Posted in Books, Movies, Music, Political, Televison, Uncategorized

Je Suis Charlie – A Picture is Worth a Thousand Bullets

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They can never take our freedom!
They can, however, try to make us afraid enough to willingly give it up.

Media spews out tales of terror, images and words so appalling we feel like we live in a giant house of horrors.

Even freedom can be scary. Some people misuse it, especially against children and other vulnerable members of society; they should be cared for and protected at all costs.

Free speech shouldn’t be a free pass to gratuitously abuse and harass.
Hopefully ethics and boundaries will prevail, but even if it doesn’t, we have free will to: close the book, don’t look at the cartoon, don’t watch the TV show or movie, don’t listen to the song.
Or do a counterpoint.
Protest.
Complain.
Object.
Disagree.
Oppose.
Boycott.
Try to change the laws.

No idea or system or person is immune to, or above scrutiny or censure.
Freedom of speech isn’t just for what you agree with, but also that which you don’t agree with, or even loathe. If we remove it, we will be rendered helpless, any power drained.

Beliefs, thoughts, ideas, opinions, faith, and/or convictions that don’t hold up under scrutiny, or if challenged, or even maligned, that are so wobbly they can be threatened by a cartoon, a post, a movie, a TV show, a book, etc., well, you might need to reconsider how committed you are to those beliefs.

Satire is a long-standing tradition.
It’s one of the checks and balances of a social order.
Satire holds a mirror up to society, to make it look at the vices, foolishness, recklessness, abuses, and inadequacies of politicians, corporations, religions, individuals, celebrities, and society itself. It pokes and prods, provokes and  pushes. It can amuse, offend, irritate, charm, intimidate, distract, inform, and more. Sometimes it can cause an international incident as we recently saw with the satirical movie, The Interview. Sometimes it can kill, as we saw yesterday with a vicious and craven attack on the French satirical publication, Charlie Hebdo that highlighted the difference between free speech and consequence-free speech. You may say anything you want, but that doesn’t mitigate the consequences.
Free speech has many prices.

There is no point in attacking anyone,
verbally or physically, for their beliefs.
There’s also no need to agree, you have the right to disagree, hopefully respectfully.
People can disagree, debate, wrangle, bicker, even argue, hopefully respectfully.

People sometimes write, draw, photograph, sing, direct, paint, produce, act, etc. to make people comfortable, sometimes to make them uncomfortable, either way, they should take responsibility for what they do…but never, ever with their lives.

Je Suis Charlie.

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