Friday, February 17, 2006
To my Muslim readers in particular: Before another innocent's blood is spilled, please look at these images that have been created over the years (more by "others," linked in title), and ask yourselves why this recent "cartoon" incident created such worldwide chaos in Muslim nations. In NYC, some Muslims peacefully protested the cartoons, though it got little coverage. Why can't it be like this all around the world? Is the difference in Islam, or the laws of the nation that it's practiced in?
Some Islamic Caliphates allowed images of Mohammed to be made, and even Osama's blown-up residence in Afghanistan had murals of Mohammed on them. This "cartoon story" is the mother of all "red herrings" to justify mindless violence. This isn't even about Islam. It's about evil people, who inflame the masses of Muslims in authoritarian states, and terrorists who seduce spiritually weak individuals.
The modern "Muslim" nations have even less of a leg to stand on when one considers the anti-semitic cartoons routinely published in their state-controlled publications. When a group of repressive nations gather their political will to stifle free speech by private individuals in free countries, all of us must respond.
One expects terrorists to hate Jews and Americans, and the West in general. Why can't majority "Muslim" countries, whether semi-democratic or authoritarian, teach about the age-old time when Islam was tolerant, and embrace that as a new way forward. Without that effort, many of them appear to sympathize with the terrorists. King Abdullah II of Jordan is a notable exception. While condemning the cartoons in a press conference with Pres. Bush, he actually preached tolerance. -from King Abdullah's website:
(Pres. Bush) said that his country believed in the freedom of the press, but that "with this freedom comes responsibility, and responsibility means thinking about others." The two leaders called the violence that has accompanied protests against the cartoons "unacceptable".
"One who wants to protest should be careful... [and] do this peacefully," King Abdullah said.
"When we see protests accompanied by destruction and violence, especially the killing of innocent people, then this is definitely unacceptable." "We should progress one step further in the issue of tolerance so as to accept our common humanity and our shared values," the King added.
The imagery of Mohammed is not going away. The truth is that it's been here throughout history, even in the Islamic world. That's a fact, and all of the protesting in the world cannot change it. When have Muslims protested at the NYC Metropolitan Museum of Art, which displays a Mohammed image?
Hat tip to my bud Magua, for the zombietime link! GREAT SITE! -and a reminder that this "cartoon war" is just a subset of the greater war in our culture, as well as the rest of the world's many cultures. Freedom must win this battle, or we all lose freedom.
Linked at Open Thoughts of a Universal Mind at STOP The ACLU.