Recently I was asked to create an illustration in support of Charlie Hebdo, a French satirical magazine, which has been the target terrorist attacks, in 2011 and in 2015, presumed to be in response to a number of controversial Muhammad cartoons it published. In the second of these attacks, 12 people were killed, including four cartoonists.
We should defend free speech but doing so while listening to the voice of the voiceless living in our midst. Charlie Hebdo and the press have the right – and should – publish what they think is right, but everyone is free to be offended by what is published and it is their right, to be critical, too.
Condemn the violence, but stay critical of the labels that are used to characterize some terrorist attacks but not others.
The well-cultivated critical thinker:
Richard Linden and Linda Elder, 2008
– raises vital questions and problems, formulating them clearly and precisely;
– gathers and assesses relevant information;
– carefully interprets information to form well-reasoned conclusions;
– tests conclusions, evaluating against relevant criteria;
– thinks open-mindedly, avoiding the influence of untested or irrational concepts and beliefs; and
– communicates effectively with others, particularly in the development and testing of conclusions or solutions.