August 27, 2007 - It's been nearly two years since the Danish newspaper, Jyllands-Posten, published 12 caricatures of the "prophet" Mohammad--a misguided action that immediately solicited violence and riots as it, in a matter of mere minutes, morphed into an international incident. The ambassadors from 11 Muslim countries demanded formal apologies from the newspaper before taking the matter before the Arab League and Organization of the Islamic Conference. In response to the cartoons, enraged Muslims issued vitriolic statements such as these:
"This is one of the most frustrating things ever happened to me, not only but all mankind. our beloved Prophet gave so much for us in this world, and we will get so much in hearafter inshallah (Shafat). This some kind of Moron journalists are making fun of finest creature of Allah. Allah has not created anybody holier, or better than our Prophet, (pbuh)," one Muslim writes. And another: "I would choke them to death who ever made these cartoons." And another: "If i had a power I would execute them in front of the mass. Their hands and legs should be chopped off. Kuffaar!"
Last week, a newspaper in Malaysia--a country in which the official religion is Islam--dismissed as a mere "accident" its front page publishing of an image of Jesus Christ holding a cigarette. After "suspending" the graphic artist responsible, the general manager of the Makkal Osai newspaper claims the artist "didn't see the cigarette".
Are we to believe that the phases of publishing involved in Malaysian newsprint media are that foreign to our own? Are we to believe that the only two eyes that viewed this blasphemous image, before it found itself on the paper's front page, were those belonging to the graphic artist? Is there not a layout editor that must approve of content to be published before it goes to press? A distribution editor? A publisher?
Even so, what are the odds that the graphic artist received death threats from distraught Christians? How many Christian countries demanded a formal apology from the newspaper in question? How many Christians rioted in the streets in response? How many embassies were torched in protest?
I'm certain Mohammad, mere dust in a box at this point, failed to have an opinion either way once the Danish cartoons hit the stands in 2005. However, the King of Kings continues to watch from above as misguided, lost souls continue to blaspheme His Holy Name. I assure you, He isn't amused.