Friday, April 23, 2010
Newshounds know that Comedy Central has caved in to a veiled threat (couched as a "prediction") from a Muslim group over a planned depiction of the Prophet Muhammad. We've seen this story before, and if we do not speak up and indeed confront it will happen again and again. As the linked story reminds us, this is not the first time this has happened. From just over four years ago, my (then) widely-linked post "Comedy Central and the violence veto":
The right of freedom of speech -- as I tirelessly and tiresomely remind my readers at every opportunity -- is only relevant for people who say unpopular or controversial things. If speech is sufficiently unpopular or controversial, people may threaten violence with the goal of coercing the speaker into withdrawing the speech or suspending its publication and intimidating future speakers from saying the controversial thing in the first place. Actual or threatened violence is the method that mobs of ignorant or unthinking people use to confront ideas that they do not like, because they are incapable of suffering the idea to exist and lack the capacity to argue against it. The mob does not accept freedom of speech, and seeks to destroy it. The only way to stand for freedom of speech, therefore, is to stand up to the mob and its violence. If we do not do that, we give violent people a veto over our speech, and we therefore have no freedom of speech. None that matters, anyway.
Muslims -- not all of them but many of those who are most visible, including activists in this country -- claim the right to express the opinion that is their religion unencumbered by the risk that it might be criticized by others. That is incompatible with a free society. People, mostly liberals, who deny this in the interests of "diversity" or sectarian comity are subverting our most important freedoms.
Did you hear the one about Mahommed and the circumcised goat? Oh well, maybe some other time.
Actually, the Left is embarrassed with targets for their bottomless hatred. Those who don't buy into the unscientific Anthropogenic Global Warming scam. Those who think that a 24-week old foetus might be a human being. Those who think that a cold-blooded murdering rapist might actually deserve the death penalty. Those Californians who think that people are more important than fish. Those who judge people by the content of their character, not by the color of their skin. Their hate list just goes on & on.