Freedom of expression is now "a fundamental human right," and presumably remains such even when it is actually exercised:
Maybe PEN should recall the words of that noted french writer Voltaire:
"I do not agree with what you
have to say, but I'll defend to
the death your right to say it."
(Apparently, Voltaire never actually said this...)
Well, PEN Canada, all I can say is better late than never.
From 2006: "PEN Canada supports the right of a free press to publish these cartoons, but also believes that a wise consideration of the principle of “voluntary restraint” would have led to better decisions."
Meaning, perhaps, "I'll defend your right to say anything you want, but hope to god you'll never exercise it..."
The 2006 PEN Canada statement, in its breathtaking Canadian niceness, is reproduced below.