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Atheist Ireland justified National broadcaster’s clip that insulted Christian faith

DUBLIN: Atheist Ireland has justified a comedy sketch released by the National broadcaster RTÉ yesterday that insults the Christian faith.

After receiving lots of criticism and complaints, RTÉ apologised for their blasphemous broadcast that depicted God being arrested for rape.

The clip was broadcast as part of RTÉ One’s NYE Countdown Show on Thursday night. The outrageous skit was made by former RTE newsreader Aengus Mac Grianna. Archbishop Eamon Martin, head of the Irish Catholic Church, has called on RTE to immediately remove the provocative clip.

“To broadcast such a deeply offensive and blasphemous clip about God & Our Blessed Mother Mary during the Christmas season on ‘NYE Countdown Show’ on @RTE , @RTEOne & on Eve of the Solemn Feast of Mary, Mother of God is insulting to all Catholics and Christians,” Archbishop Eamon Martin tweeted.

At the same time, Atheist Ireland said it was happy that RTE had not removed the blasphemous clip from its catch-up services. They asked religious people and atheists to support the right to see and hear ideas that others believe are personally criminal unless they defame people or incite discrimination, hostility or violence.

Michael Nugent, chairman of Atheist Ireland, said the people of Ireland had recently voted to remove the offence of blasphemy. “Criticism or mockery of religious ideas is just as acceptable as criticism or mockery of secular ideas. People have rights. Their beliefs do not,” he said.

“Many people of goodwill find Bible stories about a God killing innocent people just as offensive as Archbishop Martin finds this comedy sketch. But we are not calling on RTE to remove discussions of the Bible from its programmes or to remove criticism or mockery of atheistic ideas.

“What RTE should remove is the daily unpaid advert that it gives to the Catholic Church in the form of the Angelus. And that is not because it is offensive, but because it breaches RTE’s duty to be impartial with regard to religious and non-religious beliefs,” Mr. Nugent added.

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