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Here are several of my tweets concerning the Charlie Hebdo affair and the many fundamental issues it touches upon. I’ve been sad about so many horrible things happening in our world that the Charlie Hebdo incident just highlighted for me in such a stark way.

So let’s all be Charlie if we must, but let’s be real: L’ennemi est chez nous…

We should refuse to be the Charlies our leaders want us to be- read why… @IndyVoices @guardian @BBC

Read the rest of this entry »

As I had said in a recent post, I’ve so busy reading so many great tweets (phrases and pictures) and articles and comments on the Charlie Hebdo affair, that I had no time left to say much. So many wonderful discoveries. I wanted to list some of the best ones here for future reference. See my previous post for more:

Charlie Hebdo – The ever fascinating utterly complicated issue of freedom of speech

GregJ says:

Two hours of watching American reality TV, and one can understand why fundamentalist Muslims consider the West to be toxic and evil. And no, I am in no way ignoring the great evils of groups like ISIS, but only making the point that Honey Boo Boo, our strip mall culture of materialism=happiness, our soulless value system of killing unborn children and mouse click available pornography as “free speech”, is what so many millions of Muslims see and will lend their support to oppose, any way they can. The world is flat and they have seen us poison our own societies and want none of it in theirs.

The Charlie Ideology

by on • 8: 18 UTC

Faster than you can say “manufacturing consent”, “Je suis Charlie” has become another “Yes we can!”, a slogan for the self-herding masses, an opiate for the iPhone generation. If that wasn’t clear when it became the Facebook meme of the decade, it sure as hell should be obvious now, after Hollande, Cameron, Merkel and Petro Poroshenko locked arms with Sergei Lavrov, King Abdullah of Jordan, Mahmoud Abbas and yes, Benjamin Netanyahu on January 12, in one grand imperial Chorus Line of the Willing. The only ones missing from the “Je suis Charlie” cavalcade were the Pope, Bush (any one would do) and Bono. (continues…) has some very interesting articles by the way

« Le 11 septembre français », revue de presse et décryptage de l’entreprise de propagande médiatique en marche

Finally, finally, finally – a social conservative guy (Bill Jack) in Colorado had the very bright idea to walk into a homosexual agenda bakery and ask for a few cakes with some anti-homosexual agenda messages on them. He was refused service. He lodged a complaint. Liberals are going bezerk saying that no one should be compelled to bake a cake with a message they don’t like, you must have a right to discriminate! Yes, those liberals that were screaming to fine, jail, and destroy anyone, especially Christians, who would not submit to their nasty homosexuality “wedding” farce and provide their services to this end in other bakeries, wedding photographer services, you name it. Complete hypocritical flip.

Here’s a recap on what I had said before regarding these cases – search my blog for more.

Question of the day:

Two lesbians walk into a Christian bakery and demand that the baker bake a cake saying 2+2=5.

If Winston, the baker, refuses, should he be fined thousands of dollars for not submitting to the demand of the two lesbians? Should the two lesbian women hold up four fingers of their hand and ask repeatedly how many fingers they are holding up? Should Winston be forced to close down his bakery is he refuses to answer 5? Should he be tortured until he replies 5?

In what kind of a society can two lesbians use the power of the state to coerce a decent human being to state that 2+2=5, because  no one can refuse their demands, no matter how deformed, dysfunctional, or unethical?

Wiser social observers in our society have realized some time ago that so-called anti-discrimination laws and rules are being used to shove the liberal homosexuality agenda down the throats of social conservatives in the name of progress and civil rights. I simply do not understand how these cases can be framed as discrimination from a legal standpoint. The provider is refusing to provide service because they would be serving a destructive political and social agenda. These are freedom of conscience cases, much more than freedom of speech. Everyone has a most fundamental right to discriminate based on sexual ideology and behavior. On a completely unrelated note, did anyone get the license plate of that giant truck carrying away all of our liberty?

Lastly, if we are all equal before the law, there is no such thing as special, arbitrary “protected” categories – as when some people have the protection of a law, and others don’t.

The most surprising bit about this case, aside from the fact that finally a socon got up and fought back, is that ADF, yes ADF, is defending Azucar! Hah! I want to see them entangle these stupid “non discrimination” bodies in their decision, whichever way they decide. And hopefully we’ll finally be able to use the outcome to show: a) how destructive and farcical these “sexual orientation discrimination” laws are and push for their repeal, b) how hypocritical liberals are regarding fundamental rights of conscience, religion, and speech.

Update Jan 25, 2015

Look at what a smart set of questions by a commenter elsewhere:


Jan. 23, 2015 at 3:19pm

Is it the word “HATE” that makes the message hateful?

What if he wanted a cake that says “God hates Broccoli” ? Would that be hate speak against vegetarians or just agreeing with GHW Bush?

What if the cake said “God does not condone a gay lifestyle” ? Would that be hateful, or just an interpretation of the bible?

How about “God strongly dislikes homosexual behavior practiced by people he otherwise loves” ? Is that hateful?

I support the business owner in both cases to not want to create the cake with the theme as requested. If the offended person wants to raise a stink and call for a boycott, that is okay too, but the government needs to stay out of the cake making business.

Goes right to the heart of the question about “criminal” speech – especially the stupidity from liberals to want to categorize viewpoints they disagree as “hate speech”. Loved it.

And there was this below. I’m not a lawyer so I can’t agree or disagree, but I thought it was interesting as well. If he is right, then this case is looking better and better.

US Navy EOD Vet

Jan. 23, 2015 at 7:27pm

The Supreme Court has consistently held that the message itself is irrelevant. The act is protected. That’s why flag burning and the KKK burning crosses is allowed. Their message is repulsive to most, but it’s still protected. Same for this case. Under the Colorado law, the message doesn’t need societal approval in order for a business owner to have to comply, it’s the act of requesting it that is protected. That’s why I warned people about the first case, the gay couple who sued to have a business owner comply with their request. People who supported them must have thought the law only applies to “approved” messages or symbols. As the Supreme Court has said, it does not. It applies to all.

I would think Vet above is wrong (different issue) because the bakery case is not about the govt censoring an individual. It’s about a person asking another person to say something in a business service transaction. The message is relevant, or it should be relevant if it isn’t.

Excerpt from:

Charlie Hebdo Attack in France Right on Time for New Controversial Anti-terrorism Law

by Scott Creighton

Last month, a new anti-terrorism bill went through the French parliament which many fear will change the landscape of the internet in that country as well as threaten all sorts of dissenters with all sorts of unconstitutional measures.

The translated version of the bill can be found here.

During the afternoon, Bernard Cazeneuve refused any change in his position, and all alerts coming from the civil society. The Bill was voted with all its dangerous provisions: ban from leaving the country, creation of individual terrorist enterprise offense, administrative blocking of websites, substantial changes to the criminal procedure beyond terrorist actions.

Even worse, the French Senate commited a serious violation of the equality principle before criminal law by reintegrating into the Bill the Article 4 concerning the glorification and provocation to terrorism into the press law of 1881 unless it is commited on the Internet. In the spirit of the Minister and few senators, the Internet is a danger in itself that needs derogatory measures: the vote of this amendment introduces a serious inequality between the Internet and other medias, a serious confusion between mean and content. This inequality has already been condemned by the Constitutional Court2. La Quadrature

And another view of this contentious law:

Anti-terror laws have been used in various countries around the world to prosecute individuals for their speech about unpopular ideas. In the United States, the prosecution of Tarek Mehanna—a young Muslim who translated and posted material referred to by prosecutors as “Al Qaeda propaganda”—involved the use of conspiracy and so-called “material support” laws. In Ethiopia, anti-terror laws have been used to silence journalists and are currently being used to prosecute the dissident Zone9 Bloggers. And the list goes on.

France’s attempt to “cleanse” the Internet of terrorist content isn’t a first in the EU either. In 2012, a leaked document showed that the European Commission sought to make use of private Internet companies to remove terrorist content, without oversight or accountability. EFF

Some of you may recall, right here in the states even directly after the attacks of 9/11, the USA Patriot Act was meeting with serious resistance both in congress and in the general public, including various news publications.

Suddenly there was the anthrax attacks. The “terrorists” once again displaying the worst timing, decided to sent anthrax to offices of congressmen and journalists who OPPOSED the Patriot Act. The bill was quickly rushed through and signed in the aftermath.

Turns out, the anthrax came from a DoD contractor and not Saddam as we were told. The story quickly dropped off the radar as more and more evidence showed it was a false flag attack designed to generate an atmosphere in which no one could possibly vote against the bill.

This French bill apparently went into effect on the 1st of this month. Or it’s about to be signed into law. Whatever the case may be, anyone posting information about this event which calls it into question, in France or elsewhere, will now be subject to having their website blocked by the French government. And this highly public trip down the streets shooting Ak-47s and tossing flashbangs will certainly provide ample justification for doing so.

What tawdry manipulation. Hundreds of thousands of people holding up little pens in a demonstration chanting support for free speech while simultaneously creating a fascist state with no civil liberties? That is particularly sad.

I don’t know much about either the cartoons published by Charlie Hebdo or the shows by this controversial black performer called Dieudonné. But people haven’t even gone back home from the historic march and the govt is wasting no time in trying to get Dieudonné sentenced and condemned. For which crime? Freedom of expression the government doesn’t like.

The French govt has asked that an investigation into the controversial black performer be made – the accusation? “Incitement to terrorism” because Dieudonné  said that after the attack he felt like “Charlie Coulibaly” – and that is criminal speech according to the govt. Now that’s hypocrisy.

Dieudonné  loves to provoke the French and it would be magnificent if he were imprisoned for his speech while the French were hysterically declaring their love of freedom of expression. Many of his shows have been censored by the French govt and he is still being prosecuted for criminal speech by the government for past declarations.

In addition, Dieudonné  said he did go to the historical demonstration on Sunday. He qualified it as “a magical moment like the Big Bang”, “comparable to the crowning of Vercingétorix”.


I don’t know, but it seems Dieudonné  is much more intelligent than this trash of vile racism and sexism and anti-religionism that was the Charlie Hebdo – but then I remember reading mentions that  Dieudonné  hates Jews, Israel, whatever, so who knows.

[ADDED:] These articles and comments seem to confirm the above – the profound quality different between the grotesquely trashy Charlie Hebdo, voice of the French elites “sclérosées”, and Dieudo:

Comment on Le Parisien :

Tout simplement c’ent grotesque, c’est que Dieudonné a dit, n’a rien pour inciter à la violence. Ce qui s’est passé à Paris est inhumain, une barbarie, mais l’hypocrésie des politiciens, le double discours… comme si les morts français étaient plus importants que les morts par milliers dans le reste du monde et c’est ça qui fait qu’on se sent comme un “Charlie Coulibaly”, d’un côté révolté par cette barbarie…mais aussi laissé pour compte quand les autres ont été victimes d’actes terroristes. Ceux qui nous sentons aujourd’hui “Charlie Coulibaly”, aujourd’hui, nous voulons la paix, car la guerre, la haîne c’es trop dur… Le monde a besoin de paix, mais les politiciens français ont choisi le camp de l’affrontement contre tous ceux qui n’auront pas mis sur la hierarchie des souffrances, celle de la Shoa en premier et celle de Charlie Hebdo en deuxième et le reste, celles des noirs, celles des autochtones, celles de arabes, loin derrière… Non, c’est M. Valls qui fait l’appologie de la violence, de la guerre, de la confrontation… Une chance que j’habite finalement dans un pays beaucoup plus tolérent que la France, et j’en suis très heureuse.

[ADDED Jan 13 – 2014:]

The New Yorker has an article on Dieudonné that tells of some of his excesses:

“Dieudonné plays a game of deliberate ambiguity,” says Damien Glez, a writer and cartoonist from Burkina Faso who has written about Dieudonné for Jeune Afrique, a francophone magazine published in Paris. “He is using a lot of the language and metaphors of old-fashioned French anti-Semitism before a young audience that does not have a very developed idea of anti-Semitism. They don’t know who Robert Faurisson is. And then you take this into the banlieue, where many young people feel oppressed by Islamophobia and angry and frustrated about the Palestinians. And everything is ambiguous and mixed together: anti-Zionism, anti-Semitism, and anti-system anger. Humor and hatred. The resentment of the Le Pen right and the anger of the recent immigrants of the banlieue. Even the gesture of the quenelle is ambiguous.”

This gesture, which Dieudonné began using a few years ago, is not, strictly speaking, a Nazi salute—rather than raising a stiff right arm up in the air, he points his arm down, and then places his left hand on his right shoulder. In his video “Hollande” he calls the quenelle a signal of “faith and courage,” and attributes its meaning to his encounter with a young, white seventeen-year-old cancer victim, who performed the quenelle in front of an M.R.I. machine and onstage with Dieudonné.

“It’s a gesture of the free man in front of the system of his jailers,” Dieudonné said in a video made last September after the minister of defense, Jean-Yves Le Drian, disciplined two French soldiers for doing the quenelle. “We piss on your institutions, Monsieur Le Drian, we shit on your government and on your Republic and on your shitty democracy. We are for a coup d’état, done by farce, by non-violence, by the quenelle,” Dieudonn&#233 said. What he didn’t explain is that the soldiers had been photographed while making the gesture in front of a synagogue. Many of Dieudonné’s followers have connected the quenelle to his anti-Semitic rants: several have posted pictures of themselves doing it in front of Holocaust monuments and even in front of the entrance to Auschwitz.

To me, doing this “satirical” salute in front of anything related to the Holocaust is really pushing it in terms of offense, but I also think some of the Charlie Hebdo pornographic cartoons about religions are profoundly offensive (in addition, specifically because they are pornographic, that is the main vehicle for offending the concept of religion, and pornography is horrendously degrading and offensive).

And that’s the problem with free speech. In the end, we see that the powerful always find a way to defend themselves from being publicly insulted and degraded, and the powerless are the endless targets of the same. Dominant narratives and ideologies are considered sacred, questioning and marginalized ones must be silenced. The justification keeps being labeled differently throughout history, but it’s all the same, whether heresy, blasphemy, hate speech, un-patriotic speech, pro-terrorist speech, etc.

However, if these expressions à la Charlie Hebdo or à la Dieudonné or many others are then used to justify the institution of laws taking away our most basic civil liberties, such as freedom of expression, information, religion, and assembly, then the world has learned nothing – and it becomes clear that the modern world has invented a new form of government: a dictatorial form of democracy. You vote (in mostly irrelevant ways) but you are not and you cannot be free. By law.  For your own good.

[Jan 14, 2015] Le Monde reports on speech crackdown in France – govt pursuing 50 ppl for their speech this week

Some were told to appear before the police while three were arrested – put in prison, censored, and punished for their speech. Seriously, what hypocrisy.

Seules cinq condamnations ont pour l’instant été prononcées, et les peines sont très lourdes.

La plus sévère concerne un homme de 34 ans qui, après un accident de la circulation à Haulchain (Nord), s’en est pris, le 11 janvier, aux policiers en défendant les attentats : il a été condamné à quatre ans de prison ferme. L’apologie du terrorisme n’était toutefois qu’une circonstance aggravante : il avait refusé de se soumettre à l’alcootest, était en récidive et l’accident a causé des blessures involontaires.

Deux autres lourdes peines ont été prononcées à Orléans et à Toulon le 12 janvier — un an de prison ferme, avec à chaque fois huit à neuf mois avec sursis — ainsi que deux rappels à la loi à Saint-Etienne le 11 janvier, et la veille à Courbevoie (Hauts-de-Seine). Ces deux derniers concernent des hommes qui hurlaient dans la rue, mais sans viser personne en particulier. L’un d’eux avait lancé « je suis fier d’être musulman, je n’aime pas Charlie, ils ont eu raison de faire ça ».
En savoir plus sur

@DanielWickham is breaking down the leadership attendance at the rally in Paris today:

So here are some of the staunch defenders of the free press attending the solidarity rally in Paris today…

1) King Abdullah of Jordan, which last year sentenced a Palestinian journalist to 15 years in prison with hard labour

2) Prime Minister of Davutoglu of Turkey, which imprisons more journalists than any other country in the world

3) Prime Minister Netanyahu of Israel, whose forced killed 7 journalists in Gaza last yr (second highest after Syria)

4) Foreign Minister Shoukry of Egypt, which as well as AJ staff has detained journalist Shawkan for around 500 days

5) Foreign Minister Lavrov of Russia, which last year jailed a journalist for “insulting a government servant”

6) Foreign Minister Lamamra of Algeria, which has detained journalist Abdessami Abdelhai for 15 months without charge

7) The Foreign Minister of the UAE, which in 2013 held a journo incommunicado for a month on suspicion of MB links

8) Prime Minister Jomaa of Tunisia, which recently jailed blogger Yassine Ayan for 3 years for “defaming the army”

9) The PMs of Georgia and Bulgaria, both of whom have a record of attacking & beating journos

10) The Attorney General of the US, where police in Ferguson have recently detained and assaulted WashPost reporters

11) Prime Minister Samaras of Greece, where riot police beat & injured two journalists at a protest in June last year

12) Sec-Gen of NATO, who are yet to be held to account for deliberately bombing and killing 16 Serbian journos in ’99

13) President Keita of Mali, where journalists are expelled for covering human rights abuses

14) The Foreign Minister of Bahrain, 2nd biggest jailer of journos in the world per capita (they also torture them)

15) Sheikh Mohamed Ben Hamad Ben Khalifa Al Thani of Qatar, which jailed a man for 15 ys for writing the Jasmine poem

16) Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas, who had several journalists jailed for insulting him in 2013

17) Prime Minister Cerar of Slovenia, which sentenced a blogger to six months in prison for “defamation” in 2013

18) Prime Minister Enda Kenny of Ireland, where “blasphemy” is considered a criminal offense

19) Prime Minister Kopacz of Poland, which raided a magazine to seize recordings embarrassing for the ruling party

20) PM Cameron of the UK, where authorities destroyed documents obtained by The Guardian and threatened prosecution

That’s a pretty astonishing list of rally attendees, but it certainly isn’t freedom of the press that is being supported if you examine the links associated with each tweet. Supporting links can be found starting here:

You are free to post this wherever you’d like.


Volokh reports that:

Saudi blogger Raif Badawi flogged and jailed for ‘insulting Islam’

50 lashes today (Jan 9), 50 more each week for 19 weeks, plus 10 years in jail.

Hundreds of thousands of people parading in France this week, not one of them will lift a finger to stop the flogging of this blogger and really defend freedom of speech. And of course, Saudi Arabia is counted among the great friends of the US and France…

A comment I posted at a site talking about the Charlie Hebdo incident:

Dora667 says: When I disobey religious mandates, I’m not “oppressing” those who want to abide by that religion, they have the right to do as they please. However, when religious people tell you that what you do is “blasphemy,” they engage in a serious –yet, almost impossible to challenge– act of oppression toward others. That’s what Charlie Hebdo was dealing with while pushing the limits of “freedom of expression:” the right to *disobey* by being utterly irreverent.

In all this “I defend freedom of speech” circus around the Charlie Hebdo incident, my 2 cents is that “hate speech” is the name given to blasphemy in the West – you are punished and go to prison just the same for your speech, even if the state can’t kill you (overtly). When people tell you that what you do is “blasphemy” OR “hate speech”, they engage in a serious act of oppression towards you – the suppression of your most fundamental right to speak. It’s clear that Charlie Hebdo supporters and the French dislike freedom of speech as much as the next imam or idiot.

See for example the case of Maurice Sinet, a French cartoonist on trial for his speech in France. Contrary to many people, and despite their ridiculous chest beating, I don’t see the Charlie cartoonists or the French or the West as any great defenders of freedom of speech. And given that it is one of the most fundamental issues in any society, it is a pity that our mass media don’t have more intelligent debates on the matter.

Maybe one silver lining in this tragedy is that there may be a bit of debate as a result, as I have had the opportunity to read now several very thoughtful articles and opinion pieces taking on multiple aspects involved in the Charlie Hebdo incident – like the fact that Charlie will now be funded by the govt. The little mouthpiece certainly got its reward for its dirty work to stoke the flames of racist hatred and will continue to do so.

But first things first, scrap away these “hate speech” censorship laws and then come tell me how much people support freedom of speech in the West. And you can scrap away with the laws about speech that deems to violate privacy of public figures while you’re at it. Freedom of speech is freedom of speech.

Unfortunately, since the West cannot be anything but a farce, it’s own blasphemy laws will all remain in place – perhaps will even be strengthened – after this affair. The schizophrenia must continue, as always.

I have much more to say, but I have been too busy reading, following, reflecting, and distressing over the evil politics that are behind and deeply intertwining in the Charlie Hebdo affair.

I posted a large number of links to good articles and nice quotes on my twitter feed @Alessandra_Ref – here are some of them:

Will Self video – MUST WATCH Should satire only target people in power? – Martino Mora: serves the dominant ideology/powers in France/the West

The terrible truth is that it takes only a single gunman to kill a journalist, but it takes a nation to kill a right like free speech –

Does anyone really believe that mocking Mohammed serves to stop terrorism rather than fomenting it?

As a Muslim, I’m Fed Up With the Hypocrisy of the Free Speech Fundamentalists –

Charlie Hebdo, the free press and racism –

Martino Mora: If Europe identifies with , it has already lost its battle.

Charlie Hebdo: crossing the Rubicon – – Paul Berton: Is there a middle ground in all the madness? – Gilbert Rémond, militante del Partido Comunista Francés: yo no soy Charlie

Monsieur Valls a dit “nous sommes en guerre”. Et la première victime de la guerre c’est la vérité… – Open letter and call for reflection – What should Islam be in the 21st cent? – Bertez: Appel à l’Union Nationale est une escroquerie de communiquant politique

Tina Beattie: greatest threats to freedoms are political & economic, not religious (I would add moral)

Mike Gallagher: can we have an honest discussion about what is?

Free speech was already in crisis in Western societies before

Curiously we have less civil rights and less freedom of speech the more we have”anti-terrorism” & “hate speech” laws – Viviamo in un’epoca tragica: la famiglia distrutta, i giovani senza ideali, la violenza… William Saletan: there is no freedom of speech as long as we have”hate” speech laws -only hypocrisy – “Europa se consume en una espiral de odio xenófobo, de islamofobia, de anti-semitismo” – Puedo decir miles de injurias hacia alguien y si se molesta decirle que es mi libertad de expresión? – Descolonizaçoes: Quando um humorista faz uma piada racista, está endossando o racismo de quem ri

As sad as this tragedy is, now comes the orgy of hate as the reaction – all so justified

“I’m offended when those oppressed in a society are deliberately insulted” –

Ich bin nicht Charlie Hebdo –

Joe Sacco asks if satire accomplishes evil –

After being spit on & mocked by cartoon, the LATimes reminds us African kidnapped girls still missing –

et ” l’indignation très sélective” –

“Free Speech” hypocrisy in the aftermath of the attack on

– It’s Der Stürmer all over again…

On , Freedom of Speech, Terrorism, and the Value of Lives –

“Yo no considero estos dibujitos como humor, simplemente son insultos q quieren incitar odio” –

Mi dispiace, ma io non sono Charlie! –

“Je ne suis pas Charlie” or two reasons we should reject polarization –

C’est sacré quand BFMTV le décide et le reste du temps c’est rigolo ? –

We can all have free speech in the West, some in the streets and some in jail 😉

Causing offence ought not to be a crime. But often, the purpose is inciting hatred against others –

tout compliquement

did everything to fuel hatred. They’ve achieved their objective – hate is pouring forth & will escalate

murder is indefensible, but supporting a racist publication is naive

Una Messa a Punto –

Osons le dire : les dirigeants qui défilent ajd pour ont plus de sang sur les mains que Coulibaly et Kouachi

Only 2 years ago in 2013, and France decreed that “hateful” tweets are criminal and should be censored –

Lastly (for now), there was this little episode:

(headline:) EN DIRECT. Attentat à Charlie Hebdo : les forces d’élite de retour ===> I read this first as saying the “power elites” were back in full force telling us how to think and which (liberal) gods to bow down to and vomiting their sexist, racist, anti-religion hate and vitriol and inciting us to unite in hate of you know who…
Ah, an enlightened article, I thought – then I realized I had mistakenly interpreted forces d’élite – or “elite forces”. The French means the special elite police forces were back to hunt for the terrorists 🙂

Of course, no mention of all the other elite forces that were right behind them.


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