanted to paint a homosexual orgy painting with all the major religious figures engaging in sodomy, then I can draw it! It is my right!
“Inciting religious hatred” is like imprisoning a rape victim because her short skirt was “inciting lust”! The artists have the right to draw those paintings! They are not criminals! If a bunch of orthodox nut cases start rioting, then THEY are the criminals. They are the ones out in the streets breaking property and hurting people, not the artists exercising their freedom of speech. Look, there are not many things in this world that are black and white issues, but free speech is one of them. Either you support it or you don’t. Either you support the right of other people to offend you or you do not. It is the foundation upon which progress is built. I have a sick feeling most people don’t support this radical idea of free speech. Fine, take it away, watch the world delve back into the dark ages. Perhaps when enough people have suffered, when enough blood has been shed, perhaps then you’ll finally understand the importance of free speech and why generations before us died to protect it.