Tuesday, February 07, 2006

the cartoon wars

this recent episode of the religion war caused by the mohammed cartoons has been on my mind a lot recently. i find myself in a conundrum and i can't seem to get a definitive personal standpoint vis-a-vis the whole issue.

do i support the free speech proponents who would publish stuff that offend anothers religion or do i agree with the right wing hardliners who cringe like shrinking violets everytime someone, somewhere caricatures their holy figures?

whats really ironical is that five muslims got gunned down in the middle east, by other muslims, for protesting a little too much. i can't figure out protestors. my usual response to an earth shaking event (maybe like this one) is "who cares". i agree that it may not be the ideal one but i guess its a shade better than having my ass shot off.

what i think would have been a whole lot cooler would be al jazeera testing the west's viewpoint on free speech by commissioning an animation movie that depicts christ, the pope and sundry christian holies in compromising situations.

give that making fun of religion is such an easy job they could even get the thing outsourced to india. repeatedly airing the film would make for interesting viewing, increase TRPs everywhere, generate advertising revenue, and give a whole new meaning to the term "cartoon wars" thats being bandied about by everyone.

i'd really like to see a response from an islamic outfit that says "ok! you smirked at us. we're going to laugh at you."


Wafa said...

Ugh, I just finished a huge argument with someone on this same topic. Ignoring that, I have a few primary observations:

1. It seems an Iranian paper is indeed commissioning a series of Holocaust cartoons. Unfunnier & unfunnier, but your suggestion is already being followed.

2. Why do people riot & protest over blasphemous cartoons while ignoring rape & genocide?

3. Why, in France & Germany, is it ok to insult the Prophet but not to say H**l H*tl*r?

4. Why do some people think the best way to protest being represented as terrorists is to make death threats & riot, thereby proving your slanderers right?

5. What does some Danish newspaper gain by being deliberately inflammatory & offensive, as if Islam doesn't get insulted often enough?

6. Why are the worst protests in Palestine being held by Fatah a week after they lose the election, & in Iran in the runup to the nuclear mess, when the cartoons were published in September?

7. Why has the world gone mad?

Annie said...

I too had problems witht his issue until I remembered that every person is responsible for their own actions - not the actions of another. The cartoonists who published the offense - while acting within their right to free speech - may have abused the right if their only intent was to hurt another. As well, the rioting Muslims are responsible for their reaction to the cartoons. What is there intent? Is it righteous outrage, or is it an excuse to further their perception of the world. I believe intent and personal responsibility settles the question - they are both wrong. An eye for an eye never settles a disagreement, battle or war - it will always boil up at some other time and place with a different face.

Anonymous said...

I liked your ramblings and also the comments. Don't get the time to read papers much, but your blog reveals a rare clarity and perception of a complex political phenomenon and your own thoughts.