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Still no defence of free speech in official response to Afghan riots

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Bragi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-04-11 07:45 AM
Original message
Still no defence of free speech in official response to Afghan riots
Edited on Mon Apr-04-11 07:51 AM by Bragi
Kabul, Afghanistan (CNN) Top U.S. officials in Afghanistan on Sunday condemned the burning of a Quran in the United States that sparked three days of protests in which more than 20 people died.

Burning the Muslim holy book was hateful, it was intolerant and it was extremely disrespectful and again, we condemn it in the strongest manner possible, said Gen. David Petraeus, who heads the U.S.-led international forces in Afghanistan.

U.S. Ambassador Karl Eikenberry said in a statement that Americans respect the Quran and all religious texts and deplore any action that shows disrespect to any religious faith.

At the same time, I want to emphasize, as have many Afghan leaders, that to attack and kill innocent people in response to the deplorable act of one individual is outrageous, and an affront to human decency and dignity, Eikenberys statement said.


http://news.maars.net/blog/2011/04/04/petraeus-condemns... /

I'm glad someone (the Ambassador) pointed out that murder and mayhem are a bad thing, but I do wish the US administration would screw up the courage to point out that the U.S government cannot and will not stop anyone who wishes to burn any religious object they wish to burn because such speech is constitutionally-protected free speech.

What would be the practical effect of making such a statement? At least people would then understand that the government is not "allowing" these acts of "approved" desecration to happen, but that it is powerless to stop them. And the world might learn something about what "freedom" actually means in America.

That would be a nice change. From September on, when Jones first surfaced, the administration has never uttered a word about the fact that they cannot stop Jones -- or any other citizen -- from burning holy objects. I think the failure to speak about free speech rights helps out those political Islamists who want to portray Koran-burning as being an official US-approved policy.
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dkf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-04-11 07:52 AM
Response to Original message
1. We need to get out of there.
If that is the end result of all this then good.
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Bragi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-04-11 08:13 AM
Response to Reply #1
2. I agree this war needs to end now, but...
Edited on Mon Apr-04-11 08:13 AM by Bragi
However, I don't think that alone is going to address the Koran-burning issue, since it seems pretty inevitable right now that more Korans will be burned in the future.

This means that, eventually, the US needs to make it clear that any American is free to burn any religious object they wish to burn, that the US government and people may dislike that, but the government cannot intervene to stop it because Americans have free speech rights.

Personally, I don't care if everyone abroad who is offended by Koran-burnings likes free speech or not, but I see no other way of handling this other than by making it clear what free speech means to America, and why America's attachment to free speech isn't going to change.
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dkf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-04-11 08:47 AM
Response to Reply #2
3. Basically we are afraid of these people.
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