Thursday 24 August 2017

Ian O'Doherty: Lordy, the preacher has the right to be wrong

Satanic curses: James McConnell was cleared over his sermon claiming Islam was 'a doctrine spawned in hell'
Satanic curses: James McConnell was cleared over his sermon claiming Islam was 'a doctrine spawned in hell'
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Ian O'Doherty

Ian O'Doherty

Truly, you know you're living in interesting times when the rest of Europe has to look to Northern Ireland for a welcome dash of common sense.

That was the rather delightful, and extremely rare, situation we found ourselves in this week when a court finally cleared the rather batty Nordy preacher James McConnell after he was accused of 'improper use of a public electronic communications network and causing a grossly offensive message'.

In other words, he said nasty things and used the internet to spread his message - charges which could be levelled against anyone who has a social media account. The pastor's crime - or not, since he was cleared - was to denounce Islam as 'Satanic' and 'heathen' and, just in case anyone was still confused about his position, he added that it was also 'a doctrine spawned in Hell'.

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