A Russian court’s decision today to sentence members of the punk rock protest band Pussy Riot to 2 years imprisonment in a penal colony is a bitter blow for freedom of expression in Russia – and it sends a dangerous message throughout the world (take action here).
Three members of the all-female group were outrageously charged with “hooliganism on grounds of religious hatred” after they gave a politically charged and impromptu performance – a peaceful performance – poking fun at President Putin at a cathedral in February.
Say what you will about Pussy Riot: this may not be your kind of music. Some people find their shows offensive.
But it doesn’t change the facts: freedom of speech is a human right, and it’s vital to a free and just society.