Laughing at Mohammed

Can Cartoonophobia be defeated with comedy?

jesuisDraw a cartoon of anyone. Start by exaggerating the features. Make his ears bigger, his nose longer, stretch out his jaw, push out his eyes and if your picture is wearing a turban, watch the bullets fly.

Islam frowns on images of its frowning prophet, not to mention images of anything else, but it is particularly offended by the institution of the cartoon. The photo keeps us human. The painting can even enhance and flatter its subject. But the cartoon reminds us of our flaws.

And Mohammed, despite his child-molesting, caravan-robbing, sex slave-keeping and occasional demonical possession ways (see Satanic Verses; The, the subject of yet another murderous censorship Jihad), is considered the perfect man. And anyone who disagrees must die.

Mo is the paragon of Islam, the role model for all Muslim men and the terror of all those Muslim women whose idea of the good life doesn’t involve going back and forth from the kitchen to the harem before being consigned to hell anyway. (According to Mo, the majority of the inhabitants of hell were women, while heaven was filled with the serial rapists who followed him on his raiding and raping expeditions.)

Islam insists that Mohammed must be perfect because the religion is reducible to one man. Take Mo away and Islam is left with a bunch of Jewish and Christian prophets until trucks arrive from Jerusalem and Rome with the theological sheriff to repossess their stolen scriptures.

Muslims know their Mo weakness. If Mohammed is mocked, then Islam collapses. And a holy man who lived off robbing caravans, was so vain that he dyed his beard red and occasionally claimed that his worse Koran verses came through the devil is a comedy target the size of Pakistan.

Mohammed mockery must be swiftly punished because if Muslims start to realize that they’re committing suicide because of the writings of an illiterate man, they might rethink whether the 72 virgins, the 72 raisins or whatever a drunken prophet was thinking of that day might really be waiting for them once they press the button. And if Sunnis and Shiites realized that they’ve been killing each other over the world’s bloodiest family estate dispute, they might decide to just settle their sects out of court.

(Not that Islam does particularly well with courts having preemptively taken Shakespeare’s advice about killing all the lawyers, before settling down to killing everyone else.)

Islam didn’t win any theological debates with the religions whose holy books Mohammed rifled through and looted like a shoplifter at K-Mart’s religious books aisle. Its theology was the sword. It didn’t win the war of ideas. It killed those who had different ideas until the religion of Islam became supreme.

Then it went on killing to remind all the enslaved peoples of its unholy supremacy.

Violence is still the first and last resort of Islamic theology. It’s how Sunnis and Shiites win arguments with each other. For that matter it’s how Muslim televised debates in which the participants are allowed to be in the same studio tend to end.

The Charlie Hebdo massacre was not an aberration. It was Islam winning the war of ideas on its usual terms with assault rifles swapped in for scimitars. The killers came to protect Mohammed from the weapon that he and his scowling hordes never had any defense against; laughter.

Mohammed started his censorship career by having a female poet murdered. Insulting Mo back then meant that you would wake up with your own severed head lying next to you in bed. That much hasn’t changed even though over a thousand years has passed bringing with it the printing press, the automobile, the jet plane, the iPad and the statutory rape charge.

Laughter is the weapon of the weak against the strong. It shatters the tin idols of Mohammed that Muslims will not permit in their mosques, but instead hold sacred in their hearts. Violent tyrannies can destroy all opposing ideas, but not even the Soviet Union was able to suppress the secret ridicule of its leaders, ideas and systems. Even when Russians had nothing else, they had the anecdote.

Muslims do not know how to deal with mockery. They believe that killing a priest proves Christianity wrong. That massacring Rabbis disproves Judaism. That by killing non-Muslims and shouting “Allahu Akbar” (Allah is Greater) they demonstrate the superiority of Allah to God. But it does no good to kill comedians. All it does is prove that you have a thin skin and an inferiority complex.

Your punishment for killing a humorist, a comedian, a satirist or a cartoonist is the immortalization of the joke he told about you. Charlie Hebdo’s cartoons of Mohammed have now been seen by more people than they ever would have been if two murderous Algerian brothers had stuck to the nightclubs instead of clubbing for the Caliphate. Their killing spree only immortalized those Mohammed cartoons.

The killers of comedy are always bound to lose. No king or knight ever looked good while strangling a court jester. It’s not enough to kill the joker; you also have to kill everyone who heard the joke.

That’s a Grand Jihad even by the world-conquering dreams of Jihadists.

Islam can’t win as long as there are those willing to ridicule its pretensions, its absurdities and its obscene follies. It can’t kill every cartoonist in the world. What it can do is convince its useful idiots in the West that those who mock the violence of Islam are the cause of that violence. That Islam was peaceful until someone told a joke, drew a cartoon or uploaded a YouTube movie trailer.

And then suddenly the formerly peaceful people of the religion of peace began slaughtering everyone in sight. The only way to keep the Cartoonophobes peaceful is to ban cartoons, jokes and everything else.

While everyone rises up to protest when professional satirists are murdered, the amateur on YouTube gets no such protection. In Canada and the UK, he gets a jail sentence. Even in the United States.

While Obama condemned Sony for pulling The Interview in response to threats, his administration had the filmmaker behind The Innocence of Muslims arrested and sent to jail. But Obama is a bit of a Mohammed with his own angry horde that gets offended when their Prophet of Hope and Change is mocked by a lowly rodeo clown or depicted riding on an outhouse in a parade float.

That’s why it’s not enough for us to offer sympathy when a professional cartoonist like Molly Norris or the men of Charlie are threatened or murdered. We must make sure that the same rights of satire are secured for the guy making a bad joke on Twitter about a pig in a turban, the woman making a YouTube video of Mohammed Christmas carols or the Halloweener dressing up as zombie Mohammed.

The war of jokes will not be won only by the professionals. We must fight just as hard for the right of ordinary people to make mock and righteously ridicule anything and anyone. Political satire is too important to be left to accredited professionals. Free speech is not the domain of any class, but the birthright of all classes; even the classless. (Maybe even especially the classless.)

Humor is the weapon of a free society against its tyrants, cutting them down to size before their ideas and their visions get too big, and the beheadings start happening every day including weekends and holidays. It is skepticism animated by absurdity and common sense. It is neither right nor wrong, but a reminder of our common mortality.

Muslims do not truly worship Allah. They worship Mohammed. That is why he, above all else, cannot be depicted or mocked.

By rendering Mohammed in cartoon form, by stretching out his eyes, his ears and his nose, we remind Islamic supremacists that he is not omnipotent and neither are they. They have no right to kill us in Mohammed’s name because he was only a man. The cartoon brings them down to earth from the Islamic fever dreams of paradise to our mortal world of men and women who live, laugh and die.

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