Homo Consumericus

The nature and nurture of consumption

Masturbating With a Crucifix in a Film… No Riots?

Freedom of speech = bedrock of the civilized world

At the recent and highly prestigious Venice Film Festival, the film “Paradise: Faith” won a jury prize. While I have not seen the movie, it apparently has a scene of a woman masturbating with a crucifix. See the Catholic League’s take on the matter here. As far as I know, no violence has erupted in reaction to this deeply offensive depiction. On last night’s Colbert Report, Steven Colbert had a segment on the recent archaeological find that suggests that Jesus might have been married. In the clip, Colbert jokes about the fact that some people were beginning to question whether Jesus was a homosexual, so the fact that he might have been married is “comforting.” Note that Colbert is joking about the supposed Son of God being gay, and yet I am unaware of any killings that have taken place since last night’s airing. The current Broadway hit “The Book of Mormon” is apparently rather offensive to Mormons. Yet, I have yet to see any violence meted out by Mormons as a reaction to this very public slight of their religion. On a more serious note, here is a collection of actual Imams and political figures proclaiming their genocidal hatred of Jews (see here for the deeply disturbing clip). My mother tongue is Arabic so I can assure you that the translation is veridical. I do not recall Jews seeking to exact murderous revenge on innocent people as relating to the repeated call for their extermination in that clip. Incidentally, the repeated call for the genocide of a people constitutes an example where free speech is not protected.

Find a Therapist

Search for a mental health professional near you.

The most fundamental tenet of a free society is freedom of speech (see my earlier post on this topic here). That right cannot be tempered as a means of ensuring that some group’s religious feelings are not hurt. To soften one’s speech as a result of fearing violence implies that we do not have free speech. One cannot be pregnant and a virgin (unless it is the Immaculate Conception of course); a believer in God and an atheist. Similarly, there cannot be free speech on all matters except when it comes to the sensibilities of one particular group. Either we have the right to criticize all religions, beliefs, and ideologies, or we have universal blasphemy laws that forbid us from criticizing any religion. Which society would you prefer to live in?

 

Source for Image:

http://bit.ly/RAnABJ

 

Gad Saad is Professor of Marketing at Concordia University and author of The Evolutionary Bases of Consumption and The Consuming Instinct.

more...

Subscribe to Homo Consumericus

Current Issue

Love & Lust

Who says marriage is where desire goes to die?