What is at all controversial about the text?
Earlier this year, Indonesian civil servant Alexander Aan posted on Facebook that he doubted the existence of God. He was then attacked and beaten by an angry mob, and arrested for blasphemy.
On June 14, Aan was convicted of “disseminating information aimed at inciting religious hatred or hostility,” sentenced to 30 months in prison, and saddled with a large fine. Now many Indonesians are calling for his death.
By punishing Aan, Indonesia is violating its obligations to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which guarantees every person the rights to freedom of belief and expression. We petition the Obama administration to call upon the Indonesian government to immediately release Alexander Aan and improve its protections for religious dissidents and nonbelievers.
At the same time, this is a very clear-cut case of someone being harmed for expression of his view of the world.
The campaign was pushed hard by high profile organisations and people, most notably the Center for Inquiry and Richard Dawkins. Many less prominent people tried to get out the message. Could we have done more? Well, I suppose so. For example, I used this blog and other social media available to me to promote the campaign and the petition, but I doubtless could have spent a lot more of my time hammering it day in day out.
But the message was well and truly out there. In the end, there simply doesn't seem to have been much interest.
It makes you wonder...