Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Voltaire, Please Call Your Office

Sony has cancelled their premiere of a comedy film about an assassination attempt on North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. The film was called The Interview and Sony claims that too many theater chains have chosen not to show it for fear of terrorist reprisals threatened by hackers who have infiltrated Sony's computers. In other words, the very people, liberal Hollywooders, who talk about how brave and bold and courageous it is when a film or book comes out that skewers Christianity are now not only meekly submitting to the tender sensibilities of Muslims but also to some of the most atrocious people on earth, the North Koreans.

It's fine if they don't want to offend people, and I certainly don't blame them for being anxious for their safety, but it's unseemly of them to prance, preen and bloviate about how brave it is to attack the beliefs of people who would never dream of retaliating, and then cower in fear when they're given ultimatums by people who just might carry them out.

I wonder, for instance, what the reaction would have been had a few anonymous threats of violence been received when Religulous or Last Temptation of Christ were released. I suspect there would've been a lot of defiant huffing and puffing about the First Amendment, the Critical Importance of Art, Freedom From Religion and all that, and the film would still have been shown amidst congratulations all around for the amazing heroism of the doughty people in the art world who surely deserve the Congressional Medal of Honor for their courage.

Liberals used to love to quote a dictum attributed to Voltaire to the effect that though they "may hate what you say they'll fight to the death for your right to say it." Apparently that only applies to saying things critical of people you know won't hurt you for it. Since Muslims have started to hold them to it liberals don't say that sort of thing much anymore. Indeed, the actors and cast of The Interview aren't showing their faces in public lately without bodyguards.