Can Blasphemy Exist In A Democratic Society?

The Indonesian Constitutional Court has upset many government and religious leaders in the country by having a review of the nation’s blasphemy law which allows those who allegedly insult the Muslim religion to be sentenced to jail. The hearing, in effect, will be a week long forum at which clerics, dissidents, human rights activists and even artists will express their opinions as to whether a modern democratic society can allow a law which terms blasphemy to be a crime. The anti Blasphemy Law was passed in 1965 and enjoys support from conservative clerics.

The problem with any blasphemy law is the denial of those in a religion to argue for changes in religious practices because opponents can readily claim they are guilty of blasphemy. I assume Jesus was guilty of blasphemy two thousand years ago.