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Freedom of Speech in Sweden

It's not often that I agree with Joe Carter, so I thought I'd mark this occasion. We're both happy to learn that Åke Green, a Swedish minister charged with hate speech for preaching an anti-gay sermon, has been acquitted:

A Pentecostal pastor who denounced homosexuality as a "cancerous tumor" in a sermon said Tuesday he would stop preaching against gays after Sweden's highest court acquitted him of hate speech.

... The case stemmed from a 2003 sermon in which Green told his congregation that homosexuality was "a deep cancerous tumor on all of society," and he warned that Sweden risked a natural disaster because of leniency toward gays. He also said gays were more likely than others to rape children and animals.

Make no mistake about the fact that Green's sermon is vile, unacceptable, and entirely false. But the boundaries of free speech must remain broad and strong. The battle against this form of homophobia can only be won on the cultural, not the legal, level.


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