Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Christopher Hitchens Weighs In - Twice!


Cartoon Debate: The case for mocking religion.

Hitchens - As it happens, the cartoons themselves are not very brilliant, or very mordant, either. But if Muslims do not want their alleged prophet identified with barbaric acts or adolescent fantasies, they should say publicly that random murder for virgins is not in their religion.

Actually, the cartoon above by Cox & Forkum is far funnier and intelligent than the infamous 12 published in Denmark ... which reminds me of a previous Hitchens editorial.

Stand up for Denmark!
Why are we not defending our ally?


Hitchens - The preposterous person of Karen Hughes is quoted in the same New York Times article, under her risible title of "Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy." She tittered outside the store she was happily giving away: "The voices of Muslim Americans have more credibility in the Muslim world frankly than my voice as a government official, because they can speak the language of their faith and can share their experience of practicing their faith freely in the West, and they can help explain why the cartoons are so offensive." Well, let's concede that almost any voice in any world has more credibility on any subject than this braying Bush-crony ignoramus, but is the State Department now saying that we shall be represented in the Muslim world only by Muslims? I think we need a debate on that, and also a vote. Meanwhile, not a dollar of Wahhabi money should be allowed to be spent on opening madrasahs in this country, or in distributing fundamentalist revisions of the Quran in our prison system. Not until, at the very least, churches and synagogues and free-thought libraries are permitted in every country whose ambassador has bullied the Danes. If we have to accept this sickly babble about "respect," we must at least demand that it is fully reciprocal.

This Bush Adminstration is going woefully off track ... and now we have to worry that our ports will be managed by Muslims. We are part of a World War and the proof that this war is anything but over is exemplified by this Cartoon Jihad.

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To bad that our mainstream media seems content and has elected to sit by and let the Danes take this war on by themselves.

This response by the Los Angeles Times Readers Rep. when asked why the Times did not print the cartoons as part of a NEWS STORY.

L.A. Times - Thanks for your note. You're referring to a statement made by the editorial board, which is separate from the newsroom, where the readers' rep office is. However, the cartoons also were not reproduced in the news pages of the L.A. Times, though the newsroom editors are separate from the editorial board editors.

It sounds as if you believe that the L.A. Times hasn't reported the news thoroughly because cartoons weren't run. I'll let editors know.

I'm curious: Have you read all of the stories about the international furor? There have been quite a few and they've included news from all over the world about reactions ranging from the benign, because some Muslims don't have proscriptions against images of Muhammad, to, of course, the riots and killings. I do think the articles about the controversy and violence have included lots of the details for readers to know of the controversy, and question your saying that the story has not been reported. Is it your thought that the cartoons should be published with each day's stories?

In any case, thanks for writing and I'll let editors know you believe that the story isn't complete without the cartoons.

Jamie Gold
Readers' representative


Didn't the fourth estate get the memo? ... The story is NOT the story without the cartoons. What, in fact, are the Muslims really getting angry enough to kill people and torch foreign embassies about? The L.A. Times readers will never know.

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