Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Arab Dual Standard

Since I couldn't quite get the direct link to the pictures to work right, go here to see the "inflammatory" cartoons. Precisely what is offensive about these? The Mohammed with a turban that's a bomb may be in poor taste, but that's what cartoonists do - have poor taste. I understand that for a Muslim to portray Mohammed in this light would not be the best thing for him - he knows the rules and should be held accountable in whatever way his religion prescribed. A random Danish guy shouldn't. I know that we should be mindful of other peoples' faiths and all of that good stuff, and if they had written a nice letter to the editor, I would be much less critical. However, burning embassies, killing people, and in general causing havoc isn't the brightest way to get people to stop and get others to support your cause. In addition, it's not the best way to get people to believe that Samuel Huntington is wrong. Instead it perpetuates an intolerant "Us vs. Them" attitude that will leave us where we were in the 15th Century - with Islam as a militant group trying to seize the Christian world and the Christian world fighting back. At this point, that's not a fight that I would want to get involved with if I was in the Middle East because if they wanted to, Europe, the US, and Israel could kill everybody living in the Middle East in about an hour. It's not like these types of things don't happen to Christian holy men. The Catholics put the Pope on the same level as Muslims put Mohammed, and he's given this treatment. According to Christians, Jesus is the Son of God, and yet he is one of the most caricatured people of all time. Here's an example. Here's a much more offensive example. Even the living God gets mocked. Do we riot? Do we burn down the Onion compound? No, we complain. That's the civilized way to do it. As long as a group of people chooses to riot and burn down buildings over percieved slights, they will stigmatize themselves and fall further into the cycle of patheticality that they perpetuate with every suicide bomb.

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