Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Here we go again...

I must apologise for the lack of recent updates. The blog honeymoon period, where updating is fun and something I look forward to, is well and truly over. I had been anticipating this stage ever since I started this baby up, but never knew exactly when of how it would hit. Now, updating is beginning to feel more and more like a chore, which is bad. So I need to keep this thing interesting for myself first and foremost, and for all those to take the time to read my ramblings second. Like I’ve said before – I’m selfish that way.

One of the reasons I’ve not posted recently is because I feel like I should say something about the whole cartoon fiasco, but really can’t be bothered. The whole thing has just spiralled out of control into this utterly preposterous situation.

Was the Danish newspaper right to publish the pictures? In my opinion, absolutely not. Do they have the right to do so? Absolutely, according to Danish law. As Muslims living in the West we must understand and respect the ideals and laws of the lands in which we choose to live. These pictures were published because it’s legal. Equally, when such things are legally published we should engage in legal complaint. Freedom of speech does not infer the right to offend, and the newspaper would have done well to consider this before publishing. However, the completely OTT reaction we’ve seen in the Muslim world has done far, far more damage to the image of Islam than these cartoons ever would have done on their own.

There’s so much to be said on this, but I’ll limit myself to just a couple more points. In all the arguing and protesting and everything that’s gone along with this, the point of the outrage has been lost. Yes, Muslims are horrified at the cartoons themselves. However, this is not the main cause of the outrage; rather it is the fact that they were then republished several times out of what appears to have been sheer spite. To a people who already feel victimised and downtrodden, this like was rubbing salt in the wound and then sticking two fingers up in their faces.

What should have been an opportunity for Muslims to explain the significance of the prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) in our faith, and why we abhor any depictions of the prophet or God, let alone such vile ones, has turned in to a deeply embarrassing episode that has left many people in the west wondering why it is that any time Muslims are offended mob culture takes hold, flags are burnt and embassies marched upon. We’ve succeeded in shooting ourselves in the foot, with a shotgun, from point blank range. D’oh.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I definatly like the irony of it all though. A Danish papaer publishes cartoons showing a Muslim figure as a terrorist. To which Muslim extremists come out and promise to behead people, fire raise and damage the embassies and bomb countries. Right... and that proves what?

On the other hand I don't see them protesting about Al Quida, and Al Jazerra, showing muslims as terrorists.....

12/2/06 3:39 pm  
Blogger Atif said...

Sorry, what does al-Jazeera do?

And yeah there is a crazy amount of irony around this whole thing, but it's there on both sides.

13/2/06 3:00 am  

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