Topics

Literature
Charlie Hebdo cartoonists: heroes or racists? The answer's not that simple
Charlie Hebdo cartoonists: heroes or racists? The answer's not that simple

Years ago, I served on a jury that had trouble making up its mind. After we sent the judge one too many questions, he brought us back into the courtroom to impress upon us a distinction. There are questions of law and there are questions of fact, he said. It wasn't up to us to decide what was against the law and what wasn't; the state legislature had already done that. We were only responsible for answering a question of fact. Had the person in the dock actually done what the prosecution accused him of doing? In practice, questions of law and questions of fact can be quite entangled. But the distinction seems useful, even if it's rarely absolute, and I'd like to suggest...

Loading