White House asks YouTube to "review" that anti-Muslim video blamed for global freakouts

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22 Responses to “White House asks YouTube to "review" that anti-Muslim video blamed for global freakouts”

  1. cellocgw says:

    To steal a great line,   “In other news, YouTube posted a blank video and atheists around the world rioted in protest.”    

  2. Jeff Scott says:

    On the gripping hand, the video had nothing to do with the “freakout.”

  3. I’m pretty sure that YouTube (or any other video service) contains any number of anti-Islamic content (to say nothing of anti-semetic, anti-christian, anti-*, etc.)  That everyone is focusing on this particular one is silly; this particular video is not the issue.

    If it wasn’t this particular video, there would have been some other video that would have been found as the pretext for the “freakout”, which was a cover for the attack on the US Ambassador in Libya (angry mobs can’t direct mortar fire on safe houses and fleeing motorcades).

  4. BonzoDog1 says:

    As private enterprise, Google can set and enforce rules on what is carried on its network much better than government, which has a very poor record in past attempts to limit free speech. Just look at the history of sedition law.
    Producers of agitprop can continue to make their vile films and pass them around on thumb drives if they wish.
    And if Google become too restrictive the market will provide an alternative, as has happened with the purveyors of pornography.

  5. codedreamer says:

    Obviously the video in question is a pathetic, ridiculous, piece of trash, made in order to troll the Muslim faith. However, if Google allowed a government or a frenzied mob to decide what should be allowed on their servers, then we are all in trouble.

    Of course, as has been pointed out, this video was uploaded in early July, and has only now been used as an excuse to incite violence towards Western targets by certain hate-filled Muslim individuals and organisations with their own agendas.

    As an atheist, I find this all incredibly disgusting.

    Please keep all your filthy religions to yourself.

    • Antinous / Moderator says:

      However, if Google allowed a government or a frenzied mob to decide what should be allowed on their servers, then we are all in trouble.

      But that’s exactly why Google restricts sexual material. So why is the narrative that The Muslims are trying to suppress free speech when The Christians have already done it so thoroughly and effectively?

      • Entrope says:

        There are colorable non-religious arguments that minors should not have unfettered access to sexual material (for example, that it would inaccurately inform their perception of what typical relationships look like).  The taboo against widely available pornography is also not specific to any particular faith; in many ways, it more resembles a community or even a legal standard than a religious one.

        That is very different than direct criticism of one sect’s religious beliefs. [Added: This applies equally to non-religious beliefs, although those seldom provoke reactions as strong as criticism of Islam.]  In fact, when a religious group responds to criticism by demanding that their critics be decapitated, I think it becomes all the more important to defend the critics and the criticism.

        See also The Onion’s amusingly sacrilegious cartoon and associated news story from this week.

        • Antinous / Moderator says:

          There are colorable non-religious arguments that minors should not have unfettered access to sexual material (for example, that it would inaccurately inform their perception of what typical relationships look like).

          OH NOES! The childrens might be exposed to non-typical relationships!

          The taboo against widely available pornography is also not specific to any particular faith; in many ways, it more resembles a community or even a legal standard than a religious one.

          Yet, funnily enough, sexually explicit material was common in temples throughout much of the world before the Abrahamic religions took over half the planet and made sex evil.

          • Entrope says:

            I understand that you disagree with the anti-pornography argument — and I agree that Western countries and cultures generally over-restrict depictions of nudity and sex — but your misrepresentation of that argument does not help (it’s not about mere exposure to atypical relationships; it’s about misunderstanding how often real couples agree to engage in, say, DVDA or hardcore bondage).

            Moreover, you did not even address the real argument, namely that there is a big difference between the two positions. The strongest reactions to over-revealing pictures that I know of in the Western world are cases like a defaced mural in Georgia and vandalized buses in Israel. While those crimes should certainly be treated as such, property crime does not even approach church-sanctioned murder in terms of intimidation and how strongly a civilized country should reject arguments backed by that kind of threat.

  6. brerrabbit23 says:

    Democracy rests on the idea that all that is needed for bad ideas to fail is the light of day.

    Take Ron Paul, for example.

    Or organized religion, for that matter.

  7. addalled says:

    Finally! I was wondering if the ACLU was going to make a statement about this.

  8. “(R)epellent” how? If you’re suggesting that religions are not deserving of the most insensitive parody then you’re part of the problem and should feel bad.

    • Brainspore says:

      Right, because an organization called “Media for Christ” is totally riffing on the ridiculous nature of organized religion.

      • fuzzyfuzzyfungus says:

        They generally don’t intend to; but the more incompetent of God’s Own Little Helpers actually do a pretty good job…

        Sure, you need the inebriated ghost of Christopher Hitchens if you want the riffing to also win on style points; but the incredibly sincere sordid ultrakitsch pumped out by the true believers definitely passes into the realm of the autoparodic at times.

  9. TaymonBeal says:

    IIRC, Google has reviewed it and determined that it doesn’t violate their ToS. So it’s staying.

  10. So, when the White House tries to protect Muslims on another side of the globe from mean jokes, that’s super demeaning, right? Like, it’s definitely more insulting than the jokes themselves for our leaders to say “Shush! They’re very sensitive about that.” Or maybe I really don’t understand this religion.

  11. koturnin says:

    Sooo now when someone asks “where’s the ACLU now ?” I can just point to this… I swear I’ve seen this a dozen times already (not referring to anyone on BB). Many people are under the impression that the ACLU are some partisan leftist outfit when in reality they’ll defend anyone’s free speech, including neo-Nazis and homophobes! It gets me. Anyway. Go ACLU.

    … And I honestly hope the nuts behind this video are safe. Muslims get so much abuse heaped on them from the West but this is no excuse for extremists rioting in the ME. Fundamentalists over there will find anything to stir up a mob and flex their muscles post-revolution, like this trivial video..

  12. lafave says:

    The Obama administration has, since 2009, supported an international blasphemy standard. Just because he taught Con Law doesn’t mean he likes the Constitution.

    Source: http://jonathanturley.org/2009/10/06/blasphemy-american-style-obama-administration-supports-resolution-on-limiting-free-speech-to-bar-criticism-of-religion/

  13. Jason Carl says:

     I like the word “freakout” better when it means spending your Friday listening to Yuya Uchida and the Flowers.

  14. GregS says:

    The stupidity of the White House is unbelievable. 

    One reason people in the Muslim world are rioting is that they believe that the United States government supports blasphemy against Islam because it allows Americans to make blasphemous representations of Islam. They do not grasp the American concept of free speech – they think that if the government permits speech, the government agrees with that speech. 

    So what does the White House do? Instead of using this as a moment to defend free speech and to explain what the American conception of free speech is, they decide to take an action that implies that the president does indeed have the power to control the speech of Americans. So now, going forward, every time an American makes an anti-Islamic comment, the presumption will be that the government has allowed it, and supports it. 

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