Friday, January 9, 2015

USA Today Giving a Voice to Shari'a

Let's blame the victims.
Why did France allow the tabloid to provoke Muslims? 
Contrary to popular misconception, Islam does not mean peace but rather means submission to the commands of Allah alone. Therefore, Muslims do not believe in the concept of freedom of expression, as their speech and actions are determined by divine revelation and not based on people's desires. 
Although Muslims may not agree about the idea of freedom of expression, even non-Muslims who espouse it say it comes with responsibilities. In an increasingly unstable and insecure world, the potential consequences of insulting the Messenger Muhammad are known to Muslims and non-Muslims alike. 
Muslims consider the honor of the Prophet Muhammad to be dearer to them than that of their parents or even themselves. To defend it is considered to be an obligation upon them. The strict punishment if found guilty of this crime under sharia (Islamic law) is capital punishment implementable by an Islamic State. This is because the Messenger Muhammad said, "Whoever insults a Prophet kill him." 
However, because the honor of the Prophet is something which all Muslims want to defend, many will take the law into their own hands, as we often see. 
Within liberal democracies, freedom of expression has curtailments, such as laws against incitement and hatred. 
The truth is that Western governments are content to sacrifice liberties and freedoms when being complicit to torture and rendition — or when restricting the freedom of movement of Muslims, under the guise of protecting national security. 
So why in this case did the French government allow the magazine Charlie Hebdo to continue to provoke Muslims, thereby placing the sanctity of its citizens at risk? 
It is time that the sanctity of a Prophet revered by up to one-quarter of the world's population was protected.
That USA Today would even give a moment's notice, much less offer as an "opposing view" - as if this is all just a civilized debate over a difference of opinions - to a radical Muslim cleric who has called before for the death of all infidels and the destruction of the Western world demonstrates the world has gone mad.

Or - USA Today is a tabloid whore.

And as it is not news that radical Islamists hate us and wish to impose the rule of shari'a on the world, a rule that requires "submission to the commands of Allah alone," I have to assume USA Today is exploiting the death of innocent people with some journalistic sensationalism by publishing this "opposing view" to the nearly universal condemnation of murder that civilization holds.  The supporters of these murderers do not need a voice in the press - the pictures of the bloody offices of Charlie Hebdo speak for them.

Perhaps USA Today forgets that it is the 1st Amendment that gives it the freedom to print what it wishes.  Fine then, it can offer as "something for thought" the notion that the journalists at Charlie Hebdo had it coming to them.  It can give a platform to the notion that a government needs to stifle the press within its borders lest a group get offended and "take the law into their own hands, as we often see."

And it can continue to be fish wrap, bird cage flooring, and puppy toilet training material.

Because it just proved itself worthless of anything else.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Summer time . . . and the living's easy . . .

As the polar vortex bedevils these United States, take a gander at the post over at my photo blog and be reminded, winter will end.

Copyright 2014 - Stephanie Richer Photography

Sarah Bunting and the #BlackBrunch crowd

This past Sunday, as I watched Downton Abbey I was reminded of the boorishnessof the radical Left.

Earlier in the day, Black activists in New York City decided to disrupt people eating brunch in the city's tony restaurants.  The diners - ostensibly White people - sat and took it.  I guess the message was that White poeple should not enjoy brunch because #BlackLivesMatter and every 28 seconds a Black person dies by cop or vigilante, a statistic that has no support in fact although might be true - and, horribly, more frequent - at a Planned Parenthood clinic in a Black neighborhood.

But to what avail was this demonstration?  It certainly wasn't to gain sympathy for their cause.  Or "awareness," which seems to be the justification nowadays for lying ("Well, no, I wasn't raped and made up the story but at least it rasied awareness . . .").

No, it was just to be mean.  And boorish.  And stupid.

Much like Miss Sarah Bunting in Downton Abbey on Sunday night.  Who decided, as a guest of the family at dinner, to make a political statement about a war memorial for the dead of WWI regarding how futile the war was.  In this case, she is arguably worse than the #BlackLivesMatter crowd, because at least they ahve an ongoing cause while for her, the war is over so the best thing to do is rail against commemorating its dead at the dinner table.  And because a war memorial would just serve to remind you, Miss Bunting, about the war you hated although it is now 1924 and the war has been over for 6 years.

Now, I know Sarah Bunting is a fictional character but she reminds me of the protesters of today.  Any bad behavior - whether talking out of turn at the dinner table or looting a store - is excused because it is done or the cause.  In fact, bad behavior, even if counterproductive, is encouraged.

#BlackLivesMatter?  Yes, they do.  As do Black owned businesses and Black unborn children, but no one seems to care about them.

Do you want to see grace under fire and what is effective besides making some yuppies uncomfortable and risking arrest stupidly?

Boycott the rap stars that glorify gang activity and violence.  Become outraged that organizations like Planned Parenthood specifically target your neighborhoods.  Give no credence to race mongers like Al Sharpton who goes home to luxury funded by donations from people who cannot afford it.  Demand that the President stop with token gestures like "beer summits" and instead work to produce jobs so that men can support their families.

And shut up, Miss Bunting - you're simply stupid and shrill.

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Looking for a photographer? Here is a little PSA to help you know what happens after the shutter is pushed!

Unedited on the left, edited on the right - which would you rather show off?

Dear Crabby: 
One photographer says my pictures will be "edited."  Another says they will be "retouched."  I'm confused - what's the difference?!  Should I just print my own pictures? 
-- Wondering 'Bout Wording
I think the public deserves to know what in Sam Hill a photographer - heck, any professional - is talking about when we are open for business.  So I decided to do some 'splainin' on my photo blog.

ANYONE can take a picture.  But here is one of the thing that differentiates a professional photographer - what they do with the image before they present it to you.

And yes, for the important images, let your photographer handle the images!

Click the link above and learn something today!

Friday, January 2, 2015

"Please let me take your picture . . ."


"Oh, come on - you look so good after your haircut."


"One shot!"


"I already have the light set up."


"Fine.  See if my wallet is available when you need something . . ."

"Okay.  But ONE shot!"

"Mommy loves you, sweetie . . ."

My 14-year-old
"How about one more . . .?"

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Happy New Year!

Me, I prefer New year's Day to New Year's Eve and there is no better way of spending it than to get up before dawn and head out to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Here is my favorite image from today - my new friend, Bucky.  Head over to my photo blog for more images.

Copyright 2015 - Stephanie Richer Photography

May the peace of Christ fill your home in 2015.