‘It shall be a defence to proceedings for an offence under this section for the defendant to prove that a reasonable person would find genuine literary, artistic, political, scientific, or academic value in the matter to which the offence relates.’

A few days I suggested, somewhat provocatively, a cracker of an idea to protest I could the blasphemy law.

Not surprisingly, it became known as the nuclear option when I suggest it to the Atheist Ireland agm.

Atheist Ireland is planning a blasphemous statement. I think their statement will not go far enough. In fact, I don’t think any statement will go far enough, which was why I proposed an act of civil disobedience designed to provoke demands for a prosecution.

But now, I think no matter what I did, there would be no prosecution. My act was undoubtedly political, and so exempt.

Art is out too, so forget outrageous cartoon exhibitions. Scientific and academic experiments also exempt, presumably so we don’t get flooded with creationists suing educational publishers.

In fact, the only publication I can think of which is not covered is commercial, which means we’re relying on a cheeky Ryanair advert to test the extent of the law.

By Gerard Cunningham

Gerard Cunningham occupies his time working as a journalist, writer, sub-editor, blogger and podcaster, yet still finds himself underemployed.


  1. I’m more a still photo than a video kind of guy, but that was the general intention. We’ll see how the blasphemous statement goes before deploying the ‘nuclear option’.

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