#Liberty Takes a hit in the heart of Paris – #JeSuisCharlie

I’m sure all of the readers of this blog know about the events in Paris that began the morning of January 7th 2015 when terrorist assassins murdered 12 people at the Charlie Hebdo headquarters in the 11th arrondissement.

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This newspaper publication was the focus of previous attacks because of the cartoons that they published making satire of islamist extremists and their prophet. (For the record, the newspaper published cartoon satire on other religions, political figures etc…). A far left-leaning newspaper that upheld the values of liberty of expression, many members of their writing and four of their main cartoonists were shot dead by two gunmen.

But all the details of the events can be found in the news.

I don’t want to recap that here…

I do want to call on everyone to remember to not to treat intolerance with more intolerance. We will only be able to prevail over extremism if we spread the love, solidarity, unity and liberty. We cannot let the fear take hold of our hearts and drive us into the same blindness that people like these two assassin terrorists (and so many others) have fallen into.

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Keep alive the memory of the victims their denunciation of violence, and their defense of freedom of expression.

Keep love alive, keep peace in our hearts, keep humanism from disintegrating… We all have a part to play. Keep on writing, keep on creating, keep on drawing, keep on expressing the values that France stands for : LIBERTY, EQUALITY, FRATERNITY.

Share this on your twitter, facebook, and all social media if you agree and want to spread the love, not the fear.

Vive la France.

 

  6 comments for “#Liberty Takes a hit in the heart of Paris – #JeSuisCharlie

  1. 9 janvier 2015 at 07:57

    Take care Melissa
    I’ve tried to leave a comment for days..
    First time it worked for me
    Carolg

    • 10 janvier 2015 at 09:42

      Carole, I’m sorry it hasn’t been working for you. This is the first one I have seen. XX

  2. lovelucas
    11 janvier 2015 at 02:01

    Merci – et desole doesn’t even begin to convey how deep the ache is for all of us. Not only je suis Charlie, nous sommes Charlie but how upset I am because already there is criticism against these brave and true journalists who died trying to illustrate – with humor – the truth. Those who criticize say truth should be compromised or not said at all. Americans said that! Friends of mine (not FOX News watchers but educated people) said that too. So disheartening that people I consider to be my friends with some sort of shared values are asking us all to become Salman Rushdie BEFORE he published. May Paris and France stand true to all of their values including liberty in prose.

    • 11 janvier 2015 at 14:20

      Lovelucas, I can’t say enough how it soothes my heart to read your comment. I too have seen and heard the same criticism from educated friends in the States who not only misunderstand the situation context and culture here but also not understand the values they are criticizing and how dearly they have cost this nation. Freedom of expression with humor is not homophobia/racism/xenophobia/religious phobia etc… when the truth is spoken. And many Americans who are « offended » by the cartoons that these artists/journalists published could use a reality check and an introspective session on why they are so offended, which may ve because of something much more subjective than they may want to admit.

  3. 12 janvier 2015 at 10:23

    Here’s what I have to say to the critics on the other side of the Atlantic that have been posting anger about the Charlie Hebdo cartoons :

    When the Charlie Hebdo cartoonists drew/draw their messages they are not careful to make them pretty or appealing. Nor should they. Those who would find them vulgar have every right and reason, but offensive? racist? homophobic? xenophobic? etc…. No. These cartoons are not created in a racist/xenophobic/homophobic or religiously hateful spirit. They ARE drawn in the spirit of pointing out the evils in society in a crude and truthful manner… Most of the evils they denounce ARE crude, vulgar and horrifying. How else would you denounce such horrific things as pedophilia in the Catholic Church? And why should a secular person/publication/nation be required to follow religious guidelines of a religion that they may not believe in or adhere to? Why in the name of truth must we walk on eggshells? The truth IS terrible!
    The Charlie Hebdo cartoonists denounced the evils that they felt were imperative to denounce in order to uphold the values that the republic of France stands for, and they do/did so with the flagrantly honest and vulgar humor. They did not draw and publish these cartoons merely to mock certain members of the world society, they did it to draw attention to a problem. No phobic discrimination was involved in the conception of these cartoons.
    If you are feeling upset by them, maybe it’s more a subjective issue rather than a universal or objective one. Maybe you haven’t understood what the cartoons are trying to say. Maybe seeing a hairy cartoon penis makes you uncomfortable. But that doesn’t mean it’s offensive. You may not feel comfortable seeing these cartoons, but that’s a personal issue, and you cannot put your own personal issues into the definition of something you haven’t understood.
    Vulgar or not– freedom of expression is a civil liberty that cannot be silenced. It becomes a slippery slope when vulgarity or bad taste becomes the bar we silence freedom of speech on. You cannot censor the right to free speech because it makes YOU uncomfortable.

  4. 12 janvier 2015 at 11:25

    And, for the record, the Charlie Hebdo cartoonists, published those cartoons that made certain islamic extremists so angry, in defiance of their death threats! If that isn’t standing up for your right to freedom of speach, I don’t know what is. How COULD anyone accuse them of discrimination against muslims for that?!?

    Read this article http://www.theguardian.com/…/05/religion.hayfestival2005 about Stephen Fry’s views on this subject that was published in 2005! This quote from him especially rings true : ‘It’s now very common to hear people say, « I’m rather offended by that », as if that gives them certain rights. It’s no more than a whine. It has no meaning, it has no purpose, it has no reason to be respected as a phrase. « I’m offended by that. » Well, so fucking what?’

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