[JURIST] The British government Thursday is reintroducing controversial legislation designed to curb religious hatred, despite criticism that the law would overly restrict speech. The law [Home Office backgrounder] was introduced last year, but didn't get through parliament before the general election. While the government defended the bill [Politics.co.uk report] as a way to protect people from hatred and racism, others have objected to the bill on grounds that it goes too far and stifles free expression. Noted British comedian Rowan Atkinson [Wikipedia profile], best known for his roles as the Blackadder and Mr. Bean, warned last December [JURIST report] in a Westminster press conference that the bill would threaten some of his sketches and other edgy religious humor such as the 1979 Monty Python film Life of Brian [Wikipedia backgrounder]. Reuters has more.