Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Cartoons and Islamic imperialism

Daniel Pipes gets it:

The key issue at stake in the battle over the 12 Danish cartoons of the Muslim prophet Muhammad is this: Will the West stand up for its customs and mores, including freedom of speech, or will Muslims impose their way of life on the West? Ultimately, there is no compromise: Westerners will either retain their civilization, including the right to insult and blaspheme, or not.

More specifically, will Westerners accede to a double standard by which Muslims are free to insult Judaism, Christianity, Hinduism, and Buddhism, while Muhammad, Islam, and Muslims enjoy immunity from insults? Muslims routinely publish cartoons far more offensive than the Danish ones. Are they entitled to dish it out while being insulated from similar indignities?

Germany's Die Welt newspaper hinted at this issue in an editorial: "The protests from Muslims would be taken more seriously if they were less hypocritical. When Syrian television showed drama documentaries in prime-time depicting rabbis as cannibals, the imams were quiet." Nor, by the way, have imams protested the stomping on the Christian cross embedded in the Danish flag.

The deeper issue here, however, is not Muslim hypocrisy but Islamic supremacism. The Danish editor who published the cartoons, Flemming Rose, explained that if Muslims insist "that I, as a non-Muslim, should submit to their taboos ... they're asking for my submission."
Meanwhile, Antonia Zerbisias reaches from under the Burqah to rant about right-wing "hate", and shows that she doesn't get it at all:

In terms of the North American corporate media, only a few dailies, including Montreal's Le Devoir, have republished the cartoons, which are not particularly good, not very funny and not necessary to understanding the story. As many editors have explained, merely describing the cartoons is sufficient for making the point.

I hope that's the real reason for their reticence. I would hate to think that newspapers are backing away to avoid angry protests, to prevent ad boycotts, out of political correctness or a sense that some communities should get special treatment or, most of all, because they fear violent reprisals.

If you're in the news business, sometimes you just have to take major risks in order to defend freedom of the press.
But only if it happens to promote your particular political ideology, eh? Funny how I don't recall Ms. Zerbisias following the same reasoning with the Piss Christ episode or the portrait of Mary in elephant dung. The only difference is that newspapers could (quite rightly) publish pictures of those without fear of rioting, death threats and mob violence, and they were quite happy to do so with no consideration to offended Christians or reasonings that a mere description was enough to make the point.

Hells bells, I'm an atheist and yet I can see this stinking hypocrisy a mile away!

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