I am in agreement with the Salon commentator on the topic of the Danish cartoons that are claimed to be blasphemous to the Prophet. They should be published in the press everywhere (they are here on the web and in a million other places) and the exaggerated claims of outraged Muslims dismissed.
You don’t damage a religion by drawing pictures. Indeed to an atheist, like myself, God seems irreparably dead. My view is that intelligent people should live in an Age of Reason where God-talk and religion are set aside and replaced with thinking and philosophy. Bridges across waterways don’t make aboriginal women infertile (see here for a discussion of Hindmarsh) and walking on water is difficult when temperatures move above above freezing. So too raising the dead!
You didn’t agree with that? Well, I can live with your contrary view and, indeed, understand the role of beliefs and even marginally appreciate them. It improves your brain chemistry and often makes you very nice people, good social beings etc etc. By doing so it will often help me even if I believe you are deluded. But…..even then….. my friends:
- Muslims have claimed their religion as justification for killing innocents and this is satirised by the cartoons. This is a legitimate object of humour and has a socially-redeeming feature of pointing to the craziness of the claim.
- Suicide bombers and Jihadists do claim that virgin females in heaven will be their reward for killing innocents (see here) which is the point of another cartoon. Such daft viewpoints deserve to be mocked.
Give it a break my Muslim friends. You are far more serious about your beliefs than most Christians I know (you substitute pious belief for much religious babble) and deserve respect for that at least. But, as many of you have done, separate yourself from the irrationalism associated with this bout of cartoon-induced, reflex-response madness.
Get on with being good citizens who derive an important part of your life from your religion and avoid confirming the expectations of anti-Muslim bigots who parady you but who, on some occasions, as current actions confirm, are indeed correct.
Update: As one commentator suggests the Iranians have responded to the cartoons by seeking the 12 best cartoons of the Holocaust (see here). The Iranians (and other fanatics who have responded in similarly bizarre and sometimnes violent ways ways) have totally lost the plot. And I guess they will regard most of the rest-of-the-world as unreasonable for seeking to deny them access to nuclear fuels that can be turned into weapons. It is so sad that people can be so deluded and can concentrate their hatreds and resentments in this way.
Update: A key issue is that the Danish cartoonists are not under any obligation not to offend a religious law they have no obligation to uphold. Update: I grabbed this comment on the hypocrisy of the Muslim fanatics from Yobbos’ blogsite. Brisbane’s Courier Mail and The Rockhampton Morning Bulletin seem to be alone among Australian newspapers to have the integrity to publish at least one of the cartoons. The Age in Melbourne is its usual whining, gutless, hypocritical, leftist self.