Different River

”You can never step in the same river twice.” –Heraclitus

February 8, 2006

Which Side is Chirac on?

Filed under: — Different River @ 4:44 pm

At the Drudge Report, Matt Drudge has a list of links to news stories on the cartoon riots. One of them says, simply:

CHIRAC CONDEMNS…

My first thought was, “Chirac condemns … whom? The rioters, or the newspapers?” Click on the link — according to theBBC, it’s as I feared:

French President Jacques Chirac has condemned as “overt provocation” decisions to reprint cartoons satirising the Prophet Muhammad.

As another French publication printed the cartoons, Mr Chirac said any subject matter that could hurt other people’s convictions should be avoided.

Now I’m all for being polite, but “hurt other people’s convictions”? (A “conviction” can hurt?) That could mean anything. It could mean they shouldn’t make globes to avoid hurting the “convictions” of flat-earthers.

Again, I’m all for being polite — and for avoiding disrespect to people’s religions — but does it occur to anyone that perhaps burning down buildings and killing people might be, um, a bit worse than merely drawing a cartoon that people find offensive? I mean really — would you rather someone draw a cartoon mocking you, or burn your house down?

The Danish cartoonists are, like King Lear, “more sinned against than sinning.” Why can’t Chirac see that? Does he really believe that rioting, burning down embassies, and killing people is not really so bad compared to the greater sin of printing an offensive cartoon?

I know they don’t have a “First Amendment” in Europe, but this is ridiculous….

One Response to “Which Side is Chirac on?”

  1. Tyrone Slothrop Says:

    Why does one have to pick sides? E.g., you could think it’s a bad idea to offend people and also think that is’ a bad idea to engage in wanton violence and burn embassies.

    More re this:
    http://allintensivepurposes.blogspot.com/2006/02/cartoonish-debate.html
    http://allintensivepurposes.blogspot.com/2006/02/and-im-agreeing-with-him-even-if-it.html

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