A Short Word On Charlie Hebdo 

January 11th, 2015 | R. Rados 

A government's main role is to protect the freedoms and lives of the taxpayers who sustain its existence. Writers, artists, entrepreneurs, bloggers, or filmmakers should never feel obligated to give up their freedoms in order to protect their lives or the lives of others. Stronger security, stronger intelligence and stronger punishments are more legitimate than mandated or self imposed censorship. The many organizations that have chosen to censor certain materials have not only done themselves a disservice, they've done us all a disservice. 

Showing certain related materials following a tragedy is not necessarily about defiance, but about providing needed context to a legitimate story and maintaining a journalistic standard. This journalistic standard is what puts various offensive images in front of our eyes on a daily basis, such as pictures of bloodied children, victims of violence, abortions, derogatory graffiti on religious temples, artistic work that degrades Christianity, and violent protests against various institutions and agendas. These images are not always shown to offend, but to provide context.

In this case, the French government failed. At least three of the terrorists responsible for the events in France had prior convictions or known connections to extremists. Not only did the government of France fail to protect the staff of Charlie Hebdo, they willfully put all French citizens in danger by allowing criminals with extremist views to roam the streets of Paris. The government of France, for whatever reason, has failed to fulfill one of its most basic roles. As a result, a dozen people were murdered for having an opinion. 


-Ryan