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Today We Lost Something More Than Jokes

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Julian Moffatt
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In recent years there have been countless acts of terror around the world from 9/11 to suicide bombings to drone attacks in response to the latest round of extremist acts. Today, however, something different happened. Two armed gunmen attacked a satirical newspaper, Charlie Hebdo, and murdered 12 people in what can only be described as an act of insanity rather than terrorism.

If you have not been following pop culture much in the past few years, Charlie Hebdo routinely lampooned all religions, including Christianity, Judaism, Islam and others. Recently there had been threats towards the newspaper because of some of the cartoons they came up with that included drawings of the Prophet Muhammed.

Today, two completely misguided individuals decided it was worth their lives to take the lives of people who have been working to open the eyes of everyone around the world. As I write this, I can't think of any rational response that would make any sense. None of this makes sense. They were cartoons, meant to make people laugh, think, and feel. Little drawings meant to provoke emotion, thought, and realization that maybe things can be different.

It doesn't take a strong hand to pull a trigger on an unarmed person. It doesn't take a skilled military mind to storm an office full of artists and journalists armed with pens and pencils. That is something cowards, who are afraid to look at themselves and their beliefs, do.

One of the artists murdered today, Charb, was quoted recently as saying "I would rather die standing than live on my knees" when asked if they took the threats seriously. I can't think of a more rational, brave or noble stance to take in the face of irrationality such as this.

All of us around the office are shocked and sad at this sensless act. Our thoughts are with the victims and the families of the injured and dead.

Hopefully something good comes of all this, but right now I can't see what ... #JeSuisCharlie