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January 31, 2022
Government Calls Traditional Christianity ‘Hate Speech’, Asks If Citizens Follow the Law or the Bible
On January 24, the trial of Finnish Member of Parliament Paivi Rasanen and Lutheran Bishop Juhana Pohjola began. The duo is on trial for the grave injustice of writing and publishing “a pamphlet explaining Christian teachings about sex and marriage” in addition to other charges, reports The Federalist.
After explaining that the case “was not about beliefs and the Bible,” the prosecution began opening arguments by quoting verses from the Bible, describing them as “hate speech.”
Paul Coleman, a human rights lawyer with Alliance Defending Freedom International, described the trial as surreal.
“The majority of the day was about the role of the Bible in society. […] The prosecutor on more than one occasion questioned whether we in Finland follow Finnish law or the Bible, as if these things are so inherently contradictory that you have to choose one.”
“I would characterize the day as a modern-day Inquisition or heresy trial.”
One charge against Rasanen comes from a tweet she posted criticizing a Pride parade sponsored by Finland’s state church, quoting Bible verses.
An additional charge against both defendants resulted from a pamphlet covering the Christian institution of marriage, written by Rasanen and published by Pohjola, titled “Male and Female God Created.” The pamphlet “also affirms Christian teachings about the preciousness of every single human life to God.”
Outside the court, Rasanen told reporters, “The saving gospel of Jesus Christ has been given to us in the Bible. The cross of Christ shows the greatest love for both heterosexuals and homosexuals.”
In the US, lawmakers criticize the trial as blatant religious persecution. In a collective statement, Senators Marco Rubio, Josh Hawley, James Lankford, Jim Inhofe, and Mike Braun wrote, “We are greatly concerned that the use of Finnish law is tantamount to a secular blasphemy law. It could open the door for prosecution of other devout Christians, Muslims, Jews and adherents of other faiths for publicly stating their religious beliefs.”
Europe has been moving more secular for ages, but the United States is right behind them. Will this kind of attack on religious freedom come to American shores?
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