Opposition to Sydney�s Religious Hatred Law Welcomed by Some

July 1, 2005

Source: The Church of England Newspaper


On July 1, 2005 The Church of England Newspaper reported, "An Australian bishop has praised the Premier of the Australian state of New South Wales for his decision to oppose a proposed religious hatred law, recently introduced in the state’s parliament.

The Anglican Bishop of South Sydney, the Rt Rev Robert Forsyth, said the move by New South Wales Premier Bob Carr was 'a wise and common-sense decision which should be welcomed by people who love freedom of whatever religious practice – or none at all.'

The same law, which was introduced in the Australian states of Victoria and Queensland, has resulted in the conviction of two Christian pastors who criticised Islam, Jihad and the treatment of women in Islam.

Bishop Forsyth said that although those who backed the religious vilification laws had good intentions, in practice such laws proved to be more of a threat to religious freedom than a help to it. He said that every society should ensure the right of all individuals to enjoy freedom of religion, as well as the right to critique religion."