"Patriotism is the willingness to kill and be killed for trivial reasons." Bertrand Russell

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

The lapsed liberal's best friend

Is it just me or is Kevin Myers terminally confused? His latest offering circumnavigates the content of his preceding diary entries in order to argue the withdrawal of European aid from the Palestinian Authority.

As the cartoon saga slowly loses appeal in the mainstream media, Mr. Myers explanation of the issue is evolving. Originally it was just more proof of the war we are embroiled in against the murderous Muslims and had "nothing to do with free speech," with the "peace-loving" Danes caught in the cross fire.

Then money got involved. How can we stand back as "poor little Denmark" pays the price for freedom of speech, he asked. The same poor little Denmark that supplied and continues to supply military force in Iraq as part of the "Coalition of the Willing," partly responsible according to the Lancet medical journal for approximately 100,000 excess deaths in the first months of the war alone.

Today Mr. Myers condemns the imprisonment of David Irving on the grounds of freedom of speech. What is wrong, may be wrong, but we echo the legacy of the Third Reich by criminalising being wrong. It is our right to be wrong. He qualifies this idea though, "What is wrong in a free and civilised society is using one's opinions - right or wrong - to promote racial or religious hatred."

It seems free speech has a definition that can be altered to suit ones religious or racial prejudices. Some people just don't deserve the right to be wrong. That is why we in the 'West' can kill thousands under the guise of defense from an imaginary threat and still be 'peace loving', while the Palestinian's right to return will always be motivated by hatred. You can't have it both ways Kevin.

An Irishman's Diary
Kevin Myers

"And paradoxically, the only countries in Europe which have made "holocaust denial" a crime are those which were once governed by Nazi thought-police. But not Ireland, not Britain. The intellectual legacy of the Third Reich lives on wherever people today are not entitled to be wrong. For being wrong is not wrong. What is wrong in a free and civilised society is using one's opinions - right or wrong - to promote racial or religious hatred. That is what the Palestinian Authority does - and moreover, we in the EU pay it to do so."

The Irish Times