At “Bible Funmentionables,” Michael Morris points out that Muslims are the only folks that are under orders to to kill blasphemers:
But let’s not get the mistaken notion that punishment for blasphemy is a uniquely Muslim idea. The Bible clearly comes down on the side of freedom FROM blasphemy as opposed to freedom of speech.
And he that blasphemeth the name of the Lord, he shall surely be put to death, and all the congregation shall certainly stone him: as well the stranger, as he that is born in the land, when he blasphemeth the name of the Lord, shall be put to death. —Leviticus 24:16
Then Morris raises a basic issue I hadn’t considered. Why should religion deserve any special protection from criticism and insults?
No one likes to be insulted, but why is it that only one institution, religion, has its own name for insults hurled against it. I don’t call it blasphemy when someone berates my kid’s soccer team or ridicules the all-time best movie trilogy ever made on planet Earth!