Letting Islamists Dictate ‘Free Speech’
An incendiary video about the prophet Muhammad, “Innocence of Muslims,” was blamed for the mob attacks on our embassies in Libya and Egypt (and later, Yemen). In Libya, Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans were murdered. The video stirred some passion here in America as well.
Over at MSNBC, contributors Mike Barnicle and Donny Deutsch, plus University of Pennsylvania professor Anthea Butler, all agreed that the people behind the video should be indicted as accessories to murder.
“Declared Butler: “How soon is Sam Bacile [the alleged creator of the film] going to be in jail folks? I need him to go now.”
Barnicle set his sights on Terry Jones, the pastor who wanted to burn the Koran a while back and who was allegedly involved in the video as well. “Given this supposed minister’s role in last year’s riots in Afghanistan, where people died, and given his apparent or his alleged role in this film, where … at least one American, perhaps the American ambassador is dead, it might be time for the Department of Justice to start viewing his role as an accessory before or after the fact.”
It’s interesting to see such committed liberals in lockstep agreement with the Islamist government in Egypt, which implored the US government to take legal action against the filmmakers.
Now, I have next to no sympathy for the makers of this film. But where does this logic end? One thing we’ve learned all too well is that the “Muslim street” has a near-limitless capacity to take offense at slights to their religion, honor, history or feelings.
Does Barnicle want Salman Rushdie, the author of “The Satanic Verses,” charged with attempted murder, too? That book has in one way or another led to several deaths. Perhaps the Justice Department and the Iranian Ministry of Intelligence and Security could work on a joint prosecution?
Perhaps Rushdie’s offense doesn’t count because he’s a literary celebrity? Only crude attacks on Islam should be held accountable for the murderous bloodlust they elicit.
But who’s to decide what is crude and what is refined? We know the real answer: the Islamist mobs and their leaders. Their rulings would come in the form of bloody conniptions around the world.
Are we really going to hold what we can say or do in our own country hostage to the passions of foreign lynch mobs?
If your answer is some of form “yes,” you might want to explain why US citizens aren’t justified in attacking Egyptian or Libyan embassies here in America.