Behemoth’s Nergal Launches Defense Fund for Polish Artists Charged With Blasphemy
Behemoth frontman Nergal has launched a crowdfunding campaign to assist Polish artists, including himself, who have been charged with blasphemy in their home country. The Ordo Blasfemia fund will aid with defense fees and court costs for those who have “offended religious feelings” as outlined in Paragraph 196 of the Polish Criminal Code.
Nergal’s most recent run-in with Polish blasphemy law came in 2021 for a photo of the musician stepping on an image of the Virgin Mary, which he posted to social media. Previously, Nergal was brought to the Supreme Court of Poland for ripping up a Bible onstage.
The GoFundMe page for Nergal’s Ordo Blasfemia Fund reads:
My name is Nergal and I am an artist from Poland. For over a decade I have been confronted with numerous attempts to permanently destroy my career on the basis that I have harmed 'religious feelings'. It sounds absurd and I can assure you, it is.
Many Polish artists, including myself, have been dragged into court rooms, at our own significant costs, to defend ourselves against nonsensical blasphemy laws made by tenuous Politicans. Their intent is to censor anyone who does not conform to the archaic religious laws of our country. The time has come for Polish artists to fight back - join us in the Ordo Blasfemia.
Your donation will help fund a sustainable legal challenge to squash the existing and incoming bogus prosecutions. Help us reach the target so we can distribute to other artists facing their own legal challenges.
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“It’s just another excuse for all sorts of opportunists, pettifoggers, bullies to harass me under the banner of Catholic dogma,” Nergal said in a new video. “But what does the situation tell about the [judicial] system in Poland? Many cases of pedophilia crimes among clergy are being secretly wiped up and the predators hardly ever face the law. And here, an artist is being convicted within a few days for what? Posting a photo on social media? It is absurd. It makes Polish justice look like a fuckin’ joke. And so it is.”