Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Je suis Charlie

I don't understand a word of French, but I love satire.

Satire is my favorite form of humor. I devoured MAD magazine as a child and as an adult it is the satire of The Colbert Report and the Daily Show and Saturday Night Live that fuels my laughter. Political Satire is the heart of humor for me.

The murders at the French magazine "Charlie" (in English) today are beyond reprehensible, they strike at the very nature of freedom and free expression and what Western Civilization stands for and is about.

Nothing is beyond joking about whatever it is. There is no 'sacred cow' in a free and literate society.

So, these dastardly murders, to 'honor Alla' and kill talented, creative journalists is, for me, the last straw.

I've often reasoned with people about Islamic terror by pointing out that Islam is 500 years or so younger than Christianity and if we look back to the 1500's, Christians were being as outrageous and violent as some Islamic terrorists are today.

That argument no longer holds up.

We live in the 21st century, not the 15th. People in the civilized world can not be murdered with impunity because of their sense of humor.

Islam had got to get hold of itself and judge from within or else the Western World must somehow disarm the extremes of Islam.

I still defend and support the vast majority of Muslims, especially in the West, who simply want to maintain their distinction while assimilating into a new world.

But the murder of satirists is beyond the pale.

If you can't laugh at it, you can't include it.

We are all Charlie.

Something must be done to stop--and I mean STOP--the extreme and violent elements of Islam.

What's going on in Syria and Iraq must somehow be blotted out.

I'm a liberal with a capital L--and this has to stop. It has to stop.

Alfred E. Neuman, be on guard. There are people who think some things can't be laughed about.

That's the most frightening thought of all.....

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some ponderings by an aging white man who is an Episcopal priest in Connecticut. Now retired but still working and still wondering what it all means...all of it.