The Error of Defeat

So…Sony gave in and canceled the Interview in it’s entirety.  The so stupidly named Guardians of Peace and North Korea beat the studio.

People who believe in the freedom of speech, the right to protest and freedom of expression should be chilled.  And yet, I am seeing some folks opting to argue it is not a matter of concern.  The logic is that it does not look like the Interview was a particularly good film.  The problem is, that does not matter.  It does not look like all that great of a film, and yet a group of cyber-terrorists threatened 9/11 level attacks on movie theaters over it.

North Korea is an oppressive police state run by a murderous egomaniac.  And yet people are arguing that making a movie mocking said leader is over the line.  Sorry, but murderous dictatorships cross that line of decency long before movies that mock them do.

I am seeing people argue that people care about this movie cancellation, but they do not care about Eric Garner or the C.I.A. Torture report.  Except, almost every person I have seen express disappointment with the Sony decision were also people outraged over the various police killings of unarmed civilians and C.I.A. torture report.  It is possible to see all these things as problematic.

It is pretty naive to think that this will not embolden other groups to try similar tactics and threats to put a stop to something people do care about.  Just imagine if instead of the Interview, the group had opposed Selma in the name of the virtue of the South.  North Korea may not like being shown as an oppressive regime, but they are not doing the one thing that could change their image.  Not being a, you know, oppressive regime.  It is fair to call them on it.  It is fair to mock them for it.  Just as it is fair for comedians to call our nation out on injustice.

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