29 September 2012

Pussy Riot Appeal and a Parallel

This past summer I posted several times on the unsavory spectacle of the Russian courts convicting three members of the group Pussy Riot on charges of "hooliganism" and promoting "religious hatred." According to Amnesty International (who here offer the chance to drop a polite remonstrance to Russian officials) the women's appeal is scheduled for this coming Monday.

In an odd parallel, The New York Times reports that Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, the man thought responsible for the video "Innocence of Muslims" that has inflamed religious passions in recent weeks has been jailed in Los Angeles. He has been detained after a hearing in which he was "charged with eight probation violations." Although Nakoula's video (if it is his) is pathetic, the response of rioters and those who have incited them is as contemptible. And the court here is clearly relying on legal technicalities to punish Nakoula for his alleged expression of studied ignorance and bigotry.

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