The Dhimmitude of Random House
What should be a really big story has largely been buried–the cancellation of book release of The Jewel of Medina. Why? The usual reasons; threat of violence from partisans of the Religion of Peace. Safety of Random House employees. Sensitivity for the tender feelings of Muslims. The book’s not all that good anyway. And, on and on.
Once again is we have an abject abandonment of fundamental principles that undergird an individual’s right to freely express himself (or herself). And, an abdication of the principles of the First Amendment rights that not only do we have a right to freely express ourselves, but we have governing principles and institutions that are there expressly to allow and protect the right of free expression. In fact, I would submit that the Department of Homeland Security needs to involve itself with such issues as this abridgment of rights by intimidation by the implicit threat of violence.
And, I would submit that Random House, if it is really interested in continuing in business as a publisher in a society that allegedly values free expression, has an obligation to publish this book. I no longer matters that this book may be a piece of trash; “harlequin” “soft porn.” Just as it matters not that the famous Danish Muhammad cartoons were as art or political commentary a bust. The fact that there people who will commit violence and, in the cartoon matter, kill. It therefore becomes imperative that such behavior will not succeed in silencing free expression.
Two final comments:
Aisha was betrothed to Muhammad when she was six or seven years of age. The marriage was consummated at the age of nine. Okay, child marriages and polygamy were common practices in the middle east circa 600 A.D. I think most reasonable people would understand that fact and would be willing to still evaluate Muhammad’s religious pronouncements objectively nonetheless.
But, Islam needs to just acknowledge this fact rather than taking umbrage at actions that have a historical basis in fact. And, acknowledge that such practices are now simply beyond the pale in the 21st century Islamic world-view and Islamic theology.
The second thought is the greater propensity for dhimmitude in Second Amendment-free zones; like New York City. Might I humbly suggest that Random House move its offices to a red-state location so that its employees could take a more proactive role in using their Second Amendment rights to defend their First Amendment rights. That’s why the Second Amendment was written into the Bill of Rights in the first place.