The article by Robert Kilroy-Silk criticising Arab states has thrown both liberal and conservative thinking into a spin of ever decreasing circles. What is more important, the right to hold an opinion or the feelings of those offended by them? I don’t claim to be any great shakes as a philosopher, but the most sensible article I’ve read on the subject is on the BBC’s website. Written by Julian Baggini, author of Making Sense: Philosophy Behind the Headlines, it neatly captures what has been going on here and should be compulsory reading for all leader writers.
“By emphasising the ways in which the piece could be seen as anti-Arab rather than anti-Arab states, the media furore has taken the limited capacity of Kilroy-Silk’s words to harm and intensified them. The press has poured fuel on the fire and has basked in the warmth of the blaze it has created.” How true.