Please, Do Not Express Your Opinions

Something is really, really beginning to fuck me off. And that's the apolitical straightjacket we are all supposed to wear to avoid causing "offense". When quite simply put, any busy-body can take offense to pretty much anything if he or she so chooses.

Harrys Place alerts me to students of a satirical political magazine being interrogated by police for implying that a revered historical figure, who happens to have founded a religion, was a "violent paedophile".

Now, whether this is true or not, slandering somebody who lived over 1,400 years ago - does that really need to be prevented by the force of the law? To what ends?

We are of course talking about slandering Mohammed the Prophet of Islam. Of course, under Sharia law, the penalty is quite clear. Kill him.

Which, I feel, it is all the more prudent to defend those who insult Mohammed. It says at the top of my blog "A safe society is one where it is safe to be unpopular".

Surely in Britain in 2007 we can slander religion and religious figures without fear of losing our jobs, our status or face criminal charges, because somebody has taken offense?

Now the Israeli Eurovision song (yes they aren't in Europe - I haven't figured that one out either) may be banned because it contains, shock horror, thoughts about the world we live in.

The oft-quoted comedian Stephen Fry on the subject: "You're offended? So fucking what."

And one of my favourite hippy sayings is:

"You cause as much pain and suffering in the world when you take offense, to when you give offence"

14 Responses to “Please, Do Not Express Your Opinions”

  1. # Blogger Granny Weatherwax

    I took the opportunity to use this news and your links to update my post on Teapack and the song (quite catchy I think, and much obliged to you for a chance to hear it) here on the NER.
    According to the BBC one of the other songs they submitted as a possible entry was rejected as its words were a quotation from the Bible, which is forbidden under Eurovision rules.
    When I think of some of the UK's entries I think dross should be forbidden under Eurovision rules.  

  2. # Blogger Jeremy Jacobs

    Eurovision. Another attempt to stop the Jews from winning something.  

  3. # Blogger Tu s. Tin

    I know it says no opinions ... and you even said please, but I can't help myself.
    I think .. this might be one of a few if not the first blog post made by jonz... in allll his own words?
    my opinion is .. I like it.
    alot.  

  4. # Blogger jonz

    Wetherwax - this would win Eurovision I'm pretty sure of it. Look at the last Eurovision winner - the Finnish hard rock band in their LoTR style outfits.

    Jeremy you may have a point, lol.

    Tu s Tin... I will try to do more Allll in my own words in future!  

  5. # Blogger Malcolm

    We are free to openly criticise anything, with the exception of the Religion of The Easily Offended. Which is all the more reason to offend it, at contsant drips will erode even the mightiest black stone.  

  6. # Blogger Tu s. Tin

    jonz,
    ......promise?

    malcom,
    I do have an opinion on what you said too..but maybe another time.  

  7. # Anonymous Anonymous

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/articles/news/news.html?in_article_id=439761&in_page_id=1770

    Students in Oxford want to oust a professor because he is connected with Migrationwatch  

  8. # Anonymous auntiespellchecker

    "the first blog post made by jonz... in allll his own words?"

    Just such a pity that so many of them are misspelt!

    "loosing our jobs" - oh dear! You mean "losing our jobs" - you loosen your collar dear but lose your job.

    "peadophile" - LOL!!! best one yet - if you are going to use big words dear, please get them right - try "paedophile" as in paediatrician! Peas be upon him....  

  9. # Blogger Tu s. Tin

    auntiespellchecker,
    I just love when people use grammer to distract from the topic.
    all I have to say to your comment is so fucking what.  

  10. # Blogger jonz

    Exactly Malcolm. I see it as our duty, at least until it's not given special consideration or special status above and beyond the considerations for Christians in this country.

    Thanks for the defence Tu S tin. And you're right people often pick on grammar or spelling to avoid the topic at hand...  

  11. # Blogger Tu s. Tin

    no need for a thank you, but.. any time!
    so lets get back to the topic then, the only thing I would question in your post is .. why you chose to use the word "slander"?
    I feel freedom of speech is something to be fought for and defended, especially as an artist. There should be no fear in expression of words or ideas ..... well maybe unless they are stupid but nothing can be completly deontrological.
    Freedom is something people tend to take advantage of which is why IT also needs to be defended (against those who abuse it) so I do feel there are times it's best to say - shut up, please.
    It is not the first time I have seen the solution given by malcom .. offend them more?
    you agree, How so?
    I don't see how that works.  

  12. # Blogger Tu s. Tin

    are you mad at me for asking?  

  13. # Blogger jonz

    Yes very angry. Please do not ask questions, it's a form of expressing your own opinion..

    Only joking - I'm busy with a new job.

    The reason I think Malcolm is right, is simply repetition. If we keep mocking Islam, then the effect it had will be diminished over a period of time. Exactly the same happened with Christianity.

    If people are too scared, or do not mock out of "respect" - then they are simply maintaining the status quo.

    I feel safe to openly mock any belief system in society at the top of my lungs in any street. When I say anything, the exeception is Islam.

    When we are all safe to mock and criticise Islam then the world will be a slightly less crazy place to live in.  

  14. # Blogger Tu s. Tin

    lol, ok.
    I do wish you would talk more of it sometime though. I kind of still don't understand.
    I would never ever say to remain silent on the issue - EVER, and I do support the cartoons, But slander? and mock? It just makes me think of highschool bullies? Most times people who were picked on grow up stronger and better from it ... not broken down. and don't forget the ones that decide to bring a gun to class one day.
    Intentional disrespect is instegating a problem isnt it?
    I do understand the approach I guess maybe its the method I misread? and Im torn between "respect" and "offense"
    Socrates??.... Diogense??  

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