I am tending towards thinking that no one should defaecate on the stairs of a Church, Synagogue or Mosque. Nor perhaps draw a cartoon of a “barkers nest” on one, just for the sake of offending. I think that would breach the test.
The test of common propriety can conflict with free speech. The question is where is the balance?
In Australia we have three whole and separate institutions which balance each other out to make, test, apply the test, and review the result. The Parliament, The Government, The Courts.
At the same time as the Charlie Hebdo massacre the Oxford University Press was removing the “Three Little Pigs” from its production run because they offend Muslims. This is “Cultural Suicide” brought on by threat of Islamic Terrorism.
I don’t want us to commit cultural suicide. I want us to resist Islamic Terrorism. I can write or I can fight. The French are now having to fight. On their own streets.
We need to use our systems, our institutions, to stand up for ourselves.
It is offensive to our recognised standards of common propriety to praise, exhort or encourage acts of violence as retribution for “being offended”. It is offensive to Australians, certainly to me, to say or infer in any way that the murders in Paris were justifiable.
If Charlie Hebdo produced offensive cartoons the proper course of action was to use the French institutions to prosecute.
That is how we do things in the West.
I want our institutions to prosecute any person of any religion who, in Australia, breaches our recognised standards of common propriety by condoning mass murder.