I. It’s surprising to have to spell out these notions, but here goes…
One can condemn violence and at the same time sustain a critical stance against Charlie Hebdo.
One can condemn the “asymmetric warfare” of masked gunmen and also reject racism, tyranny, and hate.
One can denounce cold-blooded massacres while also unsubscribe from the horrible, orientalist titillation of Charlie Hebdo cartoons and the mental passivity of liberalism.
II. It is imperative, at this frightening intersection, to resist the coercive call to stand behind a vacuous, hypocritical, shallow slogan about “free speech.” The response to the horrible tragedy in Paris already seems to become folded into the same previous mode of thinking that enabled the magazine to exist and thrive. It is a mode in which there is no deliberation of better or worse ideas; just a liberal “freedom” excuse to embrace hate (albeit hate selectively applied, despite liberal disclaimers otherwise).
Western culture is arbitrary in its principles; it is arrogant, self-centered, and self-deluded about its respect and care for the…
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