This was born out of an April 14, 2010 South Park episode, not to draw Muhammad, but from the protest and call by Muslims for the creators of this cartoon show that they might receive the same fate as Theo Van Gogh (a Dutch filmmaker who was murdered in 2004 after making a documentary on violence against Muslim women.) The episode never had an image of Muhammad but alluded to Muhammad pictured behind the drawing of a large Teddy Bear, or in fact wearing the bear costume. That was my impression. Hardy a reason to suggest death to the creators. This is a reflection on why there exists a concern for Islam, in fact a fear, which can in turn be described as Islamophobia. (see Part 30 on Islamophobia)
The website RevolutionMuslim.com apparently issued the threat, mentioned what happened to Van Gogh. The posting: “We have to warn Matt and Trey that what they are doing is stupid and they will probably wind up like Theo Van Gogh for airing this show,” the posting reads. “This is not a threat, but a warning of the reality of what will likely happen to them.”
Subsequently a Seattle artist, Molly Norris, suggested, as a spoof, a non-judgmental act, only a whimsical idea, everyone draw Muhammad and post their image. It suggests how ludicrous the nature of the Muslim is to any form of suggestive remarks towards Islam, which they then define as attacks, persecution, even racist acts. And some as the website (RevolutionMuslim) noted suggest or encourage killing the creators. How small-minded is such a concern. In reading the Quran I have yet to find justification for such reactions or acts of retribution for images of Muhammad. (See my blog – Understanding Islam – Part 12 – Images, posted 1/26/2010). Does that not suggest anyone named Muhammad is a walking poster image of Muhammad? Ms. Norris has distanced herself from the Everyone Draw Muhammad Day, wanting no credit for the idea, but it is progressing by its own momentum. In fact there is a Facebook Page dedicated to the program with a May 20, 2010 date for the event to occur.
From the Danish cartoonist Kurt Westergaard – published cartoon (in 2005) depicting an Arab man wearing a turban with a gun pointing out of the turban, causing attacks against Danish Embassies, inciting riots by Muslims, calls for apologies, to finally a Somali man attempting his murder (in Jan 2010) in Westergaard’s home, one asks why? Why this demand for respect. Isn’t respect something to be earned. How can one respect someone who wants to kill you? How deceitful the Muslims can be. In the Quran, Sura 60, entitled ‘Friendly Relations with Enemies’ (Sura 60:1-6) it is written, Sura 60:4, referring to Jews and Christians, “We disbelieve you and there has arisen enmity and hatred between us and you forever until you believe in Allah alone.” Muslims are not to take non-Muslims as friends, nor offer them love. They are to remain distant, deceitful (deceit is justified in relationships with non-Islam-believers). Christians and Jews are not known for burning Mosques or having non-believers forcibly leave a country (for what they believe, vs. what they do), as they do not control countries. Those Muslims that do are demonstrating more a totalitarian ideology and not a religion. Is Islam not a religion but a political doctrine? Shouldn’t be regarded as such. Muslim’s attacks on those that question this doctrine, suggesting any who question Islam must be muzzled, killed, eliminated, so that the political totalitarian doctrine can continue, survive and grow – and then they do so in the name of Allah, provide evidence of the protection of doctrine. They appear as the South Park Bear to be hiding something. Are non-Muslims missing the whole picture, the true image of Muhammad and Islam? Is that what outspoken fundamentalist Islamists are trying to avoid having on display – the Truth? Thus my concern is expressed.
Wafa Sultan, an objective Syrian woman (she considers herself a secularist)( is an author and well-known critic of Muslim society and Islam, trained as a psychiatrist in Syria) has words for Islam (Youtube.com has several interviews of hers – she speaks her Arab language fluently). She refers to Muslims as ‘crying and yelling’ over minor offenses. She finds “the language of Islam is a negative, dead language, replete with violence, anger, hatred and racism.” Are we seeing this on display in threats against cartoonists? She calls for change, a need to modernize contrasting Islam as in the “middle ages v. the 21st Century”, “primitive v. civilized”, exhibiting more “barbarity v. rationality”, “oppression v. freedom”, “dictatorship v. democracy” and “violation of human rights v. human rights.” Is the furor thus exhibited by Muslims whenever they so react, especially shown in these cartoon reactions, examples of her very claims?
For those in Muslims Countries where oppression reigns, we pray you will discover your personal freedom. Such freedom comes with a price and that price can well involve suffering. Without freedom a totalitarian, authoritarian, regime will make their constituency slaves to what they want them to believe. If that belief is Islam, then the question that arises asks if each person under the dictates lives in a sovereign nation under Allah or under a human dictator, or authoritarian regime, using Allah as their cover. I believe there is only one sovereign God, that of the Trinity, where love is the example for all. Inherent in that love is your ability to worship as your free-will allows, and not to be killed for doing so. Indeed God wants everyone to obey him, love him, and live a life of charity and love of neighbor as his Son demonstrated. He provided for our Salvation without ever killing another. He died, was punished for our crimes against God, so we may be free of the sins we commit each and every day. God can do all things and God indeed begot a Son of the virgin Mary and that Son freed us from the wrath of the Old Testament and provided the new covenant of the New Testament for all mankind, Jew and Gentile. Jesus is now appearing in the dreams of many Muslims; they are seeing the light of the mercy He provides. The nightmares of the demands of Islam are as images of Muhammad that are to be denied so the truth does not surface.
For those in exile may they pray continuously for their return to the temple that is the Lord, their home, and a place in the eternal kingdom. May the truth be seen and heard, envisioned even, by everyone.
Grace and peace to all who believe in Christ, our Risen Lord, our Savior.