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Stench of anti-moslem hypocrisy

Europeans claim to be exercising "free speech" when they satirize the Prophet Mohamed as being a "terrorist." We should call them on their BS, whether we're Moslems or not.
One doesn't have to be a Moslem or an "Arabist" or even an "Islamophile" to understand the bullshit that passes for righteous "free speech" in Europe. While Moslems have a problem with fundamentalism -- although arguably no more so than American Christians, or Israeli Zionists -- Europeans have their own problems with racism, imperialism, and pompous cultural supremacy.

Let's be quite clear: Europe has no "free speech." No country in Europe enjoys the kind of legal protections that America has, canonizing what we call "First Amendment" rights as nearly sacrosanct. That's why it's almost impossible to win a libel case in America, and when big companies want to slap down their critics with such cases, they always take them to some place like Britain (a la McLibel).

In Europe, including Denmark, where a juvenile, neocon-adoring cartoonist recently launched his witless, tasteless defamations of Mohamed, you can be locked up in jail for a long time for even suggesting that the number Jews murdered by the Nazis might differ from generally accepted statistics. This they call "antisemitism." Whereas, no verbal offense against the Jews' semitic cousins, the Arabs, or against Moslems, seems to warrant any sanctions at all.

In view of such a double standard, and without giving Iranian President Ahmadijenad any credit for his ridiculous conspiracy theories, one can forgive Moslems for viewing the behavior of Europeans towards them in this recent brouhaha as essentially a public declaration of open-season on them and their coreligionists.

 http://www.counterpunch.org/itani02022006.html

thanks ne1 08.Feb.2006 18:23

just a jew

I've seen your comments on the other threads to this effect. I've held my tongue because this story has been so overblown in the corporate media. I had wanted to point out how easily offended many Christians and Jews are and this incident will result in a race to the bottom for religious and cultural insults. Unfortunately, perhaps nothing will prevent that now and the neocons and their admirers get to add more fuel to the holy war they're trying to start. I suppose it simply stems for the desire for people to be understood: "you don't understand why I am offended by insults to my religious or cultural identity let's see how you like insults to yours." If I were a betting man I'd bet that we'll see a marked increase in insulting images and statements about all religions and religious icons. And while it is important to note the speech restrictions in other countries we must also consider US culture where the importance is placed on the right to say something but not on what the consequences will be. In other words, just because you have the right to say something doesn't mean it's a smart thing to say.

who does it serve ? 08.Feb.2006 20:44

notme

Always question who it serves when these situations occur, then you can best analyze motives and causation. Who profits from outraged Islam?

\ 08.Feb.2006 21:08

/

Cartoon about Jesus were refused. A clear double standard. It is not about free speech.

fools 08.Feb.2006 22:29

docat holliday


islam has no monopoly on anger, intolerance, or self-righteousness 08.Feb.2006 22:50

demanding nobody insult the official religion

If any religion's doctrines and figureheads achieve any kind of protected status in Europe, it will be Protestant Christianity in the north and Catholicism in the south. Muslim protesters might be careful what they wish for. Much worse has happened to Muslims in Europe in history than a few ugly cartoons.

i Also Thank You, ne1 09.Feb.2006 00:32

treble

Standing in the distance, far from Europe here on the West Coast, I know little about the realities of the oppressed there, be they oppressed through religion, color or gender. My only light on the Europe protests is filtered through foreign and domestic media, mainstream and alternative. i do not fall into the trap of thinking a free press means open season. All media is limited by the visions and beliefs of it's operators. I must comment, however, on your extolling of "free speech' in this country.
Granted, free speech in this country arguably remains among the most free on the Globe. Ironically, it is because of that standing that oppressions to free speech here, on these shores, speaks volumes about those comrades operating under less, dare i say, compassionate regimes?
At this Time in the Universe our Government may data-mine all citizens' phone calls, faxes, emails and other electronic communications. Under the nom de plume Fighting Terrorism, it's all good. Imagine what is happening tonight - hell, right now! - in Darfor, the Moslim barrios of Paris, the pubs of Eugene. The Man is listening. Imagine what consequences our comrades are dealing with...RIGHT NOW! i would like to use the 'imagine' line again, RIGHT NOW!, but John Lennon got there first...
i am not a Moslem, i am human. i am not a Jew, i remain human. i am not a Christian, the belief i am most familiar with. i know i am human.
i am a listener of yours.
PS, on the pragmatist angle, not me raises a good question best defined by Watergate's Woodward and Bernstein - "follow the money"