Because you can't have depths without surfaces.
Linda Grant, thinking about clothes, books and other matters.

Friday, 30 November 2007

Root causes and other tuberous matters


I am not a vegetarian, or a Buddhist or a pacifist, but the sight of thousands of people marching through the streets of Khartoum today, carrying knives, axes and clubs demanding that 54-year-old Liverpool primary school teacher Gillian Gibbons be executed by firing squad for allowing her class to name a teddy-bear Mohammed, is leading me to consider applying for membership in the Vienna Vegetable Orchestra. There is nothing you can do about these fired-up hot-heads, except drown out their cries for vengeance by music made from asparagus.

Citing Elias Canetti's Crowds and Power, George Szirtes once remarked to me that crowds are not really human. The lynch mob certainly is not.

3 comments:

indigo16 said...

I know for a fact that for every one of those marching at least ten more Muslims are shaking their heads in disbelief. Many despair at the way so many interpret the Muslim faith to create such radicalism, sadly they are the quiet majority.

SomewhereNearDC said...

Maybe we could put the minority of Muslims that get so upset over a teddy bear named after the Prophet together with the minority of Christians who get convinced there's a "war on Christmas" even though you can't escape from Christmas for all of December, and put them in their own little country. Then the rest of us could get on with our lives.

enc said...

It seems a grotesque reaction to me, but maybe I'm just not clued in.