‘Blasphemous’ artworks censored at top London gallery

‘Blasphemous’ artworks censored at top London gallery May 8, 2019

The counter-extremist think-tank Quilliam has reacted with anger to reports that the Saatchi Gallery had covered two paintings after complaints from Muslim visitors that the works were ‘blasphemous’.

Usama Hasan, head of Islamic studies at Quilliam, said the artworks were:

Really dangerous…it’s The Satanic Verses all over again.

Hasan referenced the 1988 fictional book by Salman Rushdie, which caused major controversy among Muslims who accused it of mocking their faith.

So, what’s the story?

The Independent revealed that two paintings – part of a new exhibition by the artist SKU –were covered up in response to complaints.

The two “offensive” artworks show classical-style nudes overlaid with Arabic script, in a way that appears to imitate the American flag. They are intended to represent the conflict between the US and Islamic extremists.

However, the inclusion of the shahada, an Islamic creed and one of the Five Pillars of Islam, prompted a backlash, with Muslim visitors asking for them to be removed from the London gallery.

The gallery rejected demands to remove the paintings entirely, arguing that visitors should be able to see the works and draw their own conclusions. The artist, SKU,  instead requested they be covered, saying:

It seemed a respectful solution that enables a debate about freedom of expression versus the perceived right not to be offended.

While the gallery said it “fully supported” freedom of expression as a fundamental right, it added:

The gallery also recognises the sincerity of the complaints made against these works and supported the artist’s decision to cover them until the end of the exhibition.

Ahead of the openings of Rainbow Scenes, an exhibition of SKU works that has now ended, ArtDaily.org said:

The overriding theme of the exhibition is how we, as individuals, are subjected to wider cultural, economic, moral and political forces in society. Once section of the exhibition deals with the impact of these forces on us individually as we absorb such influences into our minds and our bodies …

SKU is based in London. The artist does not have any social media accounts or website. The work of the artist is currently being exclusively presented by the Saatchi Gallery.

The name SKU derives from the economic term Stock Keeping Unit. SKUs usually take the form of product numbers or barcode identifiers. For the artist it appears that each of us is increasingly a SKU – a bundle of assets to be monetised and a consumer of services.

Hat tip: BarrieJohn


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What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • barriejohn

    “They’re Muslims, so we’ll just roll over.”

  • igotbanned999

    In before a certain person complains that you’re being Islamophobic…

  • Kit Hadley-Day

    since when did people have the right to not be offended? I have no problem with them being as angry as they like about the art work, i mean i think it’s ridiculous but that’s down to them. The right to freedom of expression should not be curbed because someone got their feelings hurt. The trouble is every time this sort of concession is made it simply validates that their feelings are more important than another persons rights. A polite ‘Thank you for you opinion, but we are not going to censor something just because you claim it is offensive’ would be more than they deserve.

    ‘While the gallery said it “fully supported” freedom of expression as a fundamental right’

    i would like to suggest that the gallery is talking bollocks. if they fully supported freedom of expression that sentence while not start with a ‘While’, it is a telling as ‘i am not racist but………..’

  • Sorry I’m late!

  • barriejohn

    They don’t support freedom of expression in any way whatsoever. And it’s not blasphemous to those of us who don’t believe, is it?

  • Raging Bee

    We DO have a right not to be offended. It just doesn’t override anyone else’s explicitly stated Constitutional rights. Nor does it mean we have a right to go wherever we want and never see anything we might find offensive.

  • Broga

    They cannot defend their faith with facts or evidence so the alternative is to attack, and preferably kill, any one whom they deem worth killing. These super sensitive defenders don’t seem able to realise that by their defence they destroy any respect or belief in their God fictional or otherwise.

  • Nemo

    Yes yes yes, I’m sure you privileged people think censorship is bad, but have you considered that perhaps artistic expression was intended to be utilized by those whom I personally deem to need it? (I never said I support censorship, why do you think that?!) Of particular note, if one examines textual narrative, one is faced with a choice: either accept textual neocultural theory or conclude that the law is used in the service of class divisions. The subject is contextualised into a subsemiotic socialism that includes truth as a totality. Thus, Lacan suggests the use of textual neocultural theory to analyse class. The subject is interpolated into a textual neocultural theory that includes reality as a reality. Thus, the characteristic theme of the works of Smith is not, in fact, discourse, but neodiscourse.

  • CoastalMaineBird

    We have no such right.

  • Chris Hogue

    Oh no, artwork offends someones’ beliefs which alter from reality. I guess it’s too bad I can’t cover up their mosques, churches, synagogues, etc. as their beliefs offend me.

  • Raging Bee

    So you’re saying we have no right to go out in public and not be harassed or insulted by any rando who wants to piss on someone? We have no right to be treated decently by others? Sorry, that’s bullshit, and kinda racist bullshit at that, since I only ever hear Muslims being told that.

  • Freethinker

    Let’s be honest. The reason the gallery is doing this is is not because they are trying to be sensitive (art is meant to provoke) they are doing it out of sheer fear for their lives from the usual reaction of the followers of the lovely religion of peace. The gallery has bowed down to the barbarians and further proved to them once again, that they can blackmail those “infidels” who dare to live free.

    “Those who would give up essential liberty, to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.” Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790

  • I find it curious that there are folks who associate opposition to censorship with privilege, consedering that censorship has been generally used to uphold the status quo and as a weapon *against* the marginalized.

  • I have heard Fundamentalist Christians being told that as well.

    I agree that there is no right to be protected from offensive material, and think the responsibility for offense is on the person offended. Nevertheless, I don’t see a hige difference between what you and your interlocutors say.

    I also see no contradiction between the right to be treated decently and the nonexistence of the right not to be offended: we are all guaranteed human rights, which are listed in documents such as The Universal Declaration of Human Rights. These documents make no mention of a right not to be offended, but do list as rights things many consider offensive (Example: interracial marriage, apostasy).

    I guess that if by right to be offended, you mean the right to be outraged, I am in full agreement with you, since you seem to say that there is no right to CRAM one’s offense down everyone’s throats.

  • I will also point out that, had folks worried about a right not to be offended previously, black people would still be going to “separate, yet equal” facilities and LGBTQ people would still be in the closet.

  • barriejohn

    Sadly, this is the truth.

  • barriejohn

    Harassment is a completely different thing.

  • David Hughett

    Utter cowardice!

  • David Hughett

    Yup, that’s about right. Pathetic!

  • Raging Bee

    I have heard Fundamentalist Christians being told that as well.

    I haven’t. We generally tell them WE have a right to say what we want, not that they have “no right not to be offended.” That particular choice of words only seems to come up in response to Muslims, which makes the whole thing sound like a double-standard, even when it clearly isn’t.

    As for what I “seem to say,” that’s pretty simple and easily discernible from reading ALL THREE sentences of my original comment, not just the first one to which so many others seem to be reacting before reading the rest.

  • Raging Bee

    I gotta say, I like how the artist responded to the Muslims’ tantrum: instead of removing the works, he had them covered up, to highlight the fact that censorship was, in fact, taking place. That’s bound to generate more buzz, just like all those bookstores making a big show of pulling Rushdie’s book off their shelves in response to Khomeini’s fatwa.

  • CoastalMaineBird

    I didn’t say you don’t have a right to not be harassed. You do.
    Everybody has a responsibility to NOT HARASS you.

    I didn’t say you don’t have a right to not be pissed on. You do.
    Everybody has a responsibility to NOT PISS ON you.

    But you don’t have a right to not be offended, because
    nobody has a responsibility to avoid offending you.

  • I’m offended at Quilliam being called a “think tank.”

  • I will also point out that, had folks worried about a right not to be offended previously, black people would still be going to “separate, yet equal” facilities and LGBTQ people would still be in the closet.

    And I’ll point out to you, as I have before when you made this mistake, that civil rights struggles aren’t just about being allowed to cause offense. They’re about changing the power dynamics of a society.

    In contrast, the struggle to be allowed to insult and intimidate Muslim minorities in Western nations is about keeping the social order exactly the way it is.

  • persephone

    White supporters of MLK literally asked him not to march because they didn’t want to upset other white people.

    If Allah can’t handle some insults from humans, how does he manage to keep the universe working?

  • White supporters of MLK literally asked him not to march because they didn’t want to upset other white people.

    Yeah? Well, that just goes to show that lots of white people like our amigo Kevin look at social change not in terms of institutions, power dynamics, or the ethical balances of the social order, but rather how they affect people’s sensibilities.

  • barriejohn

    You remind me of Citizen Smith. How are you going to affect institutions and “power dynamics” if you don’t affect people’s “sensibilities”? That’s how you start out!

  • Kit Hadley-Day

    sorry but i have to disagree, we have a wish to not be offended, as it makes our lives easier often because offence is actually the first step to questioning a world view. Just the same as i have a wish to be happy, however i cannot force someone to stop doing something because it gives me the sads, there needs to be a more material and clearer injury before i can impose my will on others in such a manner.

  • Kit Hadley-Day

    or, and stay with me here, just possibly the desire to be able to express our selves freely on any topic is more important than kowtowing to authoritarians of any stripe. It’s almost like people who believe in false and dangerous things need to be called out on it, not provided with extra protection.

    Some people want to be rude to foreigners, that is true, however to lump in all the people who have legitimate grievances against theocrats is just a tad broad, do you not think?

  • But that’s simply not true at all. The people who fought for civil rights for African-Americans in the USA didn’t have to make each and every racist change their mind about their personal prejudice or consciously reject their white privilege. What they did was lobby for legislation that made discrimination illegal. People’s personal attitudes toward nonwhites are irrelevant; as a society we expect everyone to acknowledge that whites and nonwhites are supposed to be treated equally by our institutions.

  • This isn’t about “theocrats” or “authoritarians,” though, this is about a Muslim minority in the US or UK expecting to be treated with respect rather than having their culture characterized as a threat to Western values. I’m not saying that complaints like this one are always valid, but the question deserves to be asked whether the speech or images imply that members of a minority are unworthy of trust, respect, or inclusion. And in all these discussions, the only thing people think is important is their so-called right to offend.

    If you automatically consider having a modicum of sensitivity or respect “kowtowing to authoritarians,” maybe that’s a sign of immaturity and insecurity.

  • Kit Hadley-Day

    did you even read the OP? this story is not about someone daubing anti muslim hate on a wall, it was about a charge of blasphemy leveled at an artist, a charge that can only be leveled by theocrats and authoritarians as they are the only ones who think that their feelings are more important than other peoples rights, or at least the only ones who are willing to act on that belief.

    I never said you have a right to offend, i said there is no right to not be offended. curbing of free speech, particularly because of the overly delicate sensibilities of individuals, is dangerous.

    If you don’t like a piece of art, don’t look at it, nothing is stopping you stating why you think it is bad and wrong, but unless the piece triggers some law (hate speech, defamation, etc) then the artists right to make it is just the same as your right to complain about it.

    what is this modicum if sensitivity you are talking about? there was no compromise here, the artist has been told his rights are less important then someone else’s feelings. Does that not concern you? what you are seeing is unearned privilege at work.

    I find many aspects of both the Koran and the Bible to be offensive, should i be able to demand that they be banned from bookshelves?

  • Kit Hadley-Day

    and yet you seem to be suggesting that the religious should get extra special protection above anyone else? for some reason their sensibilities deserve more and better protection than anyone else’s? why is that?

    I am all for equality under the law, but you don’t get that by affording one group undue protection, what you get then is a class system.

  • You’re making it sound like Muslims in the UK and the USA are some sort of privileged group whose members enjoy rights the rest of us don’t.

    Please tell me you don’t really believe that.

  • Kit Hadley-Day

    I am telling you that religions, and by extension it’s adherents, expect and in many cases receive dispensations and protections that are not awarded to others, like the ability to get pieces of art censored because it offends their delicate sensibilities.

    Please don’t tell me that you think someone refusing to bake a christian a cake in the basis of a moral disagreement with their religion would get them very far, and yet apparently it’s just dandy for a christian to refuse service on those grounds.

    Now does that mean that i think that Muslims in america and the uk are treated badly by a decent chunk of the population, of course they are. It would be incredibly stupid to deny the obvious animus that many people have towards those different to themselves. however that animus is not made any less by unearned privilege being demanded and in many cases respected.

    all my comments have been generally about religion, not any particular one, because the same expected privilege and assumption of acceptance is common to all of them. The people in the OP could have been Christians or Hindus and my response would have been the same.

  • there is no right to not be offended blah blah blah

    Oh brother. This seems to be the only way people are comfortable framing the entire complex of subjects surrounding multiculturalism, speech, and Muslim minorities in the West. It’s the oversensitive Muslims hatin’ on our free speech, end of story. Is it even possible that there are relevant matters other than free speech here? Is it possible that this isn’t just about people’s “delicate sensibilities,” but about everyone’s responsibilities in a multicultural society?

    I already said I don’t think every single complaint is necessarily valid, and this may be one of those times. But our first, middle, and last resort shouldn’t be to dismiss the complaint as an affront to our precious liberties.

    curbing of free speech, particularly because of the overly delicate sensibilities of individuals, is dangerous.

    And racism isn’t? Marginalization isn’t? It demonstrates a disturbing amount of contempt for Muslims to make it sound like there’s no basis for their sensitivity to exclusion. They’ve been subject to attacks and oppression in the USA and Europe, and maintaining an atmosphere of mistrust against them only reinforces their oppression.

  • The people in the OP could have been Christians or Hindus and my response would have been the same.

    Mine wouldn’t, not for Christians anyway.

    Like I keep saying, I think there’s a dimension to these matters that you’re missing by just framing it as all about religious-people’s-feelings. Christians are a majority in the USA and Europe, and that makes their appeals to “religious freedom” ring hollow when they’re oppressing women or the LGBTQ community. Women don’t terminate pregnancies just to offend Christians, and people who support marriage equality don’t do so just because it offends the religious.

    However, the same can’t be said about publishing anti-Muslim cartoons or celebrating Draw Mohammed Day. The only reasons people do this is because they belong to a privileged majority in the West and they’re deliberately trying to offend and intimidate people they consider a threat to the social order.

    Do you see the difference there?

  • Raging Bee

    The covering in the photo looked kinda loose. Can they make it so people who want to see the “offending” work can simply lift the covering to see it?

  • Kit Hadley-Day

    draw mohammed day is designed to highlight the fact that the beliefs of some should not and do not control all. Piss Jesus did the same as does the statue of baphomet that gets ported about by the satanic temple, these are deliberately aimed at pissing of Christians, and to highlight the privilege that they attempt to claim.

    Do you think Muslim apostates do it just to piss of other Muslims, or do you think that they may have other personal reasons for those actions? the examples you site is where religion is trying to shoe horn it’s self into other peoples business, just like the OP.

    The privilege we have in the west is that we can say these things without being hacked to death with machetes (for the most part). We have to maintain a strong stance on free speech so that all those who live where there is none can see what is possible and the good that such freedoms bring. Unless you would prefer to live in a theocracy in which case good luck to you.

    There are some that do it because they just hate foreigners, but i am afraid as there is no way to stop that bunch without also stopping all free speech we just have to call it out where we see it and use social pressure to make them go away, there is no way to write a law that curbs free speech in such matters that would not also curtail totally justifiable complaints.

    So do you think we should curtail our free speech to protect the religious beliefs of Muslims?

  • We have to maintain a strong stance on free speech so that all those who live where there is none can see what is possible and the good that such freedoms bring. Unless you would prefer to live in a theocracy in which case good luck to you.

    So either anything goes is our defining principle of public discourse, or we live in a theocratic, totalitarian hellhole? Sounds like a false dilemma to me. We have laws against slander, hate speech, or shouting “fire” in a crowded theater because we realize that propriety and public safety have to counterbalance freedom of expression.

    There are some that do it because they just hate foreigners, but i am afraid as there is no way to stop that bunch without also stopping all free speech we just have to call it out where we see it and use social pressure to make them go away, there is no way to write a law that curbs free speech in such matters that would not also curtail totally justifiable complaints.

    So the downside to being civil and inclusive in a multicultural society is unacceptable, but the downside to completely unrestricted free speech is just something we have to live with.

    I repeat, this isn’t just about people’s feelings. Creating a social atmosphere where minorities are allowed to be denigrated and maligned with impunity leads to an increase in hate crimes, discrimination and harassment against them. You’re being extremely self-serving in this matter.

    So do you think we should curtail our free speech to protect the religious beliefs of Muslims?

    Like I’ve said over and over again, this isn’t just about protecting people’s beliefs or feelings. This is about the power dynamics that prevail in a multicultural society; it’s about xenophobia, privilege and marginalization. However, you’ve never, ever, not even once, seen fit to approach it in any other way than with cheap libertarian clichés.

  • Kit Hadley-Day

    all restrictions on free speech are very carefully considered and the ones that there are have some serious issues, hate speech for example, is very hard to quantify and hence it can be used to silence people rather than protect. Shouting fire in a theater, or public threats very much move into the very obviously dangerous category that is much easier to identify, even then such things have to be considered in context.

    The first step towards any from of dictatorial rule is to curb the ability of people to speak truth to power. if people cannot speak they cannot resist.

    my invitation that you go live in a theocracy was not a suggestion that it is an inevitable outcome, more that you it would appear you would prefer it there.

    The down side to free speech, is more free speech, the downside to limiting free speech is the handing over off the market place of ideas to a bunch of self selected gate keepers, now which do you think i better?

    So you can’t answer a direct question, what does that tell me about your position? I am not a libertarian and so any cliches i produce are unlikely to come from that camp, what i am is a zealous protector of free speech, something that you appear to feel is beneath your concern.

  • Kit Hadley-Day

    or better yet, leave them uncovered and people who are offended can just choose not to look, win all the way round.

  • Vanity Unfair

    We don’t have a Constitution.

  • Norman Parron

    They do not care about real respect, they like the type of respect you give the other criminal groups, like the mafia, total fear of being killed! Too many gov’mints are cowards that have bent over and spread their cheeks to religion.

  • 24CaratHooligan

    Presumably people who went to the gallery had some idea of the nature of the paintings, therefore they went there with the sole intention of being offended. I’ve no issue with people choosing not to look at things, I’m even OK with some things being away from the gaze of impressionable children but this was a semi-private space where one chooses to go or not go. The religious nuts of the world can Foxtrot Oscar, whichever mono-god they choose to prostrate themselves before.

  • 24CaratHooligan

    So you’re saying we have no right to go out in public and not be harassed or insulted by any rando who wants to piss on someone? We have no right to be treated decently by others? That’s not the same as being offended. That’s being harrassed and insulted which we do have a right not to be, although I’m not sure we have the right not to be insulted

  • 24CaratHooligan

    Oooh, I hadn’t even considered that. Good point, and all in the name of passive resistance. Ghandi would be proud

  • anne marie hovgaard

    People were shot because of publishing cartoons portraying Mohammed (not “anti-Muslim” cartoons). And you still claim they had no legitimate reason to do that, they only did it because they “belong to a privileged majority in the West and they’re deliberately
    trying to offend and intimidate people they consider a threat to the
    social order”.Who is trying to intimidate who, here?

  • anne marie hovgaard

    That dull grey piece of cloth is a missed opportunity for art. They should put up a big (bigger than the art work) poster explaining that they are covering it up because of complaints from religious people. Or maybe hire someone to stand in front of it, reciting a speech apologising for not letting people see the art AND for having it in the first place.

  • anne marie hovgaard

    They could drape a chador over it instead, perhaps?

  • Freethinker

    You are right. It would have been a perfect opportuinyt for a social conversation about how much we as society are willing to put up with delusional mental illnesses involving imaginary invisible friends who are telling us how to live our lives. We could have engaged in a discussion how this “offense” or what some would no doubt call “blasphemy”, is not just a victimless crime but one entirely of the “victim’s making. Someone once said that if believers demand that you as a non believer must also follow their, superstitions, ritual and taboos in a public domain, they are not asking for your respect, but instead for your submission. Islam is of course particularly incendiary about this point because they very word Islam (الإسلام) when translated into Arabic literally means “submission”. We could also discuss the reasons generally liberal governments in Europe would go out of their way to not offend this one particular mythological group, above all others, and the degree of actual physical fear for their lives, as a result of their actions, they personally get swayed by in their decision making process to genuflect to this one particular group.

  • Jim Jones

    Religions and street gangs have much in common.

  • Freethinker

    Are you not giving any thought to whether or not we should be bending over for someone’s irrational belief systems which in turn cause them “offense”? If a mental patient who insists they are Napoleon is offended that you are calling them by their actual given name, will you stoop to the level of their delusion just so that the illusion is maintained and they remain in control? Is it offensive to tell children that Santa does not in fact exist lest you cause them an “offense” to their belief system? If not they why would we treat the religiously afflicted in any other way?

  • If we’re both defining the Hebdo massacre as a terrorist act, then we can agree 100% that it was a reprehensible act of brutality. We can agree that artists should never be targeted and murdered in cold blood for their work. Period.

  • Like I say in the very post to which you’re responding, I don’t think the only relevant matter here is hurting-religious-people’s-feelings. You’re the one who’s not giving any thought to the angle your opponent is exploring.

    This isn’t just about hurting people’s feelings. Characterizing Muslims in the West as irrational and dangerous serves political ends in a culture where nationalists have no problem blurring the distinction between Muslims and terrorists whenever they can. Provoking Muslims with constant harassment, and using any pushback to validate the contempt and mistrust Americans and Europeans have for them, is the 21st century bigot’s favorite pastime.

  • Freethinker

    Muslims do not and should not have any special protection against people’s criticism of their deranged beliefs any more than Jews or Christians or any other mythology. The only reason they do is because people are afraid of them for their lives and those of their families. For legitimate reasons. What you are conveniently choosing not to point out is that out of all religions there is only one in the current era willing to commit atrocities specifically against those of faiths other than their own and especially those of no faith at all. Not only that, it is the only delusional worship which specifically promises outrageous rewards in the afterlife for “martyrs” willing to die in the process of killing the infidels, “enemies of their faith”. Islam is less a ‘religion’ and more of a violent philosophy of political conquest while being the only major world religion (soon to be the largest) founded by a murderous warlord who enjoyed fucking pre-pubescent girls, who also incidentally is also viewed by his inbred followers as a perfect human being. Is it any wonder so many of them want to emulate him and are so easily convinced to do so? A process we call “radicalized” and what Muslims call “coming home”. When stating facts is considered an act of “provocation” the problem does not lie with the one presenting the facts but rather those who are wired to be triggered by those facts.

  • “White people like our amigo Kevin”

    Lol; a lot of Americans would call me “black” because of the One Drop Rule.

    I guess I should ask how you define “white people”, and how white Muslims fit into your views.

  • anne marie hovgaard

    You really don’t get it, do you?

    However, the same can’t be said about publishing anti-Muslim cartoons or
    celebrating Draw Mohammed Day. The only reasons people do this is
    because they belong to a privileged majority in the West and they’re
    deliberately trying to offend and intimidate people they consider a
    threat to the social order.

    The fact that people were shot demonstrates very clearly that you are wrong. People celebrate Draw Mohammed Day because drawing Mohammed is dangerous, because religious people might kill them for hurting their imaginary friend’s feelings. Because deciding not to do it so as not to offend people is obeying terrorists’ demands. No, it doesn’t help that only a few of the people insisting that they stop offending them by drawing Mohammed are violent: we’re not idiots. If you tell me “of course massacres are bad, but the murderers were right so you should stop doing that thing they didn’t like” when we both know there are more people like those murderers out there, then you are in effect saying “do as my friend wants (or my friend might hurt you)”. You’ll insist you don’t mean that, and I’ll pretend that’s not why I’m doing it, but that’s the reality.

  • The only thing funnier than this paranoid rant is that you consider any of it “factual.”

  • If you tell me “of course massacres are bad, but the murderers were right so you should stop doing that thing they didn’t like”

    You think I said that? Anyone whose eyes connect to a functioning brain can see that the words I typed were: it was a reprehensible act of brutality and artists should never be targeted and murdered in cold blood for their work. Period.

    You’re the one who wants to exploit a terrorist act to demonize Muslims and make it sound like we’re right to consider them irrational and dangerous.

  • As usual, you ignore what I’m saying and offer nothing but tiresome nitpickery.

    You seem to think that civil rights activism is all about offending sensibilities, and you’re absolutely wrong. It’s about changing laws and institutions to be more inclusive and equitable.

    The idea that the drawing cartoons of Mohammed is akin to marching for civil rights is beyond absurd.

  • Freethinker

    Feel free to challenge any of the factual points presented.

  • anne marie hovgaard

    You also said

    The only reasons people do this (celebrating Draw Mohammed Day)
    is because they belong to a privileged majority in the West and they’re deliberately trying to offend and intimidate people they consider a threat to the social order.

    Sounds to me like you’re saying it’s a bad thing and they should stop doing it. Are you trying to pretend that wasn’t what you meant ?

  • I think drawing cartoons of Mohammed is something people only do to parade their privilege, immaturity and bigotry. I also think people shouldn’t be murdered for drawing cartoons.

    Is there any reason I can’t hold both of those opinions simultaneously?

  • anne marie hovgaard

    Of course you can hold both those opinions, when did I say you couldn’t? I just pointed out that the first “opinion” is demonstrably wrong, and that by stating it, you support the murderers’ agenda. The result is that people censor themselves wrt. Islam far more than wrt. Christianity; you help them pretend it’s because they’re being respectful, not because they fear for their lives. You are the good cop to the murderer’s bad cop act.

  • “Censor themselves”? I’ve drawn just as many cartoons of Mohammed as I’ve ever wanted to. Like I said, I consider it a passive-aggressive stunt by people whose privilege and immaturity are more important to them than their acknowledgment of a multicultural society.

    you support the murderers’ agenda

    Only in your overheated imagination, where anyone less bigoted than yourself is an apologist for mass murder.

  • anne marie hovgaard

    Are you the only person on the planet? People who regularly draw cartoons of other political and religious figures as part of their job censor themselves, and/or the papers who publish such cartoons do.

  • Well, what you’re describing is realpolitik. That’s what I mean about privilege: you think you should have the right to insult and mock the Muslim minority in the West, and also define the extent of the consequences you consider acceptable for doing so.

    In the world the rest of us inhabit, there are consequences to our actions. The only thing I’ll do if you draw Mohammed cartoons is call you a callow bigot. And that’s my right too.

  • anne marie hovgaard

    Sure, you have the right to say any silly, bigoted thing you like, I’m not going to stop you.