In ‘Current Year’ the BBC Asks ‘What is the Right Punishment for Blasphemy?’

Recently, Pakistan reached out to Facebook to help identify people suspected of blasphemy to aid in their prosecution, according to CNBC:

Under Pakistani law anyone suspected of blasphemy can be prosecuted and potentially sentenced to death.

According to Reuters, Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan said Thursday that an official in Pakistan’s Washington embassy has approached the two social media companies in an effort to identify Pakistanis, either within the country or abroad, who recently shared material deemed offensive to Islam.

Authorities in Pakistan have already identified 11 people suspected of blasphemy and would seek the extradition of anyone living abroad.

Facebook said it reviews all government requests carefully, “with the goal of protecting the privacy and rights of our users.”

After the news of this broke, the BBC, under the guise of the BBC Asian Network, asked not whether blasphemy laws are right, but instead asked what the “right” punishment for blasphemy should be:

The BBC attempted to “clarify” the bit as a “poorly worded question”, though I too don’t see how that makes the question any better.

The BBC Asian Network didn’t seem at all fazed by the fact that you can be murdered in Pakistan for criticizing one particular religion.

Gad Saad is a Lebanese Jewish atheist, and has been an open and vocal critic of religious extremism, especially since his family fled from that country’s civil war because his family faced summary execution for being Jewish:

Needless to say, he took a pretty good rip out of the BBC’s bizarre question:

It’s incredible to me that in “current year“, 2017 that this is even a question for any media outlets of western origin — that it comes more specifically from the “BBC Asian Network” makes little difference to me because the parent company is still the BBC.

That I’m an American makes little difference to me as well — I wouldn’t care for religious extremism propagandized at taxpayer expense were it from NPR, so I can imagine that British patriots wouldn’t either like that the extremist ideology of Lee Rigby’s murderers is funded by British taxpayers either.

It’s worth noting that one particular Muslim reformist — whom I’d seriously consider taking a bullet for — was none too pleased: