An Egyptian-American journalist was arrested in New York Tuesday for spray-painting over one of the controversial anti-Jihad subway posters produced by the American Freedom Defense Initiative.
The New York Post captured a video of award-winning journalist Mona Eltahawy defacing AFDI's ad with pink spray paint, while another woman attempts to stand in her way.
The other woman, who identifies herself as Pamela Hall, asks Eltahawy, "Mona, do you think you have the right to do this?" To which Mona answers, "I do actually. I think this is freedom of expression, just as this is freedom of expression.”
My father was always enthusiastic to share this insight with me when ever he had forgotten that he'd shared it with me many times before (Johnny Walker was usually to blame for this forgetting): "Do you know what the difference is between living under a communist dictator and living in a capitalist democracy? When a communist dictator is running the show, dissenters are locked in; in a capitalist democracy, they are locked out." This is what freedom often amounts to in the US. It explains why, for example, Al Jazeera has had great difficulty entering the American cable market—they, unlike Fox, are locked out. These radical American Freedom Defense people are, in fact, free do what radical Muslims could never do: buy advertising space and freely express their views to a wider audience. Sure, you can express positive views about Islam on your Facebook account, but not billboards or cable. You are locked out.
My father also had this to say about African corruption. "You know what the difference is between Asian corruption and African corruption? In Asia, when someone crookedly wins the contract, the road is made; in Africa, only the crooked deal happens. No road is made."