NPR has a story about recent arrests for blasphemy in Greece that I wrote about when they happened. The first was a scientist named Philippos Loizos who dared to make fun of a dead Greek Orthodox monk and the second was against the director and cast of a performance of the Terrence McNally play Corpus Christi. While most European countries got rid of their blasphemy laws, Greece retains theirs and is now using them again:
But in the 20th century, Nash adds, most European countries took action to separate church and state and phased out blasphemy laws.
In Greece, the Orthodox Church remains powerful, and its opinions about blasphemy hold sway. But the church does not get involved with the law, says Haris Konidaris, a spokesman for Archbishop Ieronymos of Greece.
Well, many of your priests were part of a mob that attacked the theater where that play was being performed:
Christian activists have pushed prosecutors to make arrests on blasphemy charges in the past.
And in the past year, the neofascist Golden Dawn party has also called for such arrests during speeches in the Parliament.
Yannis Ktistakis, a human-rights attorney, says the blasphemy laws fit into their agenda. “It’s the political agenda of nationalism,” he says. “They think that now is the time to call [on] Greeks to think about their ‘special’ identity.”
On the pretext of defending Greek identity and the Greek Orthodox faith, a Golden Dawn parliamentary deputy screamed obscenities as he led a mob that stormed a controversial play this October. The mob, which included priests, also threw rocks at those attending the Greek production of Corpus Christi, the Terrence McNally play that portrays Jesus and his apostles as gay men in modern-day Texas.
So why hasn’t the Greek Orthodox church condemned any involvement with the fascists? And demanded that these barbaric prosecutions be stopped? Oh, that’s right, they don’t get involved with the law — except when they do.
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