Should we be “Charlie Hebdo”?


In the aftermath of this week’s “Charlie Hebdo” attack, many editorialists and much of the public have adopted the slogan: Je Suis “Charlie Hebdo” (“I am Charlie Hebdo”) in solidarity with the slain cartoonists and to demonstrate that they will not be intimidated into giving up their right to freedom of speech. Yet many others are conflicted. While they support the right to freedom of speech and do not advocate censuring publications such as Charlie Hebdo, they find the publication’s material offensive and do not want to let themselves be goaded into proclaiming “Je Suis Charlie Hebdo”.
Here are a couple of articles from both positions:

“The right to blaspheme religion is one of the most elemental exercises of political liberalism. One cannot defend the right without defending the practice.”
“Charlie Hebdo and the Right to Commit Blasphemy” By Jonathan Chait

“I am offended when those already oppressed in a society are deliberately insulted. I don’t want to participate. This crime in Paris does not suspend my political or ethical judgment, or persuade me that scatologically smearing a marginal minority’s identity and beliefs is a reasonable thing to do. Yet this means rejecting the only authorized reaction to the atrocity.”
“Why I am not Charlie”

Charlie Hebdo: Gun attack on French magazine kills 12 -Various


“Gunmen have shot dead 12 people at the Paris office of French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo in an apparent militant Islamist attack.”
The gunmen apparently claimed to be affiliated with al Qaeda.

Below are two different takes on the magazine Charlie Hebdo and what it represents. The first from the BBC is more sympathetic to the publication, the second from Jacobin, is more critical.
“Charlie Hebdo and its place in French journalism”,
“On Charlie Hebdo”

One last point in parting, both Islamic extremists and hard-line Islamophobes benefit from this type of violence.

Euro plummets as global oil prices collapse -Al Jazeera


Note the interconnection of oil prices, the US dollar and political instability in Greece.

“Global oil prices on Monday collapsed under $50 for the first time in more than five years on the strong dollar, plunging equities, demand worries and plentiful crude supplies.

The renewed slump came as the Dow index stood down more than 200 points and European equity markets lost more than two percent on fears of a Greek exit, or so-called Grexit, from the eurozone.”