From the New Oxford Review: “The European Court of Human Rights ruled that a topless feminist who acted out the aborting of Jesus in a Paris church in 2013 was exercising “freedom of expression” (The Christian Post, Oct. 24).
“Bare-breasted and covered in pro-abortion slogans, Éloïse Bouton entered L’église de la Madeleine wearing a blue veil to mock the Virgin Mary and carrying pieces of animal liver. She stood in front of the altar, simulated aborting Jesus in protest of the Catholic Church’s teaching against abortion, and then urinated on the floor.
“A national court found Bouton guilty of “sexual display,” ordered her to pay the parish €2,000, and sentenced her to one month in prison. The Court of Cassation, the highest judicial court in France, upheld the judgment. But the ECHR argued that the decision violated the European Convention on Human Rights.
“Far from being gratuitously offensive or seeking to disturb those present in the church in the practice of their worship,” it wrote, “her action was part of a public debate on the place of women in society.” The ECHR ordered France to pay Bouton €9,800 for “moral damages” and legal costs.”
— The News You May Have Missed: January-February 2023, NOR