Clearly it's a tragic situation with the loss of life of our consular staff due to a (shoddily-made, by all accounts) film that smeared Islam.
I'm sorry, but how exactly does a film; A mass of celluloid frames, kill people? I mean, apart from the bit in Inglorious Bastards, which didn't make sense anyway.
Wouldn't it be more accurate to blame the rioters?
From the outside, it seems very muchso like a violent reaction to culture shock. Like, after the Arab Summer, the people of the region, at least the people that take their umbrage to the streets, want democracy but not a free flow of ideas that is required for this.
Maybe I'm just jaded because here we have disputed documentaries of varying quality, but I've yet to see anyone storm a church over Expelled or set fire to McDonalds over Supersize Me. I don't understand the concept that disagreement with something one finds on the internet is reason enough to kill, no matter how shitty a documentary.
Edited at 2012-09-15 09:22 am (UTC)
I agree. A film killed no one. The people that decided to riot and pillage made that call. To blame a stupid film maker is the type of blame shifting that really riles my sensabilities.
I'm saying the events are "due to" the film, as in "triggered by." I'm not saying the blame lies there.
The rioters must be considered responsible, as they are choosing to take to violence in reaction to the film.
How many do you think have seen the film?
2012-09-17 01:54 am (UTC)
People have shot abortion doctors because of what they read online. There was also an incident where an internet rumor got started that someone had smuggled a communion wafer out of a Catholic service, and they got death threats. This is what religion does to people.
No. The word 'because' implies a cause/effect relationship.
They shot doctors because they are fucking assholes. What they read online, like 99% of anyone online, is what they sought out, which often agrees and reinforces our opinions, but doesn't in itself kill people, as evidenced by others reading the same and proceeding NOT to slay their fellow man, and presumably, lack of this media item would not render said assholes any less murderous. They'd find another avatar for their violence, or target of their rage.
Media viewed or heard (or in this case heard of) does not negate responsibility of people when they commit horrific violence, and conversely this means the media does not share they responsibility with said assholes. When the media is 'violent' or controversial, people like to ignore this bit of logic.
Charles Manson formed a murder cult around a damn Beatles song and no one has arrested Paul McCartney for that crime yet.
Edited at 2012-09-24 12:26 am (UTC)
2012-09-24 01:51 am (UTC)
I agree that one has to be careful about assigning responsibility for things like this, but I don't think it's as black and white as you're claiming. While clearly Paul McCartney didn't intend for Charles Manson to be inspired to kill by his work, the examples I gave are of media that was INTENDED to inspire people to violent acts. I think there's a moral difference between the two, even if there isn't a legal difference. It may be LEGAL to post an online hit list of abortion doctors and addresses along with the suggestion they should be shot, but I think it's still immoral.
well the greyness doesn't just apply to responsibility, but the intention as well. Say, the subtle difference between Psycho Killer by Talking Heads and Cop Killer by Body Count. Still, media that's often not intended to incite violence does, not because there's any subliminal messages in The Catcher in The Rye so muchso as people with reduced sanity and violent personalities patching their own psychopathy with fiction. Like a man who thinks he's the joker so he rigs his apartment with bombs before killing innocents in a theatre.
Essentially, the example you gave holds no semblance of artistic redemption most media does. In this sense though, it's just information that should have remain private and implies worse things about the intelligence gathering capabilities of christian terrorists than just the internet being scary.
I would say, should this man have not had this list, he might have gotten the brainwave to attack a public figure or someone on the sex offenders list instead. Removal of information, or capacity for one incident doesn't mean a psycho is not a threat.
The media which Nicodemus brought up though isn't just a black list of names. It's just a really shitty internet movie. One which exists among tons of 'MUSLUMS R BAD' types of things on Youtube. I'd be willing to bet, lack of internet access aside, the protest had less to do with people seeing the video as it did with clerics rallying people into a furor because they were upset at the video... or were just looking for an excuse to secure a power base or gain notoriety.
In this sense, it's absurd enough to pin responsibility on the movie as it is to imply the White Album slit throats.
2012-09-24 05:05 pm (UTC)
I thought that at first; then I heard that the trailer was, in fact, produced by Coptic Christians as a deliberate provocation toward Muslims. That, to me, moves it from the category of poorly-thought-out satire and into the category of deliberate incitement; it's more like the abortion doctor hit list than the White Album, I think.
Mind you, that doesn't mean I think it should be illegal. It just means I don't think the people who made it are morally blameless. They got exactly the result they were trying for.
Search 'muslim plans' or anything to that extent on youtube though. If that was their intention, they hit the fucking lottery amongst a group of similar.
Provocative, even poorly done and provocative doesn't justify shifting blame. If that were the case then you might as well say anything provocative gives a carte blanche to violence.
I would say, yes, Malcom X is 'morally blameless' for his own assassination, no matter who or how hard he provoked people.
Also, yes I realize you're not calling for censorship, but your line of reasoning is what opens the gates for such.
I'm not disagreeing over Religion fucking over people's value systems, but that doesn't mean a movie merely existing is what led people to murder.
I don't believe this YouTube video is the reason for the riots and murders. And what, no fatwa calling for the execution of the film's producers??
Yes, there's a whole history of reasons for tensions. This film is just the latest trigger (or excuse, if you prefer) that has unleashed trouble and driven some factions to violence.
Edited at 2012-09-16 06:51 am (UTC)
'Turn over'? As in turn over to someone? Do you think a homophobe should be imprisoned over such? Do you feel he's somehow equal to a pedophile priest in heinousness?
2012-09-24 05:07 pm (UTC)
I don't think he's claiming equivalency among his examples. They're just examples of groups that simultaneously decry something while nurturing people who practice it.