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Mon, Feb. 6th, 2006, 01:01 pm
That cartoon

A few wee facts - The cartoon featuring the prophet thats causing all the fuss was first printed late last year in denmark (september I think). The Islamic clerics took issue with it and the paper apologised and everyone assumed that was the end of the story. Since then, newspapers aound europe have run the cartoon in a show of journalistic freedom. Needless to say, "logic" prevailed and Denmark is now copping the brunt of the outrage.

Mon, Feb. 6th, 2006 01:19 pm (UTC)
ulaire_daidoji

Why should the state of Denmark apologise for something that an independent newspaper posted? Or for something that was originally intended as an educational book for children?

There's actually a lot of issues going on here. The whole thing has mostly been stoked up by a centre right government in Denmark that relies on an anti-immigration party for it's existence. And that's how this whole firestorm started.

Normally I'd think that the whole issue was a cynical ploy to increase circulation but as it isn't the gutter press carrying these cartoons I do believe there is a fundamental issue of freedom of speech at stake here.

I believe in God. I also believe that humanity should be allowed question the existence of God and not blindly follow the institutions that would stone us to death as heretical blasphemers for questioning....


Mon, Feb. 6th, 2006 01:45 pm (UTC)
mr_wombat

" Why should the state of Denmark apologise for something that an independent newspaper posted?"
No idea, how is it an issue?

Freedom of speech, to me anyway, is like any other right - you have an obligation to use it responsibly. Exposing government corruption is one thing, publishing a cartoon that you KNOW is going to piss off a chunk of the population - a chunk that recently went ballistic in france recently no less - for NO reason other than to "illustrate" a four month old story is irresponsible and pointlss and an abuse of the right in the name of a crappy agenda.

Mon, Feb. 6th, 2006 01:59 pm (UTC)
ulaire_daidoji

There have been several calls from Islamic dominated governments such as Iran (yeah, the guys developing nukes) and Malaysia for an official apology from Denmark and then from the governments of Europe.

Theocracies, now there's a good idea from the middle ages....

Mon, Feb. 6th, 2006 02:07 pm (UTC)
mr_wombat

Gotcha, didn't hear that bit, the whole story bugs me to the extent that I'm largely avoiding it.

Theocracies - meh, like dictating our behaviour according to whats good for the magical mystical "economy" is any better anyway (granted, capitalism doesn't generally advocate genital mutilation or stonings but it has its own set of evils).

Mon, Feb. 6th, 2006 02:55 pm (UTC)
specky_ie

This topic has now become more about rabble rousing than about anything else, and that possibly goes for both sides in roughly equal measure. The whole issue is beginning to irritate me immensely on various different levels that are sometimes pro-free speech and sometimes anti-stupidity.

Without wanting to sound superior I'd be fairly confident that a majority of muslims on the planet could not point to Denmark on a map of the world (kind of substantiated by the attacks on other scandinavian properties by the outraged masses). They therefore would be unlikely even to be aware of this situation if it were not for some individuals who've decided to make this into an issue for their own purposes.

I find it typically ironic that the powers of free speech that give journalists the "freedom" to publish these cartoons have also given the protestors the "freedom" to make a fuss about it. I value the freedom I have for others to take the piss out of me and my beliefs because I want to always have the right to do the same to them. Taking that away smacks of facism.

But at the same time, the democracy we live in sprang from a generally "western/christian" standpoint, and the beliefs I would now choose to protect so fiercely are coloured by those origins even though I am far from a christian. You can't get away from the fact that "elsewhere" the values upon which beliefs, laws and social orders are built are fundamentally different, and for those people living in such a culture our position is quite alien and wrong. No amount of persuasion on our part is likely to convince them otherwise, just as no amount of persuasion, bombs, bullets or other such tactics will persuade us to give up what we hold dear (generally, quite the contrary, in fact). In these conditions (and in an increasingly integrated world where we must live side by side with those who believe other than we) sense must prevail. Just as we do not have late night drug fuelled sex parties when we live upstairs from the Garda Commissioner, so we would be sensible not to go insighting those who are so easily insighted.

It isn't perhaps what we'd like, but just as in life we generally have to abandon our ideals as we grow older in favour of more practical compromises, so we as a civilised race may need to accept that some toes simply are not worth treading upon.




Mon, Feb. 6th, 2006 05:41 pm (UTC)
evilrobotshane

Got links to the offending cartoons? I found the bomb-turban one but apparently there's about a dozen.

Mon, Feb. 6th, 2006 06:13 pm (UTC)
mr_wombat

Oh hell, there's definitely loads now, the Islamic papers started doing ones about the Jews, the Jews did one about the Islamics and the Palistinians. Its essentially "piss off your ideological enemy" week.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Jyllands-Posten_Muhammad_drawings.jpg
is the original I *think*

Tue, Feb. 7th, 2006 08:08 pm (UTC)
mr_wombat

I'm fairly sure that rocks. Go internet!