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Sometimes it takes a Jamaican..
2012
unknownj
One of the things I quite like about myself is that I'm not very stubborn about things I believe.. I'm more than happy to change my opinions, based on a good persuasive argument. And nobody argues for the opposition like an idiot.

Take Israel, for example.. Ordinarily, I tend to be of the opinion that Zionists are evil cowards who hide behind the support of the USA and the guilt of the holocaust to further their imperialist ambition towards the holy land. But as soon as the president of Iran starts denying the holocaust, and talking about how the Jews should be wiped off the map, I'm the first in line to defend Israel.

Similarly, this recent prophet cartoon issue.. Initially, I thought it was a bit of a silly thing to do - the last thing you want to do to a group of people you're accusing of being suicide bombers is to anger them. That's just not cool.. But then the massive over-reaction from most of the middle east countries and many islamic groups in Europe irritated me far more.. Gunmen surrounding buildings, death threats, flag burning, etc., all directed towards a country that hasn't done anything wrong.

If these actions were all directed towards the newspaper that published the cartoons, that would be fine. But no, take it out on the whole country, how dare they allow such a thing, yadda yadda.. Which is kind of like imposing your views on another country, which is sort of the thing that they object to the West doing to them.. Only, without the invasion to follow.

Anyway, the idea of people thousands of miles away burning Danish flags because of a drawing in a newspaper sort of bugged me. Mostly because Jewish and Christian faiths managed to get past the whole graven images thing.. I mean look at the Sistine Chapel.. Religions have to move with the times in order to be effective and taken seriously, and the fact that Islam seems unable to do that in a lot of ways is rather disappointing. They're only cartoons, after all..

So anyway, up until this morning I was thinking along the lines that these people are massively overreacting, and just being silly. Until I heard the radio on the way to work. Now I'm not sure what I was listening to, but it was a talk show that was obviously being played nationally based on the locations of the callers.. And this one, stupid woman, phones up and says..
Caller: What scares me is that there's an entire group of Muslims in this country who refuse to integrate. These are university graduates, and they're forming a country within a country. They have their own Muslim parliament, the Muslim council, and they're dictating how we should live our lives

Presenter: There are about sixty million people in the UK, how many of them do you think are Muslims?

Caller: They have 90% of the voice!

Presenter: But what proportion of the country do you think are Muslims?

Caller: They have 90% of the voice!

Presenter: But how many Muslims do you think there are?

Caller: I was listening to Radio 4 earlier, and there was an entire show where Muslims were putting forward just their point of view!

Presenter: But overall, how many Muslims do you think there are in this country?
And so it went on.. Suddenly, realising how many idiots I'd have to share my corner with, I've changed my mind on the whole thing..

I mean seriously, I'd be arguing the same as the people who think that whites are being oppressed in this country by a left-wing regime that seeks to undermine western civilisatian.. At which point, left without any real idea over which would be the least emotionally damaging side to ally myself with, the (Jamaican) taxi driver chipped in his opinion..

In his opinion, people take everything way too seriously.. In Jamaica, if people are insulted, they just laugh it off and carry on. He couldn't see what the fuss was about in the Islamic countries, but equally couldn't see why anybody in the west would really care that much about the fuss in any case..

So I think enlightened apathy is probably the answer.. I mean, I'm usually laid back about most things, I just need to add this to the list. It's not that I'm not interested - I'm still following the story. I just don't care any more, because frankly I'm not a fan of any of the sides in this one, and what would be the point in being bothered by it?

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Only, without the invasion to follow.

Not seen leicester recently then?

I can't think of a single reason why I'd want to..

So tell me, does it annoy you that by hating everything, you're allying yourself with complete idiots?

It's not really an alliance if I also take the time to hate idiots as much or more so than everyone else that I hate. Which is everyone.

(Deleted comment)
Yeah, but all they've done is complain, and in a couple of cases run around with guns.. Which they would have a right to do if they lived in America, so it's not such a big deal ;o)

But yes, I agree that the West feels they have a right to free speech, and the Middle East feels that they have a right not to be insulted, and the two are completely incompatible. Which is why you either have to pick a side, or just walk away completely..

In Jamaica, if people are insulted, they just laugh it off and carry on.

Unless they're gay. In which case laughing's a bit hard when you're dead. Oh, the illegal homosexuality, how we love it.

Well, being 'that way' is wrong, innit.. ;o)

Hm... a Jamaican gay. Two things to hate in one person! \o/

I think an aspect of this is that Christianity has become pretty desensitised to this kind of thing. I mean, go back to Life of Brian, and Monty Python got dethreats and condemnations from religious figures. Christianity's had to learn to deal with it.

Also, the seperation of church and state.

Whereas in a lot of Islamic countries, Allah is such an integral part of everything people do. The civilisation's built around Islam pretty much, calls in the morning to prayer, hundreds of people dying during the Hajj etc, so it's something that, when it gets ridiculed, is a lot harder for people to take.

I'm not attacking the cartoonists, the whole beauty of freedom of speech is that people can do any dumbass thing they like, even if the cartoons are not especially clever, and borderline racist. Freedom of speech obviously protects the protesters too, cause in a democratic country, if something pisses you off you demonstrate against it.

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