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My Gawd Is Funnier Than Yours

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wm pasz
Post Posted: Sat Feb 04, 2006 1:32 pm

Joined: 29 Jan 2006
Posts: 1219
Location: Toronto
Maybe I'm just insensitive but I find it really bizarre when angry mobs take to the streets to protest a cartoon. The recent outpouring of outrage by some Islamists about a cartoon caricature featuring their god with some explosive headgear has had my jaw dropping with every report about flag-stompings, street riots, fatwah alerts and calls for beheadings.

http://www.uncharted.ca/content/view/80/35/
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SharynS
Post Posted: Sat Feb 04, 2006 3:11 pm

Joined: 28 Jan 2006
Posts: 3632
Location: the 'puter
The cartoon has been around since september. Who or what pulled it out of the dumper to make propagandistic hay out of it? Ridiculous doesn't cover it but it and images of over-reaction are getting airtime. Hard to figure out which side is fueling this idiocy.

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Elvis
Post Posted: Sat Feb 04, 2006 7:50 pm

Joined: 01 Feb 2006
Posts: 661
Location: Toronto
I haven't had time to read the piece, but I did want to post a thread on the subject (wm is always quicker)... basically asking "how insane are these people?" And would MFD (ooops... uncharted!!) dare to print/link the funnies? Guess so.

Somebody draws a cartoon... the other burns flags, asks for beheadings, Osama to attack, and death to a continent. Ironic when the cartoon shows a lit-fuse-ticking-time-bomb.

The South Park cartoon should have Eric Cartman convert to Islam and get back into his "respect my authority... I mean deity" routine. Many viewers would die of laughter... or at least be beheaded for watching it.

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blackcat
Post Posted: Sun Feb 05, 2006 6:31 am

Joined: 03 Feb 2006
Posts: 17
Q&A: Depicting the Prophet Muhammad

Source:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/4674864.stm

Protests have spread across the Muslim world over the publication in Europe of cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad.

The BBC News website looks at why the depictions have caused such offence.

What does the Koran, the holy book of Islam, say on the issue?

There is no specific, or explicit ban on images of Allah or the Prophet Muhammad - be they carved, painted or drawn.

However, chapter 42, verse 11 of the Koran does say: "[Allah is] the originator of the heavens and the earth... [there is] nothing like a likeness of Him."

This is taken by Muslims to mean that Allah cannot be captured in an image by human hand, such is his beauty and grandeur. To attempt such a thing is seen as an insult to Allah.

The same is believed to apply to Muhammad.

Chapter 21, verses 52-54 of the Koran read: "[Abraham] said to his father and his people: 'What are these images to whose worship you cleave?' They said: 'We found our fathers worshipping them.' He said: 'Certainly you have been, you and your fathers, in manifest error.'"

From this arises the Muslim belief that images can give rise to idolatry - that is to say an image, rather than the divine being it symbolises, can become the object of worship and veneration.

What does Islamic tradition say on the matter?

Islamic tradition or Hadith, the stories of the words and actions of Muhammad and his Companions, explicitly prohibits images of Allah, Muhammad and all the major prophets of the Christian and Jewish traditions.

More widely, Islamic tradition has discouraged the figurative depiction of living creatures, especially human beings. Islamic art has therefore tended to be abstract or decorative.

Why is the insult so deeply felt by some Muslims?

Of course, there is the prohibition on images of Muhammad.

But one cartoon, showing the Prophet wearing a turban shaped as a bomb with a burning fuse, extends the caricature of Muslims as terrorists to Muhammad.

In this image, Muslims see a depiction of Islam, its prophet and Muslims in general as terrorists.

This will certainly play into a widespread perception among Muslims across the world that many in the West harbour a hostility towards - or fear of - Islam and Muslims.

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blackcat
Post Posted: Sun Feb 05, 2006 6:41 am

Joined: 03 Feb 2006
Posts: 17
If someone wants to understand whats happening in the middle east right now one must have a better understanding of the muslim religion. Sure those European newspapers have the right to free speech and such but those comics by themselves are tasteless and bordering on racism IMO especially since the author never provided any comment in the comic itself as to why he drew them like that. Its like drawing up a cartoon about 9/11 victims making fun of them and then when people get pissed off about it start yelling "free speech" rather than apologizing to people that might have been offended. Its a complete lack of cultural understanding and now its blowing up all across the muslim world. People are being attacked and such.

If you want to see a documentary movie about religion clashing with society and peoples lack of understanding of it I suggest people watch Waco: The Rules Of Engagement.

I'm 100% atheist BTW. I side with scientific theory and DNA rather than St. Peter or Allah.

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Elvis
Post Posted: Sun Feb 05, 2006 9:33 am

Joined: 01 Feb 2006
Posts: 661
Location: Toronto
blackcat wrote:
If someone wants to understand whats happening in the middle east right now one must have a better understanding of the muslim religion.


My understanding is that they have no understanding of their own religion... and are a bunch of whack-jobs because of it. Of course there are many of those in the Christian religion as well. GWB being a prime-example.

http://edition.cnn.com/2006/WORLD/meast/02/04/syria.cartoon/index.html

This story is just going to get stupider and stupider and stupider. I'm kinda enjoying it at the moment but people are gonna get hurt. It's like those Mecca retreats... a stampede is a given at some point. Sort of like a sacrificial lottery to God.

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Henri Ducard: Your compassion is a weakness your enemies will not share.
Bruce Wayne: That's why it's so important. It separates us from them.
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wm pasz
Post Posted: Sun Feb 05, 2006 1:40 pm

Joined: 29 Jan 2006
Posts: 1219
Location: Toronto
Look through any newspaper, magazine, TV program, movie or pretty much any "media" and you're sure to find something that offends somebody's sensibilities. Religious sensibilities are the most prone to offense since religious rules and regs tend to be the most restrictive and religious types the quickest to take offense.

This statement from the Vatican (in response to the rioting and destruction in Syria) puts it succinctly:

Quote:
The Vatican deplored the violence but said certain forms of criticism represented an "unacceptable provocation."

"The right to freedom of thought and expression ... cannot entail the right to offend the religious sentiment of believers," the Vatican said in its first statement on the controversy.


There you have it: thought and expression should both be restricted if they offend the religious sentiment of believers
.

If you actually applied this, you would no longer have a democratic society.

The catholics have actually been hugely instrumental in promoting censorship throughout democratic societies (their influence over the North American film industry from the 1920's right up to the 60's was massive), so it's no surprise they're lettin' it all hang out right now.

Whatever the religious strictures of the Islamic religion, its adherents are free to practice them. The rest of us are under no obligation.

If Muslims aren't supposed to draw pictures of their god they're free to live by that rule. The rest of us aren't bound by it.

Not only is there a problem here, with them trying to impose the rules of their religion on the rest of us, there's a big problem with their reaction.

Violence and retribution on the scale that some are advocating is just plain unacceptable. GWB must be thanking his god for this turn of events as it has the potential to affect public understanding of the Muslim community and its issues in the Middle East. The guys howling for beheadings and setting buidlings aflame are reinforcing a lot of old stereotypes of Muslims as violent zealots intent on imposing their religion on the rest of us.

Muslims are free to practice their religion. The rest of us are free to not practice it. If that results in some being offended, they can do a couple of things:

1. Express their views in a non-violent way, or
2. Accept that in a pluralistic world, where millions live in democratic societies somebody is bound to say something that is going to piss you off.

Frankly, some of their values and practices offend me - their views about the role of women and girls in society being a big one. But you don't see me torching buildings and demanding "death to the sexists".

Considering the harm done through the ages by religious zealots and their followers (or opportunists who use religion as an enabler for oppression and violence), the last thing anyone should be expected to do in a democratic society is cow-tow to the rules and regs of any religion.

We either support free speech or don't. No one in a democratic society should have to dwell too long on whose religious sensibilities they might be offending when speaking, writing or creating.
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atuuschaaw
Post Posted: Sun Feb 05, 2006 2:52 pm

Joined: 29 Jan 2006
Posts: 781
Location: an ahwangan
It's been reported that some Muslims (mainly European) have supported the re-publication of the cartoons in question so that individual Muslims can make up their own mind. Especially since cartoons in Arab and Islamic press often demonize Jews and Israilis also. I personally see the use of these cartoons as aiding the American/Great Britain Empire in their continued war on terror by stirring up hatred between the Muslims and the rest of the world. Whether this has been done intentionally or if it just inadvertently happened to play out this way, the fact still remains that it has the potential of helping rally popularity for the war machine's focus on the middle east.

Just my opinion of course, but as much as I am an advocate of freedom and especially the freedom of speech, it's worth noting how often in the past and the present, how the definition and use of the word freedom has been used to advocate certain agendas of seemingly freedom minded individuals and organizations who use the cry of freedom as a cover for more corporatist aims.

Quote:
Once the rallying cry of the dispossessed, freedom is today commonly invoked by powerful economic institutions to justify many forms of authority, even as on the individual level it often seems to suggest the absence of outside authority altogether....

Today, Louis Hartz's call for Americans to listen to the rest of the world, not simply lecture it about what liberty is, seems more relevant than ever. This may be difficult for a nation that has always considered itself a city upon a hill, a beacon to mankind. Yet American independence was proclaimed by those anxious to demonstrate "a decent respect to the opinions of mankind." In the global world of the twenty-first century, it is not the role of historians to instruct our fellow citizens on how they should think about freedom. But it is our task to insist that the discussion of freedom must transcend boundaries rather than reinforcing or reproducing them. In a global age, the forever unfinished story of American freedom must become a conversation with the entire world, not a complacent monologue with ourselves.

American Freedom in a Global Age


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Elvis
Post Posted: Mon Feb 06, 2006 2:40 am

Joined: 01 Feb 2006
Posts: 661
Location: Toronto
From one of the linked blogs I got this page that has tons of Mohammed pics/cartoons- current and historical.

http://info2us.dk/muhammed/

What hypocrites. Maybe an art history lesson for the extremists is in order.

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Henri Ducard: Your compassion is a weakness your enemies will not share.
Bruce Wayne: That's why it's so important. It separates us from them.
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Elvis
Post Posted: Mon Feb 06, 2006 9:25 pm

Joined: 01 Feb 2006
Posts: 661
Location: Toronto
Elvis wrote:
I'm kinda enjoying it at the moment but people are gonna get hurt. It's like those Mecca retreats... a stampede is a given at some point.


Somalia wins the gold in record time!

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Henri Ducard: Your compassion is a weakness your enemies will not share.
Bruce Wayne: That's why it's so important. It separates us from them.
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blackcat
Post Posted: Tue Feb 07, 2006 2:04 am

Joined: 03 Feb 2006
Posts: 17
I keep saying this is spiralling out of control...

Afganistan, Pakistan (allies in the 'war on terror') and all other middle eastern heads of state are condemning the comics. The muslim extremists are recruiting more followers now because of this.

Whats next...Iran pushes ahead with nuclear production. Israel attacks Iran. The middle east joins in a coalition and attacks Israel. The US (tied down in Iraq) tries to defend Israel and so forth...not looking good.

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Elvis
Post Posted: Tue Feb 07, 2006 2:37 am

Joined: 01 Feb 2006
Posts: 661
Location: Toronto
blackcat wrote:
Whats next...Iran pushes ahead with nuclear production. Israel attacks Iran. The middle east joins in a coalition and attacks Israel. The US (tied down in Iraq) tries to defend Israel and so forth...not looking good.


Awesome!! The biblical Armageddon starts with a squabble over a cartoon. Find a Christian nutjob that could have predicted that one! I'll guarantee that 12 drawings are represented in the book of rev, if you look hard enough. This is it folks!! God is the ultimate comedian and he is proving it.

Meanwhile back at the office, GWB is loving this. His approval rating will surely get boosted and it's perfect timing for his military spending increase. The conspiracy theorist in me loves this stuff. Now for every computer security employee that comes up with a 'threat' or unleashes a daily virus to boost company sales, there will be a government hack drawing profit (...I mean prophet) cartoons.

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Henri Ducard: Your compassion is a weakness your enemies will not share.
Bruce Wayne: That's why it's so important. It separates us from them.
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atuuschaaw
Post Posted: Tue Feb 07, 2006 2:38 pm

Joined: 29 Jan 2006
Posts: 781
Location: an ahwangan
Jane Smiley's comparison of the cartoon wars of the (Europeans and the Middle East) to the (Civil War here in the U.S.) is a new angle of perspective. At least the culture gap between the Rebs and the Yanks seems to be narrowing. Now if the rest of the world would learn to appreciate each other for their uniqueness we might get on with building a better world!

Quote:
There were lots of skirmishes, some open voter fraud, and one real terrorist attack -- John Brown's attack on five slave-owning Kansans. John Brown was an abolitionist who believed that God was telling him to free the slaves at any cost and that it was divinely ordained that the South was to pay for its sins through suffering, blood, and fire. When he was chased out of Kansas, he went to Maryland, and, many say, sparked the Civil War at Harper's Ferry.

So what? What do we learn from this other than that America is still at least partially in thrall to these two cultures? Well, we can also learn something about what is happening as Europe and the Middle East confront each other about the Danish cartoons. The differences are not only religious, they are also about what constitutes self-respect.


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blackcat
Post Posted: Tue Feb 07, 2006 4:09 pm

Joined: 03 Feb 2006
Posts: 17
Iran invites cartoons on Holocaust

Source:
http://edition.cnn.com/2006/WORLD/meast/02/07/iran.cartoon.ap/index.html

Quote:
TEHRAN, Iran (AP) -- A prominent Iranian newspaper says it is going to hold a competition for cartoons on the Holocaust to test whether the West will apply the principle of freedom of expression to the Nazi genocide against Jews as it did to the caricatures of the Prophet Mohammed.

Hamshahri, which is among the top five of Iran's mass circulation papers, made clear the contest is a reaction to European newspapers' publication of Danish cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed, which have led to demonstrations, boycotts and attacks on European embassies across the Islamic world.

Hundreds of Iranians hurled stones, and sometimes gasoline bombs, at the Danish and Austrian embassies in Tehran in protest against the cartoons on Monday. The Austrian mission was targeted as the country currently holds the EU presidency.

The newspaper said Tuesday the contest would be launched on February 13 and would be co-convened by itself and the House of Caricatures, a Tehran exhibition center for cartoons.

Both the paper and the cartoon center are owned by the Tehran Municipality, which is dominated by allies of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who is well known for his opposition to Israel.


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atuuschaaw
Post Posted: Wed Feb 08, 2006 12:27 am

Joined: 29 Jan 2006
Posts: 781
Location: an ahwangan
And here is what the Socialist Worker has to say about the cartoon wars.

Quote:
This is not about “freedom of speech”. It’s not about a “war of civilisations”. It’s about racism. Anyone who doubts that need look no further than the right wing Danish paper that commissioned the notorious anti-Muslim cartoons last September.

It would have us believe it was all for a noble principle of “freedom of speech”. Oh, really? This is the same paper, Jyllands-Posten, which:

* Campaigned in 1984 to censor an artist who produced an erotic image of Jesus.

* Refused three years ago to print a cartoon because the editors said it would provoke an outcry among Christians.


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