Monday, February 20, 2006

Gay Jesus, Oui; Violent Mohammed, Non

University of Toronto Student newspaper The Strand has printed this cartoon of Jesus kissing Mohammed.

Unfortunately, their view of press freedom is timid, limited to offending only those they feel confident will not respond with violence.
But was it really freedom of the press, or a case of media martyrdom? Publishing these cartoons seems to do little more than fan the flames of already-existing controversy. Is it the press's responsibility to decide what people should absorb, or is providing an option more important? Articles are somewhat different; you can decide whether or not to read something based on the headline - which, admittedly, is questionable on the subject of giving audiences agency. A graphic or photograph, however, is much more intense: you don't really have the choice to view it or not.
You don't have the choice whether or not to view a graphic or photograph? This is tortured logic, the sort of self-deluding rationalization that virtually every major American news outlet has used to justify their moral cowardice.

Via The Jawa Report.