Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

Good Bye to the Crime of Blasphemy

8 July 2008

For immediate release


MEDIA RELEASE

Good Bye to the Crime of Blasphemy


From July 8th blasphemy will no longer be a crime in Britain. The NZ Association of Rationalists and Humanists recommends that New Zealand follows Britain’s example by removing of the crime of blasphemous libel from its law books.

The Association’s president Andrew Geard said today that "The crime of blasphemous libel gives religious doctrine special protection that other ideas and beliefs don’t have. This is clearly inconsistent with New Zealand’s Human Rights Act which outlaws discrimination based on religious belief."

The only recorded prosecution for blasphemous libel in New Zealand occurred in 1922 and was unsuccessful. Attempts to prosecute Te Papa for the Virgin in a Condom artwork in 1998 and CanWest for the "Bloody Mary" episode of the South Park TV show in 2006 were blocked by the Solicitor-General.

"There is no guarantee that the law won’t be used in the future against writers, artists, comedians, cartoonists, and other people who challenge people's beliefs and make them think about current social issues. What is ironic is that many of the religious teachings that the blasphemy law today protects were once considered blasphemous. While blasphemous libel remains in the Crimes Act it continues to be a threat to freedom of speech."

The NZ Association of Rationalists and Humanists has been serving New Zealand's non-religious community since 1927.


ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Geo-political Posturing Over China’s Cyber Hacks, Plus The Weekly Playlist

The timing was one of the weirder aspects of this week’s cyber condemnation of China by the West. Why was this piece of political theatre being staged now? China (and Russia’s) sponsoring and/or condoning of semi-state and criminal hacker groups has been known about for nigh on a decade. More particularly, Microsoft had been alerted to the flaws in its Microsoft Exchange... More>>




 
 

Government: Cabinet Accepts Turkish Authorities’ Request For The Managed Return Of Three NZ Citizens

Cabinet has agreed to the managed return of a New Zealand citizen and her two young children from Turkey, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today. The three have been in immigration detention in Turkey since crossing the border from Syria earlier this year... More>>

ALSO:

Government: Quarantine Free Travel With Australia Suspended

Quarantine Free Travel from all Australian states and territories to New Zealand is being suspended as the Covid situation there worsens, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins announced today... More>>

ALSO:


Government: New Zealand Condemns Malicious Cyber Activity By Chinese State-sponsored Actors

New Zealand has established links between Chinese state-sponsored actors known as Advanced Persistent Threat 40 (APT40) and malicious cyber activity in New Zealand. “The GCSB has worked through a robust technical attribution process in relation to this activity. New Zealand is today joining other countries in strongly condemning this malicious activity... More>>

ALSO:



NZUS Council: Welcomes Nomination Of Senator Tom Udall As US Ambassador To NZ

The NZUS Council welcomes the nomination of Senator Tom Udall to the role of US Ambassador to New Zealand and Samoa, NZUS Council executive director Jordan Small said... More>>

BusinessNZ: Visa Extensions Welcomed
BusinessNZ has welcomed the extension of some critical skill visa durations and changes to immigration systems to speed processing. Chief Executive Kirk Hope says move acknowledges advocacy by the hospitality sector, the BusinessNZ Network and others, and comes not a moment too soon.... More>>



Social Development: Government Initiatives Contribute To Fall In Benefit Numbers

Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni has welcomed the release of the June quarter Benefit Statistics which show a continuing fall in the number of people receiving a Main Benefit... More>>


 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels