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Banning Hate Books

The Australian government is considering a ban of "hate books" that glorify terrorism. The ban is aimed at Islamic books that exalt violent jihad and use religion to promote violence. "One book found at a Sydney shop, Defence of the Muslim Lands, carried an endorsement from al-Qaida chief Osama bin Laden on its back cover and promoted "wiring up one's body" with explosives." Attorney-General Philip Ruddock "said the material offended society, because it attacked the very values that enable people to enjoy freedom of speech." The trouble with all this is where exactly to stop. Censorship is valid when used against sedition. However, much of the justification being given for this move involves the concepts of hate books and religious material that offends society. These same arguments are beginning to be used against Christian refutations of other religions. The danger of misuse is very real.