Thursday, February 02, 2006

Upon Further Review: The Cartoon Controversy

What a difference a couple of days makes. There is still testosterone in Europe. Even in France! Incredibly, even in the Middle East!

Various newspapers have joined the campaign for international free speech by reprinting the "offending" cartoons of the "prophet" Mohammed, including a French newspaper owned by an Egyptian. (Sadly the French editor was sacked for that decision, but what's an omelette without a few broken eggs).

Now a Jordanian newspaper has joined in on the side of sanity with an editorial pleading with Muslims to "be reasonable."

"What brings more prejudice against Islam, these caricatures or pictures of a hostage-taker slashing the throat of his victim in front of the cameras or a suicide bomber who blows himself up during a wedding ceremony in Amman?" wrote Jihad Momani.

He told the AFP news service he decided to publish the offending cartoons "so people know what they are protesting about... People are attacking drawings that they have not even seen."

Of course in Palestine the variously armed crazies are talking about killing Danish, German and French citizens in their midst, which is the proper course of action to protest a newspaper article for what passes for rationality among that crowd. Sheesh!

So where is this controversy going? Not even Nebuchanezzar would need help translating the writing on this wall. It is not going to end well. But good can come out of evil if this is helping to awaken the world to the growing intolerance and fanaticism of the Islamic jihadists.

Now someone will undoubtedly say, "But Mr. Oklahomilist, you are usually among those who complain about filmmakers depicting Jesus in a blasphemous fashion. Aren't you being a little bit of a hypocrite here?"

And our response will put them in their deserving place of shame: "There is no hypocrisy, you light-weight, limp-wristed morons! First, we never said that Muslims have no right to complain about the editorial cartoons. They have every right to complain, to protest, to let their hurt feelings be known! That's why there are letters to the editor columns, op-ed pieces, and sidewalks!"

"Furthermore," we continue before the crybaby wailing begins in earnest, "we have never, not even for an instant, considered a course of action that would involve strapping one of our kids with plastic explosive and a couple of boxes of nails from the Home Depot, and sending them out to explode themselves at Hollywood and Vine! That's just plain nuts, no matter what century you happen to think you live in."

That might silence the semi-civilized critics in America and Europe. Sadly we don't think it will carry much weight with the jihadists, who seem hell-bent on taking their campaign to turn the world back to the 7th century as far as it needs to go, even if they have to blow up every child they have sired and every wife of whom they have grown weary.

Gotta admit it's one hell of a way to evangelize: convert or die. For those of us who still believe in God-given free will to choose our spiritual beliefs after prayer, reflection and often personal revelation, it's too much of a hard sell.


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