Connect with us

Advertisement

News

Freedom of Expression Doesn’t Justify Insulting Others’ Faith – Pope Francis

Published

 on

Pope Francis Visits South Korea - Day FivePope Francis is known for giving his frank perspective on societal issues.

And this time, he is sharing his thoughts on exercising freedom of expression wisely.

He stated that while killing in the name of religion is wrong, it is equally unfair to insult other people’s faith, CNN reports.

“One cannot make war (or) kill in the name of one’s own religion…to kill in the name of God is an aberration. One cannot provoke, one cannot insult other people’s faith, one cannot make fun of faith,” he said.

He also expressed that the gift of free speech is to help the common good.

According to reports, he made these remarks while he was en route to the Philippines.

Many are speculating that his statements may be in response to the recent Charlie Hebdo terror attacks. However, the Pope did not explicitly state this.

Photo Credit: Getty Images

49 Comments

  1. Bimpe

    January 15, 2015 at 5:24 pm

    I absolutely agree. Although that doesnt justify killing in the name of God. they are both wrong. i pray for a world where we respect each other either be different faith, gender, background, colour. I pray for a world where we can all just love each other unconditionally.

    • C'est moi

      January 15, 2015 at 8:50 pm

      I can respect you and still tease you.

      Totally uncalled for if you decide to throw punches over satire.
      .
      Your freedom to swing your fist ends where my face begins…
      .
      Satire is necessary to lightheartedly challenge and expose the flaws in popular ideas for both the educated and the uninformed. As it stands faith is such an easy target, grown adults trading in santa claus and the the tooth fairy for ghostly beings. Both serve the same purpose – to keep you on good behavior when no one’s watching.

    • me

      January 16, 2015 at 6:22 am

      You must be kidding me. Even Satire has limits.

    • C'est moi

      January 16, 2015 at 3:49 pm

      @ me – you’re being satirical ha.

      The limit to satire is that one should never come to blows over it. especially not a cartoon drawing!

      on a more serious note:
      Allowing others the freedom to contradict our beliefs using satire & other means is one of the principle ways in which we gain confidence in our reasoning – the reasonable man is more confident about a view that survives scrutiny and criticism than one that has never been challenged.

      Religious belief is not exempt! – Think of the suppression by the church that the earth goes round the sun rather than vice versa.

  2. HAWTTALKWITHTOSAN

    January 15, 2015 at 5:31 pm

    This is for all those who condemn other people’s faith because they think theirs is supreme…unless you are atheist; We are all serving God

    • C'est moi

      January 15, 2015 at 8:59 pm

      no but, yeah but we’re told God isn’t an author of confusion…he wouldn’t tell one group this is my son and tell another oh no he isn’t and yet another something totally different x infinity or would he? it is all rather confusing.

    • Anon

      January 16, 2015 at 1:52 am

      We are all serving God

      We, being who? Hindus, Buddhists, Jains, Confucians, Sikhs, Taoists, Shintoists…

      The operative word being God. “We are all serving” and “upper case G” for God can’t be used together.

  3. @edDREAMZ

    January 15, 2015 at 5:38 pm

    a.k.a EDWIN CHINEDU AZUBUKO said…
    .
    Thats my pope….
    .
    .
    ***CURRENTLY IN JUPITER***

  4. Nahum

    January 15, 2015 at 5:43 pm

    This has always been my belief, just because you have freedom of speech, it does not also give you the right to insult, tear down and denigrate others. Freedom of speech comes with responsibility and it should also not be abused. You have a right to state your opinion but with that right also comes the right of reply and you may not like the response, so BE CAREFUL!!!

    • VeryAngryNigerian

      January 15, 2015 at 6:26 pm

      Sure it does….you have the right to insult or say anything with freedom of speech. However freedom of speech does not protect you from the consequences of the things you say. It’s just like you have the right to jump in front of a moving train, that don’t mean the train won’t crush you….but if you want to, knock yourself out…….pun intended 😀

  5. +Rare Gem+

    January 15, 2015 at 5:44 pm

    The world will be a better place to live in if we learn to respect others, ideology and beliefs. Do not provoke or push another to anger~

    • my sis

      January 15, 2015 at 6:00 pm

      Sadly the world is far from perfect. Most of us do not understand why the other pratctices a diff religion, we think ours is the only true way and look down on others, that’s the truth. Religious intolerance is a feat that has been on since day 1…its truly sad and grossly annoying. Stop killing pple in the name of religion. Paddle your canoe make I paddle my own.

  6. Keziah

    January 15, 2015 at 6:50 pm

    He’s absolutely right, I am all for freedom of speech and expression but there’s also a boundary that should not be crossed. I checked out the magazine and the drawings are quite offensive and insulting. It’s SATIRE.

  7. Banjo

    January 15, 2015 at 6:59 pm

    That’s a word from a wise man far better than the French chief.

  8. PACE

    January 15, 2015 at 7:13 pm

    I agree 150%. No religion should be made mockery of. TOLERANCE is key.

  9. Tee

    January 15, 2015 at 7:37 pm

    We can either have freedom or speech or not. Why have freedom of speech but restrict what people say about religion? Freedom of speech is freedom of speech, for those who practice religion of any kind you know what your beliefs are. I’m christain and I’ve learnt not to judge anybody’s religion or say mean things. In all that you do apply wisdom. Hence there are the atheist so they are gonna mock us chrisyqins all day. But we know @ the end of the day who gets the last laugh

  10. Su

    January 15, 2015 at 7:41 pm

    Hmm so all I can think about is how many times other religions have been mocked especially CHRISTIANITY! movies have been made to mock Jesus severally, cartoons, write ups, preachings, musicians, actors even the Quran makes so much reference to him and denies him to be the Son of God and says hes just a prophet and at that a prophet who will be punished for calling himself the Son of God! the Quran calls every other person who is not muslim an infidel . No one was killed for mocking Christianity! I could decide to classify this as very insulting to Christianity and is definitely a mockery of what Jesus came to say and do on this earth and blasphemy! Everyone has a RIGHT to the their opinions and expression of that opinion! What should be preached more is NO ONE HAS ANY RIGHT TO TAKE ANOTHER PERSONS LIFE! under any circumstance whatsoever except it is an immediate threat to their life. Charlie Hebdo have a write to their freaking opinions! u dont have to read their papers! I love the fact taht even through the valley of the shadow of death! They fear not1

    • Oluwaseun

      January 15, 2015 at 9:45 pm

      ….and you’ve read the Quran to know it speaks against Jesus Christ. Problem with ignorant people like you is that you don’t read but listen to “dem say” and then come up in public to defend it blindly, foolishly and ignorantly. However, Muslims believe as much in Jesus Christ (Isa) as christians do. The difference in believe is in him being referred to as God and the other as a prophet. Moreso, the old testament never referenced Jesus Christ as God. neither was Jesus Christ Christian nor Mohammed Muslim. They were both prophets of God. Christianity and Islam are faiths formed and coined by followers of both prophets.

    • Su

      January 16, 2015 at 3:17 am

      Oluwaseun, you are obviously the very ignorant and I have to add dumb cos I know what book you read in a heart beat. You obviously have not read the Bible so no need to drag with you. I can’t even!!!!! Let me just say that Jesus Christ is NOT a prophet in the Bible by no means. He was reduced to being a prophet in the Quran.

    • peaches77

      January 16, 2015 at 6:05 am

      Oluwaseun, did you even read Su’s post or you just want to make an argument. Now re-read it slowly with an open mind.

    • chu girl

      January 16, 2015 at 1:39 pm

      i must say this with all honesty……… that person you described as Jesus in ur post ISN’T my Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. and for the records you are truly ignorant. does ur Quran categorically declare Jesus Christ as the way, the truth and the life and by only Him that you can have access to eternal life? if NO, please stop exposing your ignorance with so much audacity, it hurts.

  11. dessy

    January 15, 2015 at 7:51 pm

    To me, the muslims are too touchy….my problem is which God tells his worshippers to punish humans that says or do things that are derogatory to him….that alone signify the begining of violence that is usually associated with islam. God should be able to avenge offences against him.
    These muslims calls christians infidels and all sorts, no one cares what they say or take it upon self to kill them for it…..but say anything against them…hell is let loose……how do one live without provoking Muslims? The simple answer is “become a muslim”
    Peace indeed!!!……. mchewwwww!!!!!!!

  12. olu

    January 15, 2015 at 8:00 pm

    You can say whatever you want..as long as you know you can also get knocked the F up for saying squat.
    Free speech is directly proportional, parallel and perpendicualr to free repercussion.

  13. MOSIWOMEKA

    January 15, 2015 at 8:54 pm

    True, freedom of speech doesn’t mean you should talk ill of someone’s faith who doesn’t believe what you believe. I know that I take it personal when someone says something bad about JESUS or my pentecostal faith. Its well sha. ……
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    Mosi Tash,
    @Mosi_Tash_Jazzy

  14. C'est moi

    January 15, 2015 at 9:02 pm

    BELLA, you omitted the part God’s rep on earth said:

    ‘If my good friend Dr Gasparri says a curse word against my mother, then a punch awaits him. It’s normal.”
    .
    To which Piers Morgan responded –
    .
    “Since when did turning the other cheek turn into punching someone in the face, Pope Francis? And does that mean it’s OK to shoot them too?”
    .
    Appalling comment by the pope.

    • Anon

      January 16, 2015 at 2:20 am

      What a contradiction from the Pope. On one hand, he’s abhorring violence. On the other hand he’s saying it’s okay to be violent (a punch awaits him.) We await the fall out from this. I bet you there will be a retraction.

    • Warri Boy

      January 16, 2015 at 10:20 am

      I agree with you on this one . The pope is always trying to be politically correct . He has to take a stand for something I must say .

  15. signature

    January 15, 2015 at 9:41 pm

    im sure u hav something or someone u feel strongly abt n if someone comes along to condemn, make mockery, or insult dat which u hold dear, i think d subject of being touchy is well on its way out d door. Wat we are preaching here is respect for other pple’s religion, wether u think dey are touchy or not.

  16. Oluwaseun

    January 15, 2015 at 9:52 pm

    Is there really anything like free speech or just propaganda by the west. Why is America still on the tail for the “whistle blower”?

    There are always consequences for everything we do and utter, including free speech. Else libel, blasphemy and the rest wouldn’t exist. They preach free speech but forget to preach freedom of consequences.

    • thatikwerrebabe

      January 16, 2015 at 9:14 am

      Come off bro, there’s no excuse for killing. Muslim makes caricature of Jesus Christ and Christainity, yet nobody have raised an eyebrow. Its high time Muslims learn tolerance, everything is not about, war killings and jihad.

    • chu girl

      January 16, 2015 at 1:45 pm

      thank you joor, I bet the word ‘ignore’ is alien to them in this context. besides just maybe Allah can’t fight for himself…. mscheew. p.s when you truly know the God you serve, you won”t be exercising muscles over every issue. #calmdownandservemyLordandSaviourJesusChrist

  17. Y

    January 15, 2015 at 10:08 pm

    If it’s not from God, it is from Satan. I cannot respect religious practices from Satan. I can respect the people, but I cannot respect what they are doing.

  18. Ilamosi

    January 15, 2015 at 10:25 pm

    pope talk now all of u will turn it upside down, turnin the other cheek means there’s no limit to forgiveness……. Take note he gave u an example of what the lay man Wud if his /her mother was insulted. Judge pple. Freedom of speech preachers pls don’t start here go to chibok and exercise ur power

  19. amh

    January 15, 2015 at 11:26 pm

    True talk.finally someone with sense. I do not condone the killings. But the lack of respect fir other religion is bothering. The western morals has decayed and gone to the drain. No respect whatsoever. Its time people learn how to be tolerant and respectful to other beliefs.jesus christ has been mocked and derided and battered by the maggots in hollywood. Its not like the christians are not angry but we decided to be quiet by it. Enough of their insolence jokes.

    • chu girl

      January 16, 2015 at 1:52 pm

      my point exactly!!! “Its not like the christians are not angry but we decided to be quiet by it”… we know who we serve so we don’t have to get angry and take lives over such fallacious statements about Jesus Christ.. lives we can”t create in all our worldly wisdom. its inexcusable no matter what!! I mean ok how about the innocent lives at the store in France that were killed as well? Islamic fanatics shld take a cue and do likewise jare. bunch of cowards.

  20. ks

    January 16, 2015 at 12:36 am

    It is gratifying to see Pope validate my position on Charlie Hebdo Paris terrorist attack.
    The world will continue to remain an unsafe place to live so long as some people feel their values, culture and tradition define the minimun global standards against which others who don’t subscribe thereto must be evaluated. For 500yrs there was nothing “unconscionable” about slavery & trans-atlantic slave trade because it was a lucrative business beneficial to the Europeans; it only acquired the toga of “a crime against humanity” when the same Europeans deemed it fit. I am against terrorism in any form but your rights stop where others’ rights begin. Let sleeping dog lie!!

  21. Sem

    January 16, 2015 at 8:28 am

    The pope disappointed me big time. I would say this for all to hear no god or God is worthy of anybody’s (be it a human being or animal) praise, glorification or worship if such a god or God cannot fight his own battles, defend his name or stand up for himself and requires his followers to fight for him, defend his name or kill in his name. A true god or God does not need his followers to fight for him…I call out every christian, muslim or even traditionalist if you are sure of your god or God don’t fight for him let him fight for himself afterall you praise and worship such a god or God because it is presumed that he/He is the Almighty, all-powerful. Why is it always the muslims that believe that they must fight and kill for their god/God at the slightest provocation if they are so sure of Allah let Allah whom the claim is the greatest to fight for himself. You go to a Sango shrine and insult Sango, Sango Olukoso himself would strike you dead before his followers can do anything or go to the shrine of Esu Laalu and insult him, I guarantee you would be struck by Esu Laalu without the aid of his followers. Where don’t christians kill everytime Jesus is mocked and I can tell you Jesus is mocked on a daily if not per second basis. The Hindus don’t kill in the name of their religion neither do the Buddhists. Yet it is always the muslims who always feel offended. Can’t the christians feel offended for being referred to as infidels or when Jesus is mocked to that they kill who is mocking them. Samething with other religions. Afterall Ogun worshippers can equally feel offended for being mocked about their faith yet they don’t come out and do mass killings they would simple curse you and let their god/God do the remaining. Thats how it should be if you are so sure of your god/God. Free speech is exactly what it is free speech. You have no right to take someone’s life because you feel offended by the statement someone has made about your religion, faith or your being for that matter. Do you know how many hurtful things have been said and are still being said about the black race, the African culture, African religion and so many other things, that does not mean that Africans should go about killing everybody who has hurt them. Please Islam is the most intolerable religion out there simple and the crazy thing about it is that it is the youngest of the major religions out there yet it cannot tolerate the religions it met on ground thats why they have this under-dog mentality of everyone is against them.

    • Warri Boy

      January 16, 2015 at 10:23 am

      Yeah Sam . the is a question I’ve been asking myself . Why don’t we leave the fight for God ?

    • dessy

      January 16, 2015 at 12:23 pm

      Exactly my point. …A God that depend on its worshippers to fight for him isnt worthy of worship
      ALL MUSLIMS SHOULD TAKE NOTE!!!!

    • chu girl

      January 16, 2015 at 1:55 pm

      bless ur heart Sem…… wise words spoken. let Allah in all his ‘awesomeness’ fight his battle himself jare….

  22. Sem

    January 16, 2015 at 8:35 am

    The pope disappointed me big time. I would say this for all to hear no god or God is worthy of anybody’s (be it a human being or animal) praise, glorification or worship if such a god or God cannot fight his own battles, defend his name or stand up for himself and requires his followers to fight for him, defend his name or kill in his name. A true god or God does not need his followers to fight for him…I call out every christian, muslim or even traditionalist if you are sure of your god or God don’t fight for him let him fight for himself afterall you praise and worship such a god or God because it is presumed that he/He is the Almighty, all-powerful. Why is it always the muslims that believe that they must fight and kill for their god/God at the slightest provocation if they are so sure of Allah let Allah whom the claim is the greatest to fight for himself. You go to a Sango shrine and insult Sango, Sango Olukoso himself would strike you dead before his followers can do anything or go to the shrine of Esu Laalu and insult him, I guarantee you would be struck by Esu Laalu without the aid of his followers. Where don’t christians kill everytime Jesus is mocked and I can tell you Jesus is mocked on a daily if not per second basis. The Hindus don’t kill in the name of their religion neither do the Buddhists. Yet it is always the muslims who always feel offended. Can’t the christians feel offended for being referred to as infidels or when Jesus is mocked to that they kill who is mocking them. Samething with other religions. Afterall Ogun worshippers can equally feel offended for being mocked about their faith yet they don’t come out and do mass killings they would simple curse you and let their god/God do the remaining. Thats how it should be if you are so sure of your god/God. Free speech is exactly what it is free speech. You have no right to take someone’s life because you feel offended by the statement someone has made about your religion, faith or your being for that matter. Do you know how many hurtful things have been said and are still being said about the black race, the African culture, African religion and so many other things, that does not mean that Africans should go about killing everybody who has hurt them. Please Islam is the most intolerable religion out there simple and the crazy thing about it is that it is the youngest of the major religions out there yet it cannot tolerate the religions it met on ground thats why they have this under-dog mentality of everyone is against them. I remember when I was in secondary where I thoroughly beat up a student for saying me father is a bastard and when I told my father he was furious that I fought and he asked me” Are you the father they referred to as a bastard? Don’t you think I can fight for myself?” I learnt a big lesson that day of not using my fist unless there is imminent danger to my life or the lives of my loved ones and or my property even the law justifies that as a good reason to use violence and thats what is termed self defense.

  23. KKeema

    January 16, 2015 at 9:53 am

    Firstly, no one has the right under any religion to kill anybody and i totally condemn the Paris killing. but the plain truth is that freedom of speech is limited. if it is not limited libel and defamation would not exist in law. some of the comments here makes me realize that most of us are shallow and do not take our time to read and carry out research rather we base our opinion and judgement on what is trending in social media. As Muslims, we believe in the bible and in Jesus christ.. and there is no where in the Qur’an from the first chapter to the last chapter where Jesus Christ was ever condemned or ridiculed. The English version of the Quran is available online and going through it will help a lot in correcting a lot of misinformation around.

  24. shola

    January 16, 2015 at 10:35 am

    Bella naija pls do not post of dis idiotic bigot called olu or whatever his name is.what d hell do u mean by she can get knocked d F up are u mad?so u ar happy people from ur religion are killing people n behaving barbaric?u must be an animal I’m sure u are one of those fanatical fools.u better carry ur killings to urself and followers rubbish.bcos everybody has bben keeping quiet for u guys.how many times do u guys abuse Christians and JESUS?do Christians kill u guys?just get out and go to hell already cos all dis nonesense would soon stop.bella u must post my comment cos enough is enough for all dis ppl thinking dey can jus talk and kill people anyhow Mtcheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeewwwwwwwwwwww

  25. Splendid

    January 16, 2015 at 10:37 am

    @ sem did you even assimilate what Pope said before saying that he disappointed you big time. Disappoint you in what way. Did you read where he said killing in the name of religion is wrong and to kill in the name of God is an aberration or you do not understand the meaning of aberration.It is really wrong to insult or abuse someone religion in the name of freedom of speech please.

    • Sem

      January 16, 2015 at 4:23 pm

      @ Splendid I did read what the Pope said unfortunately it is you who has used the little intelligence you have in assimilating what I wrote up there cause if you had enough intelligence to understand what I wrote you would realize that I said free speech is what it is free speech. If you are offended that someone hurts your religion or faith take a peaceful route to register your displeasure, go to court to seek redress, do anything other than rush to kill people because you are offended. Do you know how many caricatures of Africans litter the western world? Do you see Africans killing every European or American on sight. Do you know how Africans are insulted for just being Africans? Do you see them bring out AK47 assault rifles to kill people. Do you know how many times Jesus is mocked by all? Do you know how the muslims refer to christians as infidels? Do you see christians kill every muslim because of that? So please “Splendid” keep quiet and allow the adults to talk. I’m sure if I find out now you may be a catholic that may be why you feel so touchy about the Pope or are you one of those christians who follow their men of god blindly…

  26. me

    January 16, 2015 at 1:01 pm

    I have a story that comes to my mind each time, I hear someone killed for a supposedly ‘god’. Sometime when I was younger, I had a disagreement with a classmate which rapidly evolved to exchange of words. I mocked her and called her ‘olodo’, my classmates laughed, she returned the mockery but this time she insulted my father, she said my father was so fat, and had pot belly like a pregnant woman, I laughed and laughed , i retorted that my father is a rich man and that how rich men look, i asked her if she didn’t know it was poverty that made her own father thin, i mocked her further and told her, her dad’s job was for women since her dad was in the same line with my mum, outraged she threw back her own missile she told me my mum was so thin, that she looked like an old woman..That did the trick, it was true what the poor little girl had said, what she didn’t know was that my mum was not feeling fine. Enraged I rushed her, hit her kept hitting her with a vicious ferocity till i felt blood in my hands, my other classmates ran and called a teacher, they put both of us in the school bus, and drove her to a clinic then to her dad’s office, the man joined us to my mum’s office. Inside her office she was seated looking frail and weak, when she saw me, she knew it was fight again, she apologized to the man, and told them to leave me with her, she tried reaching for her cane where she usually kept it but she was too tired. In a tired voice she asked me, ‘Why do you always fight when I am insulted? It was the 3rd time that period” I answered in my childish way cos you cant fight for yourself, she laughed and asked me ‘Why do you think I cant fight for myself?” And I answered, “cos you re ill, you cant even flog me”. she kept quiet because she was sad, she was tired.I didn’t return to school that day.
    That is the end of my story.

    • Mz Socially Awkward...

      January 16, 2015 at 2:00 pm

      Hello me, thank you for your story and I thought it was very profound.

      Using it as a mirror to view the real issues which led to the Charlie Hebdo massacres, I agree with everyone who’s said that free speech has now become the handy excuse needed to taunt and disrespect certain faiths that some may not understand. And at the same time, those of us who practise whatever faith we’ve chosen can defend ourselves against the weapon of free speech, without responding with violence or murder. Protecting your mother from ridicule was the right step to take as a daughter (or son?) who clearly loved and respected that woman who gave birth to you but physically assaulting someone else because you believed, in your heart, that would have been her preferred response if she’d had the strenght to was very ill-conceived. She would probably have preferred a peaceful solution to the exchange of words with that little girl, while your own belief was that fighting was the only answer.

      And that’s what seems to spur on a lot of religious violence, that speed to kill (when you can’t create an ant, you rush to kill a human being. Imagine the effontry) because maybe some believe that God can’t fight for Himself and so they have to quickly do it for Him everytime the basis their faith is insulted. By no means should anyone roll over in the face of dissent and not take every opportunity to explain and argue about what forms the basis of that belief but if the insults continue, let’s not even lie about the real reason for violent retaliation – it’s because YOU were offended, not because of God.

  27. chu girl

    January 16, 2015 at 1:44 pm

    thank you joor, I bet the word ‘ignore’ is alien to them in this context. besides just maybe Allah can’t fight for himself…. mscheew. p.s when you truly know the God you serve, you won”t be exercising muscles over every issue. #calmdownandservemyLordandSaviourJesusChrist

  28. zeezee

    January 17, 2015 at 10:30 pm

    I love how bellanaija did not make this article derogatory of the pope, like other blogs and Piers Morgan have.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Tangerine Africa

Star Features

css.php