Solidarity for Satirists Killed in Terrorist Attack
People have already been talking about free speech lately because of the near-cancellation of the movie The Interview because of threats from North Korea. Now the struggle for freedom of expression is in the headlines because of a horrifically tragic attack on the French satirical magazine "Charlie Hebdo."
According to NBC News, 12 people were killed, including writers, cartoonists and 2 Paris police officers, when 2-3 hooded men entered the Paris offices with AK-47s and opened fire. Charlie Hebdo published cartoons of the Muslim prophet Muhammad, and was actually firebombed three years ago. You can follow the attached link for more details.
People around the world have been speaking out in solidarity for the victims and to defend the right to freedom of expression - from religious and political figures like the Pope and President Obama to satirical comedians like Tina Fey, Jon Stewart and Conan O'Brien, who have a particularly close perspective because of their shared profession. I've attached some of those videos here.
As Jon Stewart points out in his comments, comedy shouldn't have to be an "act of courage," but all too often - for comedians and many other types of writers and creators, expression and the will to continue it does become an act of courage. Let's stand behind these people who bravely stand for our right to freely say what we wish to say, whether it's a joke or an essay.