Sunday, May 12, 2019


Lauren Daigle

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"Once a Friend" by Diana Gordon

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Monday, May 06, 2019


People of Color?

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Sunday, May 05, 2019


Freedom of Speech in France

The image below on the left is an actual magazine cover published by the controversial French magazine Charlie Hebdo in the aftermath of terrorist attacks in Belgium in March 2016 that killed 32 people and wounded hundreds of others.

The person caricatured is the Belgian singer Stromae, who, in 2013, released a song entitled "Papaoutai" or "Papa où t'es" which is French for "Dad, where are you?". Surrounding the image of Stromae are severed body parts answering his question "here" (ici)  () and "here also" (et là aussi). Stromae's father was reportedly killed in the Rwandan "genocide" in 1994.*

The image on the right is a parody of the Charlie Hedbo cover asking "Shoah (i.e. holocaust) where are you?" It appears to feature Charlie Chaplin at center (though I'm not sure why). In any case, hair (or a wig), a shoe, a bar of soap (?), and a lamp shade all answer. The Chutzpah Hebdo image appeared on the web site of Égalité et Réconciliation.

Alain Soral co-founded Égalité et Réconciliation (E&R) in 2007. Soral claims he did not draw the cartoon and that he is not the "publication director" nor the "editor-in-chief" of the E&R web site, where it appeared. Nevertheless, on April 15, 2019, a French court sentenced Soral to one year in prison "for denying the existence of the Holocaust" via the cartoon. There is an informative write-up of the case on and it features Soral in a video discussing the affair (watch it before YouTube removes it).

*I've place genocide in quotes because the term is highly politicized. There is also reason to believe that the events in question are more accurately described as war crimes in the context of a long-term Rwandan civil war that was not a simple inter-ethnic conflict. The evidence suggests Hutus and Tutsis were both variously victims of atrocities, including acts of genocide (see e.g. here and here and here and here). Western and Tutsi (the victors) narratives have generally obscured the complexity of these events. For what it's also worth, in 2016, Israel's Supreme Court ruled that documents pertaining to "Israels arms sales to Rwanda during the 1994 genocide there will remain sealed and concealed from the public".

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