As explained in today’s earlier post, I’ve had a bit of a setback. I can’t walk very well at the moment. But crawling still works. And as I crawled through the interhole and my e-mail this morning while moaning in pain and feeling like a prize dumbass, I found some news about Nergal (Poland) and Intronaut (U.S.) and new music from Sulphur Aeon (Germany) that made me feel better, at least psychologically if not physically.
NERGAL GETS SOME HIGH LEVEL SUPPORT
I saw a note on the Facebook page of Behemoth’s frontman Nergal that looked interesting. You may have seen (either here or elsewhere) that Nergal’s legal troubles in his native Poland have been revived thanks to a ruling by the Polish Supreme Court that he can be criminally prosecuted for offending people’s religious feelings even if he didn’t intend to do that. This whole mess stems from a 2007 Behemoth performance in which Nergal tore up a Bible on stage.
There are plenty of places in the world where governments repress speech, sometimes violently, but I don’t usually think of Poland that way. So I was surprised when the country’s highest court made it easier, not harder, for people in Poland to be prosecuted for expressing “offensive” thoughts about religion.
What Nergal’s note revealed is that the day after this abysmal court ruling, the European Commission — which is the executive body of the European Union, of which Poland is a member — released a statement in support of Nergal. Citing the European Convention of Human Rights, a treaty that Poland signed which protects freedom of expression, the EC stated: “This right protects not only information or ideas that are favourably received or regarded as inoffensive or as a matter of indifference, but also those that offend, shock or disturb.”
The full article cited by Nergal is here. It’s not clear how the EC’s position or Poland’s treaty obligations will affect the progress of the case against Nergal, but it’s definitely an interesting and encouraging development. Continue reading »