reply to post by gladtobehere
Thank you for your post!
You are raising a very true problem in France, but are not using the "proper" examples.
Charlie Hebdo is a satirical newspaper that has been in France for ages, caricaturing absolutely EVERYONE and EVERYTHING (from extreme left to extreme
right, Jews, Muslims, Chritians, the Pope, Khomeyni, Obama, the Queen of UK, singers, TV people, you name it).
In their latest newspaper, they have made some caricatures which some (I do not know the proportion) muslim people do not like.
Well, most of them haven't even seen these so called blasphematory pictures! (Hell, I didn't even see them myself, but I'll make sure I put my
hands on that paper).
They are caricatures, mocking, using traits of the religion in a satirical way, not an insult, not a call to hate these people.
On the other hand, John Galliano is a fashion prick who thinks he is so cool.
He told some Jewish people, when he was drunk, that he loved Hitler and they (the Jewish people) should be gassed...
That's insult, and even worse, a call to hate and kill.
However, you raise a very good point, which goes unspoken in France.
Many people (and I am not talking about Arab minorities, Arab descendant people, or muslim people) feel oppressed by the way you can criticize arabic
culture a lot, but you should not even start thinking that you may a chance to discuss about Israel and/or Jewish people.
And here is a good example, which is everywhere in the French news (and has hopefully been captured by non-French media):
A Socialist party member, called Georges Frêches, died in 2010, said in 2009, regarding some elections in France, that he would not vote for Laurent
Fabius (current foreign minister and then Socialist party member), because "his face is not catholic".
Here a quick note, in French, it is a very common sentence to say that something or someone does not look very catholic. That means that you would not
fully trust the person. We use it when there is something fishy (e.g. the 5 people killed in the French Alps).
I use it sometimes (it tends to be less used, it feels a bit outdated in French), and I have absolutely nothing to do with any religion!
It turned out (I was not even aware of that fact!!!) that Mr Fabius is from a Jewish family. Laurent Fabius called this language foul, many people
(including Socialist party memebers) have been saying this was disgusting from Mr Frêches and that he should quit!!!
So here is the issue we have in France.
I want to add that recently there is a big pressure from political correctness that you cannot make any jokes at all about Jewish or muslim people
(private jokes or even stand up comedians), without having scandals all over the place.