From DN* - Dhimmi News
Second cartoon by Magnus Bard in 3 days in the proud tradition of Der Stürmer. (Bard, illustrator, Stockholm: http://illustratorcentrum.se/?findbk=BARMAG)
(commentary by by swedish art historian expected som time in the next 24 hours.)
'Sensitivity' can have brutal consequences
February 5, 2006
BY MARK STEYN SUN-TIMES COLUMNIST
I long ago lost count of the number of times I've switched on the TV and seen crazy guys jumping up and down in the street, torching the Stars and Stripes and yelling ''Death to the Great Satan!'' Or torching the Union Jack and yelling ''Death to the Original If Now Somewhat Arthritic And Semi-Retired Satan!'' But I never thought I'd switch on the TV and see the excitable young lads jumping up and down in Jakarta, Lahore, Aden, Hebron, etc., etc., torching the flag of Denmark.
Denmark! Even if you were overcome with a sudden urge to burn the Danish flag, where do you get one in a hurry in Gaza? Well, OK, that's easy: the nearest European Union Humanitarian Aid and Intifada-Funding Branch Office. But where do you get one in an obscure town on the Punjabi plain on a Thursday afternoon? If I had a sudden yen to burn the Yemeni or Sudanese flag on my village green, I haven't a clue how I'd get hold of one in this part of New Hampshire. Say what you like about the Islamic world, but they show tremendous initiative and energy and inventiveness, at least when it comes to threatening death to the infidels every 48 hours for one perceived offense or another. If only it could be channeled into, say, a small software company, what an economy they'd have.
Meanwhile, back in Copenhagen, the Danes are a little bewildered to find that this time it's plucky little Denmark who's caught the eye of the nutters.....
Hit of the week
Last night, for the newspaper edition, I spoke at length to a spokesman for the group of Danish imams and activists who have done more than anyone else to bring the Mohammed cartoon row to international prominence.
As this blog has reported in the last couple of days, there have been sharp questions in Denmark about the role played by these Danish Muslim delegations that made repeated trips to the Middle East late last year. There have been still sharper questions about the 43 page dossier on "Danish racism and Islamophobia" they carried with them, in meetings with scholars, officials of the Arab League and senior clerics in Cairo and Beirut.
The delegations were publicly criticised by the Danish prime minister, Anders Fogh Rasmussen, who said he was "speechless" that his fellow countrymen could tour the Arab world "inciting antipathy towards Denmark".
As well as being a small masterpiece of inarticulacy and self-abnegation, the statement from the State Department about this week's international Muslim pogrom against the free press was also accidentally accurate.
"Anti-Muslim images are as unacceptable as anti-Semitic images, as anti-Christian images, or any other religious belief."
What is democracy without freedom of speech?
The essence of democracy is that it is legal as well as possible to bring forward all facts and opinions as part of the political decision-making process. It also means that any member of a democratic society has the right to participate in this process, to speak up in public and to publish his or hers opinions and whatever s/he believes to be important information.
This process is vital to the spiritual as well as technical development of a society. It is in fact the very basis of progress within Western societies since the European Renaissance.
FREEDOM OF SPEECH
Freedom of speech does not only come to life through words. Also other means to present information or to speak out one’s opinion and ideas can be used. An opinion or a fact can be expressed and communicated in a variety of manners; through irony as well as argumentative conclusions and through words as well as images.
Thus, freedom of speech is also the right to argue with humor and irony and to condense an idea, an assessment or a fact into a cartoon or an image. Cartoons might in one short glimpse pinpoint something which it would take thousands of words to explain, and cartoons are often much easier to understand.
of speech – and under no circumstances will we abandon this freedom...............