Je Suis Charlie Hebdo

56 min read

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In Paris, France, 13 people were murdered, and among them 5 cartoon artists.

Murdered for being artists and journalists of a humor and satirical newspaper, “Charlie Hebdo.”  The newspaper was under police protection and at least one of the police guards, unarmed, was killed as he begged for mercy lying in the street.

We are at a loss for words. The five artists, Charb, Cabu, Wolinski, Tignous and Honoré, included the editor in chief of the newspaper, Stephane Charbonnier, who uses the signature “Charb” on his drawings. They took on a wide range of issues, social, cultural and political and it seems these murders occurred as a response to their satirical approach to religious extremist. They are now dead for being artists.

“Morts pour la Liberté”

The right to swing your fist ends at the tip of my nose. The general agreement to abide by this basic principle is what makes civilized life possible — even if we break the rule. There can be no support in any culture for the notion that the drawing of a cartoon, no matter how offensive, should result in providing the basis for an execution. The lack of justification goes well beyond political or religious arguments.  These murderers killed others just because they were “there” in front of their weapons. There is no moral stand to be found in this.  It is supremely depressing.

In this community we are especially aware of the support and love artists need and deserve. These murders offend on every possible level the mission and kinship of this community. Here within the DeviantArt staff we are in shock and dented. Our hearts go out to the friends, acquaintances and relatives of the dead; our solidarity is with the people of France, all free and open societies worldwide and all those in any culture who work to reflect it and shine light on its wonders and its defects.

Artists cannot stop being artists. Artist will not stop at being artists. Murder can only stop a body in action and can never silence the art it made.

Many of us express ourselves visually. If this is your way of dealing with this tragedy, please use #charliehebdo / #jesuischarlie so we can all share in our thoughts.

Artwork by yuumei

Here is more from Buzzfeed on the Cartoonists, Writers and Editors killed in the attack today.

Your Thoughts

  1. These four cartoon artists were totally dedicated to using art for social commentary if not to force social change. Can we gain inspiration and a new commitment to the arts out of this deeply tragic event?
  2. Do you believe in the power of the arts to catapult forward the expressions of support coming from around the world?
  3. Do you believe in free, open expression at any cost?

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EmmetEarwax's avatar
I, for ome, have had all I can take, of bearded men in turbans.