Let it never be said that we can’t be a collection of spineless weenies when we put our mind to it. Rumor has it that newspapers across the country are refusing to print this Opus cartoon (scheduled to run this Sunday, August 26th) out of fear of offending Muslims. I could see this if you were to assume that all Muslims are joyless, intolerant, radical, rageaholic nutjobs. Admittedly, some Muslims are, just as there are Jews and Christians who fit this description and are willing to bastardize the tenets of their religion in order to buttress their ignorance and hatred. If you assume that being a Muslim means being completely devoid of anything resembling a sense of humor, I might be able to understand why editors would embargo the cartoon. Frankly, though, I fail to see what might be considered offensive about this cartoon. It’s not as if Berkeley Breathed is lampooning the Prophet Mohammed, or really even insulting Islam.
I fail to see how the mere use of Islam as a humorous prop could be construed as anything close to disrespectful or offensive. While I imagine the Muslim equivalent of Wiley Drake or James Dobson will surely find something to be offended about, I think most reasonable Muslims won’t find anything to take offense over.
Memo to newspaper editors from sea to shining sea: grow a pair, willya? Jeebus, people, if you spend your lives living in mortal fear of offending people who are offended by your mere presence on this Earth, when will you be able to accomplish anything of value?