2 July 08
The report, if accurate, of the introduction of new laws to prevent protesters at the Catholic World Youth Day event from expressing opinions of dissent, is a scurrilous attack on the democratic system.
It is a mainstay of democracy that citizens have the inherent right to express publicly their views in a peaceful manner. The denial of this right under the pretext of preventing offence to particular groups is a specious argument.
The intended protest is neither about inciting violence nor offending individuals; it is concerned with exposing the massive harm resulting from religion and in particular the Catholic Church. It is not only a duty but also a responsibility for those who value human rights over personal religious belief to stand up and voice disapproval at such oppressive laws.
David Nicholls, president of the Atheist Foundation of Australia Inc said; “When governments enact laws or police overstep their discriminatory powers in enforcement, against the common good, the obligation upon the public is to react with civil disobedience. Most importantly, each person doing so must evaluate any action they intend and be prepared to accept the adverse consequences.”
Atheist Foundation of Australia Inc
Private Mail Bag 6
MAITLAND SA 5573
Phone: (08) 8835 2269
E-Mail: [email protected]