Violence Brought On By ‘Innocence Of Muslims’ Film Brings Out Problematic Reactions

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cartoon of a dead terrorist
Silence! I KILL YOU!

An amateur anti-Muslim video posted on YouTube triggered a riot in Egypt and Libya and gave cover to a militant Islamic militia in Libya to murder the US Ambassador to Libya and three other foreign service workers at the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya on September 11th. There have been problems with reactions both politically and in general to the violence. The last thing we need to do is to censor the Internet or “turn the other cheek”.

They joined protesters outside the consulate who were demonstrating against an American movie that they believed denigrated the prophet Muhammad. But according to one witness, the new arrivals neither chanted slogans nor carried banners.

“They said, ‘We are Muslims defending the prophet. We are defending Islam,’” Libyan television journalist Firas Abdelhakim said in an interview.

The gunmen soon opened fire, entered the compound and set the consulate’s buildings aflame. Hours later, the compound was overrun and four Americans were dead. Among them were Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens, 52, and Sean Smith, a State Department employee.

Libya consulate attack came after militants joined protesters, say witnesses, officials

Mitt Romney and his campaign turned the tragic attack into a political issue against better judgement. It was a cheap shot on the backs of dead Americans. Luckily he is getting some blow back even as he doubles down on his stupid remarks. I was told that attacking the President while we are at war was treason. I guess that only applies if the President is Republican?

Another reaction is the video in question and YouTube itself being censored in countries overly sensitive to religious dissent.

Some of the reaction to the violence on the social networks I read was “don’t stir up trouble” but I don’t subscribe to the abusive relationship mantra. People in a abusive relationship make excuses and try not to stir up trouble not knowing what will set off the abuser. The Islamic fanatics use the violence to silence dissent so if you don’t stir up trouble then you give them what they want.

Are you willing to die for your beliefs because those radical Islamists are. If you aren’t willing to die for your principles then you are not any better than an abused spouse and you deserve the abuse.

The difference between people who follow Islam and those who follow Christianity is Christians don’t normally murder dissenters. Killing abortion doctors, blowing up abortion clinics, and shooting up or vandalizing non-Christian places of worship are the exception and not the rule. Those who do those things are brought to justice in the legal system.

In Muslim countries one can be put in prison, executed, or outright murdered for going against the religion. That isn’t even with due process. Someone just has to report you and you get in trouble.

Some of my more liberal friends who have only been exposed to liberal Christians and freethinkers think the violence is just an anomaly that not all Muslims are violent and saying that Islam is not a peace loving religion is bigotry.

BULLSHIT!

No religion should be exempted from scrutiny no matter the reason given. Fear of violence is exactly the wrong reason to hide one’s head in the sand when these incidents come up. If your first response to dissent is to murder the dissenters then your beliefs have no moral foundation to stand on and your actions prove it. People who don’t condemn it right away when it happens enable that irrational response. (As if any religion is rational…).

The response to stupid ideas is not censorship – it is more speech. The film that sparked the riots was a stupid movie made by an amateur. That person should be ridiculed not murdered.

Incidents like this is why we must keep church and state separate, stop censorship, and not allow religious dissenters or their supporters to be murdered.


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  • sarah

    you seem to be a bit confused…you hate republicans (who defend free speech) and support democrats (who want to sensor dissent of Islam) Hmmmm http://www.examiner.com/article/u-s-diplomats-egy

    • http://www.secularleft.us cadfile

      Well Republicans only defend the free speech they agree with http://is.gd/ARf1RC and free speech isn't a party issue it is an American value and I don't support any attempt by any party to subvert it. The link you included in your comment isn't real proof of anything since Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was pretty frank about free speech:

      Now, I know it is hard for some people to understand why the United States cannot or does not just prevent these kinds of reprehensible videos from ever seeing the light of day. Now, I would note that in today’s world with today’s technologies, that is impossible. But even if it were possible, our country does have a long tradition of free expression which is enshrined in our Constitution and our law, and we do not stop individual citizens from expressing their views no matter how distasteful they may be.

      Remarks at the Opening Plenary of the U.S.-Morocco Strategic Dialogue

      Oh just because someone is on MSNBC doesn't make them liberal since MSNBC has Morning Joe and Chris Mathews who aren't liberals.

  • Observer

    I really feel sorry for the ignorance of Muslims. All they had to do was to write letters to Jewish and Christian religious leaders, civic leaders and humane societies inviting them to view the movie and decide for themselves if it was justified and fair to denigrate the belief system of non-us. One has to share this earth and air with non-us as well as help each other in time of distress, pain and sufferings. As the Russian saying goes, ‘Don’t spit in a well, one day you might have to drink from the same well‘. This way they would have made, at least some of them, feel ashamed and guilty. This works better than protests. Hate begets hate, violence begets violence and protests create controversies. Moreover, hate and truth do not cohabit. They are mutually exclusive. One exposes ones own falsehood through hate. Problem with Islamic societies is that rational and scientific thought is not within the reach of the common person because they use foreign rather than native tongues in learning, communication and expression of thought and feelings. The elite who use foreign language are corrupt to the core and pass on power and corruption to their posterity leaving the common person out of the loop. Therefore, there is no such thing as discussion, dialogue or debate, just emotional outbursts in Islamic societies. It is not only Muslims but all societies, irrespective of their race, religion or origin, who do not use native tongue suffer from the same malady

    • http://www.dougberger.net Doug B.

      It’s not the religion itself – it is the people in power – the elites that use the religion as a method of control. Stalin nor the communists in China did away with religion completely they just used it as part of their control. Those in the Middle East that stoked the protests – the clergy for example and the radicals there – did so to distract from the internal issues in those countries. Notice there were no protests to support the rebels in Syria?

  • Observer

    The fact that an Egyptian Christian produced the movie makes one wonder why, even after living together for centuries, Muslims and Christians in Arab lands have failed to develope tolerance and respect for each other for the sake of coexistence. There seems to be more than just the religion. Probably there is a fundamental rift between the two communities. This rift, probably, is also responsible for Christianity’s loss to Islam in Western Asia and North Africa because Christianity did not loose to Islam in Europe. This rift is, probably based on difference in origin as well as ruled vs. ruler. Therefore, even if there were no Islam today, the animosity between the two communities as well as between Middle East and Europe would still be the same. It is likely that the aboriginals of the Arab lands, Semites, Hittites and Hamates, converted to Islam while descendents of Greeks, Romans, Crusaders and Colonists who subjugated and ruled these lands remained faithful to European Christianity. Apparently, both the communities claim to be the aboriginals to the lands.

    • http://www.dougberger.net Doug B.

      Sure it happens to be religion used as the flashpoint it could be feet size or hair color. That’s even true here in the US – different groups try to claim victimhood – some are more true victims (like women) than not (Christians)