Denmark Passes Law to Ban Quran Burnings

    Photo: Ole Jensen/Getty Images

    The Facts

    • Denmark's parliament approved legislation on Thursday prohibiting the burning of holy books, including the Quran, in public places.

    • The bill, which criminalizes the "inappropriate treatment" of significant religious texts, was passed with 94 votes in favor and 77 in opposition within the 179-seat Folketing.


    The Spin

    Left narrative

    There are multiple civilized ways to express opinions outside of the burning of holy books. People desecrating the Quran as a protest only want to provoke violence and harm Denmark's international reputation and interests. This new law balances the Nordic nation's deep-rooted commitment to free speech with the protection of Danish national security.

    Right narrative

    This law will only have a marginal impact, as criticizing religion in other ways — including through works of art where a minor part consists of desecration — remains legal. The legislation is simply a product of "political correctness,” designed to restrain the freedom of speech.

    Narrative C

    Though burning holy texts, including the Quran, is an unsavory act, it's a slippery slope between protecting marginalized groups and infringing upon freedom of speech. Europe doesn't possess blasphemy laws for a reason; Europe must continue to facilitate a free society, and allow residents to exercise their constitutional rights.

    Nerd narrative

    There's a 50% chance that at least 20% of the global population will identify as "religiously unaffiliated" in 2050, according to the Metaculus prediction community.


    Political split

    LEFT

    RIGHT

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