Saturday, April 29, 2006

About those Mohammed cartoons

I was very cranky about my internet problems yesterday and spoke a bit too harshly about those bloggers who chose to post the stupid cartoons. As a commenter reminded me, some bloggers I like and otherwise respect posted them too, so perhaps I should qualify those statements. When I called them lamebrained idiots, I was speaking about the situation over the cartoons and not their intellect in general. FUB has this to say in comments:
But it's just plain silly, if not defeatist, to tiptoe around afraid to insult an enemy who has sworn to kill you if you insult their so-called religion.

The people doing the DOS aren't poor misunderstood peaceful religious adherents. They are scum who have hijacked a religion to carry out a war to the death on everyone who doesn't bow down to them.

You're not afraid to insult the scum who make and enforce totalitarian drug policy. Why be so nice to scum who want to kill you and every other person on the planet who won't worship the way they think people should?
Well, here's the thing. Number one, the cartoons sucked. They had no artistic value. They didn't make any kind of political statement. I found them to be the equivalent of a school yard bully taunting the smart kid (who showed him up in class) with something brilliant like -- yeah your mother is ugly.

Second, the cartoons offend all Muslims, not just the ones who were threatening to kill people. How would you feel if someone who was pissed at your neighbor started posting naked pictures of your mother on the net because , what the hey -- you must think like he does because you look like him and you live next door. Sorry, but if you want to take the fight to extremist scum, get out your gun and go find out who they are and start shooting. Please don't be drawing lines in the sand here and daring them to retaliate.

I don't think this is the same as insulting the prohibs or the administration because when I criticize, I try very hard to keep it specific to the perpetrators of the policies and not paint every person who disagrees with me with the same broad brush.

So sorry if I offended those of you on the other side of the fence on this with a poor choice of words in a fit of pique, but I simply think posting the cartoons is counterproductive and I also think that kind of mockery is not bravery but is instead uncivilized foolishness. Aren't we supposed to behave better than them? Not to mention when you deliberately incite the extremists, you put not only yourself in danger but also those of us who didn't participate. As the saying goes, discretion is the greater part of valor.

Update: For what it's worth, I cross posted this to The Impolitic and I left a more focused explanation of what bothers me about posting these cartoons in a response to a comment there.


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