Pope: Free speech has limits

Pope: Free speech has limits

[Ed. – I think we can safely say at this point that Francis isn’t a traditional kind of Jesuit.]

Pope Francis has weighed into the debate over freedom of expression in the wake of the murderous attacks in Paris, saying that anyone who insults a religion can expect “a punch in the nose”.

In provocative remarks which may cause consternation in France, the Pope said that freedom of expression had its limits, especially if it involved insulting or ridiculing religion. …

Gesturing towards Alberto Gasparri, a Vatican official who organises pontifical trips and who was standing next to him on board the plane, he said: “If my good friend Dr Gasparri says a curse word against my mother, he can expect a punch in the nose.”

Throwing a pretend punch, the Pope said: “It’s normal. You cannot provoke. You cannot insult the faith of others. You cannot make fun of the faith of others.” …

The Pope did not refer specifically to the magazine but said that insulting religions was unacceptable and dangerous.

“There are so many people who speak badly about religions or other religions, who make fun of them, who make a game out of the religions of others,” he said.

“They are provocateurs. And what happens to them is what would happen to Dr Gasparri if he says a curse word against my mother. There is a limit.”

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