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Monday, February 13, 2006

What we believe

EZRA LEVANT
Calgary Sun

Early this morning, 40,000 copies of the Western Standard magazine, of which I am publisher, rolled off the presses. The cover story is about government lobbyists and corruption.

But in the middle of the magazine, we have a two-page discussion about the Danish cartoons depicting the Muslim Prophet Muhammad. These are the cartoons that caused riots overseas.

In our magazine's news judgment, you can't properly report that story without showing the cartoons. So we're publishing eight of the cartoons. As far as I am aware, that makes the Western Standard the first large-circulation publication in the country to reprint them.

As our readers will see, most of the cartoons are innocuous; several nothing more than stylized portraits, including quite a handsome one.

It seems absurd that such a banal journalistic act would be taboo. We're not abnormal for printing the cartoons. Canada's other publications and TV stations are the abnormal ones for avoiding the subject at the centre of the largest story of the week.

It's not hard to understand. It's a potential hassle, and publishers aren't in the hassle business -- publishers are in the money-making business.

Anything that could cause subscriptions to be cancelled or advertisers to be scared off is dangerous to the bottom line. And then there is the risk of violence. What publisher needs that? That's fair. Freedom of the press can mean the right to ignore a story, too.

But I believe Canadian publishers and TV producers have not been fully candid about the choice they've all made. Not a single publisher, editor or reporter has admitted they have blocked the cartoons for fear of an economic backlash. Perhaps none of them thought about lost business when they made their decision. But if any did, they probably wouldn't admit it -- that would make them seem like callow, profit-driven commercial journalists, and that's contrary to the careful image the media has cultivated as being somehow more noble or idealistic than other industries.

And none of them have admitted what we all know is true, at least a little bit: That these riots are scary.

They're scarier than any letter-writing campaign or boycott or protest rally that has occurred in recent memory.

Journalists and other artists have been killed by Muslim radicals. Several of the Danish cartoonists are in hiding, for fear of assassination. This is really happening.

In fact, the official excuse has been that TV producers, publishers and editors don't want to offend religious sensibilities. But this isn't credible. Not a day goes by when the mainstream media doesn't offend the religious sensibilities of religious Christians, Jews or others. The media doesn't care about religious sensibilities -- it is militantly secular. But it has made an exception for the sensibilities of one religion that is quick to riot and behead its critics.

The most laughable excuse -- especially from the liberal, secular media like the CBC or CNN -- is that they "respect" Islam too much. Really? They respect a religion opposed to feminism, gay rights and abortion?

The liberal media doesn't respect radical Islam. It is afraid of radical Islam.

I'm afraid, too. A little bit at least. But courage isn't the absence of fear. It's not letting fear trump everything else -- like character or duty or our own beliefs.

The Western Standard has no explaining to do. We're a news magazine, and these cartoons are news. The publishers, editors and TV producers who are behaving as if they live under sharia law, not the Charter of Rights, have explaining to do -- to their readers and viewers.

Posted by westernstandard on February 13, 2006 | Permalink

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» FREEDOM AND FEAR from Peaktalk
Today the cartoon crisis moved into Canada following the Western Standard's decision to publish the cartoons. Here's their editor, Ezra Levant: The Western Standard has no explaining to do. We're a news magazine, and these cartoons are news. The publis... [Read More]

Tracked on 2006-02-13 2:15:58 PM

» Canadian news magazine runs Danish cartoons from The Glittering Eye
A Canadian newsmagazine, Western Standard, has become the first large-circulation publication in the country to run the cartoons of Mohammed published back in September in a Danish newspaper that have caused protests and rioting throughout the Muslim w... [Read More]

Tracked on 2006-02-13 6:28:26 PM

» A Muslim That Supports Publishing The Cartoons from www.kyid.net
From the Shotgun comes this comment: Please, why does Canadian people not defend the democracys? Why? ... In western free world they can anything. Anything. I don’t care. Why I don’t care? Becos I can go to mosque, and inside my moslem life ... [Read More]

Tracked on 2006-02-15 8:19:55 AM

» That cartoon controversy from Being American in T.O.
Feb. 11 - Are they determined to piss us off? I'm trying to maintain some calm about this but when people keeping drawing lines in the sand it's darned near impossible: Top Saudi cleric says authors, publishers of prophet drawings... [Read More]

Tracked on 2006-02-17 9:47:39 AM

Comments

Buying my copies tomorrow at billys news and or the globe

Posted by: doug | 2006-02-13 11:22:00 PM


I applaud your decision to publish these ridiculous cartoons. It is truly extraordinary that anybody anywhere could take such umbrage as has been taken, but it's especially ironic that the indignant voices here in the "post-Enlightenment western world" are so often very rude as they importune us to show respect. If I thought for a moment that any of them had bothered to read the Quran, I could believe that that's where they took their cue.In those hallowed pages the contempt and derision that are repeatedly (at least once in almost every Surah) heaped upon those that don't agree are impossible to miss.
It's one thing to expect the right to have and follow any belief, but it's quite another to expect not just respect but reverence from people whom you revile as an oft-repeated article of faith.

Posted by: Oliver Ramsay | 2006-02-13 11:25:41 PM


Tomax, you make some valid points too be sure...we have many battles to fight too be sure...it is a matter of priority to pick the most important ones and fight back...

I'm not sure what the graver threat is too our freedoms? The radical left or the Islamic world??

Both are bad news and both are now colluding with one another in spite of their completely different viewpoints.....

Posted by: Albertanator | 2006-02-13 11:40:15 PM


ezra, your small mind befits you as you incite and provoke a rift in our canadian quality of life. You have the mind of a 10 year old child, unaware of the consequenses of verbal diarreah. I am a proud canadian and believe in spreading peace, not racism and racial profiling and hate towards a religion and people that are being oppressed and insulted so gravely. shame on you for kicking dirt in the faces of fellow human beings. I pray that you one day wake up and realize what a creep you really are. peace out.

Posted by: FK calgary | 2006-02-13 11:41:23 PM


FK - that is sheer nonsense.

" ...racism and racial profiling and hate towards a religion and people that are being oppressed and insulted so gravely."

Excuse me? Do you live on some other planet? The people who have been doing the abusing the oppressing are the ones who chose to plough jet liners into buildings at a time of peace ... the ones who host dictatorships and theocratic police states. The ones who bomb and maim in the name of Muhammad.

Your views don't represent me as a Canadian - and they don't represent the majority of opinions expressed on this thread.

Posted by: raskolnikov | 2006-02-13 11:51:57 PM


Hey FK, what do you think about muslims leaving Islam?

Is that okay with you? Or do you believe in Muhammed's teachings that that should be executed?

Just wondering...I have some wonderful ex muslims friends here in Calgary.....

Posted by: Albertanator | 2006-02-14 12:11:48 AM


RE: Angela | 13-Feb-06 8:30:27 PM

You have succeeded in painting the perfect Evil picture of Islam. Now what? Should we terminate them all?

I only blame the media for painting such a bad picture of Islam and associating it with Terrorism and Ezra has just made it worse.

Publishing these cartoons is indeed an insult to Islam, a religion that Ezra and his supporters are just sick of and annoyed with. It is not an act of "Freedom of Speech". Read the comments above to just see the hatred expressed in this list, it just sickens me.

Posted by: Abe S | 2006-02-14 12:12:56 AM


I dont remember saying my views are representative for all canadians, they are MY views, whether you or this thread likes it or not! read before you react to my comment.

Posted by: FK calgary | 2006-02-14 12:21:59 AM


In the Islamic childrens’ comic book, "Mohammed's Believe It or Else?" by Aboullah Azaz, Jews are depicted as monkeys, pigs, rats, spiders and .... that is only a portion of the hatred and violence directed toward all who are not Islamic.

http://islamcomicbook.com/
Mohammed's Believe It or Else!
By Aboullah Aziz

http://www.danielpipes.org/article/3360

Posted by: Janet Ann | 2006-02-14 1:35:47 AM


I am just wondering when the next article about nigger crime and chink over population is coming.

Posted by: Xenomorph | 2006-02-14 1:56:26 AM


Sooooooo........any of you moderate muslims want too share with us 'racists' and 'bigots' your opinion of Muhammed's teachings that those that leave Islam must be executed???

Hellllooooooooooooo...........pretty quiet in here.....

Let me guess.....either are Muslim friends are rightly too embarrassed or ashamed of this inherent Islamic teaching or they are thinking about a way they can justify it or deny it???

Mmmmmm...

And folks this says it all.......if an ideology has too kill those that leave it, then that ideology deserves to be tossed in the dustbin of history....an Islam is evil folks...make no mistake about it....thankfully many hundreds of millions of muslims do not adhere to every cruel teaching of muhammed..

I wonder what are resident 2 muslims here think.....come on tyler and FK....

Posted by: Albertanator | 2006-02-14 1:57:10 AM


Albertanator

I don't think those sand niggers get it all brother.

If you and I want to watch movies of two or more healthy adult males sucking eachothers private parts together that is our choice right Albertanator?

The sand niggers would probably cut off our heads if they caught us making out too.

Of course I don't have anything to back this up, just a general understanding that sand niggers kill people.

But still, stupid sand niggers just don't get it.

Posted by: Xenomorph | 2006-02-14 2:08:46 AM


Wonderful point Albertanator.... we on the right must try to sit on the sidelines and let the left and these fundamental quacks have their own little religious turf war - Islam v. Liberalism. As for Xenomorph, I think half the people that say stupid things like him and like that are actually Muslims and lefties who pretend to be "right wing." They say something horribely racist with one name and then come back in and are like... how horrible, you people are all alike, you are so racist. This argument is ridiculous, the WS should have published these articles and so should every other paper in the country. Then we will see how many protests there are or threats on individuals like "Peter March" or "Mr. Levant."

Posted by: matt | 2006-02-14 3:15:53 AM


Matt, I kinda figured that about Xenomorph...since when do the Left or Islam ever play honestly or fairly......sadly, right now the left in the Western World is showing their true gutless hypocritical colors by allying with Islam......

For the Left, the destruction of the Judeo/Christian/Greco World and our freedoms trump everything and that is why we are starting too see a Red Green Axis....

To the honorable people on the left that actually still have some principles and will stand with us against Islamicfacism and stand for our Freedoms, its great too have you on board..

As for you dhimmi depraved vile people that have posted here today and elsewhere, you are completely revealed as arch appeasers and stand condemned by history and posterity!!

You monsters that never raised a peep when Judeo/Christian faiths have been viciously attacked for decades in the West now all of a sudden have found your censorius ways when it serves your evil ways!!

You PIGS!!

Islam will destroy and your freedoms the minute it is done wity your useless idiot lives....

Remember folks...and remember well...this is all bigger then a cartoon flap...

The world is being shaken out of its dhimmi slumber and all of your appeasing by you liberal bastards in the media and academia will only buy you some time....If you think Islam, which has been a fascist force for 1400 years, will treat you any differently, then you will be sadly mistaken!!

You are nothing but damned fools and I cannot even begin to understand how utterly blind so many of the people here on this board are....who are whimpering about hurt feelings YET missing the FAR FAR larger picture....and that is that Islam is only going to want more as their populations grow and as dhimmis in the west grow more cowardice...

You think you can buy freedom with your shameful displays of gutlessness?? You think that will placate the islamic menace that feeds upon your warped minds full of moral and cultural relativism??

You silly buggers!!
We are heading to war in the Western World and if their is any justice, the vile social engineers that thought it would be a wonderful idea to invite a backwards ideology like Islam will be the first victims of said ideology......

Give your selves a clap socialists and liberal vermin.......you have lead us into the greatest peril we probably have ever known....just wait till the religion of peace gets their hands on WMD's and explodes it in downtown Manhatten!!

Mayby then you leftist degenerates will wake up....but probably not....you'll still find a way to blame America and the Jews!!

Really I have far more contempt for the left in the Free World....at least with Muslims, they have been brainwashed in close societies from birth with the hateful teachings of Muhammed...they have not had the freedom we have had...

But what is your excuse O Leftdom!! You who have led spoiled pampered lives of ease and have had access to freedom of information but you have openly chosen your traitorous ways to side with the most appalling ideology since Hitlerism and Stalinism....scoundrals the lot of you....you who have chosen to bite the hand that has fed you...

How do you sleep?

Posted by: Albertanator | 2006-02-14 3:33:52 AM


Interestingly enough all the links that have been included here to show cartoons done by Arabs are about politics and do NOT depict a religious leader, icon, prophet in a degrading way. This is simply so, due to the fact that one of the rules of Islam is to respect and believe in all of God's prophets which includes Jesus and Moses, therefore you will NEVER see an Islamic cartoon that will have either one in it. I am all for freedom of speech, but we have limits as to how much speech we can have about certain groups. It seems to me, lately it has become open game on Muslims. Just like 'not all Christians are created equal' or 'not all Jews are the same', 'not all Muslims are terrorists'. However, the Islamic world did peacefully ask for an apology which got 'freedom of speech thrown in their face' as an explanation. Go ahead Ezra sell your magazine this week at the expense of your 'I hate Muslims, I am free to bash them' edition. In the long run, I don't think you are fully aware of the damage you're doing, to the fabric of this great nation Canada.

Posted by: SelmaB | 2006-02-14 4:48:26 AM


Thanks Western Standard...In your bid for some controversay with the hopes of selling magazines you have put my cousin into a very dangerous and potentially lethal situation. My cousin serves with the Canadian Armed Forces in Afghanistan. He performs regular foot patrols in what was already one of the most dangerous places in the world. Now you in your narrow minded effort to make a point have made his job all that more dangerous. You should really think about the potential consequences of making point, that never really needed to be made in the first place.

Posted by: David Burgess | 2006-02-14 5:02:47 AM


Bravo, WS. Where do I subscribe?

Posted by: Mark Peters | 2006-02-14 5:37:53 AM


Bravo Ezra. Michelle Malkin has put it well on her blog: "First they came for the cartoonists". I find it astonishing that the CBC other MSM and countless liberals are claiming to have suddenly found sensitivity to religious sensibilities. Where was that sensitivity to religious belief when a Christian printer in Toronto was compelled by the "human rights" tribunal to print gay-promoting literature? Where was that sensitivity when the religious beliefs of Pentacostals were openly mocked on national television during an election compaign by a Liberal spokesman with a Barney toy? Where is that sensitivity now that the Knights of Columbus in Vancouver are compelled to rent out their hall for a lesbian wedding? Methinks the new found virtue of sensitivity is in fact a cover for a good old fashioned vice -- cowardice. Congratulations on your gutsy stand. As the Germans (and eventually the rest of Europe) found out the hard way, all that is required for evil to triumph is for good men to keep silent.

Posted by: DrD | 2006-02-14 6:18:09 AM


Mrs. Smith sez:
"Shame of you Mr. Journalist,,, what a cheap way to make some money, you aren’t a true Canadian"

Who the 'F' are you to tell us who are or are not Canadian....crawl back into your sick little hole with the other fanatics.


Posted by: WLMackenzie redux | 2006-02-14 6:20:43 AM


Briefing for This Day, Continued: "(Sound Gong of Doom here.)"

Attention, Mr. O'Connor, Canadian Minister of Defence: You are fighting the last war, Sir.

Here is the Today's War & Tomorrow's War, & the Day After Tomorrow's War & Next Year's War & ......?

Get the Idea, Mr. O'Connor.

Batman gets the Idea. >>>>


Armies of the night

One of best items of news in a long time is the report -- now confirmed via Glenn Reynolds -- that Batman has joined the fight against al-Qaeda.

Miller proudly announced the title of his next Batman book, which he will write, draw and ink. Holy Terror, Batman! is no joke. And Miller doesn't hold back on the true purpose of the book, calling it "a piece of propaganda," where 'Batman kicks al Qaeda's ass."

The reason for this work, Miller said, was "an explosion from my gut reaction of what's happening now." He can't stand entertainers who lack the moxie of their '40s counterparts who stood up to Hitler. Holy Terror is "a reminder to people who seem to have forgotten who we're up against."

It's been a long time since heroes were used in comics as pure propaganda. As Miller reminded, "Superman punched out Hitler. So did Captain America. That's one of the things they're there for."

"These are our folk heroes," Miller said. "It just seems silly to chase around the Riddler when you've got Al Qaeda out there."

Commentary

The 21st century terrorist battlefield is different from the linear battlescapes of the 20th century. Like politics, to which it is related as much as to war, terrorism is a vehicle for the propagation of ideas. It is intensely ideological and might with justice be defined as proselytization through pain. Al-Qaeda itself arose in part from an attempt to create a Sunni countercurrent to the Islamic revolution of the Ayatollah Khomeini; it was an expression of the geo-religious rivalry between Saudi Arabia and Iran. For those purposes it did not matter to Osama Bin Laden that his nemesis, the Ayatollah Khomeini, was dead as he urged the Taliban to drive the Shi'a heretics out of Afghanistan, for in Bin Laden's world, ghosts lived. Only by fully grasping this fact is it possible to understand the depth of uproar over the Danish caricatures of Mohammed, for in the haunted world of fundamentalist cult theology, it is not permissible that anyone should mock their symbols and live. (Sound Gong of Doom here) Foad Ajami, writing in the Toronto Star understands that al-Qaeda has nothing whatsoever in common with the classical Islam of his memory. It's a made for television psychodrama, a comic-book scam. >>>
http://www.fallbackbelmont.blogspot.com/

Posted by: maz2 | 2006-02-14 6:50:23 AM


Dear Mr Publisher

I think your re-publishing of the 'cartoons' is incredibly irresponsible. At this point it has virtually nothing to do with the 'temptest in a teapot' which has been created around the globe. The problem now is one of common sense and safety. I take it from your comments that you don't and never have lived in the Middle East. If you did you'd know two things - 1) the basics of Islam and how Muslims think and 2) that thousands of Canadians have to live and work there and you've just put their lives at risk. Not very smart just to try and prove a point from your little safe haven in the rockies. I'm sure most of your readers wish Islam would just go away but that's not going to happen - you have to live with these people whether you like or not so time to open your eyes to that fact.

Posted by: shawn miller | 2006-02-14 7:52:18 AM


Abe S: My comment did not succeed "in painting the perfect Evil picture of Islam. Now what? Should we terminate them all?"

I said that I took the satirical cartoons as a comment ONLY on islamofascist muslims that believe their religious figures will reward them in the afterlife if they kill themselves and others.

Obviously this is not all Muslims, and many Muslims are quite rightfully angry about the above behaviour. Many have come here to escape the theocratic dictatorships that the above type of believers want to bind them to.

re: Indigo not carrying the WS. Great. That is the only store here in Ch'town that carries the WS. First the UPEI Student Union repossessed the student newspaper that printed these cartoons, now Indigo won't sell Ezra's attempts to republish them.

On the bright side - Indigo and Air Canada's actions easily refute any arguments that Ezra is nothing but a money-grubbing, PR-grabbing opportunist.

Posted by: Angela | 2006-02-14 8:20:06 AM


Political correctness? I think not, fear, as you stated is the only reason that the rest of the media won't show the cartoons.
This is news and as such should be covered by media. I applaud your decision.

Posted by: Dianne | 2006-02-14 8:25:45 AM


The muslim peole in canada and the U.S.A should try to remember that they came to north america of thier own choosing! I'm sure they were aware of our way of life and beliefs. If they are not willing to live in OUR COUNTRIES in a peaceful law abidding manner, they should leave, that is just another right, the people of north America have. North America is predomently a Christian Country, but the right to practice other religions is accepted, BUT DO NOT attempt to push or replace your religious beliefs or "old country" ways and customs on our christian ways. I personally am appaled at those telling me, I should no longer say "Merry Christmas" but seasons greetings! I said the Lords Prayer and sang O Canda in school, growing up! If you don't want to adopt our way of life, WHY DID YOU COME HERE??IF youdon't like it LEAVE!!!

Posted by: Barry | 2006-02-14 8:44:06 AM


Shaun Miller, David Burgess,

Could one of you or anyone else here explain to me how ones mind can become so small as to truly believe what you are saying? If any harm comes to any Canadian in the ME it will most likely be perpetrated by a Islamic fundamental terrorist. Not from a western publicist exercising his right to free speech.

What is incredibly irresponsible is people like you assuming that not showing some silly cartoons is somehow going to make the world a safer place. What is your next form of appeasement after stifling free speech, should western women wear veils as to not offend them? Should we all start carrying a Qur'an for quick reference? What the heck, should we take out Israel to remove that annoyance for them? Obviously impossible for us to do, but you get my point.

As I write this I am listening to excerpts of one more of Mamoud Ahmadinegad's Hitler like speeches in which he is promising to remove Israel and calling on the ME to rise up and remove the Zionists and the rest of the weak western world. He talks and the people here snore through it, but wake up in time blame the west for the plight of the poor Muslims.

Wake up people and start directing your anger at the right sources, and begin sticking up for your rights and your values, else you are sure to lose them.

Posted by: deepblue | 2006-02-14 8:44:55 AM


Abe S: "I only blame the media for painting such a bad picture of Islam and associating it with Terrorism"

Funny. I only blame the jihadists screaming "allah ackbar" as they fly planes into buildings, bomb trains, buses, nightclubs and pizza parlors, murder schoolchildren and hack off heads on video for painting such a bad picture of Islam and associating it with Terrorism.

Posted by: Kathryn | 2006-02-14 8:52:42 AM


The media double standard ....

http://cnews.canoe.ca/CNEWS/Canada/2006/02/13/1440940-cp.html

Levant dismisses suggestions from some editors that they don't like to offend religious groups. He points to the current cover of Rolling Stone, with rapper Kanye West portrayed as Jesus Christ with a crown of thorns.


The Islamic double standard ......

http://www.tomgrossmedia.com/ArabCartoons.htm

http://islamcomicbook.com/
Mohammed's Believe It or Else!
By Aboullah Aziz

Posted by: Janet Ann | 2006-02-14 9:31:06 AM


Dear deep blue

Excellent job of pointing fingers in the 'small minded' category, sir. Let's hope you're never forced to have one of your children's life in jeopardy because you're unwilling to see a bigger picture. It's obvious that the fanatical response to the cartoons is just that, fanatical. The point is,if you fuel that fire the result will be more innocent people hurt. This is not an ethical debate anymore, it's one of common sense. Debate it once people have calmed down.

Posted by: shawn miller | 2006-02-14 10:21:52 AM


Freedom of speech is freedom for the speech we hate (or cartoons we hate). If it was anything else, or less, it would be meaningless and useless. You cannot have freedom of expression or thought, and limits on the speech and opinion of those you hate. Think about it, we can all think of some group or idiot (or groups of idiots) who we would like to shut up. But respect for freedom of speech prevents us from even trying. This is a lesson Muslims need to learn, and they need to learn it quick, or return to their homelands they love so much. This is Canada, and I can say (or I should be able to say) that extremists in the Muslim world are making their religion look like only the retarded and the insane follow Mohammed.

Posted by: Q | 2006-02-14 10:35:38 AM


Freedom of speech is freedom for the speech we hate (or cartoons we hate). If it was anything else, or less, it would be meaningless and useless. You cannot have freedom of expression or thought, and limits on the speech and opinion of those you hate. Think about it, we can all think of some group or idiot (or groups of idiots) who we would like to shut up. But respect for freedom of speech prevents us from even trying. This is a lesson Muslims need to learn, and they need to learn it quick, or return to their homelands they love so much. This is Canada, and I can say (or I should be able to say) that extremists in the Muslim world are making their religion look like only the retarded and the insane follow Mohammed.

Posted by: Q | 2006-02-14 10:44:33 AM


Shawn,

Those people will never calm down. There can be no rational debate with those that are not rational.

Again, we blame the victim. If there are savages that can't behave themselves in a civilized fashion, the fault and blame remains with them alone.

Before more people end up hysterical, I am not saying that all Muslims are savages - just the ones rioting and killing people. There have been plenty of peaceful demonstrations by those that are offended that know the proper way of behaving. Peaceful protest is legit. Complaining is legit. Letters to the editor are legit. Burning down embassies and beheading people is savage and barbaric - and thus not legit.

None of this negates the fact that in a free society, we should not have to censor ourselves out of fear that a lunatic will cut us down in the middle of the street (like Van Gogh or Pym Fortun.) That - not Islam - is the point of the exercise. Standing up to fear and oppression and demonstrating that we will not be cowed and made subservient is the point. Saying that we will not bend to the will of terrorists and thugs and will fight to defend our freedoms and our very way of life. That is what is at stake.

Posted by: Warwick | 2006-02-14 10:52:12 AM


Kathryn: Excellent !

Posted by: MarkAlta | 2006-02-14 11:02:19 AM


Warwick,

Well stated.

Posted by: deepblue | 2006-02-14 11:09:52 AM


>Think about it, we can all think of some group or idiot (or groups of idiots) who we would like to shut up. But respect for freedom of speech prevents us from even trying. This is a lesson Muslims need to learn.<

It would seem a good many Canadians need to relearn that lesson as well. It is alarming to me, and I'm sure to many, how the lessons of the past are so quickly and easily forgotten. These people who think showing tolerance to intolerance are only fooling themselves.

Posted by: deepblue | 2006-02-14 11:54:38 AM


Dear Ezra,
Minor correction, Islam does not prohibit abortion.

Posted by: ihath | 2006-02-14 11:57:53 AM


Being 9th generation Canadian, I was raised that to show respect for others and their beliefs was the Canadian way.

What has happened to the country that my ancestors explored and built?

Does nobody teach new immigrants and/or their children about manners and respect anymore? It was in the 1600's that Canadians were first noted for their politeness.

The publishing or not publishing of these cartoons in Canada, in my opinion, have absolutely NOTHING to do with freedom of speech, but has EVERYTHING to do with Canadian values.

Ezra, I have witnessed two interviews with you where you have shown your lack of knowledge regarding Canadian values. We do not call people names nor do we rudely interrupt and not allow others to finish what they are saying. Our journalists also do not quote others out of context as I have seen you do.

If that's the type of journalism you prefer, then do me a huge favour, take it to the country where it belongs, because it most certainly does not belong here, in my Canada!

Posted by: Angel Laurence | 2006-02-14 12:23:40 PM


Jonathan, please look at the numbers again, what are you talking about, my numbers are the same as yours, but I broke them down differently.

Is there anyone out there who could respond to the bigger questions?

Why are Muslims held to a lower standard?

Why do we allow for excuses on these types of abuses around the world?

Do you understand that the hatred for you and everything western is undeniable.

For those of you who think Christians, Jews and any other religious group have anything in common with Muslims ask yourself this.

How would Muslims react if Mecca was occupied by a foreign power, and that the shrine of Mecca would only be allowed to serve as a museum. I would think that they would burn, rape and kill for two thousand years straight until it was free.

In Istanbul(Constantinople)today the cathederal of Agia Sophia stands. It was and is the religious heart of the Orthodox Christian faith, it is to them what Mecca is to Muslims and what the Vatican is to Catholics; it is not allowed to function as anything other than a museum.

The Orthodox Christians worldwide are deeply hurt by this and the offence continues for nearly 600 years. Do you see them burning, looting, killing? Does anyone other than the Orthodox Christians of this world seem to care?

Please do not make the same comparisons. The muslim world is all about hate for everything not Islamic. They are only concerned about themselves and don't care one bit about the rights of others.

Niv

Posted by: niv | 2006-02-14 12:29:09 PM


Rober McClelland wrote:

"You're nothing more than a cowardly bully, Levant. If you really wanted to test the bounds of freedom of speech you'd offend your own readers instead of picking on the nearly powerless Canadian Muslim community."

ROFL! That's about the funniest satire I've seen yet in this whole news story.

Posted by: Scott McClare | 2006-02-14 12:36:38 PM


I'm just curious...

Did all the people who are writing comment's blasting the Western Standard for publishing these cartoons purchase a copy so that they could read the article before they criticized it?

Posted by: Gearman | 2006-02-14 1:16:32 PM


Gearman. The point of whether or not to purchase a copy to evaluate it's contents, but the action that was taken to promote this silliness is what most of this discussion is about.

This is just a plain ol' "buy me!" free advertising by causing or feeding off controversy.

In this case, feeding off a mob frenzy. If this valiant effort to show freedom of the press, then talk about how Islam has cultish mentality and support it with facts, like the reactions to beheadings, 9/11, and so on. Just to throw cartoons in a publication (only 2 pages) knowing full well it will result in adding fuel to the fire, as well as being premeditated in doing so (had to hire extra security) and statements like another calgary newspaper "beat us to it" doesn't show one of integrity, but capitalism.

And that is a fact of life or the bottom line to newspaper/magazine publishing. Bad news sells.

Not morals.

cheers
tom

Posted by: tomax | 2006-02-14 1:53:42 PM


RE: Deepblue

Are you a complete dolt. You really can't understand how throwing gas on an out of control fire isn't a good idea? I do direct my anger the "right" way. At narrow minded ethnocentric jerks like yourself.

Posted by: Dave Burgess | 2006-02-14 3:14:01 PM


All i can say to this religious crap on both sides is, if anyone printed cartoons about the jews, the star of david, or the holocost being bullshit all you christians and jews would be yelling hate crimes, and wanting people thrown in jail. The sooner we rid the world of all religions the sooner we can live in peace, and maybe we nonbelievers can finally live in peace in the "21st"!!!! century.

Posted by: ray | 2006-02-14 3:29:35 PM


Angel Laurence I have rarely read so much bollocks compressed into a comment box.

I don't know what "Canada" you are blathering about. The Canada I know, is a Canada that sent it's best men to fight against the nazis in WW2 - precisely so we could remain a free people, capable of expressing our opinions on any subject under the sun, with out fear or censure.

You are sir/madam are a sad dhimmi - not a true and proud Canadian.

Posted by: raskolnikov | 2006-02-14 4:25:46 PM


Dear Ezra,

You proved your point, I guess, but to what purpose? Inflaming the followers of Islam is an old Jewish tradition, including Sharon's famous visit to the Jerusalem Mosque in the 1990s. A decade later and the Middle East is on fire. Thanks for spreading oil on the fire, you nincompoop!

Posted by: Patrick Burns | 2006-02-14 4:33:07 PM


Hey Patrick - go fuck yourself

Posted by: raskolnikov | 2006-02-14 4:35:51 PM


Of course the Islamists and their ilk never do any unprovoked "inflaming". They just stay home and eat humus. Uh huh.

Posted by: raskolnikov | 2006-02-14 4:39:54 PM


Hey Raskolnikov, good to know that bigots like you have limited verbal ability.

Posted by: Patrick Burns | 2006-02-14 4:41:58 PM


Raskolnikov:

The Canada I am talking about is the Canada that I cherish and love and would die for in an instant. It is the country that my ancestors' emigrated to in the year 1672.

It is the country that HIS descendant helped to explore and build as a Voyageur with the Northwest Trading Company.

It is the country that MY father raised me to love and cherish. When I was being taught manners as a child, I wasn't told... "that's rude", I was told "that's not Canadian."

It is the country that my Grandfather DIED for in WWII, so that we could live free. That freedom does not include the right to show intolerance and lack of respect for others.

It is the country that shows tolerance and respect for the personal belief systems of others.

How DARE you have audacity to state that I am not a true and proud Canadian, and what gives you the RIGHT to pass judgement on a human being in that manner?

You sir/madame, are an example of what MY GREAT COUNTRY is losing!

Posted by: Angel Laurence | 2006-02-14 4:47:11 PM


Patrick, I wouldn't even begin to try and reason with one dimensional, blinkered dhimmis such as yourself. You are clearly in the grip of some type of delusion. Any rationalizations you come up with will come from the same pathological source.

I only debate with people who are rational.

Posted by: raskolnikov | 2006-02-14 4:51:27 PM


Yes, yes, yes, Angel..we know it's The Country, but you haven't defined what The Country is. You say it's all about'tolerance and respect'.

I find it strange that you define 'not being rude' as a 'Canadian value'. That's a rather intolerant attitude; are you seriously suggesting that peoples of other countries are incapable of 'not being rude'? Is tolerance a property of only Canadians? After all, that's what your statement of 'not being Canadian' suggests. How intolerant of other peoples...

But what if the situation merits an evaluation that rejects the behaviour, that actually says that such behaviour does not merit respect? Do you still 'tolerate' it?

You seem to be very intolerant of Raskolnikov, who has voiced an opinion counter to yours. Where is your stated toleration for others? Your respect for others? Do you tolerate them only when they agree with you? Do you tolerate them only when they are subservient to you? Do you forbid them to disagree with, to criticize you?

Is that the Canada that you would die in an instant for??? Though I doubt, very much, that anyone is going to ask you for such an instantaneous and most noble sacrifice. What we might instead ask of you - is a tad more toleration of the opinions of others...even if those opinions are critical of your own.

Posted by: ET | 2006-02-14 4:58:48 PM



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