Uncut: Is the Middle East unrest really about a film?

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by JOHN McCAA

Bio | Email | Follow: @johnmccaa

WFAA

Posted on September 22, 2012 at 9:55 AM

Updated Saturday, Sep 22 at 9:57 AM

Once again on a Friday, protests have erupted in multiple countries, reportedly over a film that nearly everyone has labeled needlessly provocative.

Yet questions about the intentions of at least some of the protesters remain unanswered.

It's not the first time some Internet loudmouth has decided free speech is really free screech and put together a message that has done more harm than good.

One man's video has fomented all kinds of turmoil: Put our troops overseas at risk; provided cover for an attack that killed a U.S. ambassador; and set back relations with many predominantly Muslim nations.

People have a right to verbally defend their religion, and to declare their contempt for insults.

But if justice really is at the heart of the protests, you'd think some of the loudest voices in those crowds would have made their way to the Syrian embassy by now to complain about unjustified attacks on their own people.

If it has happened with equal fervor, I am not aware of it. The online paper The National says protests against the film in Damascus are almost non-existent. People there are more afraid of the regime's gunmen than some poorly-produced web diatribe.

There have been all kinds of explanations for the protests, from venting against another Western insult to a lack of understanding of our concept of free speech. There's probably something to that for some protesters.

But injustice as in Syria is as old as sin itself, and thus should be easy for any true believer to recognize... if injustice really is the reason for their protest.

Those are my thoughts, send me yours at jmccaa@wfaa.com.

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