Some people should know what will offend and what will not but they never seem to learn. If you’re writing an article, a book or making a movie you should first make a list of all those who will be offended by it and then sanitise your work. This piece of sound advice is not from me but the Honourable Minister Shashi Tharoor. You see, Tharoor believes anything offending Hindus is a work of art and should be appreciated and applauded as such. But if you’re about to write anything or make any movie that has the remote chance of offending Muslims you should think twice. He established this doctrine of free speech in a debate with the late Christopher Hitchens. I quote Tharoor because his logic symbolises the entire left-liberal crap in the Indian socio-political system.
Poor Ashis Nandy! He made some comment about OBCs and Dalits being corrupt and he’s about to pay a price for it. This was during a discussion at the latest edition of the Jaipur Litterfest. Yes I call them Litterfests since they seem to have nothing to do with literature but more of a platform for political discussions. Last year the same Litterfest had to contend with protests against Salman Rushdie’s participation. Hmm! That guy had offended Muslims with ‘Satanic Verses’. This year the Muslims have taken preventive measures to ensure he doesn’t turn up. Then there are those ThinkFests by the Tehelka group of Tarun Tejpal which is tainted by accusations of extortion for ads from the Goa govt. Then again there was another Litterfest where Girish Karnad ranted against VS Naipaul at a function to honour the latter. While the Rajasthan govt was quick to file FIRs against Nandy they haven’t filed any FIR against Union Minister Sushil Shinde who spewed hatred with his “Hindu terror” speech. It took the AP govt months to act against the Owaisis who frequently indulge in filthy speeches.
Imagine, if Shinde had made the same statement about “Muslim Terror” his house probably would have been burned to the ground on the same day. He would have been lucky if there was no physical attack on him if he were to make such a statement. And for all this, super moron Shahrukh Khan believes he’s a “victim” in India. Both Shinde and SRK have now found a natural friend an admirer in ‘Shri’ Hafeez Saeed. I have written many times over that our media is simply scared of Islamic terror and that prevents them from honestly reporting the loutish and thuggish behaviour of certain Muslim groups. Every Muslim public figure has enhanced the “victimhood” feeling for Muslims despite some having achieved fame and fortune in India like SRK. NDTV even specialises on topics that claim Muslims are being “stereotyped”. Let’s see, if some Muslims are going to be angered and protest (often violently) so frequently over every silly thing who exactly is stereotyping them?
Then Muslims claim they don’t get enough job opportunities and aren’t accepted as part of the mainstream. Victimhood again! Hypothetically, supposing a Muslim was employed as a senior manager and one of his peers were to be promoted there is nothing to suggest he won’t claim being discriminated against because he’s a Muslim and won’t go to court. The behaviour and conduct of public figures from the Muslim community holds them to a prison where it seems they can’t lighten up. Jokes offend them, articles offend them, books offend them, music offends them, movies offend them; there isn’t much that doesn’t offend them. India makes them feel like victims! Is there anything that doesn’t offend them? Amitabh Bachchan had to live the taint of Bofors scam for 25 years but he didn’t claim he felt like a victim in India. SRK has faced nothing like that and yet claims he’s victimised because he’s a Muslim in India. The nonsense of SRK has been wonderfully exposed by Venky Vembu in Firstpost who appropriately calls it “King of Victimhood: Shah Rukh Khan bites the hand that fed him”.
Trust me, it doesn’t stop there. Three years ago when US president Barack Obama visited India some Muslims were up in arms. In that case the reason being a security dog from the Obama team was named “Khan”. Makes me wonder how many movies should have been banned, theatres burnt and actors attacked because domestic helps in Bollywood movies are often named “Ramu Kaka”. One of the greatest legal battles in the US over free speech was between Larry Flynt (Founder of porn magazine Hustler) and religious leader Jerry Falwell. Read about in Die Freedom. I quote from that post:
In the landmark case the US SC observed: “The fact that society may find speech offensive is not a sufficient reason for suppressing it. Indeed, if it is the speaker’s opinion that gives offense, that consequence is a reason for according it constitutional protection. For it is a central tenet of the First Amendment that the government must remain neutral in the marketplace of ideas”.
Flynt and the late Falwell later became friends and often had friendly debates. In one of those debates Flynt mentioned that in the monthly agenda meetings of Hustler the discussion was “Who haven’t we offended this month?” Haha! That requires constitutional protection. And he added “Time and Newsweek don’t need constitutional protection, it is people like us who offend who need the protection”.
So when Kamal Haasan’s latest movie “Vishwaroopam” was banned in Tamil Nadu it’s again because Muslims protested. I haven’t seen the movie but I hear it’s about a dance teacher who is also a Tamil-speaking Jihadi in Afghanistan. That in itself is laughable but more laughable is that some Muslims find it offensive, many may not even have seen the movie. Against a petition by KH to Madras HC to revoke the ban, the court actually told him to “discuss with the opposing members” to find a solution. This is what appeasement has brought India to. We may now have to negotiate solutions with those who break the law, the offenders. Who knows, in future a molestation victim may be asked to negotiate with the molester too.
I believe the Film Certification Board in India should be the last word on whether a film complies with the laws in India and if they have certified it then the movie shouldn’t be banned. If the FBC has overlooked any provisions of law, that should be contested only in a court and not on the streets. There was this joke floating on Twitter last evening about a devout Arab Muslim hiring a London Taxi.
It seems there is precious little that doesn’t offend certain groups of Muslims. I believe before Lokpal or any other law, our parliament should now make a comprehensive list of things that offends and hurts the sentiments of some Muslims. The rest of us can abide by such a list so that these frequent intolerant protests can stop. Alternatively, they should make a list of things that doesn’t offend such groups of Muslims. I believe that list would be much shorter and easier to understand and follow. If this offends you, I am willing to negotiate.