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Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim Cartoons

The Philadelphia Inquirer is bucking the trend of U.S. papers by publishing one of the offensive, racist, discriminatory cartoons against Muslims.

Leonard Downie of the Washington Post explains why the Post won't run the cartoon.

"We have standards about language, religious sensitivity, racial sensitivity and general good taste."

Downie, who said the images also had not been placed on the Post Web site, compared the decision to similar choices not to run offensive photos of dead bodies or offensive language. "We described them," he said of such images. "Just like in the case of covering the hurricanes in New Orleans or terrorist attacks in Iraq. We will describe horrific scenes."

The World Socialist Society has this condemnation of the publication of the cartoons.

"The World Socialist Web Site unequivocally condemns the publication by a series of European newspapers of defamatory cartoons depicting the Prophet Muhammad as a terrorist and killer. These crude caricatures, intended to insult and incite Muslim sensibilities, are a political provocation. Their publication, initially by a right-wing Danish newspaper with historical ties to German and Italian fascism, was calculated to fuel anti-Muslim and anti-immigrant sentiment.

The decision of the right-wing Danish government to defend the newspaper that initially published the cartoons, and of newspapers in Norway, France, Germany, Spain, Italy, Belgium, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Iceland and Hungary, both conservative and liberal, to reprint them has nothing to do with freedom of the press or the defense of secularism. Such claims make a mockery of these democratic principles."

The violence over the publication of the defamatory, sacriligious cartoons is spreading. Looking for bloggers' takes on the cartoons, it seems that mostly right-wing bloggers are focusing on them. Not suprisingly, they are defending the Danish Government and the cartoons' publication.

I'll throw the topic out for discussion, because I'm interested in what liberal readers think. I suspect, however, that only this site's right-wing commenters will respond. If that's the case, I'll probably close the thread early.

Update: I'm glad to see Atrios weigh in:

I'm not too sympathetic with the notion that anything under the cover of religion is automatically entitled to deference. On the other hand, "don't be an a**hole" about peoples' religious beliefs when they aren't trying to impose them on you seems to be reasonably good etiquette. The cartoons weren't funny and the visual portrayal of Mohammed was done just to "be an a**hole" without any larger point to it. It's like parading around in blackface just for the hell of it. There's no point other than "I'm doing this to see who I can piss off." I certainly defend the right to piss people off, though not always the decision to do so.

Update: With 112 comments, this is a popular topic but time to close the thread. Here's a new one. Thanks for participating.

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  • Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#1)
    by squeaky on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 11:30:00 AM EST
    Juan Cole has a good post that puts this in perspective for us horrified Americans. Juan Cole He points out why a similar response to insupportable provocations like this one, is less likely to happen here, and how insupportable acts like the cartoon are taboo in our culture as well. Worth a read. Still it is sad and troubling.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#2)
    by Edger on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 11:49:07 AM EST
    These crude caricatures, intended to insult and incite Muslim sensibilities, are a political provocation. Of course they are. But further, they will do a 'wonderful' job of demonizing Muslims and Islam generally in the minds of the easily led, though dwindling, part of the population that still unthinkingly buys the war on terror rhetoric. Terrific. More idiocy. Just what we need...

    This situation might have cooled down by now if it weren't for the justifiable belief by many Muslims that Bush is leading the "West" in a war on Islam.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#4)
    by Edger on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 12:13:56 PM EST
    In 1941 the Nazi Party distributed 4 page pamplets demonizing Jews: The cover of the pamplets showed a Star of David on a black and red background and said: "When you see this symbol..." And the inside second page said:
    "Remember what the Jews have done to our people." The page reviews World War I, for which the Jews are held responsible, then states: "Now for the first time, World Jewry openly says what it wants: 'Germany must die!'"
    And now in 2006 The Philadelphia Inquirer is demonizing Muhammad? This is pure unadulterated racism. I hope Philadelphians boycott them into insolvency, and give the editors free room and board. In Gitmo.

    Holy Piss christ batman! I did notice the rag the World Socialist put out fails for even mention the buring of the embassies. Must be alright. I was amazed it took three post for Bush to be blamed.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#6)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 12:39:07 PM EST
    Wile - Yeah, took'em three. Sunday is a slow day. edger wrote:
    Of course they are. But further, they will do a 'wonderful' job of demonizing Muslims and Islam generally in the minds of the easily led,
    Uh, do you think that rioting, taking hostages and in general acting like uncivilized ruffins might have something to do with it? (I won't mention kidnapping journalist, car bombers, suicide bombers, beheading, hijacking, etc. That wouldn't be fair.)

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#7)
    by MikeDitto on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 12:46:50 PM EST
    I'm with Duncan. The reaction has been way over the top, and only goes to reinforce the tasteless cartoons' point (if any). And yet papers didn't need to print them, either. It wouldn't have been a freedom of speech issue had the papers refused to print them--only if the Danish government forbade the papers from printing them (you know, kind of like when the Joint Chiefs sent a letter on official letterhead the other day to a paper for printing a cartoon they didn't like). Papers make editorial decisions all the time. They can't hide behind freedom of speech on this. But I can't fault some papers for subsequently printing the cartoons--people want to know what all the hubbub is about. Now the news is about the cartoon, so people kind of need to see it to understand it.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#8)
    by jondee on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 12:50:06 PM EST
    "Uncivilised ruffians." This from a hypocrite who rationalizes dropping cluster bombs on children and calls torture "frat house hazing". PPJ, it'd be funny if it wasnt so sad.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#9)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 01:25:53 PM EST
    jondee writes:
    "Uncivilised ruffians." This from a hypocrite who rationalizes dropping cluster bombs on children and calls torture "frat house hazing".
    That is a vile personal attack that you can not prove. Everyday in everyway you folks demonstrate the accuracy of Goodwin's Law and your determined inability to have a reasoned debate. et al - Read and consider:
    Add to their commentary Charles Moore's question in the Telegraph: How did all the Danish flags suddenly materialize for burning in Gaza and elsewhere? Moore writes: Why were those Danish flags to hand? Who built up the stockpile so that they could be quickly dragged out right across the Muslim world and burnt where television cameras would come and look? The more you study this story of "spontaneous" Muslim rage, the odder it seems. The complained-of cartoons first appeared in October; they have provoked such fury only now. As reported in this newspaper yesterday, it turns out that a group of Danish imams circulated the images to brethren in Muslim countries. When they did so, they included in their package three other, much more offensive cartoons which had not appeared in Jyllands-Posten but were lumped together so that many thought they had. It rather looks as if the anger with which all Muslims are said to be burning needed some pretty determined stoking.


    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#10)
    by jondee on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 01:37:37 PM EST
    Cant prove? A little self awareness would do you some good my friend. And remember; cluster bombs and softening up may break my bones but names can never hurt me.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#11)
    by Peter G on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 01:44:50 PM EST
    The Philadelphia Inquirer, which I read every morning, is far superior to the daily papers of most US cities that I have the misfortune to see when I travel. It ran a rather small reproduction of one of the Danish cartoons (the bomb turban) on an inside page, to allow readers to see what the issue was about, along with a rather lengthy and well-reasoned explanation of the decision to run it. The Inky's daily editorial cartoonist, Pulitzer Prize winner Tony Auth, has often used potentially offensive religious imagery (Jewish, Christian, and other) to make a political or satirical point. When he does, outraged readers write in and complain, and the Inky runs a sampling of those letters in the Letters to the Editor column on the editorial page. I'm proud of them for behaving as a responsibile newspaper should.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#12)
    by Andreas on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 01:52:07 PM EST
    Wile E. Coyote wrote: "I did notice the rag the World Socialist put out fails for even mention the buring of the embassies." First: those attacks hardly disprove anything which was written in the article. They certainly do not disprove the provocative character of the defamatory cartoons. Second: those attacks have been reported by virtually all main stream media. Therefore the readers of the WSWS are aware of those attacks. Third: the WSWS article was published on Saturday morning. Most of the attacks on embassies happened after the article was written. Unfortunately the WSWS is not yet able to regularly publish articles on Sunday.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#13)
    by Johnny on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 01:58:39 PM EST
    Jim, "Godwin's" law is something that you have taken hold of and are shaking it viciously. Kind of reminds me of a little dog with a stuffed animal. But I digress. You have, over the years I have read you on this blog, advocated and supported violent means to dubious ends. Jondee calls you on that, you get yer feathers ruffled and claim "Goodwin's Law" (sp). Of course, a few cartoons should force the 1% (or less) of Muslims who are engaging in that behavior to rconsider their views and reform...

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#14)
    by Edger on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 01:59:24 PM EST
    Peter G: I'm proud of them for behaving as a responsibile newspaper should. You always make sense here Peter, and I always read your posts and respect your opinions. I've never read the Philadelphia Inquirer, and my post was intended to be inflaming and purposeful overreaction. The comparison would only be valid if the paper were running the cartoon on its editorial page or as expressing a position, rather than as the subject of an article. I just wanted to ring the alarm bells a bit, preemptively you know? I may have ventured a bit to close to "the edge" there.

    PPJ proves Godwin's corollary: As an online discussion grows longer, the probability of my name being misspelt approaches 1.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#16)
    by Al on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 02:30:18 PM EST
    It's not that simple. It certainly is not a left/right issue. Since the Madrid bombings and the London bombings were done in the name of Mohammed, it's not unreasonable to associate the two. I'm still waiting to hear from the imams an impassioned apology for those acts, which did a lot more than offend people's sensibilities -- they tore people to bits and scattered their body parts all over the trains and buses they were riding. For me, the violent reaction of Muslims against the cartoon is a bit suspect. In the UK there protests with very serious threats of violence which were condemned by other Muslims. According to the protesters, there would be more bombings and killings because of the cartoons. It seems to me the violent reaction is being directed. It's one thing to disapprove of religious insensitivity. It's quite another thing to give in to bullying.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#17)
    by jondee on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 02:38:33 PM EST
    While we're dealing a death blow to Islamofacism why we dont clear the table and rid "old Europe" once and for all of these socialistic, gun hating, gloomy, existentialist, pastry mongers? For far too long have these shipwrecked viking milk sops worked behind the scenes to undermine our oral hygiene with thier sugary concoctions and our souls with morbid introspection and pubescent porn. Time to drop the big intercontinental cruller on these miscreants.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#18)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 02:44:18 PM EST
    Johnny writes:
    Kind of reminds me of a little dog with a stuffed animal.
    Have you noticed a warm wet feeling on your ankle? ;-) You also wrote:
    You have, over the years I have read you on this blog, advocated and supported violent means to dubious ends.
    As I did in another inaccurate charge you recently made, I challenge you to prove that. But you won't, having made the attack you will just quietly withdraw. And then you close with:
    Of course, a few cartoons should force the 1% (or less) of Muslims who are engaging in that behavior to reconsider their views and reform...
    Now this puzzles me. Are you saying that the cartoons should cause the terrorists --- that's what I call people who kidnap, burn, etc. --- to cease their actions? If so, why will they do that when you have such people as the Danish Imams doing such things as sending flags to burn, including cartoons that were not part of the original and all this some three months after the fact? Does seem a bit calculated, eh? Or are you saying that since it is (probably) 1% or less, we should just expect them to riot, burn, kidnap, etc.? Tell me. 1% of the US population is about 2 million 500 thousand.... Would it be okay if they rioted in protest of some of the numerous vile attacks on Christianity? What say you, Johnny? jondee - I await your evidence, oh great insulter. But you won't provide any.

    I would have some compassion if I thought Muslims would be as offended when their own media portray Jews with vicious stereotypes that incite hatred and violence towards Jews world wide. Or is it okay because, well, you know, they're Jews and Jews/Israelis are oppressors and they control the world? Will other Western media be offended by such portayals in the Muslim media?

    Let's see, quad amputee, OK. Mo' with a bomb in his turban, outside the pale. What's wrong with this picture? I'm not questioning the WaPo's right to make these decisions. I'm questioning their judgement. BTW, I'm waiting for Martin Scorcese to make "the last temptation of Mo'" Then we'll see how brave all these Hollywood lib'rals are. When Marty showed J-man getting funky with MaryMaggy, about the worst that happened was some strongly worded letters to the editor and some Donald "wildman" Wildmon segments on Crossfire. Now its all burning of the Crossflag of Denmark. Wake up liberals. It's a clash of civilization with only one civilization on the field. Jimbo

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#21)
    by pigwiggle on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 04:03:59 PM EST
    There is no bit of speech, no matter how vile or insidious, that could drive me to violence. This is symptomatic of a significant and fundamental deficit in Arab Muslim culture. Save me all the finger pointing and exemplars of wrongs in the West. It doesn't excuse or justify violent riots over offensive cartoons (and some not so offensive). These folks need to join us in the current century and abandon fanatical devotion to their fairy tail. Really, this is just insane. And yeah, behavior like this does make it that much easier to dismiss other Arab Muslim concerns out of hand; that's just human nature. It's an interesting double standard from the left. If this were Christians I'm certain the focus would be on the behavior not the cause. Do you folks just expect more civil behavior from Christians, or what?

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#22)
    by squeaky on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 04:14:13 PM EST
    pw-
    There is no bit of speech, no matter how vile or insidious, that could drive me to violence.
    don't be so sure, that is, I am assuming that you are human, and not a qaddruple amputee.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#23)
    by Edger on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 04:18:49 PM EST
    Do you folks just expect more civil behavior from Christians, or what? Not particularly, no. Why?

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#24)
    by squeaky on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 04:22:56 PM EST
    pw-if you are interested in trying to get your head around what is going on, or just interested in another perspective take a look at what juan cole has to say. It made it seem less incomprehensible to me. Still quite a horror show though.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#25)
    by pigwiggle on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 04:46:08 PM EST
    edgar- I won't bother listing the horrors perpetrated in the name of Islam. It is sufficient to contrast the Muslim response to these 'cartoons' with the Christian response to something similar. Take for example a very humorous set of Easter cards published by the Onion annually; a bleeding Christ hopping like a rabbit, a crucified Easter bunny, and on. What would be the Arab Muslim response to a similar send up; I guarantee violent, bloody. Anyone remember the Christian outrage, the demonstrations, the burned office buildings? Squeaky- I take it back. If you were to insult my wife in a particular way we would have it out. But there is certainly no bit of speech that could drive me to this kind of violence, mob violence. This is irrational and mad.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#26)
    by Edger on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 05:15:14 PM EST
    Pigglewiggle: I won't bother listing the horrors perpetrated in the name of Islam. It is sufficient to contrast the Muslim response to these 'cartoons' with the Christian response to something similar. I don't blame you. I threw it out there for contrast only. Personally? I use the nearly the same words you did, with a different ending on the sentence: I won't bother listing the horrors perpetrated in the name of organized religions. I do not belong to or identify with any organized religion. I think that organized religion is the root of nearly all social and political problems, and probably the most evil thing on this planet... As far as christianity (lower case intentional - I refer here to the organized aspect, not honest spirituality) in America is concerned most professing of christianity is utter BS, or as it's been labelled here by many "faux christianity", and is used as cover and justification for as much or more life demeaning absolute immoral horror than any other organized religion, but that doesn't excuse other religions, Islam included. They all vye for the top spot in perpetrating horrors on the human race, like there is something to win by being more disgusting than the other guy? Dylan put it well in poetry a long time ago: Disillusioned words like bullets bark As human gods aim for their mark Make everything from toy guns that spark To flesh-colored Christs that glow in the dark It's easy to see without looking too far That not much is really sacred.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#27)
    by squeaky on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 05:21:45 PM EST
    pw- I see you are warming up. Glad to know that you are human and not suffering from some incapacitating disability. Don't you think that there is something more to this than just a very large group of people spanning several countries having a psychotic break, or whatever it is you think they are having? Do you think people are that different from one another when it comes to losing control, rioting? Would this sort of thing be possible in your neighborhood? Why not? Hey I am as anti-violence as you are. I am trying to understand what is motivating these people to riot. I do not think that they are crazy, nor do I think that the cartoons are the whole story. Straw that broke the camel's back...maybe.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#28)
    by Edger on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 05:45:47 PM EST
    Squeaky: I am trying to understand what is motivating these people to riot. I think you know that I try not to oversimplify things, but maybe the "overcrowded rats" thing is a starting point? It does affect brain chemistry, and very adversely. What are the longer term consequences when the pressure cooker of population growth and overcrowding not only never lets up, but continually gets worse? Where is the boil over, or explosion point? Who Knows? The only studies I've seen on it are short term experiments.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#29)
    by pigwiggle on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 05:46:39 PM EST
    "Would this sort of thing be possible in your neighborhood? Why not?"
    No, I don't think so. I live in Salt Lake, which is mostly Mormon. Every year they have a conference which is attended by Mormon folks from all over the nation. And every year all manner of non-Mormon Christian folks show up to protest. The protestors say all kinds of outrageously insulting stuff, even parading around sacred Mormon accoutrements in various disrespectful ways. Last year was the first time I've heard of a Mormon acting out. A conference attendee punched a man in the nose for walking on some LDS garments. Not exactly mob violence though. And of course he was immediately arrested. I've got beef with a lot of crap the Mormons pull but I would gladly take them over Arab Muslims; i.e. arcane alcohol regulation is better than Sharia like prohibition. Oh, and Persian Muslims too; don't forget Iran.
    "Don't you think that there is something more to this than just a very large group of people spanning several countries having a psychotic break,"
    Yeah, like I said, a fundamental and profound cultural deficit. It's the same foundation from which honor killings come, Sharia, or the hijab and burke, or the deep disrespect for western women which fomented the Australian riots, or the idea of 'martyring' oneself. It wasn't so long ago TL was displaying pictures of two very young men being hanged just for loving each other. A fundamental and profound cultural deficit.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#30)
    by squeaky on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 06:05:47 PM EST
    pw-
    And of course he was immediately arrested.
    Your environment is quite different from the ones where there is rioting. From your response it is clear that you have no interest in thinking about the context other than these people are bad 'culture deficit'. So much for discussion.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#31)
    by Edger on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 06:19:36 PM EST
    A fundamental and profound cultural deficit. Relative to what? To whose culture? Value judgements by comparison to ones own culture can be very misleading, and miss the mark entirely. We generally see the world through the filter of our own experiences, cultural background and upbringing. What is right and proper in one culture may not be in another. And vice versa. I have friends who profess devout christianity, and are absolutely and beyond discussion convinced that christianity is in their words a "superior" religion. I think that is absolute crap myself, but they are otherwise reasonably good people, so I stay away from the subject with them, but I see the attitude permeate their relationships and dealings with other people, and sometimes I have to just walk away. Needless to say they are not very close friends.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#32)
    by pigwiggle on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 06:35:25 PM EST
    Squeaky-
    "From your response it is clear that you have no interest in thinking about the context other than these people are bad 'culture deficit'. So much for discussion."
    No, I've provided plenty of context; that is, culture, or a cultural defect. I think it clearly explains, for example, the murder of Dutch filmmaker Theo van Gough. Or the barbaric treatment of women in Arab countries. I've posted plenty of, and plenty for, discussion. I don't see why you think I'm uninterested. edger-
    "Relative to what? To whose culture?"
    Relative to any that respects the rights of women, the individual, religious minorities, ...
    "What is right and proper in one culture may not be in another. And vice versa."
    And there's the sticking point. In all respects, values or moral codes are relative, even the choice of consistency or hypocrisy is as defensible as any other arbitrary bit or whim. So, ... I believe that all humans have the fundamental right to self-determination in as much as the exercise of that does not directly infringe on the same of another. I also believe these rights are extrinsic and universal. But there is utility as well. I think folks who adhere to these principals will, on average, prosper. And likewise, folks who adhere to the principals I consider a 'cultural defect' wont. And clearly they haven't. How could they; fully half (or more) of their brain trust is locked away, subjugated and oppressed.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#33)
    by Edger on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 06:50:50 PM EST
    all humans have the fundamental right to self-determination in as much as the exercise of that does not directly infringe on the same of another. I also believe these rights are extrinsic and universal. I agree without reservation to that. These are not rights that can be granted to anyone by another or by a state. I think folks who adhere to these principals will, on average, prosper. Well... yesss... sort of. But everyone will have their own idea of what it means to "prosper". Everyone will value things less or more than anyone else. Here we also run into, I think, the filter of our own experiences, cultural background and upbringing. folks who adhere to the principals I consider a 'cultural defect' wont. And clearly they haven't. These are value judgements. They may prosper very well, in their view, but in ways that you would place no value on. So your "cultural defect" judgement at this point is invalid because it is a "defect" only in comparison to what you value.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#34)
    by Johnny on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 06:52:45 PM EST
    Have you noticed a warm wet feeling on your ankle? ;-)
    No, why? Drooling an issue?
    As I did in another inaccurate charge you recently made, I challenge you to prove that. But you won't, having made the attack you will just quietly withdraw.
    In other words, nah nah nah boo boo, right?
    Or are you saying that since it is (probably) 1% or less, we should just expect them to riot, burn, kidnap, etc.?
    Noo.... and I think you are being purposefully dense here. As you have said in the past, I think you know exactly what I meant. (hint: attacking the religion of billions of peaceful people to infuriate a very small minority is considered by some to be slightly, well, stupid).
    Would it be okay if they rioted in protest of some of the numerous vile attacks on Christianity?
    Absolutely, I would dearly love to see violent outbreaks from christians.The only reason that violent protests don't break out in this country... Oh wait... Never mind, violent outbreaks from a very small minority of people professing to belong to a wider sect have already done that Straight Edgers-another group of radical right-wing religio-nuts hell-bent (pardon the pun) on violent conversion of the non-believers. (Violent conversion is a trademark of all "enlightnened religions.) ...all the while professing that violence is not their "way". Muslims are far from being the only violence prone whack-jobs out there, Jim. You know it, I know it, the world knows it. And before ya'll get bent out of shape about how they do not represent the christian way, keep in mind the soothing sounds of Dobson, Robertson et al.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#35)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 07:43:52 PM EST
    Johnny - I see you have avoided answering my challenge to prove your point. Typical and usual. BTW - Love your defense of the Moslem radicals. I'd wave a cross at you but I'm afraid you would trip and hurt yourself running away.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#36)
    by jimcee on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 07:54:07 PM EST
    Perhaps the cartoons were in bad taste but so is a large part of the product lines of the entertainment industry. Who could forget when the Bishop of Denver led the riots against those blasphemers Parker and Stone for thier depictions of Jesus and Mary... And those riots over Andre Serrano's Piss Christ were the worst in memory. And who could ever forget when Guiliani lead the mobs with thier torches and pitchforks to the doors of the Brooklyn Museum and threatened to behead the curators of that exhibit.... Or the Christian Pro-life riots that followed the Roe v Wade decision in 1972... And the continuing celebration in the streets of the Christian world over the Tsunami, earthquakes and ferry sinkings befalling the Muslim world. Oh wait those things never happened but to listen to some folks it would seem that way. Theo Van Gogh knifed to death by a Muslim for having an opinion about Muslim treatment of women.... The kidnappings and beheadings of Allah knows how many people for offending the Muslim faith... The Clitorectomies and honor killings of daughters and sisters... The fate of gays, Maronites, Jews, Christians and Zorastrians at the hands of pious Muslims... The dancing in the streets as 3,000 westerners die in a horrific attack perpetuated in the name of Allah. The burning of Embassies and the threat of beheading and murder of those who happen to be non-believers because of a friggin' cartoon. I hate to be judgemental but honestly the Muslim world is rife with ignorant masses waiting to be exploited by radical elements. There is no excuse for thier behavior, period. They are now in the same historical position that the European Crusaders were a thousand years ago except the roles have been reversed. The Crusaders were ignorant, barbaric, crude and pious to a fault and expected a superior culture to submit to thier religion or to thier sword. The radical Muslims right now are the modern Crusaders and just as pathetic as the European version from ancient times. And since when does anyone believe a word of what the Wobblies publish?

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#37)
    by Edger on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 08:01:26 PM EST
    See what I mean, Pigglewiggle? Value judgements by comparison to ones own culture can be very misleading, and miss the mark entirely. We generally see the world through the filter of our own experiences, cultural background and upbringing.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#38)
    by Edger on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 08:04:35 PM EST
    Sorry, Pigwiggle.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#39)
    by squeaky on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 09:12:48 PM EST
    I knew that this did not make too much sense and that there must have been more to the story. The cartoons were printed Sept 2005. After 350 people got stampeeded during the haj last month in Saudi Arabia, due to lack of security and poor planning. The deaths could have been prevented. From soj at dkos
    And while the deaths of these pilgrims was a mere blip on the traditional western media's radar, it was a huge story in the Muslim world.  Most of the pilgrims who were killed came from poorer countries such as Pakistan, where the Hajj is a very big story.  Even the most objective news stories were suddenly casting Saudi Arabia in a very bad light and they decided to do something about it. Their plan was to go on a major offensive against the Danish cartoons.  The 350 pilgrims were killed on January 12 and soon after, Saudi newspapers (which are all controlled by the state) began running up to 4 articles per day condemning the Danish cartoons.  The Saudi government asked for a formal apology from Denmark.  When that was not forthcoming, they began calling for world-wide protests.


    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#40)
    by squeaky on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 09:41:34 PM EST
    after reading most of the comments on soj's diary it is not clear that the above story is anything more than speculative. The info comes from a blog that may be a satire called The Religious Poiceman Take a look and decide for yourself. It all sounds plausible to me.,

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#41)
    by squeaky on Sun Feb 05, 2006 at 10:10:46 PM EST
    Oh well it was a good story, satire though.Juan Cole Sets the record straight. I don't know what we would do without him.
    It is being alleged in some quarters that the controversy over the Danish caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad is somehow artificial or whipped up months later by the Saudis. This is not true. The controversy began in Denmark itself among the 180,000 Danish Muslims.


    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#42)
    by jimakaPPJ on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 06:00:36 AM EST
    Squeaky - The following is from my 2:22PM comment. Glad to see Juan Cole agrees with me. ;-)
    The complained-of cartoons first appeared in October; they have provoked such fury only now. As reported in this newspaper yesterday, it turns out that a group of Danish imams circulated the images to brethren in Muslim countries. When they did so, they included in their package three other, much more offensive cartoons which had not appeared in Jyllands-Posten but were lumped together so that many thought they had.
    Link to source So the Moslems, led by such people as these Imams, I won't call them Danish, stir the pot and no one calls them on it. I can just see the editorials condemning the Pope should some Bishops do something similar and the Catholic Church not step forward. Facts are facts. There are moderate Moslems and they are the ones who must put an end to this nonsense. If they do not, eventually, it will be done externally. I hope it is the former.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#43)
    by Edger on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 06:03:39 AM EST
    Squeaky, If Juan Cole has his facts right it is no surprise that the cartoons would have upset Danish Muslims, and much of Islam elsewhere. I never condemn free speech or support censorship, but still think the negtive reactions should have been expected. The rioting is extreme reaction though, but who knows, maybe it was a whipped up reaction within the Muslim Community for political reasons. Intentionally by Muslim community leaders, or or by Christian or secular Danish, who knows? A Danish version of Pat Robertson have his hand in there somewhere? As Cole notes:
    a Danish author was unable to find an illustrator for her book on the Prophet Muhammad, since Islam forbids pictorial representations of the prophet and illustrators were afraid of a Muslim backlash.
    Yet knowing that:
    The conservative daily then asked 40 cartoonists to provide such pictures and it subsequently published all 12 cartoons received in response, some of which depicted the prophet in an unflattering manner.
    What did they expect, no reaction?
    Last week, as many as 5,000 Muslims demonstrated in Copenhagen against the newspaper and the drawings, which depicted Muhammad in different settings. In one of the drawings, he appeared with a turban shaped like a bomb strapped to his head.
    Imagine the reaction in the bible belt from the Robertsons and Falwells and their maniacal followers if Al Jazeera were to publish caricatures of Jesus Christ piloting a helicopter raining white phosphorus down onto women and children in Fallujah. What would the reaction be? Calls for bombing them into the stone age? Attacks on, beatings, and murders of Muslims in the US and Britain. Rioting by faux christians?

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#44)
    by squeaky on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 06:42:57 AM EST
    edger-
    Imagine the reaction in the bible belt from the Robertsons and Falwells and their maniacal followers if Al Jazeera were to publish caricatures of Jesus Christ piloting a helicopter raining white phosphorus down onto women and children in Fallujah.
    Such cartoons have undoubtedly been published. One of the points Juan Cole made in his first post about the cartoons is that a group that being targeted and killed (poor brown people) on a regular basis (by rich white people), acts much like a cornered animal. Fearful and angry that they cannot stop the oppression, and quicker to riot because there is not much more to lose. Race riots in America would be a more apt analogy. Cole writes today
    Before I launch into this report, I want to underline that few places in the Muslim world have seen violence over the caricatures, so far mainly Damascus and Beirut (which are unexpected in this regard.) Protests in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, Iran, Egypt, and elsewhere have been nonviolent. This is not to play down the seriousness of what happened in Damascus and Beirut over the weekend--acts which can only inspire horror and condemnation--only to set it in context. There are 1.5 billion Muslims. A lot of Muslim countries saw no protests at all. In some places, as in Pakistan, they were anemic. The caricature protests are resonating with local politics and anti-imperialism in ways distinctive to each Muslim country. The protests therefore are probably not mostly purely about religion.
    read on, if you are interested.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#45)
    by Johnny on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 06:53:35 AM EST
    Jimmy you have defended, many times, the killing of women and children during bombing runs because "we may have gotten a terrorist." (my words, not yours, and I ain't digging through the archives to show the world what they know to be true. Sorry. Everyone here knows your stances on killing brown people.) You, in one thread currently active elsewhere, implicitly gave approval to Pres. Bush to order killings on US soil. Now, you cover your tracks well enough that you will never, ever say "I condone killing on American soil." But you also never, ever say: "I do not condone these killings..." Look at any of your past statements claiming inherent violence of muslims, and your cutesy "moderate muslims need to take care of this, but they probably will not so lets bomb the hell out of them" attitude. Don't play coy Jimmy, people would give you even a small amount of respect if you stopped pretending online debate was a poker game. Your hand is showing, your brow is sweating, and your constant game of "parry and wait" style of debate is too predictable. "The laws of debate according to Jim" "When a post is made, dispute both the premise and conclusion, offering only random anectodal off-the-cuff remarks and cast subtle aspersions on the originator. Further, when someone posts a complete and reasonable rebuttal, counter with Godwin's law and sit back and smirk." Sound about right? (I never post complete and reasonable rebuttals.)

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#46)
    by Edger on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 07:02:56 AM EST
    Sounds more than just about right, Johnny.

    Man, that is a shame. You seem to suggest that support for the right to publish the cartoons, and disgust at the response, is inherently right-wing. If so, you would then consider both Josh Marshall and Kevin Drum right-wing. The Vatican and the Bush State Department you would consider left-wing. How did you feel about Hillary's support for a flag-burning amendment?

    As far as I am concerned, the demand that a newspaper be prosecuted for, or prevented from, publishing a cartoon in which Mohammed appears, even derisively, is not left-wing, but fascist. (Nevermind the outrageous hypocrisy of this anger coming from a culture that overwhelmingly applauds anti-Semitic statements and caricatures.) I don't understand how you can even contemplate sympathy with this view. If you walked into a Loyalist meeting in Spain in 1936 pushing this view, they'd tell you you must have lost your way and wandered over to the wrong side.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#48)
    by Edger on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 07:21:17 AM EST
    a group that being targeted and killed (poor brown people) on a regular basis (by rich white people), acts much like a cornered animal. Fearful and angry that they cannot stop the oppression, and quicker to riot because there is not much more to lose. Very well put, Squeaky. I think you nailed it...
    "The situation was like a crocodile meeting a helpless child, powerless except for his screams. Does the crocodile understand a conversation that doesn't include a weapon? And the whole world saw and heard but it didn't respond."


    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#49)
    by squeaky on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 07:21:40 AM EST
    ppj-
    So the Moslems, led by such people as these Imams, I won't call them Danish, stir the pot and no one calls them on it.
    Isn't what the Nazi's said of the jews who had lived in germany for over a hundred years, many who had converted to protestantism in order to have social mobility. Guess we know whose side you are on. Aryan Nation card carrying member, no?

    P.S. oh, forgot, Le monde is also right-wing, ça va de soi. Soupir<\i>.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#51)
    by pigwiggle on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 07:26:34 AM EST
    "Imagine the reaction in the bible belt from the Robertsons and Falwells and their maniacal followers if Al Jazeera ..."
    Hmmm ... Burning the Saudi Embassy in DC or combing local hotels, armed to the teeth, looking to execute Arabs? Pfftht. Really, this attempt at depicting equivalency is drawn. I can picture the reaction of this board's residences at such an outburst by Christian zealots. It would hardly be a search for understanding and justification or cries of "look, look, the Muslims do it too".

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#52)
    by squeaky on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 07:32:19 AM EST
    One thing that occured to me is that the rioting over cartoons serves the Bush Admin all too well. Wasn't the reason that the WH refused a FIOA court order to release Abu Ghraib photos that it would endanger National Security. Riots, against US embassies world wide? Hmmm. Makes you wonder if the chimp and obl are on the same side.

    edger.... And now in 2006 The Philadelphia Inquirer is demonizing Muhammad? This is pure unadulterated racism. This all just proves how crazy they all are. Can't take a joke huh? Nevermind that they (muslims) continue to demonize Isreal and the West daily! They have said on many occasions they want all of us gone... that by it's very nature makes them racists doesn't it? Or are we on the left to blind to see that? As far as I'm concerned... if all this killing (beheadings..etc) is in the name of Muhammad...he is a demon! And so are his followers. Can you imagine what the world would be like if Christians acted like this everytime their religion was lampooned? Squeaky... I am trying to understand what is motivating these people to riot. I do not think that they are crazy, I think you need to 'rethink' your assessment. THEY ARE CRAZY...and the sooner the rest of the world understands that... the better the rest of us will be.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#54)
    by Edger on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 09:07:16 AM EST
    This all just proves how crazy they all are. Kind of like how Pat Robertson "proves" how "crazy" ALL christians are, BB? Right, I get it... but I think I'll just "sweep" your "generalization" into the dustbin of history. Thanks for your "thoughts(?)"

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#55)
    by squeaky on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 09:40:46 AM EST
    bb-sounds like your sense of humor is rather poor as well, judging form how irate you regularly get. I guess Moslems must adhere to a higher standard in your book. Crazy, I think not, unless that is, the same could be said of you.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#57)
    by kdog on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 10:10:49 AM EST
    I haven't seen the carton, just read the description, and I can't see why it should not be published and openly discussed. Political cartoons are meant to be provacative, at least the better ones. Seeing as extremist followers of Mohammed have been known to strap bombs on themselves, the cartoon is quite poignant. If a bunch of extremists in the ME can't grasp the concept of the free flow of ideas and debate, well that's too bad. Media outlets should not restrict the free flow of ideas because of the warped sensibilities of the religous extremists. Being offended is an everyday occurence when you leave in a free society. That's how we roll, and I like it. I wouldn't like the feeling of opening my morning paper and wondering what ideas were left out because the editor was afraid of offending a group of people.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#58)
    by Edger on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 10:42:45 AM EST
    Here are the drawings and cartoons, along with a rightwing very confrontational view of the controversy over them. As I said upthread, one of my own opinions is that I never condemn free speech or support censorship, but still think the negtive reactions should have been expected. Expecting the reactions is not condoning them. It's being aware of the political and social context. I think the papers knew that publishing the drawings would be inflammatory, they also knew that not publishing them might be seen as a form of censorship and as not standing up for free speech and expression... What to do? If both sides continue to attack each other, where is any possibility of, if not a meeting of minds, at least some reconciliation and mutual respect and allowance for differences, and of peace? Who will take the first step towards this? Does anyone really want peace? Or does everyone just want to win, and have the other side lose, in the mistaken idea that that peace can be achieved that way? Will anyone take the first step, on either side? Islam or Christian? What will be the consequences for the world if no one will? Not easy questions... but then, the problems would not exist if they were.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#59)
    by squeaky on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 11:09:29 AM EST
    narius-
    Remember that Muslims are kidnapping & killing people because of a stupid CARTOON
    What are the jews, the blacks and the whites,the asians, and the bigots like you doing. You are quick to generalize about a whole group of people who share a religion.
    At a level of 1.2 billion, they represent about 22% of the world's population. They are the second largest religion in the world. Only Christianity is larger, with 33% of the world's inhabitants.
    link

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#61)
    by squeaky on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 12:46:23 PM EST
    Would you be offended if someone were to say that the asians are on a killing spree, watch out they are dangerous. Generalizations lead to stereotypes which only seperate people from one another and fan hatred, racism and ill will. The number of muslims who have done anything more than peaceful protest are minute compared to the number of Muslims that you are slandering. Not even a drop in the bucket.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#62)
    by Al on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 12:49:51 PM EST
    The Guardian reports on the riots in Beirut with the headline Rioting with well planned spontaneity. It is quite clear that religion is being used to goad people into committing acts of violence. These people are quite convinced that they have been offended in the most profound part of their soul, but they have been convinced by a religious elite, which thus has the force of all these furious zealots at their disposal. This is why I am quite skeptical about talk of "religious sensitivity". In the same way, by demonizing the Muslims and presenting them as dangerous lunatics, non-Muslims are manipulated into supporting invasions, assassinations and torture. The support is in the form of money (oodles of money), and in young people sent to kill and be killed fighting the Iraqis, or the Iranians, or whoever the Pentagon considers necessary to fight. Should non-Muslim nations contain their cartoonists, and their press in general? I would say no; defending the freedom of the press and free speech is more important than bowing to the interests of a religious elite. I do think that non-Muslim nations should contain their invading armies, and their torturers and murderers at Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo and elsewhere. The effect of these is far worse than that of any cartoon.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#63)
    by Edger on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 01:25:22 PM EST
    It is quite clear that religion is being used to goad people into committing acts of violence.
    Very well reasoned post, Al. I agree completely. Religious nut leaders, whether Islamic or Christian, derive their authority from their ability to whip up extreme emotional reactions, and smother reason and sense. And they use it as much as possible... without it they would have no power. The Pat Robertsons of the world, and the Mullahs and Imams, are out to save the souls of their flocks of "sheep", even if they kill them all in the process. They may be the most dangerous people in the world.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#64)
    by squeaky on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 01:32:40 PM EST
    edger-
    The Pat Robertsons of the world, and the Mullahs and Imams....
    It would be better if you were more specific with your criticisms of the Moslem religioud leaders. I noticed that you were specific with your cristofascist reference. Educate yourself and name names for the islamofacists. Otherwise you contribute to the bigotry we all are so easy prey to.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#65)
    by Edger on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 01:46:26 PM EST
    Thanks for pointing that out Squeaky. It waasn't meant to be a blanket indictment of all of them, just of the equivalents of the Robertson types in the Islamic world. I'm at work and posting in between doing the things I have to do here. That's no excuse however, for posting without proofreading to make sure I'm clear. I appreciate your reminders. Thanks!

    Religious nut leaders, whether Islamic or Christian, derive their authority from their ability to whip up extreme emotional reactions, and smother reason and sense. And they use it as much as possible... without it they would have no power.
    Very well put. Just to be clear, you do understand that is is a strategy that can and is used in business, politics, religion, inter-personal relationships, etc., by just about anyone who wants to gain power badly enough - and that it is not limited only to religous leaders. Right?

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#67)
    by Edger on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 02:01:10 PM EST
    Of course, Scar. It's used in every kind of human relationship. In business to sell cars, houses, consulting... any kind of service or product. But when it's used to foment hate and bigotry and death for profit it's no longer business. It's outright, plain, unadulterated evil... IMHO.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#68)
    by Edger on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 02:02:18 PM EST
    Sarc, nor Scar. Spelling error...

    We are in agreement.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#70)
    by Edger on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 02:06:41 PM EST
    Except I seem to be unable to spell "not" properly.... hey, I got lucky this time!

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#71)
    by Jlvngstn on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 02:19:00 PM EST
    If the Muslims don't like it, they should not buy the paper. Bunch of religious freaks going crazy over satire, no sympathy here. I commend the paper for having the chutzpah to print them.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#73)
    by squeaky on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 02:50:05 PM EST
    narius-Perhaps my point was unclear. If others of your ethnic/religious type who share visible features with you went on a killing spree, you would have to accept, according to your logic, becaue you are also asian, hate and possible violence from those who lump you together with the asian killers. We had that in America during and after ww11. We have it now with racism in america. Do you want to be a part of curbing stereotyping or do you want to fan the flames of hate? Your comment suggests the latter.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#74)
    by Al on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 03:45:10 PM EST
    Further on the issue I was raising earlier about demonizing a group to drum up support for war: The BBC announces that Bush seeks defence spending rise. FTA:
    President George W Bush has proposed a $2,770bn (£1,600bn) annual budget, with more money for defence, but less for many social areas...Cuts are proposed in areas such as health to help trim the budget deficit.
    So, when you are told that Muslims are bloodthirsty lunatics who are out to slit everybody's throats in their sleep, please pause to consider that war is being conducted on your behalf and its ever-increasing costs are borne by Medicare.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#75)
    by roy on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 04:00:21 PM EST
    I don't like the cartoons, but I like the cartoons a heckuva lot more than I like the murders done in response. More generally, I like free expression more than I like violent attempts to end free expression. Re-publishing the cartoons seems like a concise and precise way to express that. It also fights against the hecklers' veto. Offending millions of people is an unfortunate but acceptable side effect. If I could remember the password to update my website I'd post them myself. Claiming to support free speech, while not re-publishing the cartoons, kind of rings hollow.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#76)
    by roy on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 04:05:01 PM EST
    D'oh. "Murder" should be read as "violence" above -- the deaths I've read about have only ambiguous connection to the cartoons.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#77)
    by roy on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 04:21:25 PM EST
    And what's up with people comdeming the papers' use of free expression to insult Muslims, but not condeming the rioters' use of free expression to advocate murder? (This time I really do mean to write "murder") (Really trying not to rant... done for the day)

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#78)
    by jondee on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 04:25:47 PM EST
    As if no one had any idea that there would be a responce similar to this to the cartoon. People did know; which makes it a double insult to a humiliated people. Why dont we let a little time elapse and then run a cartoon of Jesus nailing Arab kids to crosses or Moses collecting holocaust reparations for his second cousin.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#79)
    by jondee on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 04:27:50 PM EST
    Roy - Kinda like you claiming money = speech dosnt silence those who cant pay.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#80)
    by jen on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 06:52:03 PM EST
    hmmm I suppose I will give my two cents on the issue here. my personal opinion is that the newspaper deserves to be commended. A cartoon like that could only possibly be taken one way and that is offensively. It would be foolish, rude, and insensitive to publish something like that. Unfortunately it is difficult to stop something like that from being published (because there is freedom of the press) that is why I think that the paper deserves a little bit of gratitude for their efforts to have a little bit of common courtesy/ discretion. definitely agreed johndee. people don't (usually anyways) blatantly mock and abuse other religions so why should it be ok in this case?

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#81)
    by jen on Mon Feb 06, 2006 at 07:10:24 PM EST
    I kind of like what Kdog had to say though. it really is true that political cartoons are always intended to rub someone the wrong way whether that be a politcal party, a religious group, or simply a special interest group that has been particularly vocal. so I can definitely see both sides of the issue on this...my main reason for being against its publishing would be that they are a minority group and getting their voice heard (for it to be fair an balanced and truly free speech/press) would be difficult.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#83)
    by squeaky on Tue Feb 07, 2006 at 06:13:51 AM EST
    From Juan Cole:
    For those waxing holier than thou over the Muslim caricature riots, it is worth looking at the (very incomplete) Wikipedia list of riots for the late 20th century and early 21st century. The answer is obviously "yes" to the question of whether Westerners riot. Mostly over race.
    naruis you may want to scan ths list as it turns out that Asians also riot over 'silly' things' like textbooks.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#84)
    by Jlvngstn on Tue Feb 07, 2006 at 06:38:02 AM EST
    Free and independent media. I wish we had that here. Kudos to the Inquirer for running it. Who cares if 5,000 are protesting it? If there were 5,000 catholics here protesting a cartoon with a Priest trading a candy bar for sexual favors, would people on the left scream? Or Pat Robertson speaking to g*d about his hit list? The screaming fanatics are no different than those that hang outside abortion clinics, just a different savior.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#85)
    by jimakaPPJ on Tue Feb 07, 2006 at 07:21:20 AM EST
    et al - I though you might enjoy reading some thoughts on this matter that goes beyond the back and forth insults:
    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?
    Link What we have with the Moslem world is a failure to communicate. And it is our failure. The intent of the radocals is clear. And the falure of the so-called Moslem moderates is even plainer.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#86)
    by pigwiggle on Tue Feb 07, 2006 at 08:08:14 AM EST
    Get this; the Iranian daily Hamshahri is conducting a holocaust cartoon contest putatively to "test the boundaries of free speech". If they really want to test the boundaries I suggest they sack up and publish some of the infamous Mohamed cartoons. Iranians spoofing the holocaust is well-worn turf, hardly boundary breaking.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#87)
    by squeaky on Tue Feb 07, 2006 at 08:18:17 AM EST
    to save y'all the trouble, ppj (social libral or is it social democrat) has once again provided a stellar link from non other than Daniel Pipes, stellar neo-con plus-ultra who advocates imperial war with Iran, Iraq, Syria and others. The idea from pnac is to conquor the mid-east and parts of asia in order to maintain American dominance

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#88)
    by jimakaPPJ on Tue Feb 07, 2006 at 08:22:26 AM EST
    Squeaky - The rejection of input from all sources is a clear indication that you do not believe in diversity. I think that rather funny.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#89)
    by soccerdad on Tue Feb 07, 2006 at 08:46:08 AM EST
    PPJ says
    Squeaky - The rejection of input from all sources is a clear indication that you do not believe in diversity. I think that rather funny
    . monumental hypocrisy from the king of such

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#90)
    by soccerdad on Tue Feb 07, 2006 at 08:49:28 AM EST
    1. Pipes is a neocon shill 2. his claim, as usual, is not backed up by any facts.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#92)
    by squeaky on Tue Feb 07, 2006 at 09:18:03 AM EST
    PPJ-Pipes is a rightwing radical extremist. I have read many things by him, including your link, and he is clearly way out of mainstream thinking. Straussian to the core but more extreme.. As is the Bush WH.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#93)
    by Jlvngstn on Tue Feb 07, 2006 at 09:30:50 AM EST
    This is the exact reason why God and Politics are a bad match. Freedom of speech, even against Haysuse and Mohamma-Llama, should be well, free. The Haysuse bunch has it right, get a bunch of loony fringe zealots to send letters, albeit the same form letter to the advertisers and scare the bejesus out of them. Or picket and attempt to intimidate women who are considering abortion. I love this example:
    Responding to NBC's announcement that Britney Spears will NOT be playing a conservative Christian who hosts a cooking show called "Cruci-fixins'" on an upcoming episode of "Will & Grace," and their assertion that the initial press release touting Spears' planned role was faulty, American Family Association president Don Wildmon released the following skeptical statement: "NBC wanting us to believe they were mistaken in describing the segment, that they didn't know what was in their own press release, just doesn't hold water," said AFA Chairman Donald E. Wildmon. "Plainly put, NBC heard from their affiliates that they did not want to go through another 'Book of Daniel' situation while losing millions in advertising avenue."
    Muslims need to organize.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#94)
    by Jlvngstn on Tue Feb 07, 2006 at 09:36:56 AM EST
    What is most interesting is the lack of coverage over the first 2 countries to protest by pulling out their representatives: Can you guess? The Evil Iran? North Korea? Indonesia? Libya???? Saudi (we had nothing to do with 9-11 except that 17 of the hijackers were ours) Arabia Kuwait. I do however love Iran's response on the Holocaust. Religious zealots sure are fun!

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#95)
    by pigwiggle on Tue Feb 07, 2006 at 09:59:07 AM EST
    Squeaky-
    Pipes is a rightwing radical extremist.
    You, and to a lesser extent SD, are using the logical fallacy of ad hominem. A makes claim B, there is something objectionable about A, therefore claim B is false. Point one (and perhaps two) may be true, but the conclusion is an inferential claim and logically unsupported. For example; Hitler was a proponent of the vegetarian diet, Hitler was a diabolical monster, and therefore the vegetarian diet is also bad. If all one needed to do was point to objectionable character traits I could refer you to several of SD's malicious and gratuitously abusive posts and we could be done with him. But to be reasonable his points should be taken as they are, not who he is.

    Squeaky, not to pile on, but you denounce Pipes as an extremist, but consider Cole your mainstream touchstone?! Yowza.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#97)
    by glanton on Tue Feb 07, 2006 at 10:23:41 AM EST
    Right on, pigwiggle. The emphasis ought always to be on the argument and not the person. At the same time, though, we dangerously err if we do not recognize that in politics the most effective rhetors sugarcoat the arguments into the dreaded Talking Point, the goal of which is to faciliate not thought but rather a paralyzing spin. For my own part, I have been watching this controversy for a while without saying anything. And I confess that overall I find myself agreeing more with the wingnuts on this thread than wiuth the people supposedly more aligned with me politically. The cartoonists may be susceptible to the charge of insensitivity, but I don't want my ART beholden to sensitivity. I want it strongly expressive, and if I find the argument put forth reprehensible I will say so, but come on, people, these drooling murderers are exactly that. How can anyone criticize Christian censors and violent missionaries with a straight face if they are simultaneously thowing a sympathetic light upon these Muslim radicals? And just as imortant: why aren't all the RIGHTY elements on this thread and across the Right blogosphere applying their dismissal of religious extremism to the GOP base? Yeah, I know, the GOP base doesn't kill people. But the difference is one of degree, not one of kind. This base still endeavors to effect laws that disenfranchise, criminalize, and punish behavior that it finds violate of its narrow bigoted interpretation of Scripture. And indeed, the most rabid of its members do turn to violence, as we have seen in Falwell and Robertson's post-911 rhetoric, in clinic bombings, gun nut outposts, and, very recently, in the gay bar incident in Massachusetts.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#98)
    by Jlvngstn on Tue Feb 07, 2006 at 10:59:43 AM EST
    Excellent post Glanton. PW - Great explanation, I hope it is paid attention to. SU - Hope all is well with you.

    glanton, fair enough, here's one for you. Last night NPR had a story about some Christian preacher wack-job who wants sodomy to be a crime punishable by death. He's getting his "word" out by going to the funerals of our fallen soldiers from Iraq where he and his 13 kids yell a bunch of anti-"Sodomite" bs at the grieving wives, parents, children, friends, etc. They were expecting him to be at the King funeral today. He's a total loon and I dismiss him out of hand. He certainly doesn't represent me or anyone else I know.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#100)
    by Dadler on Tue Feb 07, 2006 at 11:25:54 AM EST
    Sarc, Fred Phelps -- the "preacher", I believe, to whom you refer --is SOOOOOO far gone; such, as you rightly say, a complete loon, that it's hard to use him for any kind of analogy. How about Pat Robertson,= or Fallwell, or Robert Schuller, or Joel Osteen, or the Pope?

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#101)
    by squeaky on Tue Feb 07, 2006 at 11:35:51 AM EST
    PW-ad hominem. If you are referring to Pipes, everything I have read of his smacks of fascist imperialism. Hitler was a fascist because he did fascist things. The same goes for Pipes. If you are referring to PPJ- well most here have agreed that his posts are part of the Wingnut echo chamber done badly.
    The cartoonists may be susceptible to the charge of insensitivity, but I don't want my ART beholden to sensitivity.
    Either you have a very low end idea of what are is or you use the word loosely. No great art, good art, or even ok art begins with an idea to offend. The cartoonists wanted to offend and they did, Not art in my book, but a low side of humanity. What is the value of just offending without any of the good stuff. None in my book. In other words good Art that offends has to serve some other purpose than just offend. A serious artist is always trying to accomplish something great, pushing boundries of expression, or what have you. That the work offends more that not horrifies the artist who wants the work to be loved. tristero summs it up all rather nicely with examples. Also he has a great post about Serrano's Piss Christ Sarc-Juan Cole is a conservative academic. Just because he is extremely critical of Bush for his irresponsible policies does not make him left wing.

    Dadler, sorry, you may find this hard to believe, but I know more about Phelps from last night's NPR program than I do about any of the guys you just mentioned. I have no interest in them, and they literally have no place in my life. In fact, the only place I'm ever exposed to their names is in comments this blog.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#103)
    by Dadler on Tue Feb 07, 2006 at 11:47:26 AM EST
    Sarc, So be it. Meant nothing other than we both know what a nutjob Phelps is. But I'm curious, whose message other than your own do you find appealing? Living people only.

    Living and other than my own? Tough question. I rarely watch, listen to or read anything news-related that is opinion-based, I mostly try to focus only on the hard facts. I catch NPR fairly regularly during my short commute, and change the channel when Daniel Shore starts hyperventilating into the mic. I listen to Dennis Prager at work on occasion, and try to catch his Friday "Happiness Hour" as often as possible. Basically, TL is where I get my news, and I try to apply some common sense to the topics. I am not always successful. Who's message do you find appealing? Squeaky, however you choose to categorize Cole's philosophy or politics is your business, but I don't think "mainstream" is applicable.

    Jl, just saw your comment, I hope all is well with you also.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#106)
    by Slado on Tue Feb 07, 2006 at 12:27:57 PM EST
    Glanton You are right there are several cases of hypocrisy on the cartoon issue but you make light of the difference between chritian conservatives and muslim fanatics. Christians don't support suicide bombers as a rule, don't dance in the streets when a abortion clinic is bombed, don't send money to the families of the bomber etc.... There is a HUGE difference between the two groups and we need to stop the moral relativism and realize that the differences between the left and right in this country can't come close to the difference between western and middle eastern society. We are progressing forward. Carefully as both groups deal with issues like abortion, gay marriage etc... The middle eastern world is heading backwards. I have no true solutions but the first step (see my open thread post) is to realise what we're dealing with.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#107)
    by squeaky on Tue Feb 07, 2006 at 12:36:27 PM EST
    sarc-mainstream is not academia. He is an arabist scholar, a historian who teaches at U of Michigan. Reads and translates articles from the arab world every day. Basically a tremendous source for information, for those interested, that are not accessible because of language and lack of historical context. Most mainstreamers would rather listen to ones that just make s*it up without any historical context, or so it seems. I guess it is too much work for mainstreamers to learn stuff deeper than fox. BTW tristero has another great post on the cartoon madness. I couldn't agree more with his take.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#108)
    by glanton on Tue Feb 07, 2006 at 12:40:33 PM EST
    Slado, I understand the differences you're speaking to perfectly well. But again, I maintain that there differences are of degree, not of kind. Moral relativism is not the issue, as I see it. Nobody on this blog, no liberal of any standing whatever has idealized, for example, the plight of women in Taliban Afghanistan or the suicide bombers or this current spectacle of drooling fundamentalist angst directed at the Danes. We know they're off their rockers, okay? A useful way of looking at ideological fanatics whose conviction leads to violent atrocities would be as follows: We know we are nowhere near their level, but are we different enough? You point out we have made strides in abortion rights and gay rights, and put special emphasis on the idea of forward motion. Well, don't look now, but our current domestic policy is engaged with romanticizing an imagined American past to which we must return. Thus the push towards rolling back abortion rights and gay rights. Rolling back rights, incidentally, is in this context synonymous with criminalization, which is very much a form of coersion/violence. Look at the recent Gubernatorial election in Virginia, man! Look at the real reason that Salazar hates Dobson! In politics we're still very much embroiled, as a culture, with the 'who's more religious and who's a hypocrite' debate. When's the last time a single man (or God forbid a single woman) won a Senate Seat, let alone the Presidency? We are a long sight from being able to separate sovereign state laws from religious doctrine in this nation.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#109)
    by jondee on Tue Feb 07, 2006 at 02:22:00 PM EST
    So, I can expect to see a lifting of censorship in mainstream U.S newspapers and highly irreverent depictions of Jesus,Moses,the Pope etc will be forthcoming? Not likely. Looked at in context, this was an obvious provocation. Are Muslims "overreacting"? Undoubtably. But it should be kept in mind that theyre reacting to the provocation and what it signifies as much as to the content of the provocation.

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#110)
    by jondee on Tue Feb 07, 2006 at 03:19:14 PM EST
    "The G.O.P base dosnt kill people." Sorry, but bullsh*t. Just because its by proxy dosnt make them anyless accountable. Who killed Cock Robin?

    Re: Few U.S. Papers Publish Offensive Anti-Muslim (none / 0) (#111)
    by jondee on Tue Feb 07, 2006 at 04:08:43 PM EST
    Funny how the wingnuts call the Muslims "militant" and "radical" for advocating violence and then bow, scrape, heel, roll over, and play dead for an administration that has murdered, maimed,tortured, and terrorized tens of thousands.

    Squeaky, I gotta admit, I was wrong. I was confusing Cole with someone else entirely - Paul Krugman. My appologies. It's weird, I have a son named Cole and a brother named Paul and I often call them by the other's name...

    There are now 112 comments to this thread, here's the new one. Thanks to all for participating.