Someone, somewhere, sometimes described as an Israeli-American real estate developer from California (allegedly a “Sam Bacile”), makes a foolish decision, makes and releases a video that is insulting to members of the Muslim faith. The truth about who was behind the video has yet to be discovered. Motives are unknown, but one can only guess that whoever the producer is, he is a member of one of the many splinter groups around the world who do not wish to embrace the globalization of the world on a positive basis, seeking how we can understand and accept each other. Rather, such groups look for opportunities to exploit in the hope that they can hurt people of different faiths or can achieve some other end, or extract revenge, whether or not their target is indeed deserving of punishment.
Globalization certainly raises the question of whether there is indeed a universal “right and wrong?” When the world was more national, less global, there was less interference by one nation in the internal affairs of another nation. Now, we find that reasons for intruding, for caring to influence change in the internal affairs of another distant country can be for a variety of reasons: concerns that those internal affairs could somehow affect the business interests (e.g., energy supply) of our distant country; concerns that those affairs could result in war which might spillover to affect many other countries; and, concerns that the internal behaviors are simply “immoral” or wrong, in the opinion of us outsiders. This is seen to mean that we have a moral obligation to stop those behaviors, even if we have no authority to do so, and even if they do not appear in any way to threaten our way of life in our distant country.
Perhaps 30 years ago, the case of a 14 year old learning handicapped Christian girl being accused of burning the Koran in Pakistan would not make it to the papers in the US or London. If it did, perhaps most people would not feel we have any right to judge or to interfere.