One of the most frustrating things that comes with being one of Eastern Iowa's top 500 political satire bloggers is dealing with readers who presume to know where I stand on the issues. Worse yet, some even seem to think they can dictate the content of my posts. Like this recent disturbing email from a reader in Crown Point, IN:
Long time reader and fan! I trust you are planning to contribute something special for the upcoming 'Everybody Draw [redacted] Day' on May 20. Let's stand up for free speech and let the [redacted]ofascists know they can't push us around!
or this concerned message that came from an anonymous IP address in Yemen:
Dnt thikning u r to b draw cartooms the Prophet (pbuh) u fukin kaffir
Inshallah i m jihad to behed u and feed ur blood to pigs!!!!!
u r warnd
roast in hell!!!!
What bothers me is the shared assumption of these two readers that I would even consider participation in a cheap provocative stunt like this so-called "Draw M******* Day." Because if "humor" today means mocking the founder of one of the world's great religions -- one with a proud 1400 year history of art, science, scholarship, and beheadings -- well mister, you can count this humble internet funnyman out.
Why I have opted out of this event? It depresses me that our culture has reached such a level of debasement that I feel compelled to list the reasons. Firstly, it is a well known codicil of Islamic law that visual depictions of their holy prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) are strictly prohibited. Like all religions we should respect their views, and the cartoons (which incidentally I have proudly refused to even glance at) seem only to cause hurt. Yes, they hurt the feeling of millions of Muslims. But, ultimately, they also hurt the misguided cartoonists who produce them. Because let's face it: having a rusty scimitar hack through your neck can't be a walk in the park.
Second, it violates my American sense of fair play. I firmly believe all religions deserve my respect -- depending on how they respect me. Yes, it is true that in the past I have sometimes made fun of various world religious faiths: Christianity, Judaism, Hinduism, Buddism, Rastafari, Wicca, Scientology, Global Warmingism, that filthy cult of Wisconsin Synod Lutherans. Equally, without malice, and without issue. But trust me, once any of them starts emailing me credible violent death threats, I guarantee they're gonna start challenging Islam for top spot in Dave's weekly religion respect rankings.
Third, this insipid "humor event" has disturbing racist overtones. It is a needless provocation targeted at one billion people around the world of the Islamic race, and the millions of people -- of every color and every nationality -- who each year genetically convert to the Islamic race. Contrary to popular hysteria no more than 15% of these people with Islamic DNA have a genetic belief in killing blasphemers. Okay, 25% tops. The point is, by insulting M******* (PBUH) these cartoons will only result in radicalizing the vast majority of moderate genetic Muslims, who, at worse, probably only want to make blasphemy a Class II felony.
Fourth, all this ostentatious caterwauling about "free speech" and "preserving Enlightenment values" seem to me to be nothing but a cheap excuse for a few low-brow jokesters to engage in juvenile humor. For example, 'Family Guy' creator Seth MacFarlane, whom I understand is planning an upcoming episode of the popular infidel TV cartoon in which Stewie and Griffin family dog Brian take turns anally raping Islam's holy prophet (PBUH) while singing show tunes. "After slamming Jesus and Christians countless times, I would qualify as the biggest hypocritical pussy in Hollywood if I didn't give that psychotic medieval child molester the vigorous cartoon anal raping which he so richly deserves," MacFarlane has reportedly said.
Please, spare us your artistic sanctimony Seth. Your pretentious concerns about "hypocrisy" are no more convincing than those of the Brooklyn Museum, reportedly planning a new installation featuring Chris Ofili's Elephant Dung Prophet and Andres Serrano's Piss Be Upon Him. Or programming executives at Comedy Central, who have recently reversed a laudable policy against mentions of Islam with their all-new "M******* Mocking Monday" programming block -- conveniently (and unsurprisingly) timed for May rating sweeps week. Be honest, Seth MacFarlane: your puerile obsession with anally humiliating the holiest figure of Islam through musical cartoon has more to do with Nielsen ratings than any of your pie-in-the-sky Hollywood "artistic integrity." It's obvious this is only a cheap tasteless ploy to draw attention to yourself and away from people like me who would never in a million years think of depicting Islam's holy prophet (PBUH) at all, let alone getting backed-doored by a filthy cartoon dog.
Location of Islamic blasphemers: note extreme distance from non-blasphemer Iowahawk
So no; As a responsible humorist I will not, indeed cannot, sanction this disgusting and nihilistic 'Draw M*******' (PBUH) sideshow. Yes, we still have Freedom of Speech in this country. But there comes a time when a man must look deep inside himself and muster the courage to exercise his Freedom of Not Speech. And if having that courage also means not having his house firebombed, hey, win-win!