Fancy that! Editorial control in France? Sarkozy, Censorship & Danish cartoons

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Sarkozy

French Interior Minister Sarkozy’s double standards on Danish cartoons

Nicolas Sarkozy, the French Minister of Interior and Presidential hopeful in the 2007 Elections, has offered patronising words to Muslims seeking a ban on the cartoons that mock the Prophet, peace be on him:

The cartoons are over the top but all told I prefer cartoons that go over the top to an excess of censorship – “La caricature, c’est l’exces. A tout prendre, je prefere l’exces de caricature  l’exces de censure”

When I see the fatwas thrown on the Danes, which take as their target all Danish nationals and soldiers,it is nothing less than extremely shocking – Quand je vois qu’il y a des fatwas qui sont lancees sur les Danois (…) et que l’on prend pour cible la totalite des ressortissants et des soldats danois, c’est rien moins qu’extrÍmement choquant”

Democracy is the freedom to criticise, to exchange arguments and caricatures, certainly through the medium of cartoons – “la democratie, c’est la possibilite de la critique, de l’echange des arguments et de la caricature, surtout par le biais des dessins. C’est a, la democratie, et a, ce n’est pas negociable”

The Catholic church has been exposed to the blast of caricatures. It has made verbal protests to defend its convictions and we have not reached the stage where the Church has sought the banning of a newspaper because it has been offensive – “l’Èglise catholique a ete soumise au feu de la caricature. Elle a proteste intellectuellement pour defendre ses convictions, mais enfin, a n’a pas ete au-del, on n’a pas ete jusqu’demander l’interdiction d’un journal parce qu’on avait offense l’Èglise catholique”.

…whether the cartoons are reasonable, it is for the courts to judge and not religious authorities and not the governments of Muslim countries – “lorsque la caricature va au-del du raisonnable, ce sont les tribunaux qui en jugent et pas les autorites religieuses, et pas les gouvernements des pays musulmans” 

One should avoid hurting the feelings of people, but let me say one more time, I prefer one takes the risk of hurting to that of censorship -“il faut eviter de blesser les convictions des personnes, encore une fois, je prefere qu’on prenne le risque de blesser que le risque de la censure”

YET MONSIEUR SARKOZY HAS BEEN QUITE PREPARED TO APPLY CENSORSHIP ON MATTERS CLOSER TO HOME….

When his wife published her biography – in which she revealed details of their private life – Sarkozy summoned the publisher and ordered 25,000 copies to be pulped. After a recent dalliance with a political journalist he threatened to sue anyone who published her name.

IN BOTH CASES, THE FRENCH PRESS WAS QUITE COMPLIANT! (179)

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