I wondered if I should write about this. I’m sure most people have heard about the tragedy in France that claimed the lives of twelve people who shined a light through their pens and determination.
I am a writer. My writing is in the field of urban fantasy. But the right to put pen to paper or type on my keyboard, the freedom to choose my topic and put it on the page and get it out there for people to read is a right that must always be appreciated and upheld.
According to the United Nations, in The Universal Declaration of Human Rights:
- Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.
What if I disagree with what I’ve read? What if it disgusts me or insults my religion, my politics, my way of life? Well, I’m free to close the pages, Tweet my opinion or peacefully protest if I desire.
But the events that unfolded in France created (or perhaps reminded me of) an obligation to those of us who write: To write our truths, our loves, our hates. To be honest in our point of view. And to publish those truths.
I mourn for the lives lost in a senseless attack to stop words and pictures from being published. One might as well try to stop the sun.
And so, in honor of the brave ones who made their line in the sand and stood strong, I will continue to write. As should we all.
Je suis Charlie.
J. M. Levinton
World Trade Center survivor
Ground Zero volunteer
* Image courtesy of criminalatt at FreeDigitalPhotos.net