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Thursday, February 16, 2006

Peace be unto all of us

I've avoided talking about the cartoon controversy -- no, this isn't the one involving Marmaduke -- for good reason: CHB wasn't sure how to feel. There can be no doubt that riots and bloodshed are a bit over the top when it comes to protesting a political cartoon published half a world away. But freedom of expression must be tempered by respect for others. This, in a nutshell, is what Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr., was getting all in our grills about back in '19.

However you feel about the publication of cartoons deemed offensive to Islam -- and let me note here that there is much that seems to offend the Muslim street these days, not to mention the Christian one -- we can all agree that in the scheme of things, cartoons are at the low range of global importance.

And what about the destruction of the prophet's home? If the U.S., or Denmark for that matter, were to pave over the prophet's home on the Arabian peninsula to make way for more development, wouldn't the Muslim street be on fire? What if it was the Saudis who did the paving?

The wingnuts of the American right aren't the only ones easily manipulated into political hate. But we're all too busy spinning ourselves -- here, and abroad.

Or just try the freedom fries, Iranian style!


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