I didn’t, even though it’s Everybody Draw Mohammed Day. Even though entire countries are blocking Facebook and Youtube for blaspheming a religion whether you practice it or not. Who wouldn’t want to get in on that action? But I didn’t draw anything because you wouldn’t be able to tell if it was Mohammed or a tree or perhaps some sort of flightless bird.
Not that it would matter, because as long as I said it was an image of Mohammed, that alone would be enough to offend some Muslims. Witness the recent South Park controversy, in which not only was Mohammed not actually shown on-screen, but the guy they were claiming was Mohammed under a bear costume really wasn’t. That earned the artists a death threat and censorship from their own network.
How about this little drawing:
That’s my Twitter avatar. It’s actually a cleverly disguised image of Mohammed. Apparently, that’s all I need to say in order for it to be blasphemy.
Or how about this photo of a delicious grilled cheese sandwich and a cup of tomato soup?
I’m sure you can’t see it at first, but if you look closely: Mohammed. Totally Mohammed.
If that’s enough to start a riot or make somebody want to blow up Times Square, the actual depiction of Mohammed drawn by my friend Batton Lash might set off World War III:
He did that for the Everybody Draw Mohammed contest that Reason magazine is holding, the results of which are due sometime today. Here’s Reason‘s Nick Gillespie, explaining why they’re doing it:
There comes a point in any society’s existence where it must ultimately, to paraphrase Martin Luther (who himself was more than happy to see opponents put to death), dig in its heels and say here we stand, we will do no other. We don’t need to be perfectly consistent philosophically or historically or theologically to assert what is special and unique not just about the United States, with its bizarre and wonderful articulation of the First Amendment, but the greater classical liberal project comprising not just the “West” (whatever that is) but human beings in whatever town, country, or planet they inhabit. And at the heart of the liberal project is ultimately a recognition that individuals, for no other reason than that they exist, have rights to continue to exist. Embedded in all that is the right to expression. No one has a right to an audience or even to a sympathetic hearing, much less an engaged audience. But no one should be beaten or killed or imprisoned simply for speaking their mind or praying to one god as opposed to the other or none at all or getting on with the small business of living their life in peaceful fashion. If we cannot or will not defend that principle with a full throat, then we deserve to choke on whatever jihadists of all stripes can force down our throats.
…the three most offensive of the “Danish cartoons” — including the one showing Mohammed as a pig — were not by any Jyllands-Posten cartoonists but were actually faked by Scandinavian imams for the purposes of stirring up outrage among Muslims…
So, if it really is a sin to depict Mohammed, then these imams will be roasting in hell.
These imams actually made a photocopy of a picture of a guy in a pig costume at some sort of hog-calling contest, and they tried to claim it was a cartoon of Mohammed. They couldn’t find enough things to get offended about, so they just made something up.
If you’re a Muslim and you’re genuinely offended by this post, that’s one thing. But if you’re an extremist and you just want to push your beliefs on other people, coerce them to abide by the rules of your religion whether they practice it or not, and use violence and death threats to keep people from saying things you don’t like, that’s another.
Check out this slideshow. Or don’t. It’s your choice. You should let everybody else make that same choice for themselves.
P.P.S. Matt Welch: “Terrorism and self-censorship are both self-fulfilling prophecies. If you allow yourself to be terrorized, then everything looks scary, the ground is softened for restricting freedom, and the bad guys win… If people who threaten violence on cartoonists are treated not with fear but with outright mockery, and produce as a direct result of their actions not a cowed and silent respect for their fervor but an epidemic of giggling and a global WTF, maybe they’ll be less incentivized to repeat the threat next time around.”
P.P.P.S. The winners!