The video wasn’t acceptable, and neither was the reaction
There is much to be written and said about yesterday’s disgraceful events in Sydney, which came in response to a cheap and insulting anti-Islamic video made by an idiot on the other side of the world.
For now, we’re going to let some other videos do the talking for us.
The video above features Australian comedian Tim Minchin poking fun at Christianity. The talented Minchin attracts huge audiences, and you’d have to assume there are always at least a few practising Christians in his crowd
Here’s a fun one where Jerry Seinfeld pokes fun at his own religion, judaism, detours for a dig at Catholicism, then brings the laughs home with a side-splitting mocking of anti-semitism by portraying our universal fear and hatred of dentists as “anti-dentiteism”.
Now here’s the most excruciating moment in the history of Australian television. It was the ill-advised “one with everything” gag Karl Stefanovic so spectatcularly stumbled over in dialogue with the Dalai Llama, a rather prominent Buddhist.
What do all these videos tell us?
They tell us that some of the world’s major religions are willing to mock themselves, or to be mocked. That is part of their culture.
Many Muslims do not accept their religion being mocked. That is fine too. Muslims have their core values, other religions have theirs. Australians understand that.
Australians also understand the difference between genuine humour and deliberately provocative rubbish.
That’s why we understand Muslim outrage at a cheap film made by a person of questionable character and motives in another country.
What we can’t get our heads around is the violence on our streets, and the toddlers holding up signs encouraging violence against non-believers.
That strikes us as representative of neither the peaceful values of the prophet Mohammed nor the peace-loving ways of Australians.
In short, we see it as the sickest joke of all.
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