OP/ED—The massacre at French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo on Wednesday Jan. 7 killed 12 people, but the main targets were the publication’s illustrators and editors. Two male Muslims murdered staff members, and in the process two police officers, allegedly as retaliation because the magazine had repeatedly mocked Islam (among other religions) and its prophet Muhammad.
During the bloodbath, the gunmen were heard shouting “Allahu Akbar” or “God is great.”
Our question is: if you feel you must kill those who criticize or insult your faith, religion or God, then how great can they truly be?
True greatness is best expressed through tolerance, nonviolence, empathy and patience.
Truly free expression will only exist as long as no figure, group or ideology—political, religious or otherwise—is beyond skepticism, satire and even ridicule. bjg