I am overwhelmed with outrage. The Charlie Hebdo tragedy that transpired on January 7th, 2015 took the lives of 12 innocent people. Ten innocent journalists were murdered, in cold blood, for making people crack a smile. Their political cartoons mocked all religions, ethnicities, and races, equally; simply put, they drew on the plain truths they saw in this world and shed light on things others were too fearful to. In that line of work, no one should fear losing their lives.
As a young Jewish woman, I can honestly tell you that I am insulted by a few of the satirical magazine's cartoons, but: I respected their view points. I respected their sense of humor.
I respected their freedom.
And I respected their right to live.
As a young aspiring journalist, I am terrified of the future that lies ahead. Pessimistic at heart, I typically observe the slow-paced sinking of society’s awareness to its own surroundings, but in light of this event I now see that there is still hope. I still see simpletons who look at the world through rose colored glasses all round me, but I also see the contrapositive. People who see this attack for what it truly is, a threat to our freedoms as human beings living in a free world.
To cower in fear over an aggression such as this would give these radicals the victory they so desperately desire. These men, being a part of a larger terror organization, take their uncomfortable insecurities with their own selves and inflict pain and suffering on the innocent surrounding them because of it. That is why these things happen. Not because of religion or politics; it is because of greed, self-hatred, and impetuosity.
People believe the cause for these terrible incidents to be ideas of a warped faith, but that is not the case. If you were to read the Qur'an, you would see how intolerable murder of innocent lives is in Allah's eyes:
“… whoso kills a soul, unless it be for murder or for wreaking corruption in the land, it shall be as if he had killed all mankind; and he who saves a life, it shall be as if he had given life to all mankind.” - Qu'ran, 5:53
These gunmen took lives of people who have never committed murder nor have they ever wreaked corruption in the land. And furthermore, even if they had, it is not up to us as human beings to judge others and decide whether their lives should be continued in this world or ended. We are not Gods amongst men to choose who gets to live and who does not.
The fact that people lay the blame on the Muslim religion provides more fuel to the inferno that is xenophobia. Not all Muslims are terrorists, and not all non-muslims believe that to be true. Generalizations are a huge danger to civilization as a whole. That being said, it is not against any religion in particular to say that the group known to the public as Al Qaeda is an Islamic extremist terrorist organization hellbent on world supremacy. This statement expresses what a group of people are, it does not express that all people who believe in Islam are terrorists. This is where people plunge into a bottomless "politically correct" hole that is almost impossible to get out of. I personally saw this tweet yesterday and was outraged by what this user had to say:
I responded with: "Yes it would be, Terrorism is when a group of any religion inflicts violence and intimidation in pursuit of political aims!"
This started a "Twitter war" which concluded with @ReactRiri blocking me from her twitter feed. I laughed at the outcome of my standing up for what I believe in. She was allowed to voice her opinion, but when another opinion came to challenge her validity, she turned the other way. To disrespect the opposing sides in life automatically constructs your own defeat. Shockingly, there are many others who took to Twitter to show their support of the attack, including @AbuHeadshot's Tweet which shocked me to my very core:
There is no question that the cartoon was offensive to those who follow the Muslim religion, but did these men and women deserve to die for their drawings? The fact that this question even needs to be asked in the first place is genuine cause for concern.
And to the victims: Stephane Charbonnier, Jean Cabut, Georges Wolinski, Bernard Verlhac, Philippe Honore, Bernard Maris, Elsa Cayat, Mustapha Ourrad, Micheal Renaud, Frederic Boisseau, Ahmed Merabet, and Brigadier Franck Brinsolaro, Rest in peace.
I was not apprehensive in writing this article in any way. The pen will always be mightier than the sword and with my words, I will do my part in defeating any possible threats to our rights and our comprehensive freedom.