Micheal O'BrienMicheal O'Brien
Facebook | Twitter | Blog List

I Am Not Charlie

"Je suis Charlie" French for "I am Charlie") is a slogan adopted by supporters of free speech and freedom of expression after the 7 January 2015 massacre in which 12 people were killed at the offices of the satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo in Paris, France. It identifies a speaker or supporter with those who were killed at the Charlie Hebdo shooting, and by extension, a supporter of freedom of speech and resistance to armed threats. Some journalists embraced the expression as a rallying cry for the freedom of self-expression

A number of people, including Muslim friends, have said "sorry, I am not Charlie" and they cite the unfairness of the fact that when media slanders Judaism, the general response is often an allegation of "racism" and when media slanders Islam, it is called "free speech".

I get it, that is a valid thought; but the sentiment, is an expression of sadness for the loss of life. "Je Suis Charlie" is not religious, it's a defiance toward terrorists. 

I don't know if those weapons that killed 12 people at Charlie Hebdo in Paris had religion, or what if anything the shooters really believed except I can see they were all in favour of killing. Probably the shooters are all psychopaths, based on any clinical or academic definition I know of that applies to people who actually act out assassinations (as opposed to just blab about doing it) . 

While I understand and accept the  "hypocrisy" allegation I don't think that the persecution of Jews is any better or worse than the persecution of Muslims. But the world opinion of Islam is awful right now. Jews aren't doing much better. The killings in Gaza make me sick. Awful! Maybe it varies depending on the current news and people's reactions. But with all the strife that is happening in the Middle East done by fall-downs in the name of Islam, Islam is taking a seriously big hit and that hurts the feelings of as many as one quarter of the world or more.

These so-called jihadist sadists acting in the name of Islam are deeply hurting, injuring, most of the world's population. Do you realize that? Everybody is torn apart by this deviancy.

Look. I have been to these countries and seen with my own eyes far more than any one person needs to see but I see that the average person is not just horrified but hurt and worried.

Christians and Yazidis are more under attack than Jews these days. More Christians and Yazidis than Jews are being raped and murdered than even during "biblical times" (if there ever was such a thing). 

Charlie Hebdo

I myself think Charlie Hebdo was disgusting. It most often pissed me off when I saw it, which was rare because it is emboldened trash done under artistic license. Frankly, I think every artist, myself included, has over stepped some lines once in a while, but Charlie Hebdo did that constantly. This is important: I do believe the editors had the right to publish their stuff, but I also had the right to put it into the trash bin. That's the thing we are all missing about freedom of speech is the freedom of choice to read/listen or to ignore.

Jews vs Muslims?

Anyway, Jews vs Muslims. Wow. David and Goliath. I think that is a non-starter. The total number of Jews in the world is estimated at around 14 million, of which 6.3 million are currently living in Israel. The total number of Muslims in the world is estimated at around 1.6 billion. 

Meanwhile, the total number of Catholics in the world is estimated at around 1.1 billion, that number being half of the 2.2 billion estimated number of Christians. So based on analysis of more than 2,500 censuses, surveys and population registers - 2.2 billion Christians (32% of the world's population), 1.6 billion Muslims (23%), 1 billion Hindus (15%), nearly 500 million Buddhists (7%) and 14 million Jews (0.2%) around the world as of 2010. 

So there are your religions and that's what many people are focused on and worried about these days.

Not me.

I am most concerned that we (human kind) focus on four things:

1) Stem Cell Research 
2) faster-than-light travel 
3) colonizing space or at least growing food somewhere else other than earth

Peace, brothers and sisters.


Support The RINJ Foundation