Insults tit for tat with Pope Francis

Pope_Imam

 

Since the murderous attack on those satirical cartoonists and their staff, at Charlie Hebdo’s headquarters in Paris, there have been any number of cries for more journalistic self-censorship. And by critics – often folded in with their condolences for the victims of this crime – concerned with what are viewed by many, as needlessly vitriolic and loathsome displays of religious intolerance. If not intentionally provocative blasphemy.

Even Pope Francis weighed in, Thursday, January 15, 2015, with his much abused statement that “the right to liberty of expression comes with the ‘obligation’ to speak for ‘the common good.’” Asking, along with those many others, why folks can’t be just a bit more respectful – in order to get along.

Of course, much of what could be construed as derisive – if not blasphemous – hate speech, comes from the ‘normal’ day to day internal pronouncements of various religious sects, themselves. Not only do we have radical Muslims – holding forth on the evils of western civilization, and the infidels who populate it – Pope Francis, himself, pontificated that the Charlie Hebdo attackers were enslaved by “deviant forms of religion,” that used God as a mere ideological pretext to perpetuate mass killings. And that, just days earlier – on Monday, Jan 12, of 2015 – from his somewhat conflicted statement of Thursday. So we see that derisive comments, bordering on blasphemy, are routinely spouted from all sides – and not just by activist cartoonists.

The difference being, of course, that the former are usually intended for the eyes and ears of their private, and more sympathetic, audiences. And not generally intended for the ears of their rivals. Let alone being advertised through the media, and all but dropped on their virtual doorsteps.

They seem to forget, however, that the whole Charlie Hebdo / ridicule Mohammed thing, arose out of an equally ridiculous religious ideology, that routinely pronounced death sentences against authors, like Salman Rushdie, and caricature cartoonists. And had already led to the assassination of cartoonists in the Netherlands and elsewhere.

To be ashamed of one’s immorality: that is a step on the staircase at whose end one is also ashamed of one’s morality.
– Friedrich Nietzsche

 

So, Charley Hebdo’s activities did, indeed, go much farther than the simple failure to respect the beliefs of others. Theirs was a protracted effort, by social activists, to openly defy the ridiculous presumption that anyone’s religion – or religious beliefs – could prohibit the free, open criticism – and yes, ridicule – of their religious beliefs, on pain of death.

Charlie Hebdo has exemplified the fact, that no single religious organization can expect to draw a line in the sand – without also having those many defenders of personal freedom and liberty, literally tripping over themselves, to record their defiance.

Kind of says a whole lot, about the source of ridicule often aimed at the Catholic Church, Mormons, and fundamentalist Christian religions, as well.

The defenders of showing respect for the status quo, are usually deeply attached to their ideas about the status quo.  Detractors are often seeking change.  And are a bit more pragmatic – in recognizing you sometimes have to apply a bit of social demolition, before you can begin any new remodel.

Then again, many of us like to mount our various media soap boxes, from time to time, in holding forth on the apparently ridiculous beliefs of others. Forgetting – or at least failing to acknowledge – just how utterly ridiculous our own beliefs often appear, to anyone outside our own locus of credulity.  It’s the same with every brand of politics – religious or secular.

It’s a free country, at least in America. And it’s freedom of expression – and speech – that is largely honored, above all else. And the message is still needing to be delivered to those extremist, Islamic knuckleheads* out there: Don’t be so ridiculous as to think you can force the knee of humanity – and society at large – to bend, in abeyance to your particular religious beliefs.

If you feel it is an act of idolatry, to portray Mohammed, then don’t do it. But your attempts to police a world of non-believer’s, who will do as they damned well please, strikes the rest of us – ironically – as hypocritically idolatrous.  And invites the kind of derisive ridicule, that has been directed towards you by the likes of Charley Hebdo, and others.  Hell, WE are all Charley Hebdo.

Donnie

 

* Radical, Islamic, Muslim strongholds, their Imams, and their piss ant Jihads. (All others excluded.)

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