Everybody Draw Muhammad Day!

Some Muslims–certainly not all of them–have made a stink now and again about depictions of their prophet Muhammad in the media. And by “stink” I mean “violent protests and death threats.” Some have caved to the pressure and fear, which seems like it sets a bad precedent. No group of people have the right to force everyone else to live by their religion’s arbitrary rules; no Hindu has the right to force me not to eat a hamburger, no Jehovah’s Witness has the right to force me not to get a blood transfusion, no Jain has the right to force me not to step on ants, and no Christian has the right to force me not to make “graven images, or any likenesses of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth.” And that’s true no matter how many threats of force those people might make.

So it was suggested that everyone draw Muhammad today, to make a statement about free speech, to stand against the thugs who would try to bully others into following their religious tenets, and to remind all religious believers that no belief is above or beyond criticism or ridicule.

To that end, I give you my crude drawing:

Shut up woman, get on my buraq!
If you’re not familiar, it’s based on this song (NSFW) which is better at the link, but here’s the YouTube version.

I even wrote a partial song parody:

Look at my ass, my donkey’s amazing!
Come ride with me, you’ll get seventy raisins.
Buraq is his name, he flies just like a plane,
He could take you to Spain, or he might fly us to Heaven!

Now, if only I could get a Muhammad action figure. He’d go really well with Jesus. Maybe they could rock out.

5 Responses to Everybody Draw Muhammad Day!

  1. Mythnam says:

    Your "crude drawing" still beats the hell out of my MS Paint stick figure. Nice one.

  2. Will Staples says:

    I don't like stuff like this (or that "Blasphemy Day" with people destroying Bibles, etc.). I don't begrudge anyone the right to say whatever they want, and I'm disgusted by the violence perpetrated by radical Muslims, but this just seems petty.But hey, don't let me stop you. I DO respect your rights, I just disagree with your view. *shrug*

  3. Bronze Dog says:

    They commit violence when someone draws a picture, and we're petty?I think you need to work on your choice of vocabulary.

  4. Will Staples says:

    Let me rephrase that – I think it's juvenile. There are more mature ways to take on fundamentalism, IMO.

  5. Doubting Tom says:

    There is definitely a childishness to it, to do something precisely because you're told you can't or shouldn't. Similarly, there are certainly more mature ways to fight against fundamentalist ideologies: reasoned arguments, examining evidence, etc.That being said, it's also childish to make up a bunch of arbitrary rules and expect everybody to follow them because you said so, and to throw violent tantrums when people hurt your feelings. Just as there is a time, place, and necessity for ridicule, I think there's also a time, place, and necessity for protests like this one. When religious fundamentalists engage in garbage like this, I think it's important to remind them that they don't get to dictate the rules for the rest of society. Whether it's flaunting Muslims' rule against drawing Muhammad or their ideas about female modesty, or publicly denying the Holy Spirit or treating a Communion wafer like a normal cracker, stunts like these serve two purposes: asserting our independence from religious laws, and drawing out crazy, over-the-top responses from the fundy extremists. It's a bit of consciousness raising for the moderates on two fronts: first, trying to get them to think about the silliness or arbitrariness of religious rules, and second, showing how unhinged some people–who may share the same label–get over what, ultimately, are harmless, juvenile stunts. It's easy for moderate religious people to write off the Westboro Baptist idiots, since they get vile and nasty without any provocation. Demonstrating that some of the more acceptable, mainstream believers are exactly as vile when you scratch the surface a little can be the kind of wake-up call that gets the moderates to start speaking out against even the less obviously, ostentatiously crazy of their fundamentalist kin. Obviously this shouldn't be the only method of protest that people use, but I think it has its place now and then.

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