Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Cutting Off A Nose To Spite A Face

The rage against free speech is still going on in Denmark and, it seems, most of the Muslim world.

And now France and Germany are joining forces with Denmark in defense of free speech. In the words of Serge Faubert -- France Soir editor: "There is no right to protection from satire in the West; there is a right to blasphemy."

This is actually pretty much what I expected to happen. The free-speech countries are rallying 'round one another. With France and Germany on board (and France being already on the Muslims' shit list for its policy against all religious displays, regardless of religion), I think other countries may soon join the fray.

But, to get to the point of the title for this post -- the boycott has gone too far. 'Way too far. Because if this statement in the article is true, then the Muslims are willing to kill their own people, or allow them to die, just to make a point that has already been beaten bloody:

"The world's biggest maker of insulin, Novo Nordisk, said it was also hit as pharmacies and hospitals in Saudi Arabia have avoided its products since Saturday."

Muslims who have diabetes are being denied treatment in order to bolster the offended egos of their overly-sensitive "friends."

With friends like this, do Muslims need more enemies?

I wonder how this would turn out if some of the Muslim religious/government leaders were diabetic?

(H/T Sandmonkey)

UPDATE: Italy and Spain have joined the fray!

Keep your own updates here.


Blogger Ann said...

Muslim countries are not leaving their diabetic patients to go without the insulin they need. What some of them are doing is deciding that they don't need to use insulin made by Danish companies, when they have plenty of insulin from other companies.

Unfortunately, diabetes is quite common in the Arab Gulf countries. Honestly, I'm amazed that you would even believe that people were leaving their mothers, fathers, aunts, uncles, etc. to die, rather than give them insulin.

And I'm surprised that you would assume that Denmark's Novo Nordisk is the only company in the world that makes the stuff.

Thursday, February 02, 2006 2:21:00 AM  
Blogger Chimera said...

The articles available on the subject ( and this was only one of them) stated that Novo was the largest insulin producer in the world. It's also the safest insulin -- no hidden surprises that can cause unexpected reactions (I have been married to a severe diabetic, so while I'm not an expert, I know -- on a personal level -- more than a lot of people about insulin and diabetes).

Most insulin-producing companies get their insulin from pigs. It's one of the easiest and cheapest sources. It's also the closest in its chemical makeup to human insulin. To a muslim, that would be haram.

It's a little more expensive to get insulin from cattle, but a large company like Novo would be able to do it and still keep the cost down.

There is also recombinant human insulin, but considering what it takes to produce this particular product, I don't know whether Muslims would consider it haram or not. Also more expensive, it was invented specifically for people who showed allergic reactions to natural insulins.

I have no doubt that if the decision were left up to individuals whether or not to buy insulin from Novo, they would buy from Novo. But individuals are not in the picture at the moment. It has become state-and-mob rule. The individual has no input whatsoever. And nobody cares about someone else's aunt or sister while they, themselves, are whipping up a righteous indignation over something the rest of the world sees as...what?...a too-willingly perceived (not given) "insult" that isn't even being felt by the entire Muslim world!

I put some links to Muslim bloggers in this article, Ann:

Go check them out and see what they say.

Thursday, February 02, 2006 10:03:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

it has nothing to do with freespeech , being brave , or challenging muslims in order a debate can take place these are all deflections from the motivations of some powerful establishment figures.

dont be mistaken though the issue is about the intolerance of the west to other beliefs and cultures.

it is because of the inherent insecurity that western peoples have along with the recognition that the west has devalued their religious beliefs to such a degree that all it amounts to is a commodity, a product to be sold , for example christmas... there is no spiritual value , no time for recognition of humility or ones place amongst humanity, all life.

if it was about freespeech there are greater monuments to be challenged than islam . we all recognise that fact.

we can recognise that this has never been about freespeech , it is actually more a case of fascism taking a hold in the west once again. it is the same mentality that enabled adolf hitler to gain power and eventually murder and attempt to eradicate wholly its enemies. it is the jack boot of nazism on the march again.

i suppose in truth none of us need be surprised since europe is the birthplace of the holocaust, why should we believe that this mentality is not inherent, a part of the genetic make up of the west. all we are viewing today is something that has been ever present, it is just that the political climate is allowing the inherent evil to be exposed with greater and greater clarity.

of course muslims can and should ask for respect for their beliefs and values, it is as much their right to a peaceful life as it is of those aound them.

there is no excuse that can allow the publication of depictions that are deliberately meant to cause distress, upset. at the very least it is bad manners at the worst it is incitement to hatred and mockery of the very values that each muslim stands for.

it is an act of dehumanisation, there is a difference in the uk/europe there is a tradition of depicting christ and other religious figures.

in islam it is just not allowed. there is no tradition. it is highly offensive. it is blasphemy.

when such depictions are being made in the west they are doing it thru knowledge and the great offense that it would cause.

it has never been about freespeech.

the effect of the cartoons is to dehumanise to denigrate. we do that to all of our enemies especially at war when we kill them we arent killing or abusing humans but sub humans ..if humans at all.

this is what the nazis did to the jews .. and thats why the nazis found it wholly acceptable to murder their enemies as they did.

if you accept these kinds of depictions , you allow yourself to be abused further. the prejudices grow and one day you become a victim just because you are what you are.

when the nazis removed jews from their homes to be sent away to be murdered .. was turning the other cheek, accepting the abuse really the way to their salvation?

govts have a duty of care to all of their people not some partisan section.

Thursday, February 02, 2006 11:23:00 AM  
Blogger Chimera said...

Anon: Like a lot of people, I love a good conspiracy theory, but that's all this is -- a conspiracy theory.

The original cartoons, printed over four months ago, were about free speech. Within the country of Denmark, where they were published, free speech is guaranteed.

In countries that guarantee free speech, you have no guaranteed right not to be offended. If something offends you, you must take it up with the offender on an individual basis. The exception to that is hate-speech. And there was no hatred in the cartoons. Satire is not hate.

Free speech countries also do not recognise blasphemy. There literally is no such thing.

And let's not bring the Nazis and the Jews into this -- they have no place here. I tend to like to stick to the topic at hand...

...which can actually be posited both ways, since you bring up the sub-topic of cartoons being used to denigrate and dehumanize the "enemy," whomever you may perceive them to be. How do you explain these cartoons:

I am all for mutual respect. But you do not get respect simply by throwing a tantrum and demanding it. You get respect by treating other people with the dignity to which you would like to become accustomed.

Note that I said "people." Governments, institutions, religions, icons, cultures, ideals, and dieties are all abstracts that cannot return the concept of respect, and they are not considered to be part of the equation.

Thursday, February 02, 2006 12:23:00 PM  
Blogger Chimera said...

Anon, your name is Wendy, correct? I see you posted pretty much the same thing, almost verbatim, over at Safiyyah's:

Thursday, February 02, 2006 1:50:00 PM  
Blogger Mentok the Mind-taker said...

On the ligher side, check out my comment on this issue ;-)

Friday, February 03, 2006 11:10:00 AM  

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