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The Innocence of Muslims: Sam "The Imbecile" Bacile, Religious Freedom and Free Speech

By   Follow Me on Twitter     Message Tim McGettigan     Permalink
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Let's begin by making it clear that Sam Bacile's "film," The Innocence of Muslims , is a piece of crap. The film is embarrassingly terrible. Imagine the worst Saturday Night Live sketch that you have ever seen and then multiply it by 100. Everything about the film is distressingly awful: the script, the make-up, costumes, editing, etc., etc. Sam Bacile makes Ed Wood look like a celluloid genius by comparison. 

To sum up, Bacile's Innocence of Muslims is an insult. It is an insult to filmmaking, it is an insult to artistic expression, it is an insult to free speech, and it is an insult to humanity. Oh, and I suppose I should also mention that Sam Bacile's Innocence of Muslims represents a profound insult to Muslims. In addition to its dung-brained anti-Muslim script, the film depicts the prophet Muhammad in an unflattering light--which to devout Muslims is one of the worst imaginable forms of sacrilege. Apparently, the primary reason that Sam "the Imbecile" produced his ill-begotten film was to insult and inflame the ire of Muslims. Thus, reprehensible as Bacile's film assuredly is, the film has succeeded (Sadly!) in sparking precisely the sort of global outrage that Bacile had hoped it would. Truly, this is a twisted success story. Three cheers for Sam The Imbecile. This monumental lamebrain has single-handedly succeeded in undoing much of the progress that had been forged between the West and Middle East during the Arab Spring rebellions. A flicker of democratic fraternity has been doused by a tsunami of intercultural outrage. C'est la vie to political harmony and interfaith respect. Sam Bacile has succeeded in diverting us down the highway to hell. 

Unquestionably, Sam Bacile has much to atone for. Let the damage and violence that has been inflicted, and the blood that has been spilled be on his head. You reap what you sow, Sammy. If you are a religious man, then I assume that must bother you. If it doesn't, then I encourage you to re-examine your religious morals. They are woefully lacking. 

That said, I think it is high time to call for restraint on the part of responsible Muslims the world over. On behalf of Western culture, I apologize for the titanic insult to Muhammad and Islam that Bacile's rotten film represents. I can assure you that Sam Bacile speaks only for himself, and his repugnant film is antithetical to the USA's foundational principle of religious freedom. The USA reveres and respects Islam every bit as much as it does every other world religion. OK? Are we good? 
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America and Americans have disavowed Sam Bacile. Once again, Bacile and his abhorrent film do not speak for us. Bacile's loathsome opinions are his alone. Yet, while America has officially disavowed Sam Bacile, we will not permit ignoramuses of his ilk to infringe upon our right to free speech. In a world where intolerance rears its ugly head all too often, free speech is an essential counterbalance to tyranny and ignorance. Although I disagree profoundly with the sentiments that Sam Bacile expresses in his sorry excuse for a film, I will not now--nor will I ever--call for Sam Bacile's free speech rights to be restricted. For free speech to exist, its advocates must fight just as hard to ensure the rights of those with whom they disagree as they do for themselves. If we don't believe in free speech for those with whom we disagree, then we don't really believe in free speech. Period. 

Such a conclusion is unlikely to appease the many protesters who have been calling for Sam Bacile's head on a platter. I wish it could be otherwise. We live in a mighty big world, and every now and then boneheads like Sam Bacile are going to insult one religion or another. Nothing good will ever be accomplished by dignifying the worthless prattlings of the Sam Baciles of this world. If Sam Bacile insists upon using his free speech rights to make an ass of himself, then let the joke be on him. Sam Bacile is an ass. 

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Having amply demonstrated that his opinions are worthless, people should accord Sam Bacile the respect and recognition that he so richly deserves: Ignore the dumb-ass and move on! Continuing to fuss and fume over Sam Bacile's idiotic insults will only drag otherwise decent folks down to his slimy level. For crying out loud, don't let an ass like Sam Bacile ruin your life or anyone else's! 

Too many innocent people have already been hurt. Too much time has been wasted on the mindless ramblings of a demented trouble-maker. The only folks who can end the violence are those who insist upon perpetrating it. Just stop! Stop right now and think about what you are doing. And please do so before any more innocent folks get hurt. 

Also, the next time that some cretin like Sam Bacile insults Islam--and, trust me, it's going to happen--don't lash out. If you do, then you are playing right into Sam Bacile's hands. Don't give him the satisfaction. Just ignore the dumb-ass and move on. If Islam is a great world religion--and it most assuredly is--then it needs to act like one. The Sam Baciles of this world are not worth the time it takes to sneer in their direction. Let Sam Bacile and his cronies tell their dirty little jokes, and drown in their own bile. Great religions have got to rise above that dreck. 

Enough! 



Thanks to Wikimedia Commons for the photo: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Clerics_take_part_in_a_protest_against_an_anti-Islamic_film.JPG

 

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Prof Tim teaches sociology at CSU-Pueblo and he writes books about social change, such as... A Formula for Eradicating Racism, http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/113759974X


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