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gratuitous insults vs. political satire

Reader comment on item: [U.S. Intelligence: ]"Moslem States Represent a Potential Threat to World Peace"
in response to reader comment: Abuse of Muslims in the West

Submitted by Sidda (United States), Feb 13, 2006 at 20:22

Dr. Gajewski, look at this issue from another perspective. I agree with you that gratuitous insults to another's beliefs are not really productive. Serrano's "Piss Christ," the crucifix in a jar of urine was not exactly a great contribution to the world of art in my opinion.

However, as much as I disapproved, and even protested it, in the end the artist has the right to his art. And I have a right to not support it. What Muslims want to do is to put the same restriction on the non Muslim world not to criticize Islam or Mohammed that they have. It is punishable by death under Sharia law for Muslims to speak ill of Islam or the prophet Mohammed. Muslims who live in Western countries must understand that we do not follow Islamic law.

Cartoonists' drawings are often provacative. They are meant to be so in order to make a political point. Islam is not just a religion; it is also political. When Muslim extremists are committing acts of terrorism to achieve political objectives, when Muslim clerics call for violence against non Muslims in the name of Islam from their mosques, and for democratic constitutions to be replaced with Sharia law, Islam is no longer just simply a religion--it has moved into the political realm. Therefore, the cartoons were making a legitimate point to be debated. It is not just gratuitous insult.
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