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View Diary: Muslim Cartoon Controversy: What the Media Isn't Telling You (358 comments)

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  •  so there are two things the media is not saying (4.00)
    ...about this story.  The first is this, the role of Saudi Arabia.  The second is how remarkable the administration's response (so far) to this completely contrived mess has been.  Unless I'm reading wrong, the Administration's stated position seems to be that the European Press asked for this, and that we should all try to be more sensitive to people's religious feelings.  In other words, religious sensitivity now trumps freddom of press/expression, at least according to Bushco.  I guess that shouldn't be a big surprise.  What i'm wondering, though, is whether MSM has yet called them out on the heretofore wholly unAmerican position, or whether we all now accept the complete inversion of old fashioned American values (which would surely have sided with the Europeans on this one)?  For instance, did anyone on the Sunday morning talk shows speak up in favor of freedom of the Press?  Did anyone anywhere castigate the Administration for its position or point out that we now seem to have adopted the mindset/values of our enemies?  I'd have watched myself but I kind of wanted to keep my breakfast down...
    •  What the Administration actually said is this: (none)
      QUESTION: Yes? Can you say anything about a U.S. response or a U.S. reaction to this uproar in Europe over the Prophet Muhammad pictures? Do you have any reaction to it? Are you concerned that the violence is going to spread and make everything just -- MR. MCCORMACK: I haven't seen any -- first of all, this is matter of fact. I haven't seen it. I have seen a lot of protests. I've seen a great deal of distress expressed by Muslims across the globe. The Muslims around the world have expressed the fact that they are outraged and that they take great offense at the images that were printed in the Danish newspaper, as well as in other newspapers around the world. Our response is to say that while we certainly don't agree with, support, or in some cases, we condemn the views that are aired in public that are published in media organizations around the world, we, at the same time, defend the right of those individuals to express their views. For us, freedom of expression is at the core of our democracy and it is something that we have shed blood and treasure around the world to defend and we will continue to do so. That said, there are other aspects to democracy, our democracy -- democracies around the world -- and that is to promote understanding, to promote respect for minority rights, to try to appreciate the differences that may exist among us. We believe, for example in our country, that people from different religious backgrounds, ethnic backgrounds, national backgrounds add to our strength as a country. And it is important to recognize and appreciate those differences. And it is also important to protect the rights of individuals and the media to express a point of view concerning various subjects. So while we share the offense that Muslims have taken at these images, we at the same time vigorously defend the right of individuals to express points of view. We may -- like I said, we may not agree with those points of view, we may condemn those points of view but we respect and emphasize the importance that those individuals have the right to express those points of view. For example -- and on the particular cartoon that was published -- I know the Prime Minister of Denmark has talked about his, I know that the newspaper that originally printed it has apologized, so they have addressed this particular issue. So we would urge all parties to exercise the maximum degree of understanding, the maximum degree of tolerance when they talk about this issue. And we would urge dialogue, not violence. And that also those that might take offense at these images that have been published, when they see similar views or images that could be perceived as anti-Semitic or anti-Catholic, that they speak out with equal vigor against those images. QUESTION: That the Muslims speak out with equal vigor when they see -- that's what you're asking? MR. MCCORMACK: We would -- we believe that it is an important principle that peoples around the world encourage dialogue, not violence; dialogue, not misunderstanding and that when you see an image that is offensive to another particular group, to speak out against that. Anti-Muslim images are as unacceptable as anti-Semitic images, as anti-Christian images or any other religious belief. We have to remember and respect the deeply held beliefs of those who have different beliefs from us. But it is important that we also support the rights of individuals to express their freely held views

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