Saturday, March 31, 2007

Press Limits

The UN can't bring themselves to condemn Iran's kidnapping of 15 British sailors and Marines, but they can condemn something else-

The United Nations top human rights body condemned "defamation" of religion on Friday and, in an apparent reference to the storm over the Prophet cartoons, said press freedom had its limits.

The press is free to do anything it wants apart from say anything vaguely critical of Islam. That's not so much to ask for is it? I mean, it's not as if some journalists aren't already trying hard to do that already- they seem to be quite good at ignoring certain unpalatable facts. So much for freedom of speech.

Most of the press caved over the Mohammed cartoons- though they didn't seem to be too concerned by offending Christians by printing the chocolate Jesus pictures- and now they are reaping the results of their timidity. It hasn't gained them any credence or support- simply led to a desire to impose those limits on them that they've already accepted voluntarily. I guess the UN states who supported this assume that the press has already submitted to them so why not put it in writing. I wonder what will come next?

With the support of China, Russia and Cuba, Moslem and Arab states comfortably won a vote on the 47-state Human Rights Council to express concern at "negative stereotyping" of religions and "attempts to identify Islam with terrorism."

Nevermind, there it is- no more attempts to link Islam with terrorism carried out in the name of Islam. Got that journalists? How ironic that such a statement should come from a "human rights" council- only the proper sort of rights evidently. And what paragons of virtue that sit on this exalted council!

"The resolution is tabled in the expectation that it will compel the international community to acknowledge and address the disturbing phenomena of the defamation of religions, especially Islam," said Pakistan, speaking on behalf of the Organization of the Islamic Conference.

It will compel. So there you have it- don't say anything bad about Islam. Now you don't just have to fear some member of the Religion of Peace attacking you for it, the UN is on the case too. How long before an international law is passed to limit press freedom? You know, the kind of laws that liberals say that the US should acknowledge. Think that may come back to haunt you?

If the press really did care about freedom of speech- and was willing to stand up for it- there would be calls from all over the world by journalists to reject any limit on the press like this. Why should "especially Islam" be exempt from any kind of criticism?

Einstein's maxim is proved correct yet again.

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