Monday, July 9, 2012

Faithful Get Offended... Again

Recently I wrote about a case of a bad "blasphemy law" in Poland (well, there is no "good" blasphemy law in my opinion, since they all infringe on people's freedom of speech in the name of someone unvalidated opinion), and this week brings us another case, this time from India (thanks to the New Scientist).

This particular case has been brewing for a few months, but finally, it is getting attention it deserves in the "mainstream" media, not just in the skeptic and rational circles. Senal Anamaruku, a skeptic from India, is accused of "hurting religious feelings" by exposing a purported miracle. The case is very straightforward: people believe in a miracle, they are swindled by others, who are trying to make money, someone exposes the fraud (intentional, or not, it's irrelevant) and gets blamed for "hurt feelings" of those who prefer to cling to irrational beliefs at all costs.

The main point to learn from this case, is of course, freedom of speech. And someone's opinion, is, and always should be, protected by this basic freedom, even if others don't agree and even if it goes against people beliefs.

There is also an important nugget of wisdom by Senal:
Once trapped into irrationalism, they become more incapable of mastering reality. It is a vicious circle, like an addiction. They become vulnerable to exploitation by astrologers, godmen, dubious pseudo-psychologists, corrupt politicians and the whole mega-industry of irrationalism.
Great point and worth repeating every day, when someone says "what's the harm?"