As many are aware, there was a terrorist attack last week at the headquarters of satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo in Paris, France. It has been exactly one week since the deaths of 12 people and the paper shows that they will not give up their freedom to write about world issues in their satirical manner. This is not the first time a satirical news source has made jokes about a major religion.
In the U.S., we have The Onion, which deems itself “America’s Finest News Source.” Often, Catholicism is a targeted religion of their articles. This is all about the freedom of press, a concept that the U.S. has stood by for over 200 years. American’s have taken to social media to show support to stand by France. According to Keyhole (a trending tracker), in the past two days, there have been approximately 724 posts using #charliehebdo, reaching almost 25 million viewers. Of these tweets, 20% have come from users in the U.S. and 21% from users in France.
But back to today’s cover of Charlie Hebdo. It features a picture of Prophet Muhammad shedding a tear and holding a sign that reads “Je Suis Charlie.” Above the cartoon, it reads “All is forgiven” in French. A powerful message being sent internationally by the writers of the paper.
People flooded the streets of Paris early this morning, lining up at news kiosks to purchase the paper. Usually, the paper sells between 50,000-60,000 copies per week. Today’s edition sold five million copies just hours after the magazine hit news stand. Charlie Hebdo’s Wednesday Edition was sold out across the country by 10am local time.
Freedom of speech has become an extremely pertinent issue worldwide. It’s time for everyone to speak out, and there has never been a better time than the present. Everyone’s voice can be heard, you are just a tweet or post away. Read more, speak more, and discuss more. Now, more than ever, we can access endless information, anywhere, at the touch of a button.