Is Believing—Whether It's Hoot Gibson of Muhammad
By Denis Schulz
“We are a
very tolerant and peaceful people. We go about our business and don’t ask
much. Yet our Prophet PBUH is
being blasphemed. CAIR
(Council on American-Islamic Relations) and the Muslim
Public Affairs Council are greatly offended. All of Islam is offended. We
are a religion of peace and tolerance. It says in Tabari VIII: 104 “Peace
to whoever follows the right guidance! To proceed; Submit yourself, and you
shall be safe.” What could be more clear? But Islam is not safe. The
Prophet PBUH is being blasphemed. It is one thing to portray George W. Bush as a
Nazi and Ariel Sharon as devouring Palestinian
children for breakfast — aside from the essence of truth in those
depictions — but to draw pictures of Mohammed PBUH puts a strain on Islamic
tolerance. We will not be patient forever.”…Anonymous.
Associated Press: GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip—Masked gunmen
today briefly took over a European Union office to protest a Danish
newspaper’s publication of cartoons deemed insulting to Islam’s Prophet
Muhammad, the latest in a wave of violent denunciations of the caricatures
across the Islamic world.
League has already taken steps to put an end to this gross example of Danish
intolerance. “Consultations are currently taking place at the highest level
between Arab countries and the OIC (Organization of the Islamic Conference) in
order to ask the UN to adopt a binding resolution banning contempt for religious
beliefs and providing for sanctions to be imposed on contravening countries or
institutions,” announced Ahmad Ben Helli, assistant secretary-general of the
Binding resolution? Banning contempt for religious beliefs?
Sanctions? Is Michael
Newdow aware of this? That rascal could be in big trouble! He’s been more
blasphemous of Christianity than Salmon
Rushdie ever was of Islam! Removing ‘under God’ from the pledge of
allegiance and ‘in God we trust’ from nickels and dimes is a thousand times
worse than drawing cheap penny postcard pictures of Mohammed. Gosh! That rascal
has been dead for 1,400 years! What does he care? If this resolution is passed
Kofi Annan could actually send Interpol after Newdow! He could declare a UN fatwa!
What? The resolution is not intended for Newdow? It’s
only to protect Islam? So Newdow has nothing to worry about unless he starts
thrashing Islam? And Ted Turner and Larry
Flynt don’t need to go into hiding? That is correct.
Then why do they need a resolution? The European Community
is caving in like a ten-story house of cards in a game of Calvin ball. Jim
Bakker didn’t make nearly as many mea maxima culpas on his way to
the jailhouse as Europe’s cringing dhimmis have made to Islam in the last ten
Norway’s Foreign Minister, Jonas Gohr Store went down on
his knees. “I am sorry that the publication of a few cartoons in the Norwegian
paper, Magazinet, has caused unrest among Muslims…Your faith has the
right to be respected by us…The cartoons…are not constructive in building
the bridges which are necessary between people with different religious and
ethnic backgrounds. Instead they contribute to suspicion and unnecessary
conflict…Freedom of expression is one of the pillars of Norwegian society.
This includes tolerance for opinions that not everyone shares. At the same time
our laws and our international obligations enforce restrictions for incitement
to hatred and hateful expressions.”
Freedom of Expression—now you see it, now you don’t. Fay
Wray showed more courage and did less cringing atop the Empire State
Building playing hide-and-seek with King Kong.
and these guys got really mad.
Store was not alone in his cowardice. Brussels, always the
perfect dhimmi, was right behind, if not out in front.
Danish Prime Minister, Anders
Fogh Rasmussen was shocked. “I am speechless,” he said, “that those
people, whom we have given the right to live in Denmark and where they have
freely chosen to stay, are now touring Arab countries and inciting antipathy
towards Denmark and the Danish people.” The Prime Minister reaffirmed his
commitment to freedom of expression.
The European Union, the Council of Europe and the UN have
all criticized Denmark over the cartoons.
The editor of Jyllands-Posten, Carsten Juste,
repeated what he said a week ago, “We will not apologize, because we live in
Denmark under Danish law, and we have freedom of speech in this country. It we
apologized, we would betray the generations who have fought for this right, and
the moderate Muslims who are democratically minded.”
That was yesterday—a Buzz
Lightyear in the Danish timeline. The generations are weeping. It’s lonely
up on the ledge with Fay Wray and that overgrown ape.
A couple of cyber attacks on the Jyllands-Posten online
website and a sudden boycott of Danish products in the Middle East and editor
Juste apologized. That’s right! He apologized! Honorable Fellow Citizens
of the Muslim World ran the headline in Jyllands-Posten.
Whoa! Back up there a bit! Muslim World? Fellow Citizens?
What is this? An apology? Or was it surrender? Did somebody toss Juste off the
top of the Empire State Building? He seems disoriented. Did he land on his head?
He’s still in Denmark, isn’t he, and Denmark is still in Europe, isn’t it?
This is scary! Why would anyone want to be a citizen of a world hostile to his
The sad story: “In our opinion,” wrote Juste, “the 12
drawings were sober. They were not intended to be offensive, nor were they at
variance with Danish law, but they have indisputably offended many Muslims for
which we apologize.” So much for Danish law; so much for freedom of
expression; so much for moderate Muslims that are democratically minded—a rare
breed, indeed. Of course, Denmark’s existence as a non-Muslim country also
offends Islam. Juste may want to work on that one for a while.
But the picture flap brought the world no closer to
discovering what Mohammed looked like. And, in the absence of a Shroud
of Turin, inquiring minds will insist on knowing and there will be no
stopping them. Get out the paints and the easel, Rembrandt. What did Mohammed
look like? Could he have been mistaken for Wallace
Beery after a night on the town; for Jesus Christ staggering through the 10th
Station of the Cross, for Abu Hamza; for Osama bin Laden? Was he tall? Short?
Ugly? Bald? Rotund? Cross-eyed? Did
he wear a bomb for a hat? Seeing is believing. Take Al
Capp, add Thomas Nast
and Toy Story, jumble them
together and one could possibly have Mohammed. Maybe Ted Rall and Gary Trudeau
should try their hand at Mohammed. It would be interesting—and maybe life
threatening. It’s a puzzle. But remember—Granny
Clampett would never have believed in Hoot
Gibson if she had not seen him with her own eyes.