Gollum and Erdogan. Erdogan and Gollum.

If you follow Turkish politics at all, you may have heard that a rather fantastical case is going through the Turkish courts right now. This is the trial of a Turkish doctor, one Bilgin Çiftçi, who is being tried on the charges of “insulting the president” for posting these absolutely heinous photographs on facebook.

Sourced this blown-up version from news.com.au, who sourced it from twitter. All the versions I could find in Turkish newspapers were very small.

Sourced this blown-up version from news.com.au, who sourced it from twitter. The non-blown up photo is also available in many Turkish newspapers.

As you can see, these photographs compare his eminence, Turkish President Erdogan, to the power-hungry, corrupted, swamp-dwelling, broken English-speaking Lord of the Rings character, Gollum.

There is no resemblance. Like, at all. We all know Erdogan doesn’t live in a swamp, but in a glorious palace that cost loads of money, all of which he definitely deserved.

ANKARA, TURKEY - OCTOBER 28 2014: A general view of Turkey's new Presidential Palace. (Photo by Volkan Furuncu/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images) Source: Huffington Post

ANKARA, TURKEY – OCTOBER 28 2014: A general view of Turkey’s new Presidential Palace. (Photo by Volkan Furuncu/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images) Source: Huffington Post

Ah well. Dr. Çiftçi has already been fired, and rightly so. Now the only thing left for the court to determine is whether his, frankly scandalous, conduct should land him in jail for two years.

Of course, if Turkish courts are about anything, they’re about due procedure and making sure that everybody gets a fair trial, so instead of jumping the gun and just throwing that low-life Facebook-sharer in prison, the judge admitted that he hadn’t seen the Lord of the Rings movies and ordered a panel of, erm, Gollum experts in order to determine whether Gollum is a good guy or a bad guy.

Seriously. Why spend tax-payer dollars on this? Just throw that guy in prison already!

The panel will apparently be composed of “two academics, two behavioural scientists or psychologists and an expert on cinema and television productions.”

This may actually derail the case against this doctor, as fortunately for him Tolkien tended to write characters with actual psychological depth. Gollum is one of these, and although he has already been corrupted by his desire for the ring throughout the books, many of the other “good” (and formerly good) characters including Bilbo, Frodo, and Saruman fall into the same trap. It is also Gollum, ultimately, who is responsible for destroying the ring as Frodo balks at the last second. Alright, he didn’t mean to. But can you really say that he was worse than Frodo, at the end?

Anyway, we shall see what this ‘panel of experts’ will say. You can read more about this here, including some interesting details about freedom of the press in Turkey.

Also, I don’t want this post to be in any way miscontrued. I would never insult Erdogan. President Erdogan definitely only closes newspapers and blocks webpages that tell lies about him. His quest for truth is truly a true service to society. All hail Tayyip. You’re the greatest. The end.

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