Moving ahead swiftly
I read with interest that the Jyllands-Posten wanted to “test” the boundaries of expression about Islam in Denmark. The very idea of “testing” implies that freedom admits, paradoxically, certain limits when it comes to sensitive issues such as religion and culture. The newspaper has had an answer now: that is where it needed to stop.
It just reminds me of when I was a kid, “testing” at times my behaviour to see whether my parents would approve it. They were often cool (democratic?) about anything I did or said, but they also stopped me when they deemed it necessary. I therefore was able to draw boundaries to my social behaviour, and was aware of what was okay, what was okayish, and what was not okay at all. We all need to establish limits to our behaviour in order to live and interact, rather than merely ‘co-exist’, with other people.
These boundaries have to be nationally defined and internationally agreed upon in highly sensitive areas such as religion, national origin, skin colour, and gender. Otherwise, we will be facing unfortunate culture clashes again and again.
That’s what I think.