Thursday, February 09, 2006

Stop the terrorism!

The Muhammad cartoons were backed with an article on self-censorship. The reaction has proved the authors right. There cannot be freedom of speech if it is merely allowed by legitimate Government, but vigilante forces do not. As long as you've got a supply of loyal followers who will sacrifice their freedoms and lives for your cause, and something easily targeted, they can stop anything.

Self-censorship shrinks the number of targets, making it far easier to target any one person, thus causing a vicious cycle. It is why we must not give in with anything, no matter how small. Even if we think they certainly can't kill every woman in the world who doesn't cover her face - they may be able to if much of the world falls prey to their demands.

Imagine if Governments encouraged women to cover their faces in public, to avoid offending Muslims. It may not be done much at first, but a little encouragement and social proof could extend the numbers. As the numbers grow larger more would be conceded to the Muslims, which despite being unfathomable a few years back could be acceptable by then. After a few decades, the number of women in the streets with their face uncovered could shrink to a fairly small minority, which would then be more targetible by extremists. A publicized murder for these reason could scare most of the other women to conform, and the transformation would be complete. Once they're all covering their faces, it'll stay like that - and it wouldn't be long before the rest of Sharia law comes into effect.

Thanks to some minor discretions on the platform of "tolerance", the threat of terrorism (which "tolerance" really seems to be about) controls us.

However, do note that this sort of thing occurs in other ways, all the time. Social stigma can cause a great deal of self-censorship, unfortunately. However, at least it is being done by a majority. It's worse for 99% to be stopped from doing something due to the actions of an extreme 1%, than for 1% prevented from doing something due to a prejudiced 99%.


Blogger libertyscott said...

Well said, good post.

2:05 AM  

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