There is so much in the news right now about the Charlie Hebdo journalists being attacked and killed, and how Muslims feel about their faith and especially the prophet Mohammad being satirised.
There has been horrendous loss of life and today more danger unfolds with hostages being taken in a kosher supermarket in France.
Questions of freedom of speech, religious beliefs, multiculturalism, terrorism and how people respond to safety threats – all issues which we study in GCSE Religious Studies. Watching the scenes in Paris not only makes me fear for the safety of loved ones, creates anguish when I consider the families who’ve lost their soul mate, parent or child, but also immediately makes me want to learn more about the world and where we live.
An interesting article on the BBC debates the origins of the famous phrase “the pen is mightier than the sword”.
Another BBC article ponders how well Islam has integrated in Europe.
Meanwhile comments by British politicians about the risk of similar terrorist attacks in Britain also allude to the need for our secret services and police to have more power. It is always worth keeping eye on when there seems to be a promotion of stronger police powers and less liberty for the people.
Then with all the fear and shocking news coverage, perhaps we should take time to give names and identities to the dead, learn something about them, what made them tick, what drove them to make risky decisions in the name of freedom of speech. The Guardian reports about Georges Wolinski and interviews his daughter.