On portraying the Prophet and being offended

Chick Publications anti-Catholic ranting
Chick Publications anti-Catholic ranting

The furor of Islamists at Charlie Hebdo appears politically motivated rather than based on religious beliefs. I would be willing to bet large amounts of money that AQ and IS leaders do not follow their own Draconian rules and instead are mainly concerned with money, power, and women.

I was raised Catholic and have seen more than a bit of viciously anti-Catholic propaganda, such as the hate-filled Chick Publications, To my knowledge, no Catholic has ever said Jack Chick must be killed. Christian churches were just burned in Niger and several killed in response to the Charlie Hebdo Mohammed cartoon. (Yes, I’m quite awars that black churches have been burned by in the US by white “Christians”, who probably included Catholics.) All such religiously-based violence is derangement, and if there is any minority that particularly hates our freedoms, it is religious fanatics who think God is telling them what to do. I’m not bashing religion. Lots of people get real help and strength from their beliefs.

South Park can be at least as offensive as anything Charlie Hebdo has done. South Park satire can also be quite funny and biting. Since it satirizes and attacks most everything, it can’t be accused of being racist, sexist, or insulting to specific targets. South Park gleefully lampoons everyone. In one telling incident Isaac Hayes, the voice of Cookie, quit because South Park insulted Scientology, of which he is a member.

South Park co-creator Matt Stone replied “In 10 years and more than 150 episodes Isaac never had a problem with the show making fun of Christians, Muslims, Mormons and Jews. He got a sudden case of religious sensitivity when it was his religion featured on the show. To bring the civil rights struggle into this is just a non sequitur. Of course, we will release Isaac from his contract and we wish him well.”

Rules against depicting Mohammed the Prophet does not appear to be an iron-clad rule for Muslims. And even if it was, so what? The rule doesn’t apply to non-Mulims.

The permissibility of depictions of Muhammad in Islam has been a contentious issue. Oral and written descriptions are readily accepted by all traditions of Islam, but there is disagreement about visual depictions. The Quran does not explicitly forbid images of Muhammad, but there are a few hadith (supplemental teachings) which have explicitly prohibited Muslims from creating visual depictions of figures.

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