CNN host Kathy Griffin has posed for a photograph holding a mock-up of what is unambiguously depicting the severed head of President Donald Trump.
Apart from being a disgusting act, it may well be criminal.
I am a free speech advocate but like many, I believe the line should be drawn and criminal threats and obscene images or literature. The Griffin photograph not only fits both criteria, but is exemplary of each.
An image can convey a threat as much as a series of words. The threat is clear: it is glamorising and consequently encouraging the brutal killing of a well known figure, in this case the American President.
Furthermore, the image is obscene. It is not newsworthy reportage as videos of ACTUAL ISIS beheadings are. For this reason I have strongly encouraged the showing of ISIS atrocities in order to fully report on the actual savagery of what the civilised world is up against. French political leader Marine Le Pen has voiced similar views.
Kathy Griffin’s act however was not a piece of reportage but a contrived and calculated act of obscenity that could easily be construed as both a normalisation of ISIS style Salafism, a normalisation of political violence and a clarion call for murder.
Because of this, it is imperative that Griffin is arrested for making a criminal threat and for producing an obscene image. If Griffin was not part of the establishment, I have little doubt that such a thing would have all ready occurred.