Attention Religious Fanatics: Go Fuck Yourselves

If we don’t exercise our freedoms, we will surely lose them. The most critical of them, freedom if speech, can never be abandoned or curtailed because of threats of retribution. We at Whenceforth Progress invite all bloggers to join us in defending our right to speak freely on any subject we wish.

Once again a bunch of religious fanatics are threatening the lives of non-believers for failure to follow some aspect of the cult’s ridiculous proscriptions. An entity calling itself RevolutionMuslim.com, previously famous for organizing a pro-bin Laden rally outside a moderate mosque in New York, has threatened the lives of South Park creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker for animated cartoons depicting and lampooning Mohammed.

Comedy Central, the station on which South Park airs, has responded to these threats by censoring South Park episodes. That is entirely the wrong response. It validates the position of those making the threats by giving credence where none exists for their claims of authority, and encourages others to impose censorship through death threats which is nothing but a form of criminal extortion. No one should ever give in to such threats, regardless of which group of religious fanatics makes them.

There is only one possible effective response.

Show the cartoons. Show the drawings. Show them over and over, all of the time, by the thousands and hundreds of thousands and millions upon millions of times.

Because they can’t kill us all.

This should have been the response from all of us when Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten was threatened for publishing cartoons depicting Muhammad Danish artist Kurt Westergaard was attacked.

Because they can’t kill us all.

This should have been the response from all of us when Dutch filmmaker Theo Van Gogh was killed by a religious fanatic for making a film critical of Muslim teachings.

Because they can’t kill us all.

It should have been the response from all of us when Salman Rushdie was threatened with death, a threat that he lives under to this day.

Because they can’t kill us all.

This defiant republishing should be our response, again and again, whenever these fanatics make their hideous threats, until they understand that making threats will only result in millions upon millions of repetitions of the very thing they hope to quash.

Of course, these idiots have every right to hold whatever stupid ignorant beliefs they want. Of course, so long as they don’t break any laws and don’t abuse others, they should be free to practice their beliefs. If they think a picture of Muhammad is forbidden then they shouldn’t draw one, but they don’t have the right to tell other people what to believe or what to do. Some people think eating pork is unclean and disgusting and so they shouldn’t eat it, but leave me my bacon and pork chops and ribs and jamon.

The same holds true for something like same-sex marriage; those opposed shouldn’t marry someone of their own gender, but that doesn’t give them the authority to prohibit marriage by same-sex couples who want to take the plunge. Also abortion; those who think it is a horrible sin and unacceptable under any circumstances shouldn’t ever have an abortion, but that doesn’t give them the power to prohibit one for a woman who decides it is right for her. Other people, non-believers, have absolutely no obligation to observe all of the petty stupid silly beliefs these fanatics want to impose.

And so, in solidarity with Stone and Parker and Westergaard and Rushdie and Van Gogh and many others subjected to unjustified censorship and threats of harm, here are a couple of my favorite Mohammed depictions as scans from Danish author Kåre Bluitgen’s book The Koran and the life of the prophet Mohammed, demonstrating just two factual aspects of the supposedly divine prophet’s many unsavory behavioral traits:

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Mohammed the middle-aged pedophile, with his 9 year old child-bride Aisha

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Mohammed the bigoted mass-murderer slaughtering hundreds of innocent Jews

Many more Mohammed drawings and cartoons can be found here.

To be clear, this essay is not a specific attack on Islam or Muslims. It is rather a rebuke and rebuttal against religious fanaticism of all stripes. To make that perfectly evident, here are some other images that have drawn condemnation from religious followers.

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Gay D/s Jesus, Sermon on the Mount

Was Jesus gay? Hard to know. Many who claim Biblical infallibility argue Biblical testimony documenting that he never married and spent the last few years of his life surrounded by hand-picked recruits who were also single men, men he said he loved and with whom he slept rough and shared everything communally, is insufficient evidence. There are also persistent rumors about Jesus and Mary Magdalene so maybe he was bi or, perhaps more correctly, all-loving.

You’d think his modern-day followers would actually take Jesus’ admonitions to heart, including turning the other cheek when affronted, but you’d be wrong. Instead they’ve taken up axes to destroy art and made death threats, while the Pope cancelled a planned audience with the Swedish archbishop because the artist’s images were shown at Uppsala’s National Cathedral.

What wouldn’t seemingly be open to criticism from Christian fundies is a condemnation of the trivialization and commercialization of Christian holidays, as done satirically in this chocolate sculpture:

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“My Sweet Lord” by Cosimo Cavallaro

But Bill Donahue managed to get all riled up anyway and forced removal of the sculpture.

Pat Oliphant portrayed the Jewish state of Israel as equivalent to jack-booted goose-stepping totalitarians, persecuting defenseless Palestinian women and children.

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The reality is more complex, but rather than take the opportunity for enlightened discussion prominent Jewish organizations issued calls for the image to be censored.

Buddhists are supposed to be laid-back sorts, not actually true but useful propaganda for those in the Buddhist religious hierarchy of power. This bit of harmless fun

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Rub me; you might get lucky

brought squeals of outrage and blanket condemnation.

And just to show I’m ecumenical, not to mention catholic in my disparagement of all extremist religious views, here’s an image poking fun at atheists who take themselves far too seriously:

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I was an atheist until I realized I was god

(No, Christopher Hitchens, this is not specifically directed at you. But it certainly could be.)

True, though, I can’t find any links to atheists demanding censorship or threatening retribution for this or any other image poking fun at a fundamentalist lack of religion. If there are any fanatical atheist extremists out there, by all means jump on in right here and be the first.

To his great credit, Jon Stewart (also on Comedy Central) has spoken up condemning the censorious bigots in no uncertain terms: Go Fuck Yourselves.

Please join in condemning censorship, whether you are a Liberal blogger or a Conservative, a Libertarian or far-right-wing Strict Constructionist. Help protect Freedom of Speech for all of us, whether we agree with what is being said or not.

Start now by reproducing some drawings of Mohammed. Send them to your friends and contacts, and ask them to do the same. Fill the blogs, pack the intertubes, make our position clear: Attack any of us because you expect we will subordinate our freedom to your restrictions, and we will bury you in that which you most abhor.

There is no reason why anyone should be controlled by someone else’s religion, just because the believers are sincere. Tolerance for beliefs is not automatically deserved but may be earned, by believers showing tolerance for the beliefs of others.

To those of you with strong religious opinions and the inclination to impose them, I say: Having the delusional belief that you know the will of a god is not enough to gain my deference, no matter how much you threaten. All that does is turn you into an annoying delusional person instead of a benign one.

Trying to impose your beliefs on others is the real sin, a sin against the dignity of all humankind. Now go, and sin no more.

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7 responses to “Attention Religious Fanatics: Go Fuck Yourselves

  1. ok

    and i don’t even approve of the cartoon’s sentiment, nor did always agree with marlette, but he was a wicked good political cartoonist.

    • grahamfirchlis

      We all know you’re a couple three years ahead of me on most topics, no need to rub it in!

      Didn’t know about Marlette, that’s a shame. I didn’t read Kudzu but every once and a while one of his editorial cartoons would make it into the local paper. He was what a satirist should be, wicked indeed.

  2. JAMES SCAMINACI III

    I would join you. Let me get with my editor Jason and see if he will re-post your effort.

    • grahamfirchlis

      Hey James! Thanks for considering it. Let us know if you do, we’ll add a link in the post body.

  3. Pingback: Artist Lars Vilks attacked by Radical Muslims during free speech lecture « Whenceforth Progress

  4. Pingback: Muslim arsonists attack Lars Vilk’s home; shocking new Mohammed caricature « Whenceforth Progress

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