Towards the Abolition of Hate Speech Bans: A ‘Viewpoint Absolutist’ Perspective

Religious Pluralism and Human Rights (Titia Loenen & Jenny Goldschmidt, eds.), 2007

11 Pages Posted: 5 Mar 2019

See all articles by Eric Heinze

Eric Heinze

Queen Mary University of London, School of Law

Date Written: 2006

Abstract

By the mid-20th century crimes of blasphemy had been either formally abolished in Western democracies or had become dead-letter. In recent decades, however, blasphemy laws have re-emerged as hate speech bans. To be sure, seemingly anti-religious motives sometimes only thinly veil unmistakably racist or other discriminatory sentiments. However, offenses against religious doctrine, irrespective of their motives, remain fundamentally incompatible with basic principles of democratic citizenship.

Keywords: free speech, First Amendment, discrimination, human rights, religion, democracy

JEL Classification: Z10

Suggested Citation

Heinze, Eric, Towards the Abolition of Hate Speech Bans: A ‘Viewpoint Absolutist’ Perspective (2006). Religious Pluralism and Human Rights (Titia Loenen & Jenny Goldschmidt, eds.), 2007. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3339878

Eric Heinze (Contact Author)

Queen Mary University of London, School of Law ( email )

67-69 Lincoln’s Inn Fields
London, WC2A 3JB
United Kingdom

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