I might agree that there is a double standard in the application of what is freedom of speech vs 'hate speech', but any justified response to the issue has long been surpassed. With the threats and the outright attacks, I think that it might be time to clear the streets with a gatling gun the next time these idiots try to storm an embassy. They all seem to want to die for Allah and I think we should let them.
What is most obnoxious about this is that you just know that there are people making political hay out of this. The back story seems to suggest that this was sparked when some Danish muslim group gave the pictures (along with ones they added that were far more obscene) to an egyptian government official who then passed it on to radical clerics who organized and staged the riots. There have been indications that the syrian protests have been carefully orchastrated by the government and that the saudis have also been involved in whipping up the flames.
Something really needs to be done about this whole mess. Personally, I've never been into the whole hippie obsession with alternative energy, figuring that those breakthroughs would come when market forces made them feasable and cost effective. With this crap in the middle east every few days, I think that we might all be forced to get on board and I don't mean just the united states, but all the countries of the west as a whole. Maybe it's time for us to start some sort of collective effort to develop something that will reduce the dependency on oil. As long as that's a sword hanging over our collective heads, we'll never be able to fully deal with the problem.
On a sidenote, an Iranian paper is holding a contest for people to submit cartoons entries to run in an edition of the paper about the Holocaust. I'm not quite sure how this differs from any other day or content in these newspapers but the morons there seem to think they'll be making some sort of point. Newsflash jackasses. When your president goes off ranting about how the holocaust is a myth and no one has yet dropped a cluster bomb on his toweled head, that's freedom of speech. These hypocrites utter more incendiary crap on a daily basis and yet I don't see the ADL taking to the streets and burning out muslims in this country.