On May 20th, This Might Not Be Just A Stick Figure

Everyone Draw Mohammed Day

Because May 20th is not just another day, and this might not be just a stick figure.

And if this stick figure offends you, consider whether it’s the stick figure – or you.

31 thoughts on “On May 20th, This Might Not Be Just A Stick Figure

  1. Nicholas

    Dude, how offensive. You should have put him in a bear suit – that would have been ok (maybe?)

  2. Emmanuel

    I am not a Muslim, but don’t you find that unnecessarily hurtful? It’s not something you should be promoting on Planet Ubuntu, and is highly disrespectful to people.

  3. Limon

    Float like a butterfly, sting like a…

    HEY! Wait a minnit! That doesn’t look anything like The Greatest.

    Ripoff!

  4. ethana2

    Free as in speech.

    See, when I look in the bible, I see a lot of flawed people. Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses.. these were NOT perfect people by any means. King David did some _messed up_ stuff.

    ..and Mohammed did too. From what I’ve read he was some kind of desert pirate. I just don’t have any respect for him, and I’m ECSTATIC that I live in a time and place where I have the RIGHT of being able to say so, and I will defend that right for others. And you know? Some people don’t like the God of the Bible, he said himself he’s a jealous god– but he gave us free will specifically so that if you don’t want anything to do with him, an eternity separate from him is.. quite attainable.

    Whatever the case, you’ve gotta believe that God, if he exists, is big enough that if someone sticking their tongue out at him really bothers him that much, he can defend himself, like with sodom and gomorrah. What kind of pathetic, helpless god truly needs *you* to stick up for the *image* of one of his prophets?

    There’s plenty of offensive imagery out there of Jesus, and you know what? I don’t look at it and I get on with my life. I figure its better than headbutting Swedes.

  5. Aoirthoir An Broc

    Isn’t it unnecessarily hurtful when people say “There is NO god but…Jehovah, Ahura Mazda, Jesus, Billy Bob Thorton..”? After all what that is saying is that MY religion (polytheistic paganism) is offensive. Why are people allowed to tell me that my religion is bad and that I must conform to their religion, but if I say I won’t abide by THEIR rules or the rules of THEIR religion in MY life, even if I am fine with THEM following THEIR religion, then I am being offensive.

    Something to ponder. And yes this DOES belong on the planet. Once again we have a situation where opinions of the left are not told they don’t belong here, it’s OK in THAT case to make political posts on the planet. But anything outside of that, well, by golly DONT POST. Interesting.

  6. Brian Post author

    Free as in speech.

    Bingo. Canadian Charter of Rights & Freedoms, 2 (a) & (b).

    And I like your line about dieties, if they exist, being (theoretically) big enough to look after themselves.

    And actually, to wander offtopic slightly to address An Broc’s line about “opinions of the left” – I’m pretty darn left wing, and Canadian left wing is far, far to the left of anything mainstream American politics usually sees – we’re closer to Europe in political spectrums, generally. My opinions ARE opinions of the left. Some of them, sometimes, might also happen to be opinions of those to the right of me. Awesome.

    I’m pretty nearly a free speech absolutist. Tell me I can’t post a stick figure and I’m likely to post one just to piss you off.

  7. raevol

    It’d be cool if someone collected all the stuff from this event and put it up in a torrent, so if the original content gets taken down it’s all still available.

  8. Aoirthoir An Broc

    Ethana point on.

    Brian, in the United States politics is ridiculous. Both the left and the right make claims that are simply often not true about the other. Ultimately though we have one politicial party, the Demopubs or if you prefer the Republicrats. They are heavily invested in giving us the [so-called] other party as bad guys, when in fact, in most issues they vote right along with each other. The only times they don’t are wedge issues, to give us the idea that one or the other party is on our side.

    In any case my comments about the left in this case were about posts on Planet Ubuntu. Time and again we’ll see left posts with folks agreeing, or even disagreeing, but little commentary made about its lack of appropriateness. However, nearly any time a post is right leaning (even by a generally left poster) immediately, within the first or second comment will be cries that this doesn’t belong on the planet. Why not? If left posts can be made why not right? Or, deity forbid, middle?

    So while there are those on the left that are willing to hear the other side, on Ubuntu Planet, the loudest on the left are those demanding not to.
    Kind Regards.

  9. Ag

    Why is freedom of speech important? Think about it. Why did people fight and die for freedom of speech? Was it so people could go around being rude and insulting to each other? Was it so movements that advocate hatred and intolerance can spread? Certainly those are side-effects of freedom of speech, but in partaking in those actions do you honor the principle of freedom of speech or do you abuse it?

    For those who are complaining about one religion saying it’s right over another, wake up. That’s what a religion is. Those who claim that the problem is that Muslims say God will be offended are missing the point. Muslims don’t view this in isolation, they view this as part of a larger picture and a larger trend. An attack on the Muslim prophet is by Muslims perceived as an attack on them, it’s viewed as symbolic. People aren’t “just drawing” they are vilifying the man who symbolizes the way Muslims aspire to be. I’m not saying this is what every one who participates in these events is thinking, but it is the way it is perceived by Muslims (which you must understand if you seek a complete and unflawed understanding of the issue). Essentially these actions are interpersonal as if you were saying “convert or…”.

    Also, Muslim annoyance (and in some cases downright anger) with these pictures has multiple facets to it. To understand it we need to go back to the beginning of this row. When a cartoon show decided to “draw” the Muslim prophet. This to many Muslims is actually offensive. Though the vast majority of Muslims ignored it, why? Well consider the following, it’s also wrong for Muslims to draw Jesus as he too is considered by Muslims to be a Muslim prophet. It only truly becomes a problem when others draw the Muslim prophet with the intent of attacking Muslims.

    However one group of Muslims (as in a website run by Muslims) who were particularly untactful and severely under-educated in the Muslim ways issued a statement that people have been attacked for doing what the cartoon show did. People took offense to this and decided to attack the Muslim prophet (as opposed to attacking the website).

    Where moderate everyday Muslims get offended now is that they feel they are under-attack because of the actions of a few fools that aren’t even a noteworthy percentage of American Muslims much less Muslims worldwide.

    Yes, Moderate Muslims feel they are under-attack when their prophet is attacked because as part of their Muslims studies they have come to love the prophet due to his merciful ways (yes even in war he adopted the most merciful tactics possible, don’t believe the anti-Islam evangelists and don’t take random tidbits out of context to build your arguments against this). In fact, it’s often back to the prophets teachings that moderates go to when they try to inform those that take a more radical approach to back of and adopt tolerance and moderation. All those efforts are greatly under-cut when attacks on the Prophet by the very people the moderate Muslims attempt to voucher for. This essentially leaves moderate Muslims feeling abandoned. On one hand they are trying to push back and fight those who adopt a more radical (and false) version of Islam and to reeducate them. On the other hand, they have to deal with racist Islamaphobes, and now the people they have for so long thought were their allies in the quest for tolerance and moderation (those same people who advocate freedom), the so called moderate voices have also turned on them and begun to attack the symbol of everything they (the moderate and overwhelming majority of Muslims) stand for. (What makes it worse is that they are slapping them and then telling them that being slapped is normal in this society and that if their faith is strong enough they should take it without complaining and yet on other issues, they say being slapped is unacceptable in a modern and free society).

    This whole issue brings to light a current and very serious problem. If someone drew stereotypical, rude, and insulting pictures of African Americans and in fact made a contest of it (or Jews or any other group whose suffering in Europe and the United States and the west in general was finally acknowledged, alleviated, followed with cries of “never again”) the society would be in an uproar with claims of “sure, you have freedom of speech, but this is wrong and we need to present a counter-voice that calls for tolerance”.
    Sadly, that doesn’t exist when it comes to Muslims. I’m not saying that this is illegal, just that it’s a dangerous precedent as it paves way for those with even more hateful and violent intentions toward Muslims to plan and carry out actions because in the media and among the public there is an ambivalence towards attack on Muslims. I worry that in the future, our ancestors will look back at our actions and realize that they paved way for the anti-Muslim atrocities that followed decades or even centuries later. How many of you have heard about the Mosques in the U.S. that have been bombed, vandalized, burned down or otherwise attacked? It’s been happening more and more often. The fact that it’s not “worth” national news is proof of our current state mind, and it is very sad. If you choose to participate in such actions that attack the core of Muslims’ belief and faith then rest assured, you are allying with the hateful, those who make claims of genocide (yes the exist). You maybe more moderate, you maybe less hateful and you may in fact disagree with those beliefs and those methods; but by attacking all Muslims for the actions of a few, you are in effect doing precisely what they would, just on a smaller scale.

    You maybe excercising your freedom of speech but in no way are you honoring those very principals. Just keep that in mind.

    Disclaimer:
    The above is not necessarily a direct rebuttal to anyone comment posted here or to the original blog post, it’s simply something I’ve been wanting to voice and I have found this as a place where it might reach my target audience. My attempt was to show a point of view that I felt has been missing from so many of these discussions.
    The above may seem severe, it’s because I think this has the potential to get worse. There are enough fools on both sides of the argument that have no qualms about escalating. Also, all that I have said with regards to things Muslims have had to endure are not exaggerated as they are pulled from specific events that have happened in the hometowns of my Muslim friends, google is your friend. But you need to look no further than the last presidential election where the notion of Obama being Muslim or Arab (not all of whom are Muslim and who are in fact a minority among Muslims) was seen as a deal breaker, as if Muslims & Arabs were responsible for all the evils of the world.

    FYIs about Muslims (since there is so much misunderstanding about them): They are not allowed to order anyone to convert (even in Muslims countries, nor can a Muslim country punish a non-Muslim for not abiding by Muslim laws), they are obligated to abide by local laws, they are not allowed to execute/attack anyone even if they have broken the law and are supposed to leave things to the authorities. They are not allowed to tell anyone they are going to hell. (Certainly they can say things like, people who murder and never repent are going to hell, but they can’t be judges and themselves say that Person X is going to hell).

  10. Brian Post author

    Shorter Ag: Freedom of speech is great, but stick figures are just mean.

    I think. The wall-o-text kind of got really, really wall-like.

    People aren’t “just drawing” they are vilifying the man who symbolizes the way Muslims aspire to be. I’m not saying this is what every one who participates in these events is thinking, but it is the way it is perceived by Muslims…

    Generous of you to come here and speak for all Muslims. Are you one yourself? (honest question, actually. Are you?)

    Sometimes a stick figure is just a stick figure.

    “O Lord, make my enemies ridiculous.” — Voltaire

    The Flying Spaghetti Monster appears to have granted Voltaires’s one-liner. Or is it the Invisible Pink Unicorn we should be prayin’ to? I get confused.

  11. Aoirthoir An Broc

    Brian, good sumation. Actually much of his post is just quoting the Huffington piece.

    Ag, sorry but drawing a stick figure, is not an attack. Further, while it is wrong for muslims to make any depiction (respectful or otherwise) of prophets, the same rule doesn’t apply to the rest of us.

    While we are talking about insulting, when monotheists stop insulting and attacking me by telling me there is only one god, in other words, by following their own faith, instead of mine, then maybe I will stop “insulting and attacking them” by following my own faith.

    Any chance you’re going to become a polytheist? No? Then don’t expect me to follow your monotheistic rules.

  12. Ag

    Yes, I am. Why is that relevant?

    Since when are we enemies?

    True, sometimes a stick figure IS just a stick figure. However, in the context of today’s current events, that is not the case. Besides, I’m not really talking about your stick figure. (Nor do I actually care who you draw). MUSLIMS are not supposed to draw the prophet. (A big part of that “law” is to avoid people idolizing the prophet, but I’m not arguing from a religious perspective). The problem with the images is the message they actually send and the fact that so many of them are used to insult and ostracize an entire group of people.

    What I am actually talking about is how these types of “let’s get together and insult Muslims/attempt to teach the uncivilized people about what our society is all about” events are not exactly helpful and can lead to a lot of damage long term. Not to mention they give a platform to fans of KKK type organizations.

    You cannot think of these issues in a vacuum. Not when it comes to depictions of Muslims in the west. Your smart enough to realize that, which leads to the question of why you felt it was important to post this to Planet Ubuntu.

  13. Ag

    Aoirthoir An Broc,
    By all means follow (or don’t follow) whatever religion you want. I’m not asking you to follow my religion or any religion. I’m asking you not to insult mine just as I won’t insult yours.

  14. Aoirthoir An Broc

    “The problem with the images is the message they actually send and the fact that so many of them are used to insult and ostracize an entire group of people.”

    The only ones using them to ostracize and insult an entire group are the ones making death threats. The group they are insulting and ostracizing are artists.

    “What I am actually talking about is how these types of “let’s get together and insult Muslims/”

    These acts have nothing to do with insulting muslims. Rather, muslims of any sort that insist those of us not of their religion, have to follow the rules of their religions, are the ones doing the insulting in *this* case.

    “attempt to teach the uncivilized people about what our society is all about” events are not exactly helpful and can lead to a lot of damage long term. Not to mention they give a platform to fans of KKK type organizations.”

    The “uncivilized people” are those making death threats and ONLY those making death threats. You might call them tactless, but they are far more than tactless, they are hooligans (I can use that word, I’m Irish). The claim about KKK types is what is known as a bait and switch. It is an attempt to say “SEE this bad group agrees with you therefore you are bad.” Well KKK types also poo, but that doesn’t make me wrong for pooing.

    “You cannot think of these issues in a vacuum. Not when it comes to depictions of Muslims in the west. Your smart enough to realize that, which leads to the question of why you felt it was important to post this to Planet Ubuntu.”

    These issues are not in a vacuum. Free speech, the right to say, draw, create, WITHOUT threat of violence is sacred. Your question “why you felt it was important to post this to Planet Ubuntu” leads me to the question “why on Goddess’s green earth SHOULDN’T they be on Planet Ubuntu?” If you are going to say “because people will feel insulted,” then I will agree, when, and only when, monotheists stop insulting my faith and the faith of the billions of polytheists and other non-monotheists around the world.

    “By all means follow (or don’t follow) whatever religion you want. I’m not asking you to follow my religion or any religion. I’m asking you not to insult mine just as I won’t insult yours.”

    Except that is not what you are doing. You are asking me to follow your religion. Specifically, under what circumstances would it be “not insulting” to your religion for someone to make a depiction of a prophet? Because that is how this entire thing got started in the first place.

  15. Ag

    “The only ones using them to ostracize and insult an entire group are the ones making
    death threats. The group they are insulting and ostracizing are artists. ”

    Not true, YOU may not seek to do that but there are people who use this as an opportunity to draw and further propagate insulting stereotypes about Muslims.

    “The “uncivilized people” are those making death threats and ONLY those making death threats. You might call them tactless, but they are far more than tactless, they are hooligans ”

    I never endeavored nor do I care to defend those people

    “Except that is not what you are doing. You are asking me to follow your religion. Specifically, under what circumstances would it be “not insulting” to your religion for someone to make a depiction of a prophet? Because that is how this entire thing got started in the first place.”

    Since when does me being insulted mean that I want you to follow my religion? There are in fact non-Muslims who do not go around attempting to draw the Muslim prophet. Are they following Islam by doing so? No, they have made a decision not to. Where’s the problem here?

    As for monotheistic religions insulting yours I can say this. In Islam the prophet Mohamed told us not to insult anyone else’s religion. Yes point blank like that. (keep in mind the difference between deliberately insulting, and debating on merits. Saying fedora is better than ubuntu because it tends to be on the bleeding edge, while opinionated is not deliberately insulting Ubuntu. Saying Ubuntu sucks/is stupid is not a discussion of merits simply an insult). So if a Muslim is insulting your religion, they are not following theirs. I am not qualified to defend the other monotheistic religions so you’ll have to ask them why they are insulting you religion. I’m sorry you’ve encountered these annoying comments, it must be frustrating for you, but after all that’s freedom of speech.

  16. Ag

    Oh and yes, I understand that you are not a fan nor on the level of the kkk, that was a poorly worded argument. Basically, a lot of my annoyances have been with the racist people’s exploitation of freedom of speech to ostracize Muslims. I understand there is a significant contingency of people who supported this campaign who did so on the grounds of “freedom of speech” and with no malice or ill intent towards Muslims at large(at least I hope).

  17. Aoirthoir An Broc

    “Not true, YOU may not seek to do that but there are people who use this as an opportunity to draw and further propagate insulting stereotypes about Muslims.”

    Yes there are those that will see this as such an opportunity. For isntance, those make death threats against people for DRAWING. That’s about as insulting and stereotypical as one can get.

    “Where’s the problem here?”

    The problem is that some persons THREATEN MURDER to those who draw.

    “As for monotheistic religions insulting yours I can say this. In Islam the prophet Mohamed told us not to insult anyone else’s religion. Yes point blank like that.”

    Well, just as Muslims are insulted when someone says “There is no Allah,” even if the person says they are not insulting, so to polytheists are insulted when you tell us our gods and goddesses are not real. So Muhammed can say that all he wants, the first tenet of Islam begins the insults “There is no god but Allah.”

    “Oh and yes, I understand that you are not a fan nor on the level of the kkk, that was a poorly worded argument. Basically, a lot of my annoyances have been with the racist people’s exploitation of freedom of speech to ostracize Muslims. I understand there is a significant contingency of people who supported this campaign who did so on the grounds of “freedom of speech” and with no malice or ill intent towards Muslims at large(at least I hope).”

    Again this has ZERO to do with Muslims or Islam or race. PERIOD. This has to do with objecting to MURDEROUS THREATS as a means of INTIMIDATION which says that a person DESERVES TO DIE because they DREW something or WROTE something. If Christians had threatened The Trey and The Stone, the same exact campaign would be going on still.

  18. Mackenzie

    Ag has a good point. The “everyone draw Muhammed day” thing is clearly meant to cause offence, so yes it is an example of attacking others’ beliefs and of Islamophobia.

  19. Aoirthoir An Broc

    “Ag has a good point. The “everyone draw Muhammed day” thing is clearly meant to cause offence, so yes it is an example of attacking others’ beliefs and of Islamophobia.”

    No it’s not. It is in direct response to threats of murder. But we’ll just ignore that little important fact and pretend it is about something that it is not about.

  20. Paul Kishimoto

    (via Planet Ubuntu…)

    Aoirthoir: no it’s not “an example of attacking others beliefs and of Islamophobia”? Perhaps. However, it would be disingenuous to deny Ag/Mackenzie’s point that it “is clearly meant to cause offence.” Stated rejection of the basis on which people are offended merely emphasizes that participants are acutely conscious that their actions *will* offend.

    Mackenzie: maybe there are some genuine Islamophobes, but it seems to me (comments above as evidence) that a lot of the jumpers on this particular bandwagon are actually imported from the “New Atheist” movement—cheerleaders for Dawkins, Hitchens, et al. They’ve got nothing against Islam in particular; their thing is general anti-religious activism in which the ends justify any means.

    Somewhat related: http://www.firstthings.com/article/2010/04/believe-it-or-not came up on Arts & Letters Daily last week, an interesting read.

  21. Jef Spaleta

    @Mackenzie

    Yes the approach taken isn’t constructive. Something like
    http://zombietime.com/mohammed_image_archive/ is much better.

    is far more appropriate as a starting point for a mature dialog about the issue.
    Attitudes about depictions of the profit Mohammed have changed through history. A historical perspective of how opinions have evolved both inside Islamic communities as well as outside views is needed to ground discussion about current disagreements over the issue.

    It’s…complicated. Islam culture has a rich history and the extremism over this issue now is just one subcultural view from inside the wider Islamic tapestry of cultures which happens to be dominant right now. Stick figures and cartoon drawings aren’t going to help combat extremism. I can understand wanting to stand up to terrorist extremism…but this isn’t the way to do it. All this approach is going to do is to harden opinion, its not going to open up lines of dialogue with moderate peace-loving Muslims.

    Non-Muslims like myself, need to be intellectually honest about our historic use of the image to make disparaging statements about Islamic culture (Dante’s Inferno) as well as usages of the image meant to honor(Depictions on the US Supreme Court Building.) The more we intend to offend, the more reactionary will be the response. It would be far far better to hold up examples of depictions of Mohamed meant to sincerely honor Islamic history as a set of images to form a set of talking points around the specific issue of what is and is not..extremist.

    -jef

  22. Brian Post author

    Aoirthoir An Broc: It is in direct response to threats of murder.

    I like it when commenters make my arguments better than I do. (nice ASCII figure too, BTW)

    Had the internet existed in it’s current form back then, I’d have been posting excerpts from Rushdie’s Satanic Verses on this blog too. Some things should never be allowed to go unchallenged.

    I spent ten years working in a public library. Tell a library worker they’re supposed to ban or suppress a book, and they’re likely to put it up in the front window with a huge awesome sign above it. I don’t work in libraries anymore, but this is my front window display now.

    And Paul has also nailed the rest of my motivation for the posting, although I don’t consider myself a “New” atheist particularly. Atheism has a long and honourable history, long before Dawkins et al bumped it back to it’s current limelight.

    We can wander off into a discussion of atheism if desired – let’s start with Stephen F Roberts’ excellent quote:

    “I contend we are both atheists, I just believe in one fewer god than you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods, you will understand why I dismiss yours.”

  23. Aoirthoir An Broc

    Paul, it’s not disengenuous at all. The offense here is the death threats and the expectation that someone must do as another demands, speak as they demand, create only the art they deem allowable. Speaking out against offensive actions, is obviously going to offend the original offender. Too bad. They don’t get to tell us how to live and they most certainly don’t ge to tell us how we protest their hate speech and THREATS OF MURDER.

    Let’s make that clear because in all this “we must speak as another says” conversation, what the other side keeps doing is ignoring, with a deliberateness, that this entire thing occured because threats of murder were made and HAVE been enacted in the RECENT past. So it is absolutely NOT disengenuous for us to state that DRAWING A STICK FIGURE in protest OF A THREAT OF MURDER is NOT islamaphobia or hate of muslims. The truly offensive thing is that they appear, by virtue of their many words against this protest compared to their few words against the threats of murder, to be more upset by the drawing of a stick figure than both threats of murder and ACTUAL murder.

    Further, this has ZERO to do with atheism. I am a POLYtheist. I believe in MANY deities. There are also atheists involved, pagans, muslims (yes muslims), buddhists, agnostics and many others in this protest. The SOLE issue here is NOT the religion of those makin the death threats AND CARRYING THEM OUT. This same protest would have happened if an atheist group threatened to murder Trey Parker and Matt Stone because they had a character potrayed as Darwin in an episode. ESPECIALLY if other atheists had recently carried out ACTUAL REAL LIVE (or DEAD) MURDER.

    Again you and others are playing BAIT AND SWITCH. Every time you do, we’ll bring up a reminder that this has NOTHING TO DO WITH RACE OR RELIGION. It has SOLELY to do with the fact that many are objecting and protesting THREATS of murder.

  24. Aoirthoir An Broc

    “I contend we are both atheists, I just believe in one fewer god than you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods, you will understand why I dismiss yours.”

    And you will understand once I accept one god, I can accept them all. Especially the likes of Loki, Swimming Spegetuh Monstrosity (flying spegetti monster is actually a creation of apostates from Swimming Spegetuh Monstrosity, and I have ABOSOLUTELY ZERO to do with those bastords, they can keep their filthy hate!)

    “(nice ASCII figure too, BTW)”

    Yeah it kind of messed up though. Here is another, warning this is NOT a depiction of a prophet, I know that will offend some:

    (*) (*)
    /\
    \______/

    And here is one of Thor, Odinists be damned:

    (___)
    (o o)
    /——-\ /
    / | ||O
    * ||,—||
    ^^ ^^

    Oh and from the Yes We Can Has No Bananas Church, the Banana Deity:

    _
    //\
    V \
    \ \_ Mmm I’m Tasteee and much
    \,’.`-. better to eat than those
    |\ `. `. wafers and wine!
    ( \ `. `-. _,.-:\
    \ \ `. `-._ __..–‘ ,-‘;/
    \ `. `-. `-..___..—‘ _.–‘ ,’/
    `. `. `-._ __..–‘ ,’ /
    `. `-_ “–..” _.-‘ ,’
    `-_ `-.___ __,–‘ ,’
    `-.__ `—-“”” __.-‘
    `–..____..–‘

    Aoirthoir Grand PooPoo of the Church of Delusional Mysticism, out.

  25. Brian Post author

    PZ Myers has a nice summary of “Draw Mohammed Day”.

    Two short quotes for the TL;DR folks:

    …it’s a humorous response to a gang of thugs who have threatened to kill people over a few sketches. You do not surrender to bullies. You also do not respond in kind, threatening to kill people who believe in the sanctity of stick figures. What you do is ridicule and weaken the blustering insistence on special privilege by showing repeatedly that they are powerless and look hypocritical and silly.

    I’ll tell you what. You can complain when the atheists issue a fatwah and threaten you with beheading if you don’t draw a picture of Mohammed.

  26. Aoirthoir An Broc

    “Stick figures and cartoon drawings aren’t going to help combat extremism. I can understand wanting to stand up to terrorist extremism…but this isn’t the way to do it. ”

    Sorry, but you don’t get to determine how offended people get to express their offense. This is NOT about stick figures or depictions of Muhammed. This is about REFUSING to be bullied by DEATH THREATS. How complicated is that to understand?

    “Non-Muslims like myself, need to be intellectually honest about our historic use of the image to make disparaging statements about Islamic culture (Dante’s Inferno) ”

    Right, except I’m not a christian and that history isn’t mine. Maybe we could ask about historic depictions by monotheists (muslim, christian, zoarstrian etc) of polytheists. Their “devils” are nothing more than demonizations of our gods. But that offense is ok…

    “The more we intend to offend, the more reactionary will be the response.”

    How much more reactionary can you get than MURDERING people for DRAWINGS? I mean Odin’s sake, SERIOUSLY you expect us to think they are going to be MORE reactionary than THAT? Give me a break.

    “It would be far far better to hold up examples of depictions of Mohamed meant to sincerely honor Islamic history as a set of images to form a set of talking points around the specific issue of what is and is not..extremist.”

    First, DRAWING STICK FIGURES is NOT extremism. It is DRAWING STICK FIGURES. The extremists are the ones OFFENDED enough by stick figures, words, fiction, works of art and others to MURDER people. That is the ONLY extremism going on in ANY of this. Period.

    Second, your point is moot because it would not matter if the representations were “honorable” or not because ANY representation of the prophets is forbidden. Those that view it as forbidden want to force ALL of us to follow THEIR religious viewpoint and FORBID US from depicting things that THEY are forbidden from depicting. Sorry, it doesn’t work that way.

    Finally, the entire POINT of free speech is to protect speech that others DO NOT LIKE. Murdering someone because they SAID or WROTE or DREW something you do not like is abhorrent and INDEFENSIBLE on all levels. We don’t NEED free speech when everyone likes what you say and NO ONE is EVER offended by it.

  27. Aoirthoir An Broc

    As an aside from this discussion of DMD, I want to point out that there is absolutely no need or cause to practice ableism in these posts. Many persons around the globe suffer seriously from a variety of phobias. When we use terms like “homophobia” and “islamaphobia” to describe an instance of hate of a particular group, what we really are doing is marginalizing persons that suffer from phobias. We are being completely dismissive of their conditions and saying that the fear they experience is no different than the purported hate mongering we are accusing others of perpetuating. Such an act is in itself hate mongering of the differently mentally abled.

    It is amazing that people will so readily dismiss an entire group of persons on the basis of their experiences, something BEYOND THEIR CONTROL and twist their condition into fodder used to express anger or dissatisfaction (valid or not) with someone.

    Instead of using such repulsive, ablest terms as “retarded”, “insane”, “somethingphobia”, “mentally sick”, “crazy” and other terms, why not check your abled privilege at the door and instead simply describe what the person did wrong and why it is wrong? Then you can be sure you are not yourself further marginalizing yet another group, content in your 101 about the group you are defending?

    But I will tell you ahead of time, I am dubious first that anyone using such terms will actually try to change them, and if they reply, they won’t check their privilege but instead will glory in it and find excuse after excuse to why it is ok to dehumanize people with phobias by continuing to use “phobia” as a term of hate speech instead of acknowledging that persons with phobias are humans by NOT so doing. But, I might be wrong, sometimes, even extremely privileged people surprise me.

  28. Victor

    I have two things to say.

    1. With freedom comes responsibility. If you are not responsible, i.e. you offend a bunch of people, it might hurt you and people in your vicinity. Piss a bunch of Islamic extremists off and you might receive death threats or even attempts at your life, just as Lars Vilks have had. It might be for the cause of “free speech” WHICH YOU ALREADY HAVE, but it might not be worth exercising in this manner because if people are so offended by it and the government deems the people not to have the responsibility required for the freedom, they might take it away because it’s creating war! Fools! Why do you think weapons are illegal in a lot of countries? I can only assume the government deemed the people unfit to carry them because people were getting killed left and right.

    2. The whole concept of provocation over information is just utterly childish. You’re no better than the Islamic extremists! What is basically happening is that Islamic people say “Creating images of Muhammad is wrong.” and you say “Naa-nanaa-nanaa-naa” and DO IT ANYWAY TO PROVOKE THEM. What the f*ck is wrong with you? GO BACK TO KINDERGARDEN WHERE YOU BELONG. Didn’t your mother teach you not to tease?! Fool. Anyone with some sense, or who is a Christian (not saying those are dependencies of one another), knows that the way to go is not by antagonizing, but by informing and teaching. What kind of idiot would start provoking someone and expect them to yield to their ways? Only a fool would do that, and lo and behold, fools HAVE. Such as this fool on this blog, and such as the fool that is Lars Vilks, putting all of us Swedes in the dirt where ONLY HE SHOULD BE, and souring our relationship with Islamic people.

  29. Aoirthoir An Broc

    “I have two things to say.”

    Actually a lot of things to say.

    “1. With freedom comes responsibility.”

    Prepare for the typical reason why we should do as others command us to do, and NOT exercise our freedom. See, WE have responsibility to obey THEM but they have ZERO responsibility to let us alone in our freedom…

    ” If you are not responsible, i.e. you offend a bunch of people, it might hurt you and people in your vicinity.”

    Wrong. THEY might hurt people in our vicinity. We, exercising our freedom are not the cause of the hurt. Indeed, it seems these days it is impossible to NOT offend SOMEONE. My paganism offends monotheists. My polyamory offends monogamists. My bisexuality offends straight AND gay people alike. My support of monotheists right to not be polytheists keeps offending pagans. My support of SOME republican views and SOME democrat vies and SOME socialist views and SOME anarchist views and SOME libertarian views offends some in each of those those AND MORE groups.

    This nonsense that “with freedom comes responsibility” to not offend is utter trite and rubbish. It is another way of saying “with freedom comes MY right to ENSLAVE YOU.” Sorry but that’s not freedom

    ” Piss a bunch of Islamic extremists off and you might receive death threats or even attempts at your life, just as Lars Vilks have had.”

    WOW. Ever hear of VICTIM BLAMING LANGUAGE? Well you get the victim blame award. Understand this, we DON’T have to teach people how NOT to be victims. We just have to teach VICTIMIZERS to STOP VICTIMIZING. Do you blame rape victims for being raped too? You seriously make me ill.

    ” It might be for the cause of “free speech” WHICH YOU ALREADY HAVE,”

    And which can be STRIPPED AT ANY TIME.

    ” but it might not be worth exercising in this manner because if people are so offended by it”

    Too bad. They can be offended and NOT MURDER. All the rows I have with feminists on these sites, I NEVER murder them. I DISAGREE with them and VOICE my disagreement. It’s amazing how I can disagree, BE OFFENDED by what they say and gee, I don’t know, NOT MURDER THEM? See, it’s really that simple.

    ” and the government deems the people not to have the responsibility required for the freedom, they might take it away because it’s creating war!”

    NO! The ones causing the war are the ones murdering AND ONLY THEM. You are HONESTLY suggesting that the reason we NOT exercise our freedom is because IT MIGHT BE TAKEN AWAY?

    Should I not exercise my freedom to agree with the left AND the right? Should I not exercise my freedom to walk a woman through a self-righteous crowd at an abortion clinic so SHE can exercise HER right to an abortion? Should I NOT exercise my right to MY BODILY AUTONOMY AND SEXUALITY? Should I NOT exercise these rights simply because people will be offended and thus the government MIGHT take my rights away?

    Do you REMEMBER DOCTOR TILLER?

    ” Fools! Why do you think weapons are illegal in a lot of countries? I can only assume the government deemed the people unfit to carry them because people were getting killed left and right.”

    You can deem whatever you want. History says otherwise.

    “2. The whole concept of provocation over information is just utterly childish. You’re no better than the Islamic extremists!”

    Uh huh. Yeah you just convinced me that my drawing a COLON, a letter D, 5 dashes and two pipe symbols is as bad as MURDERING people.

    : D–|–|

    Uh wait, NO YOU DIDN’T. But you did convince me of your idiocy.

    ” What is basically happening is that Islamic people say “Creating images of Muhammad is wrong.” and you say “Naa-nanaa-nanaa-naa” and DO IT ANYWAY TO PROVOKE THEM.”

    WRONG. See YOU don’t get to tell ME WHY *I* did something. I did it to PROTEST THOSE that threaten MURDER. This is ABSOLUTELY NOT ABOUT MUSLIMS PERIOD. If it AINT about you, DONT MAKE IT about you.

    ” What the f*ck is wrong with you? GO BACK TO KINDERGARDEN WHERE YOU BELONG. Didn’t your mother teach you not to tease?!”

    f*#% f*#%ity f*#% f*#% didn’t your mother teach you how to f*#%ity f*#% f*#% talk you f*#%ity f*#% f*#%! My mother taught me how to f*#%ity f*#% f*#% talk and I am going to f*#%ity f*#% tell you how!

    ” Fool. Anyone with some sense, or who is a Christian (not saying those are dependencies of one another), knows that the way to go is not by antagonizing, but by informing and teaching.”

    Yeah? And where do we pagans fit into your conversation? Oh yeah we don’t because most of us throughout the centuries have been MURDERED by monotheists.

    ” What kind of idiot would start provoking someone and expect them to yield to their ways?”

    Yeah? So why are you trying to provoke us to yield to your ways? And I find it interesting that wanting people to “yield to our ways”, in other words NOT MURDER PEOPLE, is objectionable to you.

    ” Only a fool would do that, and lo and behold, fools HAVE. Such as this fool on this blog,”

    Count yourself included.

    ” and such as the fool that is Lars Vilks, putting all of us Swedes in the dirt where ONLY HE SHOULD BE, and souring our relationship with Islamic people.”

    The only ones that “soured” your relationship, were those WILLING TO MURDER. YOU are VICTIM BLAMING Lars again. GET THIS, people do NOT deserve to DIE EVER for what they write.

    But as has already been shown about nearly everyone opposed to this day, YOU CARE LESS about those MURDERED than those that MURDER. Typical.

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