In 2009 a French cartoonist who went by the name of Sine was sacked from Charlie Hebdo’s, he claims for drawing a caricature of Nicholas Sarkozy’s son. It would seem a small joke is far more damaging to society than deliberately insulting the Prophet Mohammed, an act that has been continually repeated to anger Muslims. Personally, I would ignore these puerile attempts at incitement but the people at Charlie Hebdo’s know exactly what they were doing. Obviously, they didn’t anticipate the ferocity of the murderous attack that happened but by insulting 1.6 billion people there is always a chance that a couple of psychopaths might be amongst them.
I’ve noticed that Hebdo’s jokes at the expense of Jews are gentle and poke fun at stereotypes of Jews. It seems to me we can only laugh at Jewish jokes if the Jews themselves say it or laugh at it. No other section of society is given the same respect. So far as I’m aware they do not attack any aspect of the Talmud or Torah. It’s particularly easy to insult a person or organisation, any idiot could do it. Poking fun in an inoffensive way is much more difficult and perhaps that’s the reason the employees of Charlie Hebdo couldn’t do it.
Nothing justifies the attacks in France last week but freedom of speech is something we are all individually responsible for and if we are going to be restricted from historical events then we should certainly leave peoples religion alone, however despicable or unsavoury the religion is perceived by others.