Today, Roy Brown, the International Humanist and Ethical Union (IHEU) delegate to the UN, said goodbye after 12 years at his post
Exactly 12 years ago this week, on 9th March 1994, I gave my first speech at what was then the UN Commission on Human Rights; it was against blasphemy laws. This week, on my last day at the Human Rights Council I spoke again on blasphemy. It might seem that nothing has changed in the intervening years but much has, some good, some bad.
The complete text of Brown’s “A long kiss goodbye” is available at the IHEU website.
This is a good time to point out that
Canada continues to carry an anti-blasphemy law in the criminal code. Criminal Code Section 296 is the law which has remained on Canadian books since 1892. Blasphemy laws are, by their very design, contrary to the idea of secularism – the separation of church and religion from the state and laws which govern people.
Browns “goodbye” reminds us that it’s time to remove Section 296 from Canada’s Criminal Code.