By Simon Rocker
May 14, 2012
Last week’s Torah portion of Emor ended with the unhappy of a story of a man who was stoned for cursing God.
Despite the biblical precedent, however, the rabbis, always reluctant to impose the death penalty, later made it extremely difficult to convict for blasphemy.
Alas, modern trends seem to be going in the opposite direction. Kuwait is the latest country that has moved to make blasphemy (against the Prophet Muhammad) a capital offence. According to the Tablet, the crime was previously punishable by imprisonment (which is bad enough). The national assembly has passed a law to introduce harsher punishment, although it must still be approved by the Emir.