Saturday, July 22, 2006

What We Stand For

In yesterday’s post I wrote about a vile anti-Semitic cartoon that was published in the Norwegian newspaper Dagbladet and discussed in Vårt Land. At the time I had no translation of the Norse in Vårt Land, but Gates of Vienna is very fortunate that Zonka, who is Danish, can also translate Norse. Here is his version of the Vårt Land piece, with his editorial comments shown in italicized square brackets:

Bold Assault [Rudely transgressing boundaries of decent behavior]

Ehud Olmert as a NaziThe reactions were severe after Monday’s edition of Dagbladet published a cartoon of Israel’s prime minister as a Nazi commander.

“I have never seen anything like this in Norwegian newspapers. This is a bold assault,” says To Øyvind Westbye, leader of Bergen KrFU [Kristelig Folkepartis Ungdom — Christian People’s Party Youth Organization] to Bergens Tidende.

Shooting a Jew

The cartoon in Dagbladet portraying Israel’s PM Ehud Olmert as a Nazi commander in Auschwitz is taken from the movie Schindler’s List, where the commander walks out to the balcony and shoots a random Jew.

“I have seen such cartoons in extreme Arabic newspapers, but Norwegian newspapers have restrained themselves from bringing such comparisons,” says Westbye.

“Not over the line”

The editor of Norge Idag [Norway Today], Finn Jarle Sæle, tells Bergens Tidende that he sees the cartoon as anti-Semitic.

Cartoonist Finn Graff doesn’t think that he crossed the line:

“It’s a little rude, but this is what I stand for”, says Graff to Bergens Tidende.

Aaarrrggghhh!“A little bit rude”???

I suppose the Holocaust was an “unfortunate faux pas”? World War Two was maybe a “minor dust-up”? The Black Plague was “a slight fever”?

So this is what he stands for. Well, why should we stand for it?

I’m not talking about censorship. I’m talking about vilifying, ostracizing, snubbing, insulting, denigrating, ridiculing, and holding up to public opprobrium people who hold such disgusting views.

Make your opinion known. Boycott the papers in which the works of such people appear. Light a fire under the feet of their editors to make their jobs less secure. Help take away the comfortable sinecures they have enjoyed for so long in the hitherto impregnable redoubt of the Mainstream Media.

If people like this don’t represent us, then their voices should be drowned out by the opposition.

After all, what do we stand for?


Zonka has sent some more material for Gates of Vienna, which we’ll be posting eventually.

Everybody make sure to tell Zonka that he is one righteous Viking dude.

10 comments:

Voyager said...

Well at least they didn't depict the Norwegian Leader of the time - Vidkun Quisling

Platform9 said...

It's a cartoon - get over it.

Zonka said...

platform9, it's a cartoon alright but it's also a political statement, that's deplorable.... unless of cause you agree with the message of the cartoon!

Baron Bodissey said...

Platform9 --

What do you mean, "get over it"?

It's a cartoon, so I'm going up to DC and torch the Norwegian embassy!

And maybe behead a few Lutherans, if I can find any.

Zonka said...

Baron, you will find Norwegian Lutherans at Emmanuel Lutheran church, 7730 Bradley Boulevard, Bethesda, Maryland at 3pm on the second Sunday of each month... two birds with one stone ;-)

ScottSA said...

Never mind the Norwegian embassy. US cultural imperialism is the culprit. Torch your own neighbourhood instead. No wait...create an organization with "social justice" somewhere in its title and demand cash, jobs, and extra privileges in return for NOT torching your own neighbourhood. But first torch the next neighbourhood over...it helps lend credibility to your own threats.

ScottSA said...

Frankly, I have a hard time going to the barracades for free speech on one hand when its something I agree with and hollering about the exercize of it when its not. If free speech is desireable, then it is desireable no matter what is said.

I suppose the only thing we all find better than democracy is an autocracy led by ourselves, but since we are not likely to get the latter, we ought to make the former as negatively free as we can.

Baron Bodissey said...

ScottSA --

There's a difference between suppressing the excercise of free speech and objecting to the particular content of a particular instance of free speech.

My point was to express collective outrage by the time-honored method of boycotting, which forces newspapers via economic consequences to consider the opinions of their readers, and to make such things too impolite to be publicly aired.

The N-word virtually disappeared from polite discourse in the South during my lifetime, while the F-word became ubiquitous. Neither of these changes carried the force of law; they were the results of social changes.

The disapproval of smoking was another one. A law against smoking wasn't necessary; smoking simply became impolite and vulgar, through the collective effect of publicly expressed opinions.

Archonix said...

Aye, if those muslims had simply resorted to boycotting Ijlands Posten... well it wouldn't have suffered because I doubt most of them read it. But resorting to threats of violence is a completely different matter. That's the diffeence here; so far nobody has declared that norwegians deserve to be massacred in the streets.

omar said...

I don't think that the poster is getting the point behind the comic. I do believe it is within the realms of propriety, it is not a black and white situation where the artist is portraying an anti-semetic message. I think what you are missing is the intelligent commentary on how we can all agree that the situation portrayed in the movie schindlers list is deplorable, and that it represents a much larger, much more horrendous act that was commited against the jewish community. The artist manages to parallel that act with the actions that the jewish community or rather the israeli government to be correct (i don't believe they are actions supported by the worldwide jewish community) of the middle eastern arab community (lebanese and palestinian to be specific.... at the moment). I think its time that jews (in general, very general) start looking at today and tomorrow and stop dweling on the past(i understand that the past is part of their identity) since there is no solution to be found to current problems in the past... unless we look way back before the crusades to a middle east that was much more tolerant. Bullying your neighbors is not going to make them treat you better. But then again, who knows.

Peace