Saturday, February 04, 2006

Cartoons of Mohammed Go Far Beyond Denmark

In an amazing display of spine, many European press organizations are now demonstrating "freedom of speech and of the press" by reprinting the so-called offensive Danish cartoons of Mohammed. But this goes far beyond cartoons, far beyond Europe, far beyond freedom of speech. It goes to the heart of free society itself.

Here are the offended, tolerant, peace-loving Muslims. No need to read, just look at the pictures.

And here is a great essay on free speech in a multicultural society. Excerpts:

Note the bolded text, because it draws clear (if to be expected) lines of demarcation between the actions of the rival “protest” groups: the Danish protesters are “extremists” from the “extreme-right”—many of them members of a “racist party”—while those Muslims outraged by the publishing of the cartoons in the first place (who “protested” by burning flags, firebombing embassies, and—even here, through a spokesman, issuing active threats of “grave consequences” and promises that “All hell will break lose” should counterprotests seek to address “Muslim anger") are mere victims of some minor misunderstanding in the “new cultural battle over freedom of speech and respect of religions.”

That last bit of spin is key, because it not only shows the force of a cynical Islamic identity politics still trying to write itself in strokes that aren’t quite so obvious [update: this story seems to fit well with the thesis that the “outrage” is part of an identity politics strategy]-- but it also highlights the dilemma western proponents of identity politics have (and always will have) to face: namely, the point at which the necessary clash of soft, boutique mulitculturalism and the kernel beliefs of identity politics groups threaten to erupt into something much larger than a minor disagreement that can be fixed with a bit of superficial policy manipulation. Which is why even now you have Kos commenters contorting themselves into positions of self-righteous progressive onanism that are a wonder to behold—suddenly, free speech is not a universal right worthy of the crafting of puppet heads and the defacing of Starbucks’ windows, but instead is a culture-specific gift that needs to be filtered through the religious precepts of the culture of the Other. Unless, of course, that “Other” happens to be, say, Evangelical Christians. In which case, such extremists MUST BE SHOUTED DOWN with free speech.

And then there's this quote, representing how the protesting Muslims are acting:

“Free speech is good so long as it tolerates our right, as an identity group, to dictate which free speech is authentic and allowable. Otherwise, y’know, we get to torch shit.”

It cannot be said any more clearly.

Update: Apparently, it's not as blasphemous to show images of Mohammed as we've been led to believe.

Update #2: Are you not taking this seriously? Watch this 2 minute video that puts it in perspective.

Update #3: Lefties, here's how you reap what you sow. Try to talk to these people, try to understand their fe-e-e-e-e-e-e-lings, and they don't give a damn. They'll threaten to kill you, to "torch shit", and you buckle. How very proud you must be of your sensitivity. Maybe Republicans should get in on that act--we've certainly got the provocation here.

1 comment:

Daniel Q Blog said...

The Europeans are really sticking the cartoon in the Muslims' eye. Though it at least brings forward a problem that must be resolved at some point... Isolationism and Appeasement are failed policies.

I think that this might be a beginning of a real breakthrough for European societies. No wacked liberal can state that it is so and so's fault not the muslims in the media...because then the news will just show Muslims burning, death tolls at rallies, and posters calling for the killings of Europeans...the Liberal then looking like an idiot.