Less than two months ago, Borders made a deal with Al Maya Group to operate Borders Franchises in United Arab Emirates and other Gulf Cooperation Council Countries. (1) This may help explain the following:
In The Agora, Courage Sans Frontieres
Borders and Waldenbooks stores will not stock the April-May issue of Free Inquiry magazine because it contains cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad that provoked deadly protests among Muslims in several countries.
"For us, the safety and security of our customers and employees is a top priority, and we believe that carrying this issue could challenge that priority," Borders Group Inc. spokeswoman Beth Bingham said Wednesday.
Read The BIDINOTTO BLOG's letter to Borders protesting the company's craven policy of capitulation in the face of the mere hypothetical threat.
Here's a Borders' employee's email on Borders' new policy of moving Qur'ans to top shelves [via LGF before it became a sanctuary for cowards and dhimmis]:
I work for Borders Books and after reading the article you posted on Wed. 3/29 about our company not carrying the magazine due to it showing the dreaded cartoons of blasphemy, I thought I should write with another tidbit of information I learned about my company the other week.
I was shifting rows of books in our religion section and it happened to be that all of our Koran books (a section on its own) ended up on the bottom shelf. The next day I was informed by my General Manager that it is Borders policy as a whole (not my particular store) that due to complaints in the past from Muslim customers, we are not allowed to put our copies of the Koran on any shelf other than the top.
Perhaps we need to phone spokeswoman Beth Bingham at 734-477-4457 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org and tell her that she needs to convince Borders to CAVE IN to Americans or face a boycott, which, gates of vienna suggests is another way to say F*** Borders.
Not only have Muslims failed to contribute anything of value to modern civilization, but they threaten to turn our western culture back 1400 years.
pete the elder tells us that NYU also forbade a student group from showing the cartoons:
The Objectivist Club at NYU has been planning an event titled: Free Speech and the Danish Cartoons. The event was supposed to be a panel discussion with a representative from the Ayn Rand Institute, the president of F.I.R.E, an author on Islam, and a former editor of the NY Press. During the discussion, the group planned to show the Danish Cartoons of Mohammed. This last bit caused a bit of trouble.
If Borders were forced at the point of a sword not to carry certain publications, I could accept it, but self-censorship?
Michelle Malkin, THE HECKLER'S VETO
On a night when many trenchant points were made, the most trenchant belonged to Peter Schwartz of the Ayn Rand Institute, who noted that the goal of Islamists isn't merely to intimidate the west into censoring itself. It's to have the west accept self-censorship by dressing up its fear as something principled, such as "tolerance" or "respect for religion." Which brings us right back to the Alberta Human Rights Commission and the Western Standard.
Borders Inc., a subsidiary of global book, music and movie retailer Borders Group, Inc. (NYSE:BGP) , announced that it has signed a memorandum of understanding with Al Maya Group, a diversified corporation headquartered in the United Arab Emirates.
The first of what is expected to be multiple Borders stores in the United Arab Emirates will be located in Dubai at Deira City Centre, the premier shopping center in the GCC. The Borders stores will offer a vast array of book titles in English and Arabic. Borders will provide training and marketing support to Al Maya. The store will be operated by Al Maya consistent with the Borders brand experience. Terms and conditions of the anticipated agreement will not be disclosed.
"We look forward to expansion into United Arab Emirates as an extension of the successful franchise experience we have with Berjaya Group in Malaysia," said Rick Vanzura, president of Borders Group international and Paperchase worldwide. "Borders Group's international expansion is a key part of our company's overall growth strategy and franchising will accelerate this process," he continued. "We're pleased to be working with Al Maya, a company that is respected for its retail expertise, wholesale operations, and excellent in-store execution of American and European brands such as Steve Madden, British Home Stores, and Mothercare (Warsaw). Based on its successful track record, we believe Al Maya is an excellent choice to operate Borders superstores in select GCC countries."