I have a high degree of tolerance for hate: I spent a lot of time in Northern Ireland during a period when many Catholics and Protestants seriously hated each other, and I came rather to appreciate the way they were entirely upfront about their mutual hatred. The problem here is that in the biggest resurgence of Jew-hate since the Second World War we’re not allowed to say who hates Jews.
That’s why free speech matters. Without free speech, there are only the official lies — about who’s killing Jews in Copenhagen, who’s sexually assaulting women in Cologne — and there is nothing to say in response to either except to crank up the old joanna for one more chorus of “Imagine”.
What happened on January 7th 2015 was terrible. But our response to it made it more terrible, and emboldened civilization’s enemies. With respect to the late Charb, the choice is not between dying standing up or living on our knees – for those who choose to live on their knees will die there, too, cringing and craven.