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The Death of Free Speech in America

9/11, world trade center
Judy Parisio places an American flag in a plaque of names of the victims of the September 11 attacks at North Pool of the 9/11 Memorial during ceremonies marking the 11th anniversary of the attack on the World Trade Center in New York, September 11, 2012. |

Freedom of speech is the most fundamental pillar of Western, Judeo-Christian society. Increasingly, this fundamental civil right afforded to all Americans through the First Amendment to our Constitution is being eroded by the Islamist-leftist coalition in an effort to assert control over "we the people."

The unholy alliance between radical Islamists and radical leftists has resulted in a modern-day America our founders would not recognize. America, despite being known for its protection of free speech, is now a country where speaking the truth will leave you labeled a bigot or the new attack word, Islamophobic.

The key date in history was 9/11. The whole world began to take seriously the very real threat that radical Islam posed to the free world. That's what happens when Islamic savages use commercial airliners as human missiles to kill themselves and over three thousand innocent civilians in a matter of hours while yelling "Allahu Akbar!"

As a result of 9/11, the West began asking questions about Islamic ideology in trying to understand and solve the problem of terrorism. The Islamic world had to come up with a clever way not only to silence criticism but also continue playing the victim card, something they have perfected for centuries.

The OIC and the United Nations: Islamaphobia and "Defamation of Religion"

The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) is an international coalition of Islamic nations with a permanent delegation to the United Nations and a permanent observer in the European Union. Formed in 1969, the OIC is comprised of 57 countries that are predominantly Muslim, many of which are beholden to Sharia law, and 13 of its member nations currently sit on the United Nations Human Rights Council.

The OIC's purpose when it was founded back in 1969 was for Muslim countries to create a more powerful, unified force and promote Islamic interests over Westernization. The OIC says its purpose is to "safeguard and protect the interests of the Muslim world in the spirit of promoting international peace and harmony." Of course, it's hard to promote international peace and harmony when almost all of your members have atrocious human rights records and/or have supported terrorist movements.But maybe that's just me.

Freedom House, an independent watchdog organization dedicated to defending human rights around the world, publishes an annual Freedom in the World survey of 195 countries and 15 territories, scoring them on issues such as freedom of expression and belief and personal autonomy and individual rights. Based on their scores, countries are given a status of free, partly free or not free. Only four of the 57 member-states of the OIC had a status of free in 2016.

This is why I think it's patently insane that this collective body holds 13 of the 47 seats on the United Nations Human Rights Council. I know more about playing quarterback for the New England Patriots than these countries know about promoting human rights. Islamic countries who make up the OIC do not take kindly to those insulting their prophet. In many of these countries, the penalty for blasphemy is death. To say that they're opposed to freedom of speech is the understatement of the century.

Things escalated after 9/11, when Westerners began trying to understand what drove educated and sometimes wealthy people such as Mohamad Atta, the ring leader of the 9/11 hijackings, to kill themselves. In order to get to that answer, Westerners started scrutinizing the Quran and debating it in public forums, otherwise known as exercising freedom of thought and expression, a big no-no in the Muslim world.

The Bible says "Come now, and let us reason together" (Isa. 1:18, nkjv). Jews have religious schools where all they do all day long is debate scripture. However, in Islam there is no questioning the word of Allah, and those who dare will be dealt with accordingly.

According to the Libyan representative to the UN, freedom of speech is not the issue, but rather, "misuse" of that right. What a coincidence; that's exactly how the leftist mainstream media feels!

Marked For Death

I'm not just talking about political correctness here or the mainstream media silencing voices they disagree with. I'm talking about the fact that simply because I have written books and spoken the words I have spoken in my life, I am marked for death in the eyes of an Islamist.

One of the most tragic realities of Islamist opposition to freedom of speech has been those who have been killed for simply speaking up in criticism of Islam, such as filmmaker Theo Van Gogh producing a video criticizing Islam's treatment of women or a newspaper publishing editorial cartoons of the prophet Muhammad.

Most Muslims view depictions of prophet Muhammad as strictly forbidden and therefore consider them to be blasphemy, and under Sharia law, blasphemy is punishable by death. Consider that for a moment. What does it say about a religion, if simply characterizing its prophet justifies the murder of another human being? What does it say about the values of someone who believes in such inhumane barbarism?

Of course, the Left will inevitably read this and say that its religion in general that's the problem, and that all religions are equally dangerous and inhumane in their own ways. They will cite the Crusades, and passages from the Bible and Torah to justify their desperate attempt to resist offending anyone from a different culture, because for the Left, cultural relativism is their religion.

Here's where the far left gets it wrong, even when it's smacking them directly in the face. When Christians hear about a movie or TV show that expresses what they feel to be anti-Christian messaging, their response is to vehemently voice their opposition and boycott the programming. This goes for Jews, Buddhists, Atheists and even Westernized Muslims who believe in the First Amendment right to free speech, the Constitution and the enlightenment.

When leftist playwrights on Broadway decided to demean and mock Mormons for their religion with the musical dubbed "The Book of Mormon," you didn't see Mormons staging worldwide protests and calling for the death of the producers, as Islamists did when a Danish cartoon depicting the prophet Muhammad was published back in 2005.

The same can be said for Christians who find the Broadway musical Jesus Christ Superstar offensive. You don't see Christians or Mormons storming the offices of the producers in broad daylight with AK-47s and slaughtering them for their perceived blasphemy, as Islamists did when the French magazine Charlie Hebdo published a perceivably "offensive" depiction of their prophet in 2015. You don't see Christians or Mormons attending these shows, only to stand up and begin shooting at audience members for their attendance and participation in such offensive events.

You don't see these things because, as opposed to the Islamic world where such actions are considered heroic, for those of us who believe in freedom of speech, the Magna Carta, the Bill of Rights and Western civilization, such actions are considered barbaric.

In fact, the creators of the musical told NPR that they "had faith" that the church would not respond with anger.Try making a Broadway musical called "The Quran" and see what happens.

You know what's tragically ironic about the lie that Obama and Susan Rice cooked up about Benghazi being the result of an Internet video? They thought the public would believe it because, well, Islamists certainly would kill someone over a video they didn't like.

In the Western world, we use words. In the Islamic world, they use swords.

Brigitte Gabriel is a New York Times best-selling author, terrorism expert and founder of ACT for America. Her new book, "RISE: In Defense of Judeo-Christian Values and Freedom," was released on Sept. 11.

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