Respect for institutions reinforces the power of those who already hold it; the democratic impulse is to reduce the power of those who already hold it. The former had a straightforward realizable goal, the abolition of slavery. The left these days has no such simple, feasible program. As readers of this blog ought to painfully aware, there is no clear-cut, doable program on order as a global replacement for the current system.
Various cults and movements dawned and dwindled over time. In this respect, the Roman Empire was civilized, tolerant 6 and peaceful as much as was possible, given how many problems with Human governance had not yet been resolved.
But occasionally the mood changed, especially when the growth of atheism throughout the empire offended someone with enough power to react. The reason given was that he had scoffed at the Eleusinian Mysteries. Religions that followed - Christianity and then Islamno longer tolerated a plurality of worship and had long-lasting negative effects on religious belief for a long period of time.
It wasn't until the advent of Human Rights that the balance was restored. Christianity austria christianity denmark greece ireland italy netherlands poland UK Christendom has reacted in mixed ways to free speech.
Countries that were historically Christian have often censored whatever mediums established churches could control. The British Board of Film Censors was much-criticized for its Christian bias since its founding in when it banned film-makers from directly depicting Christ at all.
Many other films were similarly curbed and prohibited for infringing upon Christian sensibilities. These bans lasted decades. Some similar restrictions existed in America too; liberalisation began in the s but that decade still saw Spanish actor Enrique Irazoqui 15 months hard labor in Spain for portraying Jesus in Aside from film and television entertainment in the 20th century, Christian institutions also reacted badly to other historical innovations in mass media.
Christian authorities burned and banned the first English-language Bible the Tyndale Bible that was destined for the masses because it would replace the Latin ones that only rare educated priests could read. They feared the masses would come to question clergy and debate scripture for themselves. There were warning signs that Christianity would take the route of oppressor where it could: But Christian censorship didn't last and after several hundred years of censorship Westerners in most countries can view a full spectrum of portrayals of Jesus exists on film, and read and write whatever books they wish, with no effective religious groups opposing their appearance.
But progress isn't yet absolute. In Greece in three actors were arrested for playing parts in a play that featured a gay Jesus 10 and in " GreeceIreland or Polandblasphemy laws allowing fines and imprisonment may lead to prosecution or have a deterrent effect on journalists, academics, artists and other citizens which may amount to self-censorship" Thankfully however, Europe in general recovered from its era of Christian theocracy.
A few countries such as AustriaDenmarkItaly and the Netherlands still have blasphemy laws but they are no longer used The UK 's blasphemy law - famous for its disuse - was abolished in after a Christian pressure group tried to revitalise it in their fight against homosexuality Now that modern democracies are more careful to avoid discrimination of grounds of religion, most democracies no longer allow established churches to maintain biased censorship controls.
Islam islam The concepts of free speech and freedom of belief are not acceptable to Islamic states. Their concept of blasphemy is absolute: They are allowed to preach to others, but, not the other way around.
Their concept of "defamation of religion" boosts the idea of blasphemy to such as extent that many other rights are trampled. It includes some very heavy-handed restrictions on access to the Internet.
Even in the 21st century, printed material and books are censored on their religious and scientific content if it is deemed to be "unIslamic".
Simple things such as TV dramas do not escape the religious censors Pakistan is infamous for the frequency at which people are arrested under its blasphemy laws Medieval-minded Muslims do not restrict their wrath to those who actually believe the same way they do.
Salmon Rushdie is famous as a victim of Islamic international censorship, now having spent many years in hiding as a result of publishing a work of fiction that featured Muhammad.
Anywhere on the Internet and across the world, individuals can become the focus of angry imams.
The Internet has partially enabled Muslims in strict countries to obtain more information about the world, but, it has also opened up the world to the demands of strict Muslims.
What might be a small-scale and meaningless act, which harms no-one, can be magnified to an International incident beyond all reasonableness, if it happens to be something that angers Muslims: Was it the massacre of peaceful demonstrators in Damascus?Arguments from political equality.
So the arguments go, members of a polis are of equal moral worth (this is one of the axioms of many forms of liberalism). So, their views about contested issues should be weighted the same. We are NOT "sovereign citizens" or any other convenient stereotype or label a corrupt government uses to slander those whistleblowers such as us who insist on a law.
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Brain Pickings remains free (and ad-free) and takes me hundreds of hours a month to research and write, and thousands of dollars to sustain..
If you find any joy and value in what I do, please consider becoming a Sustaining Patron with a recurring monthly donation of your choosing, between a cup of tea and a good lunch. While arguments against democracy are often taken by advocates of democracy as an attempt to maintain or revive traditional hierarchy and autocratic rule, Criticism of democracy's outcome Against Democracy and Equality: The European New Right, Arktos Media Ltd, Instrumental Arguments against Democracy.
Not all instrumental arguments favor democracy. Plato Each of these three arguments can be questioned.
On the democratic argument, it simply isn’t clear why it is necessary to democratic equality to justify ones views on terms that others can accept. Against the liberty and equality.