Muslim rage over European cartoons

I just feel like I have to vent about this… it’s driving me a bit nuts. 8p One of these days I’ll make a blog which I’ll update maybe once a month, knowing me. Feel free to entirely ignore it.

There have been two main arguments for the deplorable behavior of the Muslims after a Danish newspaper published a set of 12 cartoons depicting the Prophet Mohammed in ways both positive and negative. The first is the racism card - the cartoons show the Muslim faith as terrorist. The second is that any group - whether it would be Christians whose Jesus was lampooned or Jews whose Torah was smeared - would have been just as angry.

Truth be told, the cartoons are borderline racism. Islamophobia is a more politically correct racism than most others… but it’s also more excusable than others, because there’s a decided lack of religious and political figures who publicly dispel the stereotypes (e.g. by decrying suicide bombings). Painting all Muslims as terrorists, or Islam as a terrorist religion (which is patently false) is easy when there is no strong, straight message to the contrary.

In any case, let’s say it was a racist cartoon. That in no way excuses the behavior of the Muslims afterwards. Sure: if a cartoon was published which denigrated Jewish or Christian beliefs, there’d be an uproar. The government would be notified, possibly hate crime charges would be laid. Picketing would occur. A boycott of that newspaper would probably ensue.

But there would be no rioting in the streets. There would be no cries of “Death to Denmark”. There would be no calls to boycott products from the entire country of Denmark. Countries would not recall their ambassadors. Presidents would not make public statements. A “day of rage” (an idea which is solely Muslim; most peoples try to keep their rage down, not publicize it) would not be created. In short, there would be a backlash against the publication, not against an entire country (and by this time, an entire continent).

Arla Foods, Denmark’s primary exporter, which has a very large business in Saudi Arabia, had to lay off more than a hundred workers yesterday. I’m wondering how many of those workers were Muslim? How many Muslims lost their jobs because a bunch of wacknuts decided they were angry at the entire Denmark for daring to allow a private newspaper to print these cartoons? (Another thing Muslims can’t seem to wrap their minds around - Western governments gasp do not control every press in the country!) If I were the president of Arla, I would probably be excused for actually finding employees with Muslim-sounding names and firing them first. But that’s another hallmark of Muslim righteous anger - who cares if other Muslims get hurt as long as the infidels go with them? Most of the victims of Iraqi suicide bombings have been other Iraqis.

And how ironic is it that they’re going nuts about these caricatures when there are things being said in official Arab newspapers which echo ancient anti-Semitic canards? Not just anti-Zionistic (which is still racist, but more acceptable) but Nazi-era propaganda? Pictures of hook-nosed Jews controlling the world, quotes and TV series based on the long-discredited “Protocols of the Elders of Zion” taken as fact… hell, Iran is now sponsoring an entire conference specifically dedicated to Holocaust denial. You can dish it out but you can’t take it, huh?

I have no problems with individual Muslims, nor even the religion of Islam, which in and of itself is not violent. But it drives me crazy when people (such as the Toronto Star’s Haroon Siddiqui) try to pass off as “reasonable” what the legendary, amorphous creature known as the “Muslim street” is doing. (The “street” is probably mainly egged on by Arab dictators - the cartoons appeared in September, but the outcry didn’t start until Egyptian politicians took jabs at them.)

I don’t agree with using violence for any religious purpose. There was a picture in the paper a few days ago of Jews in Hebron throwing stones and pieces of concrete against Israeli police who came to evict them - a stark contrast against the inspiring conduct of the Gaza settlers half a year go. Those pictures embarrassed and shamed me. Almost no rabbi would go on the record praising them for their acts - and there would be plenty who would decry them. My problem is that Muslims and their leaders simply fail to realize that the more they froth at the mouth and try to bully people into doing what they want, the less anyone will take them seriously. The aforementioned Siddiqui was shocked that so many people would jump to defend the paper in this instance. The reason is simply that people don’t like bullies. Had there been such a reaction in the Christian world, I can promise you the same thing would have happened.

This happens time and time again - something bad happens to Muslims, the reaction goes completely out of whack (like the whole Koran-dunking incident last year) and everyone sort of shakes their heads and goes “Well, they’re Muslims, they’re entitled, you’d do the same thing.”. No, we wouldn’t, and no, they shouldn’t be entitled. They’re like kids throwing tantrums to get their way - only when they throw tantrums, people often die.

I’d honestly be interested in corresponding with a Muslim and seeing what he thinks about the way his fellows are acting.

Phew… that was a long one, and I don’t even care if no one reads it, but I had to get it off my chest. :sunglasses:


My buddy Sami is a Muslim originally from Pakistan. I’ve had conversations with him before about things like this, but not this situation specifically.

From what he’s told me, the Muslim religion does not approve of actions like this. It is a peace-loving religion, not a war mongering one like people think. He says that it is the extremists that give all Muslims a bad reputation.

I agree with what you said, Cid. I think the Muslim leaders need to step up and publicly denounce actions like this. There is not enough outrage when extremists cross the line.

Hypothetically, if there was a radical Christian group who went around blowing up abortion clinics or something like that and claimed to be doing it in the name of “God”, the reaction would be immediate. There would be Bishops and Cardials all over the place publicly condemning them, saying that is not how true Christians act. The Pope would probably even make a statement about it.

I’m glad someone put into words what many people think. I’m sick of all the hypocrisy, the double standards, the fanatic hatemongers. Honestly, those people are acting like spoiled brats. If they want to hurt someone, why don’t they just slit their own wrists? Terrorists aren’t Muslims. Hatemongers aren’t Muslims. They’re self-serving hypocrites who use religion as an excuse for everything from suicide bombings to horrible social practices.

i agree with dave. the only reason the muslims are viewed badly as a whole is because the only ones making the news are the extremists. and other than being middle-eastern, there had to be one common denominator by which to rule them out. saying all musilims are terrorists is like saying all middle easterns are violent. the fact is that the majority is most likely not violent, but since the only ones doing anything are the violent minority, they have painted a bad picture for the enitre middle east.

*Clap, clap, clap.
It’s obvious that the caricatures serve no purpose but to provoke and insult and show disrepect, and to say that they were published to create a discussion around the freedom of speech is nothing but a coverup, but that doesn’t give anyone one right to respond with threat and violence. Both JyllandPosten and moreso Magazinet, who refuse to even appologise, and the extemist Muslims who react to the caricatures with threats and violence are going about this all wrong. What we need isn’t unprovoked insults and provocations and violence and unveiled threats, but respect and dialogue and from those ultimately harmony and friendship and above all peace.

Yes, extremist everywhere and in every form, go sod yourselves!

What he said.

I saw this in the news just now as I was having lunch. As soon as I saw the headline I assumed that there were just common protests by some angry Muslim group and didn’t pay much attention, until I heard the line “and European citizens in Muslim cities are advised to evacuate” that I jerked my head up to the screen and realized how much this shit had escalated.

Whoever decided to publish the cartoon was indeed an idiot, but the decision from other European newspapers to spread it around and the Muslims’ ridiculously exaggerated response makes this look like a fight between primary school kids. With bombs.

It’s the usual Muslim rage against the West. I’ve heard that some former President of Iran gave a speech in which he said those caricatures were an organized campaign of the west against the muslim world.
Anyway, I’m not surprised about that rage. They know neither democracy nor free speech, so they have no idea that 1) this doesn’t necessarily reflect the opinion of all Danes and 2) the Danish government can’t prohibit publishing caricatures.

i agree with dave. the only reason the muslims are viewed badly as a whole is because the only ones making the news are the extremists.

The reason they’re making the news is because they’re in power. And half the time, the people themselves put them there. Look at Iran, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, and now the Palestinian Authority: the most radical elements of Islam are in power, and many of them were elected. If that’s who the Muslims want to spread their message, then it’s not like they can complain about the image that projects.

I will admit that many of those elections are not as free and open as they could be, but quite a few of them (like the recent one in Palestine) pretty much are.

of course, comparatively speaking, Muslim nations actually have very little power compared to the Judeo-Christian nations that surround them on all sides and tell them how to orchestrate their affairs.

The vile Denmarkians have crossed the line for the last time.

of course, comparatively speaking, Muslim nations actually have very little power compared to the Judeo-Christian nations that surround them on all sides and tell them how to orchestrate their affairs.

Which is probably part of the reason they’re so angry, granted. But moderating their tone would gain them power far more quickly than ranting and raving and blowing things up.

I fail my “take them seriously” roll, and for pretty much the exact reasons outlined by Cid.

This… has gotta be a joke.

Has anyone read Samuel Huntington’s The Clash of Civilizations? I think that cartoon incident just validates some of Huntington’s ideas.
Watching a news clip this morning, showing a demonstration by men carrying Hamas flags and some of them wearing masks, at first I though it was about Palestinian/Israeli conflict, but then at the bottom of screen a flashing sign appeared – Paris (France). And it wasn’t a replay of the riots that hit France a few months ago. How about the “Cartoon Riots”?
In defence of the Danish daily Jyllands-Posten and other news organizations that reprinted (or aired) the cartoons, even 2000 years ago the writers/editorialist could not spare the targets of their critique:
“It is difficult not to write satire.” - Juvenal

“You can dish it out but you can’t take it” << My thoughts exactly. There wouldnt be half as much of a mess if the cartoon had been about, say, the pope. Despite the borderline racism as you called it, I think the papers shouldn’t have apologized. (Then again, I don’t know the cartoons.)

The images in question

From what I can tell, only 1, 5, 7, 8, and 12 can definitely be construed as offensive. 6 and 9 can be offensive, but I don’t think they are. The rest are just tongue in cheek (2, 3, 11), artistic (10), or a serious attempt (4).

8 definitely hit the nail on the head about the issue though. >.>

Don’t let Islam off the hook by claiming that just because these guys do violence they’re not Muslims. They’re as much Muslim as is the non-violent one, the same way both Pope John Paul II and Pat Robertson is Chrisitian. Which one is “correct” is rather irrelevant when you’re asking which babbling prophet heard the tempermental sky god’s words right. The problem is that each separate group has a totally different conception of what authority they give obedience to, and I don’t understand how a society can ever hope to function in such a state.

Then why the heck are the enraged people burning Swiss flags on TV news?

Because they have crossed the line of denmarcation!