Thursday, February 09, 2006


Headline Should Read: EU Contemplates Cowardly Capitulation to Religious Zealots

LONDON (Reuters) -

The European Union may try to draw up a media code of conduct to avoid a repeat of the furor caused by the publication across Europe of cartoons of the Prophet Mohammad, an EU commissioner said on Thursday. In an interview with Britain's Daily Telegraph, EU Justice and Security Commissioner Franco Frattini said the charter would encourage the media to show "prudence" when covering religion. "The press will give the Muslim world the message: We are aware of the consequences of exercising the right of free expression," he told the newspaper. "We can and we are ready to self-regulate that right."

Doesn't this prove the point of the cartoons in the first place. They were initiated to examine to what degree cartoonists would self-censor their own material (apparently because of the not-so-far-fetched concern that they may each end up with fatwas on their heads and suffer the fate of Salman Rushdie, or far worse that of Theo Van Gogh ). Now cartoonists themselves are not only afraid to tackle the subject of Islam, but entire nations...continents are capitulating.

You can't help but wonder once this furor blows over if we'll ever again see a cartoon depiction of Mohammed. Not that I really need to, but the very idea that violent proponents of a religion, any religion, are effectively truncating and censoring freedom of speech throughout the world is an incredibly offensive concept. Free-thinking peoples throughout the world should be angrily marching the streets in righteous protest. Putting leaflets on cars, singing "Freedom of Speech" ditties copping Arlo Guthrie's melodies, and banging on old typewriters. But nah...let's just try not to upset the slavering maniac in the corner of the room, and hope he'll go away. Until our next offense.

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