Some words lose so much of their meaning that they should probably be retired. Case in point, Firoozeh Bazrafkan, an Iranian artist living in Denmark, has been charged with “racism” for criticizing Islam.
It might have been more honest to charge Firoozeh Bazrafkan with blasphemy, but Western countries are still looking for ways to prosecute refugees from Muslim countries for blasphemy without calling it blasphemy.
Firoozeh Bazrafkan is an artist noted for making provocative statements. Here she celebrates the Islamic Revolution in Iran in her own way.
“I am also deeply convinced that Muslim men to a great extent and everywhere in the world rape, mistreat and kill their daughters,” Firoozeh Bazrafkan had written. “It is my opinion, being an Iranian-born Dane, that we are here facing a defective and inhuman culture – if this can be considered ‘culture’ at all.”
In response to the charges, Firoozeh Bazrafkan pointed out that she was criticizing her own people, but the prosecutor however stated that, “There is ample opportunity to criticize the law in Iran, if you feel like it, but it must be done in a good and factual tone, and you should not deride and demean them.”
Firoozeh Bazrafkan refused to pay the fine for racism and was taken to court.
The prosecutor, in his procedure, noted that the article by Firoozeh does not constitute threats against Muslims, but rather mockery and denigration of Muslims due to their faith, as clarified by the reference to the fundamental scripture of Islam, the Quran.
Firoozeh herself had the last word. She pointed out that “crimes of expression” can indeed be taken back, as has been the case with a quite elaborated death threat aimed at her some time ago. That case was abandoned when the person uttering the threats later claimed towards the police that he didn’t really mean the quite graphic threats he had made against Firozeeh.
The court found her not guilty of racism and the government will have to pay court costs.
Police believed that the blog post was a violation of the law, but the artist herself has always insisted that it was a work of art and meant as a protest against Iranian law. The case will then not compel Firoozeh Bazrafkan to keep his opinions to herself in future.
“I will never ever wrap my views in gift paper. I would never embellish or hide anything,” she said to P4 Jutland.