"It profits me but little that a vigilant authority always protects the tranquillity of my pleasures and constantly averts all dangers from my path, without my care or concern, if this same authority is the absolute master of my liberty and my life."

--Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Roger Simon Has... Well, Balls

Roger Simon offers himself up to the Obama administration in a thought experiment about the First Amendment:

Hillary Clinton, I insist that you have me arrested. I am thinking of making a movie about Mohammed.
I don’t want to brag, but as a film professional with an Academy Award nomination in screenwriting, I may do a better job than Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, alleged creator of the Innocence of Muslims.

But I have to admit one thing. Hopeless and inept as Nakoula may be as a filmmaker, I agree with the intentions of his movie. I too detest Islam because I happen to abhor misogyny and homophobia, both mainstays of that faith. And, like most Americans, I prefer freedom of religion to jihad, Sharia law, and a global caliphate.
Don’t let me criticize any of that.

I also happen to agree with Nakoula that making a movie about a faith whose prophet married a six year old and deflowered her at nine is of thematic and dramatic relevance. As a father, I am seriously concerned about child abuse, as is most of our film-going public, I would imagine.

Indeed, the beginnings of Islam are the very stuff of great theatre and cinema, reprehensible as the actions of the protagonist may be. In fact, it may be great because of those actions. After all, Richard III is not a classic for nothing.

So I am very tempted by the subject of Mohammed.

Arrest me, Hillary Clinton, before I start. Call Eric Holder!...

My film is likely to be inspired by a fascinating lecture I heard by the very Rushdie during which the novelist, who read Islamic history at Cambridge, explained the origins of that faith. He said it began with Mohammed’s ruthless and violent battle with the mother cults that then controlled Medina over local trade routes. It was about money then, but, as I will show in my movie, that war evolved into a kind of perpetual “War on Women” that has been waged by Islam since.

Interesting, huh? Good cinema. Action, adventure, sex (matriarchy vs. ultra-patriarchy), even a little meaty conversation like Lawrence of Arabia.

Don’t let me do it. There’s only one “War on Women” and you know it — the one your fellow Democrats ascribe to Mitt Romney and company. I wouldn’t want to undermine that.

So stop me, Hillary, before I write. The Bill of Rights is a fusty old document anyway, obviously subject to revision by an UN-approved committee of trans-global multi-culturalists.

Censor me all you want. I’m ready. I don’t want to cause any international incidents. I have enough sleepless nights as is.

But you will excuse me if, in the process, I think of you as the deepest of reactionaries. I knew you were a big time liar when you blamed the “right-wing conspiracy” for your husband’s obvious serial adultery. That was nothing compared to this, however. By blaming filmmakers, even the most amateurish ones, for the murderous actions of fanatical Islamists, you have placed yourself in complete opposition to everything our country ever stood for and to the essence of the U.S. Constitution.

Meanwhile, Glenn Reynolds makes the argument that the picture below of the "film-maker" whose Youtube video about Mohammed allegedly caused the Middle East riots (note:  it didn't; Islamists simply used it as a pretext) being hauled off by authorities for midnight questioning ought to cost President Obama the election by itself:

When taking office, the President does not swear to create jobs. He does not swear to “grow the economy.” He does not swear to institute “fairness.” The only oath the President takes is this one:
I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.
By sending — literally — brownshirted enforcers to engage in — literally — a midnight knock at the door of a man for the non-crime of embarrassing the President of the United States and his administration, President Obama violated that oath. You can try to pretty this up (It’s just about possible probation violations! Sure.), or make excuses or draw distinctions, but that’s what’s happened. It is a betrayal of his duties as President, and a disgrace.
Here's the picture:

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