Several media outlets have reported the recent story of a Quebec girl forced to quit her volunteer position as a soccer referee due to a Quebec soccer federation/FIFA rule prohibiting hijabs on the field. The decision has been defended as necessary due to a general rule prohibiting participants from displaying commercial, political, and religious messages.
In my opinion, this decision is unwarranted and discriminatory. A reasonable accommodation could easily be made in this case to allow this girl and other young Muslim females to enjoy soccer without being forced to choose between it and their sincere religious beliefs. To my mind, FIFA's interest in enforcing common attire rules is outweighed by society's interest in fostering religious inclusion, much like Sikh members of the RCMP are allowed to wear turbans while on duty.I don't know if public accommodation laws are applicable to this soccer federation, but if so, this girl would seem to have a strong claim.
Wednesday, June 29, 2011
Saturday, June 25, 2011
A court in the Netherlands has acquitted MP Geert Wilders of charges of inciting hatred and religious discrimination. In several comments and a film, Wilders portrayed Muslims and Islamic values as a threat to the democratic, secular Netherlands. Although the court condemned many of Wilders' statements, it ruled that they criticized Islam as a religion, not Muslims as a group and that the statements were made in the context of a public debate over Islam's place in the Netherlands. (Source: Radio Netherlands Worldwide)
Monday, June 20, 2011
"Beyond Case Reporters: Using Newspapers to Supplement the Legal Historical Record (A Case Study of Blasphemous LIbel)
My article Beyond Case Reporters: Using Newspapers to Supplement the Legal-Historical Record (A Case Study of Blasphemous Libel) has now been published by the Drexel Law Review.
Thursday, June 16, 2011
Having a newborn at home has slowed down my updates to Legal Heresy, so I appreciate my readers' patience in the matter. I hope to have some new posts soon, and please feel free to e-mail me with news stories or interesting scholarly articles.
Saturday, June 4, 2011
According to the Toronto Star, a controversy has recently arisen in the province of Quebec over new regulations that forbid religious instruction in publicly-subsidized daycares.
According to Religion Clause Blog, Algeria has sentenced a Christian man named Siagh Krimo to five years in prison for violating a provision of the country's criminal code which forbids acts that "insult the prophet and any of the messengers of God, or denigrate the creed and precepts of Islam[.]" It is unclear exactly what Krimo did or said to merit the conviction, but a neighbor accused him of Christian proselytizing and defaming Muhammad.