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Tuesday, November 15, 2005

 

Ake Green

This came today from the Alliance Defense Fund. Anyone care to comment?

This is about Pastor Ake Green, the Swedish pastor facing imprisonment for preaching a sermon on Bible and homosexual behavior. Argued before the Swedish Supreme Court last Wednesday, November 9th, this case has serious ramifications worldwide.As we told you, ADF sent chief counsel Benjamin Bull to Sweden to assist with last Wednesday’s trial. Unlike U.S. Supreme Court oral argument, this was an actual trial where Pastor Green was called to testify and grilled by the prosecuting attorney.

Ben reports:“Pastor Green’s trial before the Swedish Supreme Court was one of the most remarkable things I’ve ever seen. It was surreal. The case should have been called Sweden v.The Bible. It was like a cross between George Orwell’s 1984 and a Stalin Soviet show trial. It was hard to believe that this was happening in a “developed” Western country. The entire case was televised live in Sweden and Parliament stopped to watch the proceedings.The prosecutor made amazing arguments. He repeatedly mocked the Word of God. He ridiculed Biblical texts on homosexual behavior. The prosecutor asked Pastor Green several times what version of the Bible he was using. When Pastor Green politely replied that he used the New International Version, the prosecutor replied that Pastor Green was using a ‘bad translation’ and to ‘get a new Bible’ – one that does not question homosexual behavior. I sat in amazement as a government prosecutor was telling a minister to use another Bible translation. It was like a pastor telling the government that they need to use another law book. This was a case where the state was trying to dictate and reshape theology to fit its own agenda. The prosecutor demanded that the court convict Pastor Green so he would be an example to deter other pastors from preaching what the Bible says about homosexual behavior. He did concede – quite amazingly – that it is still legal to publish such Bibles in Sweden (for now). The radical homosexual activists demand that Pastor Green be made an example as the first person to be prosecuted under the ‘hate speech’ law since it added 'sexual orientation' in 2003.

Throughout the trial, the justices were almost completely silent. Percy Bratt, Pastor Green’s defense attorney – whom we helped prepare the day before at a moot court – did a fabulous job. He also mentioned the brief that ADF had filed and another we funded on behalf of Focus on the Family and the Family Research Council – and the chief justice acknowledged that he had read the brief and found it to be helpful.All people of faith need to continue to be in prayer for this decision – as three out of four people in Sweden (per a poll) believe that Pastor Green should be sent to prison for simply preaching the uncensored Gospel. If Pastor Green is convicted, it will open the floodgates – and the same thing will be happening in the United States and Canada – sooner than you think. It will be a precedent in international law that pastors can be targeted and prosecuted for engaging in ‘hate crimes’ and we will soon see this cited in American courts. This case must be won and it must be defended.” Please continue to be in prayer for Pastor Green and for this decision – which is expected in 3-4 weeks.

Comments:
From what I've read about it, I think that the Swedes are going over the line. I'll defend the right of even bigots like Fred Phelps to preach what he wants.
 
I guess Sweden does not have freedom of speech. I think this is what worries conservatives about hate speech/crimes laws.
 
Yes, but in the US we do have freedom of speech. We have the First Amendment. Say all the nasty things you want. Expect to be disagreed with, maybe even shunned, but not prosecuted.

Boo
 
"...in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity..."

The First, apparently, was needed to help spell that out in the U.S.

I'm not sure many Swedes would disagree with the opening statement. They plainly have a different idea of what is needed to insure domestic tranquility and secure the blessings of liberty.

Slandering an individual is against the law (and not covered by the First, I might add). The Swedish Parliament also passed a law against slandering groups of people. Someone making similar comments about, say, Pentecostals would find themselves similarly situated.

For those amused by all things hypocritical... you may already know that Green was defended by dear old Fred Phelps. Then Phelps slandered the Swedish Royal Family in his typically crude manner. (do not click here or here if you get the vapors over rude words).

Green's response?... outrage.

Speaking to The Local, Green has told of his distress that the website is using his name in this way:

"I think it is appalling that people say things like that, it is extremely unpleasant."

Green said that he has contacted newspapers in the United States to distance himself from the comments on the website. He added that he is surprised that authorities in the United States have not intervened. "This harms Christianity," he said.


(emphasis mine)

Did you get that -- Green wants the authorities to curtail the comments made by Phelps about the Swedish Royals... Yeah, a real icon for unlimited free speech.

Hence, there may be some wisdom in a law that bans all such slander. I fear it would not be equally and evenly enforced, but Sweden would probably make as good an effort as is possible.

And remind me again how free speech relates to the Federal obscenity laws?

(Sweden also leaves both the U.S. and Australia for dead on freedom of the press.)
 
""...in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity..."

The First, apparently, was needed to help spell that out in the U.S."

You're thinking of the Preamble to the Constitution, not the First Amednment. I think.

Point being, nobody in the US has to worry about anyone taking away our sacred right to anti-gay speech.

BTW, did you know that Dr. Throckmorton once shot a man just to watch him die? It's true. And by "it's true" I mean "it's false." It's a lie. A horrible, filthy, non-Constitutionally-protected lie.

Boo
 
Urgh, yesss... it's the Preamble (or, "opening statement"). I'm not confused, on that anyway.

That's why I mentioned the First was -- apparently -- needed to clarify how those noble sentiments may be achieved.

Amendments always refer back to something. Kind of like, well, durh :)

And ah-ha! I see you too have been to the Judith Reisman School of Writing, but not yet graduated.

In the final few classes it will be revealed that the simple putting of "?" on the end of an outrageous lie makes it... a question, not slander.

"The question needs to be answered. Is Boo, in fact, really an international drug-runner? So far she has never given a straight answer to that question, and as a concerned parent I have a right to know."

BTW -- and not unrelated -- has anyone ever read the Constitution of the former Soviet Union? As a promise note, it was magnificent. Chock full of all sorts of wonderful verbage about freedom, liberty and rights.

Discuss: "But not worth the paper it was written on because?" (50 words or less)
 
To be fair tho, Kinsey was a quack. Actually, pretty much all of "sexology" from Kinsey through Money and Blanchard etc. is 99.9% bunk.

I refuse to answer allegations of international drug smuggling, on the grounds that I am too frickin fabulous.
 
And I deny that I shot anyone for the reasons alleged.
 
Boo,

Do you have any evidence that Kinsey was a quack? Apart from Reisman that is...

I tend to see him as an explorer. He was (in recent timeline) the first to bother asking, instead of speculating. He tabulated the data, instead of merely writing a moralistic ersion of the way the World should be. This, in 1948, was a major breakthrough (as was, his scale; as a way of conceptualizing sexuality). His interviewing techniques were radical for the day, but are now the standard approach.

Knowing -- at least -- that America is "to the East" is a big help to those that follow.

It is also fascinating that his estimate of 4% of the male population... has been (largely) confirmed time and time again.

Good guess? Or was he on to something?
 
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