I have yet to see a single article questioning why adherents of Islam believe they are justified in butchering innocent citizens
French citizens, having been butchered in Paris and Nice, the media is picking over arguments about what France has done wrong, how it has incited the violence we now see. I have though yet to see a single article questioning why adherents of Islam believe they are justified in butchering innocent citizens. Where is the article asking whether such a religion has a place in modern society?
France has a long history of secularism, going back to the post-Revolutionary period. The laws apply to all citizens, whatever their religious beliefs, so why should France be expected to make an exception for Islam? Why should they be expected to treat Islam with any more respect than they do Christianity? And if they make an exception for Islam on the subject of satirical cartoons, what comes next? Fundamentalist Islam treats women as second class citizens; will all women be required to walk behind their husband, for fear of upsetting the Islamic community?
If you want to believe in God, if you want to follow a particular religious doctrine, that is entirely your right, and that right should be protected. However, in a secular society, whether it is France or Britain, when the religious beliefs come into conflict with state laws, then the state laws must always take primacy. The right to freedom of speech is a basic tenet of a free society, and that includes the right to satirise and question any and all religions. If that means the publication of what you consider to be offensive cartoons, then so be it. After all it is that very same freedom that allows you to practise your religion in peace.
Vive la France.
1st November 2020