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Phredreeke

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29th April, 2010 at 16:02:28 -


Originally Posted by Phredreeke
It's gonna come back and bite them in the ass. Those South Park episodes were fairly tame. Now people are bound to be pissed off about the death threats and make far worse depictions of Islam and Muhammed.



Just as I suspected...

Today someone posted a drawing on 4chan of Mohammad giving Jesus a blow job... I wont link to it out of respect of Muz and other muslims on this site. I'm just trying to tell the true consequences of the death threats.

 
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Make some more box arts damnit!
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Muz



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29th April, 2010 at 18:59:59 -

Lol, I don't take 4chan seriously. It's a site with guro, bestiality, and Rule 34, and little to no enforcement. I'm more offended at the sane people who don't see anything wrong with it.


Well, it's incredibly difficult to find a suitable metaphor, but I guess I should explain this once and copy and paste it whenever a similar discussion pops up later It's a difficult concept to grasp and explain.. if you try to find a flaw in my explanation, you will, but this is just for those who are really trying to understand why people would kill themselves over a comic.

First, I think the biggest mistake here is that people are comparing it to a religion. It doesn't work that way. Think of it as a culture. I think a lot of people have the sects, like Sunni and Shia' confused, even Muslims themselves. They compare it to sects of other religions like Catholic and Protestantism, etc. Not the same.. sects are different cultures. The core Islam stuff like prayer, beliefs, rituals are religious in aspects. The rest of Islam is a culture.

As any clerics would say, Islam is a way of life. It doesn't work at all with secularism (separation of church/mosque/temple and state) because of this. It's very hard to explain to a non-Muslim, but think of it as a culture.

A culture is basically like a collection of beliefs. Some cultures reward hard work, others reward stealing credit. Some respect women, others reward punishing them. Some respect braggers, others prefer humility. Some have a strong caste system, some preach equality. Some may respect handicaps and weakness, others may feel they get in the way and don't contribute to society.

Islam is sort of that way and all Muslims (of the same sect) think alike in that sense. They look down on sex before marriage, not in the same Christian way of seeing it as "a sin", but in the cultural way that one might disrespect a person who has sex with a hooker. They see female hair as a private thing, much like the Western world sees breasts as a private spot. It's not overall disrespect for women, or even a religious demand in most cases, but demand. Growing up with the Internet, most Muslim boys are used to bouncy, sleek hair, but they still have a preferance to see their female relatives covered up. And so on.


Now every culture has it's own symbols. Attack one and you attack everyone. For example, it could a flag. If someone burned or say, told you to take down your nation's flag, anyone with the slightest respect to his nation would be hurt. Tearing a flag can be considered a declaration of war or at least a sign of all-out hatred.

Muhammad and Allah are basically Islam's symbols. You might pay respect to your flag by flying it high and by not dipping it in alcohol. Islam pays respect to its representatives by NOT depicting them. The cultural background says that by depicting a picture of Muhammad, you are idolizing him. But today, it's seen as a sign of respect not to depict Muhammad or Allah's physical form. It's not the same as Christianity's respect towards Jesus, Mary, and God.. there is no tarnish involved in depicting any of them.

It's rude simply because the way to respect them is to NOT show a picture of Muhammad. It's a difficult concept to grasp because the Western world does not have an equivalent form. There is only one way to insult every member of Islam directly, and that's it. It's like taking a flag and downright mutilating it. You're not insulting the religious members of Islam... you're insulting the cultural ones, and that's why the bad people are angry. An American gangster might just laugh if you make fun of him for being short, but he'll be insulted if you drag the USA flag on the road, tear it to bits, burn it, then toss it in in a sewer, and worse.

Nobody really cares that much if you go against the spiritual aspects of Islam, like eating pigs or drinking in front of a Muslim, but this is a cultural issue.


Here's the best metaphor I can think of to explain the situation...
Let's say some nation, Artica, has a long history of dictatorship, where people aren't even allowed to stand without explicit permission from their dictator. After a revolution, they have a history of loving, even worshipping free movement and equality, just like European nations love free speech and the right to own arms. Being able to do anything in Artica is a right, just as treating everyone the same way.

Now the Queen (of whatever country) comes and pays a diplomatic visit. At the same time, some journalists who were eager to prove their point of free movement and equality comes and gropes the Queen. They know from TV and Wikipedia that it's wrong, but they do it to prove that they have the right to free movement and they're on equal terms with the Queen.

This is a horrible diplomatic gaffe. But instead of apologizing, they decide that the Queen is actually trying to restrict their freedom of movement and sees Artica as an underling. They instead escalate things by insisting that the Queen is being bigoted because they can grope anyone they want in Artica and that it is a right of everyone. Artican people go around writing books about how the Queen is a horrible person because she doesn't like being groped.

People under the Queen are even more pissed that they won't apologize. It's a valid reason for war. Some send death threats, others quietly disapprove, and any newspaper that approves of the Queen getting groped gets their license revoked by the Crown.

Artica absolutely refuses to apologize. They think that the Queen is being stupid and bigoted. Eventually, some people realize that they're just being mean and apologize. But one journalist decides that he'd rather live under death threats than apologize. The Artican secret agents actually go on and defend this journalist.

After a few years, things calm down, people forgive and forget, Artica becomes friends with the rest of the world again.

Comparing it to the South Park issue..
Thinking that things have cooled down, Comedy Central lets Borat walk into the palace and grope the Queen again. Borat has done a lot of very wrong things and people have only laughed. Surely this would make everyone laugh too. Well, some people are still buttsore over the last time someone groped the Queen and they put up a huge fuss. It's against her rights as a human (yet those rights never existed in Artica).

Some people will take it much more seriously than others, because it is Borat after all, but some take it very seriously and see it as an insult to their nationality. Comedy Central decides that if people are sending death threats, it's not very funny, so they apologize. The more peaceful nationalists think that Borat is an idiot for pulling the stunt in the first place, chuckled a bit, but are happy that Comedy Central apologized.



 
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Ricky

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29th April, 2010 at 19:46:38 -

revolutionmuslim.com
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I've been calling them every day and will keep calling them and arguing with them till that south park episode airs uncensored.

 
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Matt Boothman

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29th April, 2010 at 19:54:16 -

A very long post there Muz. Not actually answering of the points I've raised though.

It's NOT very hard for me to understand Islamic culture, and why they are offended. The difference is that when a person offends this Islamic culture (I use the term 'culture' begrudgingly here) they are threatened with violence and bodily harm. You are continually defending the actions of Muslims who kill people because they are offended at the Western way of free speech.

And by saying 'it is not the same as Christianity's respect towards Jesus, Mary and God' you are again showing your hypocracy by placing Islamic views and Islamic sentiment before any other group of people. And the issue isn't simply about depictions of Muhammed. Salman Rushdie was issued with a fatwa for writing about Islamic spirituality, from a country where the book was neither published nor widely understood. Theo van Gogh was assassinated by an Islamic faction for producing a documentary critical of Islam's conduct towards women. Muhammed isn't the only sore point for Islam, it is one of many.

If we turn the situation on its head, it will illustrate the differences between Islamic and Western culture. If somebody in an Islamic country burns an American flag, the American people may well feel upset, but they do not issue death warrants to those that did it. Similarly, if an Islamic scholar writes a text highly critical of Western culture, he is not killed nor even threatened; instead he is widely discredited.

Oh and by the way, your long metaphor is both pointless and misleading. I live in the real world along with most people and am continually dismayed by apologists for Islamic intolerance both from Muslims and non-Muslims alike.

 
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Phredreeke

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29th April, 2010 at 20:16:41 -

Except Artica didn't grope the queen, they drew a picture of someone groping the queen...

 
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Make some more box arts damnit!
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Ricky

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29th April, 2010 at 20:32:40 -

Muz, when people make death threats, that means you shouldn't apologize. People like that don't deserve apologies, no matter how offensive it was.

 
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Sumo148

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29th April, 2010 at 21:19:45 -

I just saw a 60 minutes show talking about the controversy between muslims (extremists) and the US. Apparently some extremist guy believe that our CIA crashed into the world trade center on purpose so we could blame the muslims and go to Afghanistan. Whaat?

 
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29th April, 2010 at 21:23:53 -

There are alot of idiots people who think this.

 
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Muz



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4th May, 2010 at 05:31:27 -

That was just written to explain the situation. You have to make people really angry for them to get homicidal, and I'm just trying to explain why for those who are wondering. If you wish to find a flaw or a reason to hate, you will, because it's an apples to pineapples comparison.

Unfortunately, it seems like death threats are the only way to respond. There are always a lot of peaceful demonstrations, but nobody listens. It doesn't make it on the news and is conveniently ignored. But when a few dumb kids send death threats (which is ironically something that South Park should be parodying), everyone makes a huge deal about it. The Ku Klux Klan regularly receives death threats, and some are even murdered, yet I don't see anyone feeling sorry for them. Why not?

There are almost 100 thousand civilian casualties in the Iraq war. That's more innocent deaths than the Americans had during World War 2. Yet, Americans are protesting the 2000 or so military deaths, the deaths of people who were paid to murder. Israel and the USA spends millions trying to develop weapons to kill Muslims. It's no surprise that violence is the only language they learn.

Iran and Pakistan are yelled at for using civilian nuclear power. Yet it's fine for non-Muslim civilizations to hold nuclear weapons. It's even fine for the USA to nuke Japan, but not fine for Japan to mourn the dead lost in the war. If that isn't hypocritical, I don't know what is.


And me, personally, I'm annoyed that it's come to this level. C'mon.. 10 minutes of an episode pulled out of a series with over 200 episodes? Is it really that funny? Dirty jokes are only funny when everybody finds it funny. What happened to politeness? Why do people have to go to lengths to send death threats to get other people to be polite?

I'd say it's ridiculous that people are willing to get hated by a lot of people for the sake of comedy. But then, well, if the Western world values their entertainment more than their dignity, I don't understand it, and there's a clash of cultures right there.

 
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Matt Boothman

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4th May, 2010 at 16:57:06 -

Some interesting points there Muz. What I would pick up on though (and what I think is clearly evident from your post) is the tendency in Islamic countries to confuse (or possibly conveniently replace) Western military action with Western intellectual society. I don't know whether this is the case with the majority of Muslims in Islamic-controlled countries, but I suspect it is.

An example in case is when you jump from talking about South Park parodying Islam, and then in the very next paragraph start on about US war-mongering (which I am personally against). The wrong-doings you feel have happened towards Islamic countries are very real. But as a Westerner, I would automatically see no link between US/Israeli armies and the citizens of those countries. There is a constant ease by which extreme Islam equates all sections of Western society, as if they were acting in one against Islam. This phenomenon is well documented. For instance, when Jyllands-Posten published satirical images of Mohammed, signs were made saying "Kill all the Danes" and Danish exports to Islamic countries were stopped.

Why has this been? I think it may be to do with cultural differences and the way society is set up in the West and the East. Islamic countries are typically fascist; in that the state, in this case in the guise of religion, comes before the individual. When a picture of Mohammed is drawn, Muslims are offended on behalf of their nations and of Islam itself. In contrast, Western society on the whole promotes an individual's rights over the state, as is shown by the freedom of speech laws, freedom of religion laws and for the large part, secularism. The two are incompatible. However, our societies now overlap sufficiently for it to cause problems.

The solution? Well I'd suggest its up to Islamic society and Muslims in general to start to ignore any drawings, criticisms of Islam or any other things you don't like. There's is nothing a writer, a cartoonist, or a comedian hates more than being ignored. It's up to Islamic countries to educate itself about the West. However, I hold no hope of this happening, as Islamic countries, such as Iran, Pakistan etc, tend to be anti-education, anti-science and pro-ignorance. For such a scientific and mathematically successful religion, Muslims sure do find it easy to stick their heads in the sand.

 
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Phredreeke

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4th May, 2010 at 17:13:01 -


The solution? Well I'd suggest its up to Islamic society and Muslims in general to start to ignore any drawings, criticisms of Islam or any other things you don't like. There's is nothing a writer, a cartoonist, or a comedian hates more than being ignored.



Exactly. DON'T FEED THE TROLLS!

Edited by Phredreeke

 
- Ok, you must admit that was the most creative cussing this site have ever seen -

Make some more box arts damnit!
http://create-games.com/forum_post.asp?id=285363

Hagar

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4th May, 2010 at 19:47:52 -

I do not think Westerners will ever truly be able to fully understand an Asian/Eastern culture, like they cannot fully understand ours. I have been with my GF for four years (she is a Bhuddist and I am a C of E/Protestant) and although I can understand (and predict) how she is going react to certain things most of the time, she can still completely surprise me in her thinking.

I have quite a few Muslim friends (Western and from other countries in academia at a higher degree level - even one from Malaysia Muz ) and if it was not for Muslims I would probably not have my academic career nor my father today (it was a Muslim GP that finally found his illness after a long string of Dr's and Consultants). This Muslim Dr (our family Dr, and now a family friend) also attended my Grandfathers funeral, out of respect.

Why I have posted all this? Just to show that there is a LOT of good Muslims out there - but they sometimes get a bad image in the press which sticks to all of them.

On the other hand I could never agree to violence over a cartoon, especially south park and reacting in such a way only feeds such people more desire to make such cartoons. Freedom of Speech (of which I ardently am for) is a tricky thing; let's say for example someone made a cartoon purely out of ethnic slurs of all races & religions. Should this be allowed to be broadcast? Some people will say yes as long as it does all of them equally and others will say no, I think it will always be like this .

I shall keep my thoughts on UK social culture to myself for now (as they apply to other things, not religion) but I do think we are being socially engineered (i.e. those cops that let that kid drown, becuase of H&S).

In terms of Western Culture and off topic , I think the green situation is quite bad. The environmentalists can and have become very hostile even at me posing questions and even offered to refute any questions and or claims I have before I made any! Yet each year these people get more and more media attention even though some things I have heard them say is complete and utter drivel. Do you wish to sign my petition to ban Di Hydrogen Monoxide? It has been found in lakes and rivers now, and it is even making its way into your children's drinks!

 
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4th May, 2010 at 20:06:16 -

Hagar, your point about good Muslims is well taken although not really necessary. No one here has really accused them of anything rather than sitting silently while others call for violence in their name. Silence to me feels a lot like support.

What's worse, in visiting RevolutionMuslim.com, all they want to talk about their is the wars in the middle east and use that as a justification for their attack on south park. The thing is, the 2 are completely unrelated. They even showed a picture of a child's severed head and said south park watchers are responsible! What they don't seem to understand is that they are attacking the very same free speech that allows them to criticize the American governments actions. Completely hypocritical!

 
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4th May, 2010 at 20:53:10 -

1. Bin Laden ("Bin Liner", more like) decided that for all of the american military's sins, 3,000+ innocent people must die in 9/11 - utter crap! Like the U.S. or the U.K. would fly 4 airplanes into buildings and start crowing to the world about it - would they hell! We tend to attack the government/regime rather than the innocent people (deliberately, i might add - that's one of the biggest differences here!)

2. Since when does attacking America's foreign policy = Islam must rule the world!? Utter crap again.

Instead of trying to get us to understand why your extremists want to butcher us and our children, why don't they try and shame and shun those extremists into understanding that no innocent person should pay for extremist views.

(p.s. this isn't a rant about Muslims, i am not racist and i only want everyone to get along. This view conflicts with those in this world who don't want to get along with everyone else, like Bin Liner and his idiot mates)

 
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5th May, 2010 at 03:05:55 -

Osama Bin Laden is a b******rd

 
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