France embodies idea of freedom of speech

SHARE France embodies idea of freedom of speech

In the aftermath of the shootings in Paris, after more than a decade of satire directed toward just about everything, religion included, the newspaper, Charlie Hebdo, will continue to churn out daily editions as if 12 French citizens did not die by gunfire from “alleged” terrorists this past week.

In this country we tout our First Amendment; in France, they appear to practice it.

Consider the awkward parallel between Sony and Charlie Hebdo. Sony was intimidated by alleged North Korean threats and withdrew “The  Interview.”  Charlie Hebdo was attacked by alleged Islamic terrorists but will continue to print their newspaper even more forcefully.

A modern Charles Dickens should update the classic “A Tale of Two Cities” and write a sardonic satire, “A Tale of Two Companies.”

 James D. Cook, Schaumburg

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Fast Track trade agreements hurt

Trade Promotion Authority (aka Fast Track) is the anti-democratic tool of choice for passing “Free Trade” agreements. Recently officials from the U.S. and China were in Chicago to work on a treaty to expand financial protections for foreign investors.

Four Democratic Congressional Representatives from Illinois refused to sign a letter directed to President Obama stating their opposition to Fast Track. Those four are Rep. Mike Quigley, Rep. Tammy Duckworth, Rep. Brad Schneider and Rep. Bill Foster.

A recent report from the Economic Policy Institute showed U.S. Jobs displaced due to goods trade deficit with China broken out by Congressional District. Most lost jobs were in manufacturing. Rep. Quigley’s district saw 8,900 jobs displaced. Rep. Duckworth’s district saw 11,400 jobs displaced. Rep. Schneider’s district saw 9,900 jobs displaced. Rep. Foster’s district saw 10,300 jobs displaced. These jobs displaced equals Americans out of work. Who or what are these officials representing?

Rep. Schneider lost his seat in the recent election, but the other three representatives need to answer that question. Bob Dold, who beat Rep. Schneider, should also declare his position on fast track.

Tom Broderick, Oak Park

French show how freedom of speech is protected

I hope the French people are not tempted to resort to guillotine justice when the recent assassin-terrorists are apprehended. As a bastion of free speech, such actions would only aid the terrorist movements. Unlike their savagery, the French will show the world how free speech is judged. Not with deadly gunfire but with judicial constraint. France is a libertine society composed of many factions.  The loss of such liberties should not be altered by a handful of assassins but left in the hands of a court of law. France will show the world how freedom of speech is cherished and also protected.

Vincent Kamin, Streeterville

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