11 February 2012 Free Expression Day of Action: Your Chance to take a Stand

The One Law for All 11 February rally for Free Expression is being held in London from 14:00-16:00 hours at the Old Palace Yard opposite the House of Lords. Here is leaflet for download and distribution.

Speakers are: Richard Dawkins (Scientist); A C Grayling (Philosopher); Alex Gabriel (Blogger); Caroline Cox (Peer); Derek Lennard (Gay and Lesbian Humanist Association); Faisal Gazi (Spittoon.org); Gita Sahgal, (Centre for Secular Space); Hasan Afzal (Stand for Peace); Jennifer Hardy (Queen Mary Atheism Humanism and Secularism Society); Jenny Bartle (National Federation of Atheist, Humanist and Secular Student Societies); Jim Fitzpatrick (MP); Kate Smurthwaite (Comedian); Kenan Malik (Writer); Lilith (Poet, Anti-Injustice Movement) ; Marco Tranchino (Central London Humanist Group); Mark Embleton (Atheism UK); Maryam Namazie (One Law for All and Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain); Nick Cohen (Writer); Nick Doody (Comedian); Pragna Patel (Southall Black Sisters); Rashid Ali (Centri); Rhys Morgan (Student activist); Roy Brown (International Humanist and Ethical Union); Rupert Sutton (Student Rights); Sohaila Sharifi (Equal Rights Now); Sue Cox (Survivors Voice – Europe); Sundas Hoorain (London School of Economics Atheist, Secularist, and Humanist Society); Susan Zhuang (University College London Atheist, Secularist and Humanist Society); Terry Sanderson/Keith Porteous Wood (National Secular Society); and Yasmin Rehman (Campaigner). There will also be a message from Jesus and Mo creator. Iranian Secular Society’s Fariborz Pooya will be the Master of Ceremonies.

The call for action follows an increased number of attacks on free expression in the UK, including a 17 year old Rhys Morgan being forced to remove a Jesus and Mo cartoon or face expulsion from his Sixth Form College and demands by the UCL Union that the Atheist society remove a Jesus and Mo cartoon from its Facebook page. It also follows threats of violence, police being called, and the cancellation of a meeting at Queen Mary College where One Law for All co-spokesperson was to deliver a speech on Sharia. More recently, the LSE Student Union has asked the atheist society to remove its affiliation to the union again due to a Jesus and Mo cartoon.

[To read Maryam Namazie’s recent speech on how accusations of offence and Islamophobia are secular fatwas, click here.]

The Day of Action has already been endorsed by nearly 100 groups and individuals including Jessica Ahlquist, Richard Dawkins, Equal Rights Now, Taslima Nasrin, National Federation of Atheist, Humanist and Secular Student Societies, National Secular Society, Salman Rushdie, Southall Black Sisters, and Peter Tatchell. To see the list and add your own, click here.

In addition to the London rally, there will be actions and acts of solidarity in other cities, including Australia, France, Gambia, Germany, Poland and South Africa. To see the list or to add your own action or event, click here.

Clearly, the time has come to take a firm and uncompromising stand for free expression and against all forms of bogus accusations, threats and censorship.

The right to criticise religion is a fundamental right that is crucial to many, including Muslims.

11 February is our chance to take that stand.

You need to be there.

Enough is enough.

NOTES:

1. Join 11 February Free Expression Day of Action Facebook page here and Tweet #11FebFEDay.

2. The rally is sponsored by The Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science UK.

3. See recent media coverage of the rally and/or attacks on free expression:

A Day to Stand up for Free Expression, South African Times Live, 24 January 2012 [external link]

How freedom goes, The Spectator, 22 January 2012 [external link]

Strong religious belief is no excuse for intimidation, The Independent, 22 January 2012 [external link]

11 February: A Day to Defend Free Expression, New Zealand’s Scoop, 20 January 2012 [external link]

Islamist stops university talk with threats of violence, National Secular Society Newsline, 17 January 2012 [external link]

3. For more information, and details of the Day of Action, contact:

Maryam Namazie

One Law for All

BM Box 2387

London WC1N 3XX, UK

Tel: +44 (0) 7719166731

onelawforall@gmail.com

By | 2016-06-23T14:10:00+00:00 February 11th, 2012|Past Events, Press Releases|28 Comments

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28 Comments

  1. juanda muhammad yatim January 24, 2012 at 1:57 pm

    Please restore REAL freedom with WISDOM

    • Godless February 11, 2012 at 12:18 pm

      @ juanda muhammad yatim @

      Your multiple posts are indicative and part of the problem. Muslims such as you just keep SHOUTING at non Muslims, you just shout and demand wanting the whole world to convert to Islam. Then threats of violence from the ‘religion of peace’ if your victims refuse to capitulate.

      We will not bow down to your beliefs no mater how many time you post! and SHOUT!!

  2. juanda muhammad yatim January 24, 2012 at 2:05 pm

    Such disrespect, hatred, offence, freedom to insult to others is not a way of civilized human being.

    • John t Baptist February 10, 2012 at 7:32 pm

      Juanda, i believe that is why this event is taking place – to say to such people who show such disrespect, hatred &offense that threatening lives because of mere cartoons should never be acceptable. it’s called standing up to bullies.

  3. juanda muhammad yatim January 24, 2012 at 2:09 pm

    Even if a photo of our family, lets say our great grand father,grand mother, mother, father, our brothers, sisters, husband, wife, children are ilustrated like the way your group established are surely cannot be accepted.

    • Rob January 30, 2012 at 9:29 pm

      No one has drawn cartoons of your extended family Juanda, but rather, ones representing a man whose words now act as the word and law of God for over 1 billion people on this planet. This is why he must not be beyond criticism, because his words influence people powerfully each and every day of their lives.

  4. juanda muhammad yatim January 24, 2012 at 2:11 pm

    Spread PEACE not WAR.

    • Rob January 30, 2012 at 8:54 pm

      Spread cartoons and discussion not death threats.

  5. juanda muhammad yatim January 24, 2012 at 2:13 pm

    Restore MUTUAL RESPECT in the name of REAL FREEDOM with WISDOM.
    Not BLINDLY Freedom in the name of FREE EXPRESSION.

    • Jonathan Hartley February 1, 2012 at 2:37 am

      “REAL FREEDOM with WISDOM”? And whose ‘wisdom’ would we have to believe in before we are granted this ‘real freedom’? I suspect your ‘real freedom with wisdom’ is nothing more than the right to agree with whichever holy book you happen to believe in.

      One of the delights of free expression is that it allows anyone to say what they think whether or not it is wise or stupid. As you have so ably demonstrated.

  6. juanda muhammad yatim January 24, 2012 at 2:24 pm

    It is far away from civilized way of live if we are still in the circle to spread hatred in the name of freedom expression.We may went to excellent universities to learn lots of knowledge and know how but ended with stoneage attitude. May God give you the way to aware of His path. After aware there is a God, may be God will lead you to think there is a God is watching every single line of the issue you try to spread.

    • john c February 11, 2012 at 2:25 pm

      Juanda, your belief in a god is a delusion which many people do not share.You never had a chance to think freely, your parents drummed religion into you from day one, you are incapable of accepting any “truth”other than the one you are indoctrinated with, we were not brought up in that environment of mental abuse, or had sufficently logical minds to escape from that trap,Freedom with wisdom as you call it is not freedom, what you see as wisdom,being subservient and respectfull to a delusiory “god”is to us , pure folly and denial of the truth.Freedom of expression means the freedom to speak the truth, which means we can view your faith as stupid , and mock it as much as we want, because, we see that as the truth.If you want an environment where mislim sensitivities are respected, F**K off to pakistan or another islamic theocracy, because, we wont allow you to create one here.

    • john c February 11, 2012 at 2:31 pm

      If you came to this country to attend university, it was obviously wasted on you.Your grasp of writen english is a travesty, you are truly a stonager in your use of it.How anyone can take in a decent aducation, and still believe in such illocigal crap as you do is beyond me.If you were born in this country, then you obviously did not attend a school which was capable of educating you in the correct use of the native language, islamic school perhaps?

  7. Harry January 24, 2012 at 6:04 pm

    If you support this call for free speech, you oppose the censorship of the Bible (Psalm 14:1) and the Qu’ran (2:191-193)

    Both of these examples defame others based on their religious standpoint. By supporting this day of action you affirm that this is okay, religious people can continue to read and preach these words without interference. By objecting and campaigning to ban defamation of religious standpoints you call for these holy texts to be edited.

    I prefer not to censor anyone, religious or not. I don’t trust censors.

  8. whyowhy January 24, 2012 at 7:04 pm

    The Queen Mary incident (though not specifically the cameraman) was at least part orchestrated on Islamic-awakening it seems. Maybe a good idea to check that board before future events.

    http://forums.islamicawakening.com/f18/urgent-calling-all-muslims-
    east-london-today-55211/

  9. Dr Pedram Kazemi-Esfarjani January 24, 2012 at 11:59 pm

    I wish to endorse the 11 February Rally Day of Action for Free Expression and help with distributing leaflets, too! Best Regards, Dr Pedram Kazemi-Esfarjani, Middle Grade Accicent & Emergency Physician, Trauma Surgoen in training, independent secular liberal activist and actor, theatre maker and fine artist under registered name Pedd Raam, Copenhagen and London

  10. Dr Pedram Kazemi-Esfarjani January 25, 2012 at 12:03 am

    I hereby ask MI5 and Metropolitan Police to do indeed follow up on the suggestion by previous commentator on this page to check and crosss-check the networks within and around the Islamic Imperialist vigilante and other paramilitary networks like the so-called Islamic Awakening website.

  11. Harry January 25, 2012 at 4:47 pm

    Please don’t investigate the forum itself. Far better that the occasional bad egg should talk about their plans in public than in private. Besides, free speech includes the right to tell the world you plan to commit a crime in advance so you end up getting arrested for it. Joy.

  12. Chris Knowles February 2, 2012 at 9:07 pm

    One Law for All Free Expression Day of Action Rally to Take Place on 11 February 2012

    The International Civil Liberties Alliance would like to take this opportunity to endorse an important rally that is to take place on 11 February 2012 at 2pm at the Old Palace Yard which is opposite the House of Lords.

    One Law for All is an organisation that has supported The Arbitration and Mediation Services (Equality) Bill sponsored by Baroness Caroline Cox Bill and should be commended for this and be worthy of the gratitude of all people who value the most basic, though most vulnerable, of our traditional freedoms.

    We have seen the acquiescence of the political class to endorse the Islamist interpretation of Islam and to undermine the liberal movement and its courageous advocates within Islam. It is vital that liberal Islamic reformers are supported by our Government and by the general public. Supporting sharia finance is to support Islamist interpretations because even Al Azar University, according to Patrick Sookhdeo’s book – Understanding Shari’a Finance: The Muslim Challenge to Western Economics, suggests that sharia finance is unnecessary and that pious Muslims who endorse it are effectively been led astray. In the United States a group called American Islamic Forum for Democracy are showing the way for other liberal Islamic reformers. This group should be emulated across the world.

    Instead of endorsing Islamist interpretations of Islam, the Government should be standing full square behind those courageous individuals who are willing to stand up to the extremists. The utterances of the Archbishop of Canterbury, and the former Lord Chief Justice Lord Phillips, did such a disservice to moderate Muslims in Britain who were standing up to the extremists. These pillars of the Establishment should be ashamed of the damage that they have done to Moderate Islam in Britain.

    Furthermore, the elite of the European Union who have agreed to host the next meeting of the ‘Istanbul Process’ or as it is more commonly known – the ‘Campaign Against Free Expression’ are effectively acquiescing with the expansion of sharia principles in the United Kingdom. The Organisation of Islamic Co-operation which is responsible for United Nations Resolution 16/18 has serious persecution issues to address in its own member states before it lectures the world.

    It is vitally important that all those who share One Law for All’s objectives and values participate in this significant demonstration in the cause of freedom. Freedom of expression will be lost if people do not take the opportunity to stand up for it.

    The International Civil Liberties Alliance believes that the approach that One Law for All is taking with regard to this is issue is commendable and worthy of support and encouragement.

  13. Gareth Edwards February 3, 2012 at 10:50 am

    For those considering coming to the event from north of London, may be interested to know that London Midland have a special offer. £15 for a days unlimited travel on the London Midland network.

  14. Simon February 4, 2012 at 9:33 am

    Should we bring our own signs to the rally? Can anyone suggest a link for atheist or free expression signs/placards that I can download and print?

  15. fenchurch February 8, 2012 at 9:51 pm

    Juanda, your bumper-sticker homilies are kind of empty chants. Care to develop any of your slogans with reasoned, supported argument?

    By the way: a “civilsed” society is not all crumpets and tea with pinky finger extended– progressive civilisation includes shaking the rotten foundations and exercising free speech.
    Not giving offense / being offended is not a protected form of speech. People can give offense by simply not agreeing with another person’s POV; humans do not have the “hive mind” that, let’s say, muslims think/wish there was.

    Blasphemy is, after all, a victimless crime (to return your slogan with one of my own)– the god character in most current religions is depicted as an arsehole. I don’t mind calling such gods out for their ugliness and immorality.

    People who worship imaginary beings are silly to do so, and deserve mockery for claiming things they can’t prove. It is a right an a necessity to call bull5hit where it’s seen. Your silencing techniques are feeble. So suck it, brother.

  16. Nick February 9, 2012 at 10:14 pm

    I support what you are doing but isn’t it a bit biased that no groups like UKIP or the BNP get to speak?

    The word right wing “fascist” is used against people like me who have common sense by mad brainwashed people to deny me free speech. This is because I object to governments that deceive the people making mass scale immigrations while pretending otherwise to “rub the nose of the people in multiculturalism”, and being told we are a multicultural society without the consent of the people. A society where is you say you object to cultural Marxism or the doctrine of multiculturalism people feel a need to automatically and almost as a programmed response challenge you, a society there you can be brought before the courts for saying you would rather hire a British person than a foreign person who lives in a foreign country, a society where sinister forces of fascism want to change the names of schools, tell the police off if they stop and search black people and take down flags, in case they are too British. A society where you can back everything up with fact like the one trillion pounds of debt and 120 billion of government overspending helped along by the “immigration welfare industrial complex” where we import people who go on benefits or who take jobs that locals want to do or prefer to stay on benefits and we pay then up to 26k (35k before tax in the bracket of the top 20% of wage earners), and people are so brainwashed that even when you present them with facts they still revert to the brainwashing that New Labour has been broadcasting out of their TV for 13 years as they are like drones who have lost the ability to think for themselves.

  17. Josh Kutchinsky February 10, 2012 at 10:53 am

    Freedom of expression does not mean I have personally to provide you with a platform to express fascist, homophobic, racist or other views which run contrary to democracy within a framework of laws underpinned by a structure of human rights. I defend your right to say what you will within the law of libel and incitement to violence but don’t have to provide you with the means to do so. To what extent this site or others tolerate a particular opinion is up to them. They are in no way contravening human rights by choosing what they wish to publish.

  18. Nick February 11, 2012 at 9:02 pm

    Thank you for your response. I attended the rally and it was very enjoyable and informative. I noticed that the issues that arise in the free speech area concern freedoms to criticise regions and in light of Islam extremism this seems quite correct, however I would suggest that none of the issues that I raised above are fascist, homophobic or racist and don’t run contrary to democracy but are suppressed due to a hidden code or programming which has been pushed out. This became evident today when I was discussing these issues with one of the spectators of your event. His comment is that when one mentions thinking of “the nation” (which can be in cultural or even economic terms), it automatically brings up images of extremist groups, and this surely needs to be questioned. I was wondering whether it would be worth bringing these issues into your movement.

    • John t Baptist February 11, 2012 at 10:19 pm

      “…to provide you with a platform to express fascist, homophobic, racist or other views which run contrary to democracy” i think he was directing that comment to those who oppose cartoons of their “glorious leader” rather than those who organised & supported the rally.

  19. tony February 14, 2012 at 10:04 am

    I also attended the rally and heard some great speakers.
    Especially the moving

    I was dissaponted Douglas Murray was not one of the speakers and I would of liked to hear what UKIP had to say as no other poltical party seems to be disccusing the uncomftable topic of Muslim Extremism.
    I am against racism and homophobia and find myself sympathising a lot with what the EDL say but could never joina fascist orginistaion.
    I have always supported UAF but feel completely disalluisoned and appalled by their behavour marching along side the black Jihadi flag and laughing at thugs beating up a woman in Whitechapel.
    I live in Finsbury Park.

  20. Someone February 18, 2012 at 8:49 am

    Why does this webpage go bl;ack when you click on it? Hard to type a comment or select text.

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