Thursday, March 08, 2007

Turkey looses the plot.

AOG, Madrid

Today, a court in Turkey ordered Türk Telecom (TT), to deny access to YouTube from anywhere inside the country- read article here. The reason? Someone has uploaded a video on You Tube that seems to suggest the creator of modern Turkey, Kemal Ataturk, was a homosexual and so were some (or all) of his assistants.

As we all know, in Turkey, to defile or insult the country, or its history, is a crime punishable by law. To say nothing of the Armenian genocide. Turkish writers, the latest high profile case being that of Nobel prize winner Orhan Pamuk, are forever on the news being tried for defiling the Turkish nation because they suggested - or right out confirmed- that there had been a genocide of the Armenians.

This is another case of denial of a basic human right:the freedom of speech. The other day I went to the Democrats Abroad meeting. A wise lady said she had a stock answer for people who opposed abortion: "If you don't like abortions, don't have one!" I would suggest to the Turkish Government to do the same. If you don't want to watch a video that suggests Ataturk was gay....don't watch it! For those of you interested to see what all the fuss is about....see below.

As if this video were not bad enough (though perhaps this is not the video in question but rather another video) someone has posted a reply. This time suggesting that it is the Greeks who are homosexuals. Look out for those "Gayreeks" [sic.]

The only thing wrong with this video is that it falls short of its purpose. It leaves out hundreds of names. Pity.

I think someone has to remind both of these countries of a couple of things. One, it is not a crime nor a cause of shame to be a homosexual. Personally, if Kemal Ataturk was gay (and I guess we'll never know for sure), it would make me like him a bit more. And two, Greeks and Turks can both be gay. I think it is disgusting that anyone would try to make this distinction and somehow try to denigrate a person by merely calling them gay. If you are called black...should you feel insulted? Is being black a bad thing? Well of course not! Neither is being homosexual.

I sometimes wonder if the EU is doing the right thing by toying with the idea of allowing Turkey into the club. As far as I'm concerned, we should start by kicking Poland out if its government's comments regarding abortion, religion and homosexuality are concerned. I thought we all entered the XXI century together.

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