Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Speaking up for Iranian bloggers

The blogworld is alive today with references to two Iranian bloggers who are in trouble with authorities in Iran. They are not in trouble because they have actually done anything wrong. They are in trouble because the authorities do not like what they wrote on their websites.
There is a distinction between political prisoners and ordinary criminals. Criminals represent some kind of threat because of behavior. Political prisoners are a threat because of their ideas.

In the end, ideas are really more threatening than behavior. If there is any dynamic to human behavior, criminal or praiseworthy, it starts with ideas. In efforts to limit the flow if ideas in Iran, the authorities are admitting that they have run out of ideas that can compete in a contest in which freedom of thought and inquiry is the prize. For them, it is the political equivalent of running out of bullets.

The notion that you and I can agree to disagree is a novelty for many people. So powerful is the urge to control others that there are those who would rather kill or die than embrace that simple concept. Let us pray, first for the minds, then for the hearts, of those who are so in bondage to their ideas that they would rather die or kill than allow others to disagree.

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