Thursday, 19 February 2009

Moving closer to thoughtcrime

Raised hat to JuliaM for pointing out a Guardian report that the government is considering plans that would lead to thousands of Muslims being branded as extremists.

Among the signs that someone would be considered as an extremist is that "they argue that Islam bans homosexuality and that it is a sin against Allah".

There are no indications as to whether the writers of draft use the word "homosexuality" to refer to a practice or a preference, but many legislators don't seem to be willing to make a distinction.

But let us suppose that some Muslims do argue that even having homosexual preferences is banned by Islam, and is a sin, should they not be entitled to do so? Isn't this a basic part of freedom of speech and freedom of religion?

We don't know whether this proposal will eventually find its way into legislation or not, but the very fact that it is included in a draft is an indication that the Libertarian Party's sending of a free copy of Orwell's 1984 to every MP last year was not just a silly gesture.

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