...what kind of a democracy is a democracy that forbids dissent, the punishes it, that turns it into a crime? What kind of a democracy is a democracy that instead of listening to its children silences them, hands them to the enemy, abandons them to abuse and bullying? What kind of a democracy is a democracy that favors theocracy, that re-establishes heresy, that tortures and burns the free minds on the stake? What kind of a democracy is a democracy where the minority counts for more than the majority and where, counting for more than the majority, it swaggers and blackmails?!? A non-democracy, I say. A deceit, a lie. And what kind of freedom is a freedom which prevents us from thinking, from speaking, from going against the wind, from rebelling, from opposing those who invade and muzzle us? What kind of freedom is a freedom that makes citizens live in the fear of being prosecuted and convicted as criminals? What kind of freedom is a freedom that along with thought wants to censor feelings, to decide whom I must love and whom I must hate, so that if I hate Americans I go to Heaven and if I hate Muslims I go to Hell? A non-freedom, I say. A mockery, a farce.
-- Oriana Fallaci
I had forgotten I had ordered The Force of Reason, Oriana Fallaci's latest book some time ago. It was on back order, so today I got a box through the mail and was delighted by the surprise. The above except was from her prologue, and I could not help but think of the Mohammed cartoon controversy and the craven response to the ensuing Islamic riots. What kind of freedom indeed?
At any rate, I look forward to a weekend of being rabble-roused by the acerbic old woman. I thought I best warn you I may be foaming at the mouth a bit in the near future.