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February 03, 2006

All the Islam That's Unfit to Print

Mohammad While the inward American Left still shudders from occasional paroxysms of apoplexy over Hitlerian, jack-booted thugs removing t-shirts from the Capitol on Tuesday night, the rest of the western world turns its eyes further east this week as one of the core foundations of liberal democracy comes under orchestrated attack by Islamic nation states and the real, tangible shadows of fascism.

When a Danish newspaper published editorial cartoons depicting the Prophet Mohammad, a firestorm erupted in the Muslim world. Artistic likenessess of the founding father of the religion are strictly verboten. Islamic governments and culture at large reacted with characteristic aplomb, attacking embassies, threatening to kidnap and execute foreigners, demanding apologies and groveling from European governments, and generally being their peaceful selves. Egypt dispensed with formalities and addressed the controversy with a bit of straight-forward Euro-speak. While the politicians fell over themselves apologizing for freedom of expression, European publications are standing firm.

In a somewhat related story, Richard J. Rosendall of the Independent Gay Forum recently wrote a piece wondering what on earth gay people and organizations are doing supporting Palestinians over a liberal democracy. Queers Undermining Israeli Terrorism have called for a boycott of World Pride 2006 scheduled to be held in Jerusalem. The International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission characteristically picked Leftist politics over gay rights, supporting a violently homophobic Palestinian culture that would kill them over a liberal Israel that protects gay rights. As the author notes, wrapping this decision in human rights rhetoric counts not at all considering the IGLHRC attended rallies in Beijing and Havana.

Given the first story in this post, I am beginning to doubt many of these queer organizations are, in fact, liberal. Supporting cultures that would squelch free expression while persecuting gays seems like more "solidarity in oppression" agitprop.

Last, but definitely not least, I decided to toss up one of the editorial cartoons depicting Mohammed, because, well, fuck 'em. Free expression must always trump offense and the cult of victimology, even if Islamic culture has unravelled the code speak our own radical queers use when siding with far left-wing causes that would reduce freedoms under the guise of gay and human rights.

h/t Queer Conservative

October 19, 2005

Mmmm, Infidel Bacon . . .

Homer  D'oh!

(Oct. 18) -- After 17 seasons of entertaining U.S. audiences, "The Simpsons" can now be seen on Arab television. While U.S. foreign policy is not always a hit overseas, there is a huge audience for American popular culture.

So the Arab satellite network MBC is bringing the cartoon saga of Springfield to the heart of the Arab world. "The Simpsons" has been exported overseas and is now called "Al Shamshoon."

The article notes "anti-Islamic" Homeric staples such as bacon, beer, and Moe's will be removed from the Arab version.

Continue reading "Mmmm, Infidel Bacon . . ." »

August 18, 2005

The Jews Mean Business


How do the Israelis handle the issue of "religious sensitivity" when recalcitrant settlers who share their own religious beliefs hole themselves up inside of synagogues?:

Israeli riot police with helmets and shields broke open the door of a synagogue in this hard-line settlement and fired water cannons at barricaded protesters, who responded by hurling debris and what police said was acid at the troops.

Contrast that with how certain veal in the blogosphere react when, say, a Koran gets tinkled on (even after numerous American troops have been killed precisely because of our institutional respect for mosques.)

But I suppose the cultural difference is found in what the daily threat of being blown up on a bus or in a pizza shop will do to you.