It’s Everybody Draw Muhammad Day 3

Today is Everybody Draw Muhammad Day 3:

(Video via Thunderf00t)

In previous years, I’ve compiled and posted large sets of images as a way to show solidarity with others who refuse to be censored by religious extremists… this year, for a variety of personal reasons, I just didn’t have the time to put it all together. I didn’t think anything of it — it wasn’t as much of a hot topic this year as it was in the past, right?

Maybe I need to reconsider.

Pakistan shut down Twitter in the country after the company refused to censor Tweets linking to the Everybody Draw Muhammad Day Facebook page:

Muhammad Yaseen, chairman of the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority, said the micro-blogging site had been shut down on Sunday after it refused to remove tweets promoting a Facebook page encouraging people to post images of the prophet Muhammad.

He said Facebook agreed to address Pakistan’s concerns but officials had failed to persuade Twitter to do the same. “We have been negotiating with them until last night, but they did not agree to remove the stuff, so we had to block it,” Yaseen said.

Tech-savvy Pakistanis found ways to get around the censors, but the idea that a country can censor a website because some of its users don’t treat Islam with respect it doesn’t deserve in the first place is crazy.

It makes me want to draw Muhammad just to spite them. For now, I’ll just link you to Facebook pages featuring drawings of him.

Then again, the whole thing is just going to backfire, anyway:

Emrys Schoemaker, director of iMedia, a research organisation that studies social media in Pakistan, said attempts to control the internet reflected a shift from the media freedoms introduced by the former president Pervez Musharraf.

“This is a very defensive, dated response to politics in the digital era,” Schoemaker said. “Closing down debate simply makes the voices louder.”

People will keep drawing images of the Islamic prophet until Muslims stop censoring other people from doing it. If they can’t handle freedom of expression, that’s their problem. No one else has to abide by their religious rules — and as long as they kill and suppress others who criticize their faith, we have all the more reason to fight against it.

***Update***: Pakistan’s Prime Minister has restored Twitter access in the country.

(via Atheism Examiner)

About Hemant Mehta

Hemant Mehta is the editor of Friendly Atheist, appears on the Atheist Voice channel on YouTube, and co-hosts the uniquely-named Friendly Atheist Podcast. You can read much more about him here.

  • GabyYYZ

    Here’s my submission… 
    http://twitpic.com/9n41sm

    • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friendlyatheist/ Hemant Mehta

      You HEATHEN!

      • GabyYYZ

        I hope you appreciate the nuance. :)

  • Andrea

    Today on Twitter, I saw someone saying that Draw Muhammad Day is racist, which I found odd. What do you think?

    • Andrea

      Maybe I’ll clarify a bit. I can certainly see how someone could use it in a racist way, but I don’t think it’s inherently racist.

    • http://yetanotheratheist.com/ TerranRich

      It’s not racist, as it’s not targeting a race. I’ve seen non-middle-eastern Muslims, and non-Muslim middle-easterners. This is targeting a silly rule that the more extremist elements of Islam are trying to force upon non-adherents of their religion.

    • Andrew B.

      I think many people are self-righteous.  People often throw around the term racist (and “bigot”) in cases where it simply doesn’t apply.  It’s just such a powerful claim to make that many people don’t ask themselves if it really applies.  I see it is a form of rhetorical cheating: against the rules but provides you with such an incredible advantage.

  • KL

    It’s funny.  I’ve never drawn a picture of Jesus — never felt the desire to, though I could if I want.  However, I feel a sudden strong desire to draw one of Muhammad.  If they didn’t try to prohibit it, I’d never have the slightest interest…

  • http://www.last.fm/user/runawayuniverse runawayuniverse

    I went with this on twitter and it seems to have gone over well.

     

    ~~~~o/~~~~

    Muhammad in the ocean

  • bb

    Interesting.  What is the purpose of the “Everybody Draw Muhammad” Facebook page?  Is there an objective other than merely fanning the flames?

    • http://yetanotheratheist.com/ TerranRich

      Yes, of course. It is to demonstrate that freedom of speech and expression trumps the demands of the religious extremists to censor the rest of us and try to ensure that we follow their rules.

      • Shani

        you are going to hell …kafir ke olad

        • http://yetanotheratheist.com/ TerranRich

          OK, and you’re going to the Christian hell (among many, many others). You don’t see me all hot and bothered about it. Who cares?

  • HughInAz

    Here is my short-lived contribution…

  • http://atheistdave.wordpress.com/ Atheist Dave

    My submission:
    http://twitpic.com/9nifb2
    Happy Draw Muhammad Day!

  • OldNerd

    I tend to think of this as “I will draw whatever I damned please!” day.  Mohammed is just an example, selected specifically to counter those who would prevent us from drawing him.

  • Blah

    This is Muhammad smiling: :)


CLOSE | X

HIDE | X