Quick note...

...saying that mitvit is again extremely right (well, not politically). I agree with everything he says, including the part in which he scorns me and others (and I'm taking this personally) for not saying anything about the Muhammed-cartoon-thingy. I agree, having spoken openly against the new copyright legislation and defending (or at least blabbing incoherently about) the freedom of speech, I should've said something strong and to the point about the matter.

But what to say? I feel like everything has already been said. All I can do is give my own, personal, little support by saying that mitvit is right, and that violence is simply stupid, and in reality the whole shebang has very little to do with the pictures and a lot about a camel which has been burdened by stupid, arrogant and greedy westerners for a long time, and whose back is close to a snapping point.

This is an issue which is too big, too deep, and too complicated to approach lightly. Defending online freedom and deconstructing stupid laws is easy. Trying to say something right about a conflict that spans hundreds of years is a heck of a lot more difficult.

Throughout this crisis I have been reading The Bookseller of Kabul by ├ůsne Seierstad, which is a story of a family living in Kabul, Afghanistan. It would probably be one of the best fantasy books ever written, if it wasn't about real people. Most science fiction novels I've read don't create such a feeling of alienness - things that you just simply cannot wrap your brain around - but I guess that just tells how reality is sometimes stranger than fantasy.

I cannot shake this feeling that this is just the tip of the iceberg. I understand that people are afraid, and would like to silence those who might call harm upon this country. But all my instincts are saying that this is the wrong solution. It won't go away if we pretend that it's not there. There are billions of people who think in a way that our specialized western brain, living in the specialized western world does not understand. This is a wake-up call, and it's up to us to answer it and start talking. Or the next thing we see is that the billions are knocking on our doorstep.

We don't need to sacrifice liberties or traditions or religions to talk. Nor do we need to sacrifice lives. We may have to sacrifice our pride, though.

Caving in and acting like a bunch of scared bunnies (yes, that's you, mr. Prime Minister) won't help in the long run. To make a geeky and bad software analogy: this is a deep design fault which cannot be simply patched or ignored. We need to redesign the architecture from scratch and see what can be reused.


Yes, we need to start cross-cultural and cross-religion discussion on democracy, freedom of expression, justice, human rights, fair division of pain and gain. And this is hard, since we cannot just dictate or relapse in submission.

A good book about these issues is Cornel West's "Democracy matters", which tells about the state of American democracy, the prospect of democracy in Islamic countries, on the ways to solve the Israel-Palestine-conflict.

The way Finnish politicians are behaving is as shameful as their behavious in the 1970s. They do not think, they are just knee-jerking cowards.

--Matti Kinnunen, 28-Feb-2006

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"Main_blogentry_280206_1" last changed on 28-Feb-2006 13:53:09 EET by JanneJalkanen.