(I love the quote from Thomas Jefferson on his t-shirt, I don't think it means what he thinks it does)
Now I’m not well versed in US law so I don’t know why these men were not allowed to distribute the Gospel of John. I have in a previous post stated the bible should be treated just like any other piece of literature and this works both ways, if somebody is allowed to distribute any form of information then biblical literature should be allowed too. Personally I feel if you are promoting information of any kind in a non-intrusive manner then it should be allowed, the only sort of leafleting not permitted should be when the writings are inflammatory; and it was this sort of picketing which marred 2012’s festival.
Calling Islam a religion of blood and murder and referring to Mohammed as a pervert is clearly provocative, and I wonder how the bible-believers would feel if Muslims started handing out segments of the Qu’ran at a Christian festival and followed that up with placards insulting Christianity and Jesus. Somehow I don’t think they’d be such ardent advocates of free speech then. In each blog post so far I’ve generally had a strong opinion one way or the other but on this one I am not too sure. Should the Christians be allowed to distribute biblical literature? Is calling Mohammed a pervert and declaring Islam a religion of blood and murder an act of free speech or hate speech? (Hate speech is criminalised in most of Europe). And isn’t it interesting that the police arrested they guys handing out the Gospel of John yet allowed an inflammatory protest to take place which in my view is a worse offence. So if you have read this to the end I would love to know what people think.