The following audio is an excerpt from an interview with Douglas Murray that aired yesterday on the BBC.
In the aftermath of the Charlie Hebdo massacre, Mr. Murray was discussing the sham nature of all the candle-lit vigils for “free speech” that were then taking place. Well-meaning, well-heeled people stood with pens held high and tears running down their cheeks, holding signs that read “Je suis Charlie”. But in all likelihood none of them — especially those associated with Big Media — will do what Charlie Hebdo did: lampoon Islam with unbridled ferocity.
Collectively speaking, we have long since lost our freedom to speak our minds about Islam. From Salman Rushdie through Theo Van Gogh to Charb, we have now been frightened into submission. Islamic intimidation has taught us the rules.
These heartfelt demonstrations are no more than beautiful lies. This is all theater — public posturing that makes ordinary middle-class people feel good about themselves. Full of sound and tear-drenched sentiment, but signifying nothing.
Below is an excerpt from what Mr. Murray said, as transcribed by our British correspondent Richard Edwards:
One of the most important things at this time: there will be a lot of reaction of people saying things like “we must defend freedom of expression, we must stand for freedom of expression”, but it really is all empty, if I may say so, because we have been going through this for many years now. And since 2005, at the very least, when the Danish paper Jyllands-Posten published some cartoons which depicted Islam’s founder Mohammed, all of the European and Western press, all of them failed to stand alongside Jyllands-Posten — none of them republished cartoons, except for Charlie Hebdo.
And now, when everyone says “We must stand with Charlie Hebdo”. “Solidarity with Charlie Hebdo!”, they can’t really mean it. because you and I know the BBC won’t dare to show any of these cartoons. No other major newspaper, journal or magazine in Britain or across most of Europe will dare to show these cartoons.
The point is, we say again and again we stand for freedom of expression, when we don’t really. And we say again and again “We mustn’t allow the terrorists to win.” And they do, again and again. The terrorists routinely succeed, and have succeeded again, shutting down a whole a whole area of discussion, a whole area of debate, and journalists and others and all sorts of people who like to think they’re in favour of freedom of speech, in fact, again and again, cede the territory to the terrorists.
I think it’s shaming.
Hat tip: Vlad Tepes.