Freedom is a wonderful thing. Freedom of thought; freedom of speech; freedom of religion; freedom of desire; freedom to say yes or no! What happens when two freedoms collide?
I’m sure you already know where I am heading. The recent controversy over some cartoon published in the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten. [http://epaper.jp.dk/30-09-2005/demo/JP_01-01.html].
Having seen the cartoons [click on the headline of this piece to take yourself to an archive of the same] I see no issues with it. Anyone should have the freedom to say what they think is right or wrong. I might not agree with what one says but as Mark Twain had said “I will defend your right to say it till the end.”
My religion, my belief, my Allah, my principals, my prophet is stronger and more entranced in my heart than any image a cartoonist can draw. What Mr. Rushdie or some cartoonist says does not change anything for me. And at one level I guess it strengthens it.
The paper has given a reply [http://www.jp.dk/meninger/ncartikel:aid=3527646 ]. Burning down Danish Embassy is uncalled for.
Jyllands-Posten has also made a mistake! They have not realized the sentiments of the Muslim world. After more than 5 years of being told that they are terrorists Muslims have reached the breaking point. Believe it or not they are feeling as if they are the victims. I would presume quite like Japanese- Americans after Pearl Harbor attacks! And an “insult” to the Prophet is the worst of humiliation that a Muslim can take.
Jyllands-Posten of course has the right to publish the cartoons. Should they have done so? No, I say. I may have the right to color my hair shocking pink. But should I? Engage in debate about the current state of religion, question its roots and its tenants. But was it necessary to blasphemously lampoon the prophet? The Pandora’s Box once opened cannot be closed. Hurt a person and the wound takes a lifetime to heal.
Sometimes saying nothing is more impactful than proving our might!