09 August 2007

How Do You Define "Protest"?

An author was promoting her new book at a press club in southern India today when, all of a sudden, there was a protest by individuals who felt that her book was not pleasant enough towards Islam.

The poet and novelist Taslima Nasrin has been attacked at the launch of her book Shodh (Getting Even) in the south Indian state of Tamil Nadu.

Reports suggest that a crowd of between 20 and 100 protesters, led by three local politicians (MLAs) belonging to the Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) party, burst into the Hyderabad press club shouting slogans describing Nasrin as "anti-Muslim" and "anti-Islam". They ransacked the venue, throwing chairs and overturning tables, as well as reportedly slapping the writer in the ensuing melee.
That sounds more like riotous behavior as opposed to a protest. But apparently, when one feels that Islam has been insulted, it is okay to elevate a protest to the level of physical destruction and assault.


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