It is with regret and sorrow we must acknowledge the senseless murders of twelve people, some of whom were journalists who were executed while at work this week in Paris France. These, our fellow journalists were killed with other innocents and eleven others injured, along with two police officers who gave their lives trying to protect them all. Among the dead were Jean Cabut, Georges Wolinski, Bernard Verlhack, Philippe Honore ,Bernard Maris, Elsa Cayat, Mustapha Ourrad, all employed by Charlie Hebdo working with Stephane Charbonnier, who was the Editor of the organization. A visitor was killed, Michel Renaud, who was there from another city with a colleague who survived the shooting. A caretaker, 42 year old Frederick Boisseau just happened to be in the lobby at the time and lost his life with the others. French Policeman Ahmed Merabet lost his life as well as Security Officer Franck Brinsolaro.
Some of those who perished at Charlie Hebdo were editors, cartoonists, economist and one a trained psychologist who wrote a column favored by many intellectuals. Some were just in the wrong place at the wrong time, but all were human beings who should not have had to lose their lives because of someone else’s idea that a religion, faith or whatever it might have been were being exploited, mocked and jeopardized.
Charlie Hebdo had been around since 1969 poking fun at everyone including the Pope, Presidents, Kings and many Muslim and extremist leaders usually with their outrageous cartoons. In much of the west there is freedom of speech and freedom of the press. In America we have tolerated our leaders’ images being characterized each and every day in the newspapers. It’s part of who we are. Some laugh, some get irked by the cartoons of their favorite politicians, personalities and sports stars but all in all we have developed a thick skin for pundits and writers. In conclusion though, as I have always maintained we need to work more together as a human race to eradicate prejudice and malice towards others. We need to learn to be kinder to one another, brother to sister, nation-to-nation. May these twelve souls lost in this vicious attack be one with God. Peace to All. Bruce J Maier / editor