Tuesday, July 17, 2007

What Freedom of Speech is, and isn’t

My latest Malaysia Today submission

By the Anti Jihadist

Since I have started posting regular columns here at Malaysia Today, I have been taken to task by any number of commenters over my blunt writing style, and particularly, for my direct swipes at a certain ideology that shall, for the moment, not be named. Certain members of this esteemed site, no doubt followers of the ideology that need not be named, have (among other things) repeatedly shrieked for me to take ‘responsibility’ in regards to my work. Use of this word, in this context, is nothing more than a thinly-veiled reference to outright censorship, self-imposed or otherwise. Sorry to disappoint my many ‘fans’ out there, but I’m not about to go anywhere. Nor am I about to censor myself.

It is virtually certain that many followers of a certain alleged ‘prophet’ hope that I am silenced, by any means necessary. They are, after all, only emulating the example of their prophet and founder of said ideology, who during his life had every one of his critics either assassinated, or forced them to flee for their very lives. By precedent and design, this certain ideology deliberately aims to strike fear into the hearts of all who resist its aggression, or speak truthfully of its designs on the world. The so-called ‘religion of peace’ is really the religion of fear, and don’t expect these people to make any apologies for it. Quite the opposite, actually.

If followers of Islam are offended by what I have to say, then steer your eyes and your browsers elsewhere. No one is forcing anyone to go to Malaysia Today, to click on my articles, or to read them. As a kafir, I’m offended by what I see in the government-owned (pro-Muslim) Malaysian mainstream media every day. Now that I have articles posted here, and the shoe is on the other foot in a small way, what is the harm in it? Why is it ok for infidel beliefs to be ‘degraded’ daily, but the beliefs of Muslims are to remain forever inviolate? Why are so many so quick to exclaim that there no room whatsoever in any forum for viewpoints such as mine?

Despite my writing at M-T, this is hardly an equal contest. Unlike my pro-jihad or pro-Muslim opponents, I certainly don’t have a television station at my command, a daily newspaper at my beck and call, or an Information Ministry to issue statements on my behalf. I am only one person. I am working alone, on modest resources, fighting back practically single handedly against the lies and deception of Islam, the encroachment of sharia, and the erosion of all values and freedoms that I hold dear. But for those suffering from Thin-Skinned Derangement Syndrome (TSDS), even one lone writer that dares to criticise Islam is one too many.

For anyone who has grown up in a totalitarian and criticism-free (i.e. Islamic) environment, let me clue you in as to what many of you so offhandedly refer to as ‘freedom of speech.’ Freedom of speech precisely means the freedom to offend people, anyone and everyone, be it with cartoons, diatribes, or satanic verses. In dynamic, prosperous, and genuinely free societies, everything is up for discussion and debate, and no topic should be beyond the pale. In fact, offensive speech is the vital, necessary exhaust of free societies. If offensive, boorish or insensitive speech is banned, outlawed or ‘discouraged’, then there is no freedom of speech, and the society in question has taken a giant step closer to fascism.

Undoubtedly, many Malaysians suffering from undiagnosed and untreated TSDS -- from the Prime Minister on down -- consider ‘freedom of speech’ to be some sort of ‘issue’ that necessitates ‘responsibility’. This of course usually means self-censorship, or failing that, an ‘inducement’ from the friendly religious police, UMNO’s youthful thugs, or perhaps the Internal Security Ministry armed with an ISA ‘detainment’ order.

Well, sorry to poop on your party, but I refuse to go along with the Islamofascist programme. Ladies and gentleman, the only solution to freedom of speech … is more free speech.

3 comments:

Mark said...

Yes, exactly! 'Freedom of speech' is indivisible. Either you have it, or you don't. Period.

Hantu Laut said...

I am not against people speaking out or critical of things they think is not right.I am not a practising Muslim but I do know a little bit of my religion.

Your stupefying and bigoted opinion are full of contradictions.If you can criticise,slam and attack other people and other ideologies what makes you think others must not resort to the same method employed by you.Do you think you are more privileged than others to make judgement on other religion.On one hand you spoke about freedom of speech and on the other you asked those who don't agree with you not to read your article.What's the point of writing if you only desire those who agree with you. What kind of intellectual discourse would you get?

If offensive,boorish, insensitivity and right to offend others is your version of freedom of speech than I have nothing more to say.

You might just as well drown in your own intelligence.

Hantu Laut said...

Hi,Jihadist,

Thanks for dropping by my place.You are not what it seems to be.I expect a volley of bullets from you.Obviously,I was wrong.My apology, if I have been harsh with my words.

Will see you around.