After much debate, intellectuals within the international community have concluded that world peace could and will be obtained when there's far less freedom floating around to mess things up. They have also decided that they are just the people to eradicate the great obstruction to commonality…formally known as liberty. They will, therefore, usher in a new utopian mandate where people must not be overburdened with those pesky freedoms of expression and self-discipline. Too many variables can get in the way of their proposed symmetry and equity because when some individuals lacking restraint are exposed to cultures where autonomy prevails, they just can't handle it. Naturally, their answer is to shut down the autonomy.
At the international level where the task of forestalling World War III is the general focus, a growing number of great thinkers housed within the ivory tower known as the United Nations believe that the murderous riots in Egypt, Libya, France, India, England…have I missed anyone…begin with a YouTube video and end with the United States forfeiting its Bill of Rights to appease the hurt feelings of the Muslim Brotherhood.
Be certain of this. When it comes to the mission creep of the United Nations and its stated objectives, once Pandora's Box has been opened it will not be so easily closed. For the UN, America's free and open society is the obstacle which must be overcome in order to truly achieve world governance. This is because for all our nation's flaws, a majority of Americans intuitively recognize that our domestic problems cannot be solved by some committee of despots masquerading as UN dignitaries.
Most, I say. The Supreme Court has very recently abdicated its constitutional mandates which require the court to protect individual liberty. The president has asked the international community for its indulgence while our political leaders and the DHS work out the details of internet security as our new understanding of free speech evolves.
Then you have individuals like Tammy Duckworth of all people - a candidate for the US Congress, mind you – addressing an Islamic cultural center in Villa Park to disparage and malign the "upper class, upper middle-class, affluent and largely white" voters within that district for not being culturally nimble enough to accept the area's changing demographics… to explain that the cultural shifts are uncomfortable for the status quo…
…while sporting a hijab so as not to make Muslim leaders of Villa Park uncomfortable with the insult her free flowing hair. The irony of that visual is just the gift that keeps on giving, now isn't it? But then again, what is she doing that our own Secretary of State hasn't done in the name of appeasement?
So, you've got Lady Gaga who has acted lewdly while dressed as a nun, who has swallowed rosary beads, played the role of Mary Magdalene professing her love for Judas Iscariot in a music video and who is now being hailed for her aspersions of Pope Benedict for upholding the Catholic teaching that marriage is between a man and a woman. You've got an alderman in Chicago condemning Chick-Fil-A and blocking that company's ability to open a restaurant in his district because the company's CEO, Dan Cathy, voiced his personal opinion regarding same sex marriage…so profoundly arrogant is the governmental intrusion into Cathy's right to free speech that even the ACLU has suggested it might be unconstitutional and that's saying something these days. You've got the federal government not just protecting anti-Christian art as objects of free speech but actually funding them. And let's not even get started with the HHS mandates which legally require religious organizations to fund sterilization and abortion without regard to their teachings or their consciences.
All of that comes and goes without so much as a hiccup from the international Christian community or the UN (thank goodness) but because of one video that was insulting to Islamic teaching? The United Nations with the blessing of the US government is moving forward with resolution 16/18 which seeks to "combat intolerance, negative stereotyping and stigmatization of, and discrimination, incitement to violence, and violence against persons based on religion or belief."
Incitement to violence. Let's think about that language for a minute. Talk about becoming your brother's keeper. If someone uses your words to justify an act of violence, you can be held in violation of international law. That's what that phrase means. That is the purpose of resolution 16/18 and here we have Hillary Clinton speaking to the rioting nations of the Middle East about the offensive anti-Muslim video in question using these words:
"It appears to have a deeply cynical purpose – to denigrate a great religion and to provoke rage."
Again, these words came from the US Secretary of State. Within that statement, we can identify the authorization necessary for the international community to modify…moderate American free speech with the theoretical purpose of averting future violence. Sheikh Abdullah Bin Bayyah who is a professor at King Abdul Aziz University of Saudi Arabia has come to the United Nations with his plea for assistance:
"We ask everyone to ponder the ramifications of provoking the feelings of over one billion people by a small party of people who desires not to seek peace nor fraternity between members of humanity. This poses a threat to world peace with no tangible benefit realized. Is it not necessary in today's world for the United Nations to issue a resolution criminalizing the impingement of religious symbols? We request all religious and political authorities, as well as people of reason to join us in putting a stop to this futility that benefits no one."
But in the United States, protected speech does not have to benefit society. It does not need to promote peace or fraternity. It may, in fact, denigrate and provoke people of reason. Such is the price of true freedom that even when someone provokes you with his words, you must still behave rationally. It's not easy, but it is simple. That is the American tradition of political dissent. Yet there are now American scholars who echo the bin Bayyah observation that non-productive political speech should be limited. The LA Times makes the argument that bin Bayyah may actually have a point. And the US Secretary of State has resolved to go beyond mere rhetoric to make 16/18 the law of the land.
"It is the common fate of the indolent to see their rights become a prey to the active. The condition upon which God hath given liberty to man is eternal vigilance; which condition if he break, servitude is at once the consequence of his crime and the punishment of his guilt."Because who gets to be the arbitor of productive free speech?