Friday, April 23, 2010

Muhammad: Mental Images Also Forbidden?

Not Showing Muhammad?
(Non-Image from CNN)

Todd Leopold of CNN has an article, "Has 'South Park' gone too far this time?" (April 21, 2010), in which he first notes:
This is a show . . . that once painted God as a gap-toothed rhinoceros-monkey.
A rhinoceros-monkey? Maybe a rheseus monkey? Anyway, Mr. Leopold then follows this by asking:
But have they gone too far this time with a depiction of the Prophet Mohammed in a bear suit?
Let's think about this sequence. The creators of South Park first ridicule God. They then go on to ridicule a human being. And Mr. Leopold asks, "[H]ave they gone too far?"

Good question. How could a satirical show that's previously only commited the minor blasphemy of ridiculing God go so far as to commit the major blasphemy of ridiculing a human being?

Now possibly, Mr. Leopold is speaking in irony here, for in the video accompanying the article, CNN's John Roberts asks not if South Park has gone too far, but if the radical Islamist group calling itself "Revolution Muslim" has gone too far in an apparent death threat against South Park's creators:
Does that go too far, or is that a threat that's protected by free speech?
Now that sounds like a better question, depending upon what those 'revolutionaries' said to the creators of South Park:
"We have to warn Matt and Trey that what they are doing is stupid," the posting on says, "and they will probably wind up like Theo Van Gogh for airing this show. This is not a threat, but a warning of the reality of what will likely happen to them."
Hmm . . . that sounds sort of like a threat to me, given how Theo Van Gogh ended up for his part in making a movie on the oppression of women in Islamic culture. He was shot, stabbed, and nearly decapitated on an Amsterdam street by a radical Islamist. So, yeah, that sounds rather threatening, especially coming from a group that considers 9/11 justified, as you can hear around a minute and twenty seconds into the video.

All this for not showing Muhammad? In South Park, 'Muhammad' appeares completely disguised in a bear suit. How can we even be sure the figure inside the suit is Muhammad? There might even be nothing at all inside that suit.

I can thus only imagine that these Islamists are now forbidding a mental image of the man.



At 5:06 AM, Anonymous Erdal said...

Saw a talk show on TV, a couple of months ago, where some Islamic spokesman was confronted about Islam being terribly uptight about humour. Not so, said the spokesman, and upon some prodding proceeded to tell "a great joke featuring Mohammed".

The joke turned out to be the biblical story of David and the two women who claim the same child -- only starring Mohammed in David's place.

Upon finishing his joke he burst out laughing, while everybody else looked at their fingernails. When the islamic-homour guy started to explain the punch line, I switched channels, because I was too emarrased to watch further.

At 6:46 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The biblical story was of former King David's son, King Solomon, found in 1 Kings 3:16-28.
Maybe the Islamic spokesperson made a mental error, and used the wrong name accidentally. I am getting that problem, calling out the wrong name. But my problem is senior moments, not necessarily ignorance.
Of course, JK likely has a better explanation of my failings.


At 7:35 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Sounds like the joke was on him, Erdal.

Jeffery Hodges

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At 7:36 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Uncle Cran, I was going to make the same point about Solomon being the guy.

Humor is a complex thing . . .

Jeffery Hodges

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At 11:21 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

For once Cran I feel no need to make snide remarks. You seem to have covered the bases.

However I am absolutely certain - you share no similarities with the "spokesperson."


At 11:29 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

JK is right, Uncle Cran. You share nothing in common with any of these Islamists.

Assuming that you're no this-worldly theocrat, of course . . .

Jeffery Hodges

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At 3:27 AM, Blogger Carter Kaplan said...

What is meant by going "too far?"

Rhetorical question.

At 5:26 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

No safe way back, if way at all . . . I suppose.

Jeffery Hodges

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At 9:39 AM, Blogger Brandon said...

A rhinoceros-monkey? Maybe a rheseus monkey?

It was very much a rhinoceros-monkey, although that's an approximation, because it's a mish-mash. Very definitely there's some rhinoceros, though.

At 9:53 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Looks more like a hippopotamus-monkey to me, but I'm no expert.

Thanks for the link, Brandon.

Jeffery Hodges

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