It’s not often that I see eye-to-eye with William Bennett, aptly described as a right-wing “self-appointed moral compass for America.” But his take on Islamic anger over the Mohammed cartoon controversy is right on. Today on CNN I heard him tell Wolf Blitzer:
“Look, it just turns out that there are people who are acting in the world, cutting people’s heads off, putting jetliners into buildings, and saying they are doing so in the name of Allah. You know, this is what people say…they’re saying they’re doing this because of the Koran, because of the Prophet.
Now, others argue it is a distortion of that. Fine, let that debate commence. But I take it that one point of the Danish newspaper cartoons is to say this is being done in the name of Islam. Religion is not off limits when it comes to a free press. Religion is, despite the fact that our State Department may wish to deny it, very much embedded in this war against radical Islam.”
For some reason our State Department is critical of the publication of the Mohammed cartoons, calling them “offensive to the beliefs of Muslims.” Well, I’m with Bennett on this one (and it could well be the last one). As I said on my Church of the Churchless weblog a few days ago:
Earth to the Muslim world: People get disturbed by lots of things every day. People get their feelings hurt in lots of ways every day. Almost always these things and these ways aren’t illegal or immoral. They’re just part of life in a society where people can freely express themselves.I can’t believe that our State Department is aligning itself (or at least, making excuses for) fundamentalist crazies who are saying that Denmark should be blown up and those who published the cartoons should have their heads cut off.
I believe as many people as possible should see these cartoons. Secular Western democracies can’t allow themselves to be held hostage by religious fundamentalists, whether they be Muslim, Christian, or whatever. Freedom of the press far outweighs the “right” (if such even exists) not to be offended.
So here’s a link to a site that has more readable versions of the cartoons than the image I posted previously. Take a look and practice Islamic blasphemy. What does it matter, if you’re not a Muslim? Or, even if you are.