Questionable Motives

May 12, 2010

How much is freedom of expression worth?

Filed under: censorship,Islam,religiously inspired violence — tildeb @ 10:04 am
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Apparently, the most recent islamic bounty to kill those who dare exercise such rights is about $100,000 for a cartoonist and another $50,000 of an editor willing to publish the cartoon… at least in Sweden. Of course, there will be those who say that such bounties don’t really reflect any true values of the religion of peace, but it’s a head-scratching mystery why (some, many) those who take offense to a religious caricature in cartoon form are then willing to resort to real life violence as if such action were religiously justified.

Oh, wait…

Might that actually be the case? Might the religious justification for violence in its name accurately reflect the inherit disrespect for freedom of expression within that religion? In other words, as long as everyone respects the religion and its claims over and above respect for basic human freedoms, then it really is a religion of peace… except when (some, many) believers face dissent, in which case it’s just as much a religion of violence.

The sooner the moderates of islam recognize this discrepancy as part and parcel of their faith, the sooner its evolution into a civilized expression of peaceful religious faith can occur. In the meantime, this is what freedom of expression and islam look like when they meet in a lecture hall.

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