Friday, February 10, 2006

Update on Free Speech Coverage

Myrhaf points out an excellent post on his blog. I particularly like these formulations:
We must stand up to their intimidation; it is the only way we can defeat militant Islam. That is also the only chance the moderate Muslims have of reforming their culture. If we cave in moral cowardice, the worst elements of Islam will be emboldened and the best will be forced to continue cowering in shadows, afraid to speak their mind. ...
Acts of appeasement hurt our war effort, not cartoons. The State Department hurts our war effort. Steven Spielberg’s Munich hurt our war effort. And Hugh Hewitt’s lack of confidence in the rationality of 1.3 billion Muslims hurts our war effort more than any stupid cartoon could.

This is about more than cartoons, it’s about fighting a totalitarian ideology that has been intimidating the West in the name of multiculturalism. They are using our New Leftist ideas against us. In the long run, we must change our culture’s philosophy to survive. In the short run, we must find the courage to stand up against their bullying.
Also, Onkar and Christian Beenfeldt have a new op-ed on Free Speech. Though the wording in a few passages at the beginning seemed a bit rushed, the message and arguments are crucially important, and I urge everyone to read it. From the text:
To demand special status for any idea or ideology--to declare Judaism or Christianity or Marxism or Islam off-limits, above public criticism--is to negate these rights. No rational mind can function under the order: Follow the evidence wherever you think it leads, but don't you dare come to a negative conclusion about the philosophy of Marxism or the religion of Islam.

The consequence of making submission to authority and not thought--faith, not reason--the sacred value of a society can be observed throughout the Middle East, where censorship, state propaganda, intellectual stagnation, forced compliance with religious edicts and medieval punishments for religious offences are part of everyday life.
The moment someone decides to answer those he finds offensive with a gun, not an argument--as many Muslims have by demanding that European governments censor the newspapers or by issuing calls for beheadings and other violence against Europeans--he removes himself from civilized society and any rational consideration.

And against this kind of threat to free speech, every free man must stand up. We must vociferously condemn the attempt by religionists to impose censorship in the West. We must extol--without apology or qualifications--the indispensable pillar of a free society: freedom of thought and speech.


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