Saturday, September 15


Protests in Cairo over a film trailer, The Innocence of Muslims, originally called Desert Warriors, represent but a fraction of Egyptians, the vast majority who continue to go about their daily lives. Journalist Ethar El-Katatney provided perspective this morning on UP with Chris Hayes. Protests were reported in 23 nations, each fueled by varying sources of anger, the foolish anti-Muslim film serving as an excuse in many cases.

The protests are scattered and fragmented.

On the other hand, the vast majority of people in the United States, the third most populous country in the world, are puzzled, not prepared to fear and resent 1 billion Muslims.

Likewise, most Americans are not ready to dispense with freedom of expression. It may be difficult for other cultures to reconcile, but  most Americans both support peaceful protests that blast the US in Egypt and Libya and Yemen and beyond, as well as a mean, self-centered, biased filmmaker's right to make a film and, as writer Oscar Wilde once said, make an ass out of himself. Violence is wrong, freedom of expression is open to all. The nation's first president, George Washington, said in a speech to officers in 1783, “If freedom of speech is taken away, then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter.”

Protesters can walk on the US flag, and this makes Americans stronger.

Photo courtesy of Mohamed CJ and Wikimedia Commons.

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