I received a comment in response to my post yesterday. The commenter felt that the cartoonists at Charlie Hebdo had deeply deliberately offended the Muslim community, likening their cartoons to "spitting in someone's soul" and thus 'justice' was carried out. While I understand the hurt caused when someone deeply deliberately offends you, it cannot be a justification for killing that person.
I am writing my reply here as a stand alone post, as it provides a good opportunity to cover this issue we humans have with 'being offended'.
Are you seriously justifying the murder of 12 people because
someone was offended? I don't think we can speak for the entire
collective of Muslim people because being offended is a very personal
response not a general one.
I have been spat at. I didn't go on to murder those people.
have been called a witch for what I do by members of the community in
which I grew up. Of course at first I was offended, but later I learned
to laugh because I KNOW who I am, I don't need to justify it to anybody.
Nor do I need to murder those who do not like or understand me.
the majority of beautiful Muslims need not be offended by someone's
cartoons. For every belief, religion and cause there is someone saying
something contrary that has potential to cause offense. Deliberately
ridiculing a respected spiritual teacher is not something I would do nor
perhaps would you, but jesters and comediennes have been doing this for
thousands of years whether to make light of a situation or to
deliberately provoke controversy. For every cartoonist ridiculing the
Prophet, there is one ridiculing Jesus, the Buddha, God - are we to kill
You can't control what someone says to you, or does
to you. You can control how you respond. Murdering someone is an
impulsive act of an ego that feels threatened and invalidated. It is not
a powerful act. Deeply offending someone deliberately is not a powerful
act either. Yet with a pen, you get it off your chest and someone who
doesn't like it can throw away or even burn that paper.
writer, I do my best to write from my heart and wouldn't dream of
deliberately offending anyone. Yet someone somewhere might be offended
by something I write, and I shudder to think that some people think this
is a justifiable cause for murder.
(c) Dana Mrkich 2014