Everybody Draw Muhammad Day is Thursday May 20!

This Thursday is Everybody Draw Muhammad Day!

Seattle cartoonist launches “Everybody Draw Mohammed Day”

Creators of ‘Everybody Draw Muhammad Day’ drop gag after everybody gets angry

Rebecca Watson

Rebecca is a writer, speaker, YouTube personality, and unrepentant science nerd. In addition to founding and continuing to run Skepchick, she hosts Quiz-o-Tron, a monthly science-themed quiz show and podcast that pits comedians against nerds. There is an asteroid named in her honor. Twitter @rebeccawatson Mastodon Instagram @actuallyrebeccawatson TikTok @actuallyrebeccawatson YouTube @rebeccawatson BlueSky

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  1. Okay, I just re-uploaded my old Muhammad photoshopped beer ad in anticipation for Draw Muhammad Day. Once the genie is out of the bottle, it cannot be stopped, so I expect quite a lot of Muhammad pics out there…

  2. I was really trying to defend this day to my Sufi mother-in-law. I can’t watch Rebecca’s video at work (sux0r) but I really believe in this whole event. I think stick figures are the best way of doing it because it doesn’t needlessly offend Muslims while still conveying a message. I actually think stick figures pack a more powerful punch because it exposes how silly it is to threaten to kill someone over such nonsense.

    Silly = completelyfuckinginsane.

  3. I will not be participating. I try to avoid deliberate and unprovoked offense when possible. (with varying degrees of success)

    However, my choice to not be offensive would be meaningless if I didn’t have the choice in the first place.

  4. @Peregrine: I thought like this at first too but here is the way I look at it. I’m sure there is probably something off about this analogy but here it goes:

    Harry Potter offends certain religious people too but we aren’t going to stop reading it because of that.

    That’s how I see the drawing Mohammed thing. If it was “Everybody read Harry Potter Day” it wouldn’t be as controversial.

    I see both situations as related because just the act of drawing a man is not showing any disrespect (depending on how he’s drawn of course.) Muslims can’t draw Mohammed out of disrespect but that by no means prohibits people of other religions or no religion from drawing him.

    That being said, I also think we should refrain from drawing silly or blatantly offensive drawings. It’s not that we don’t have the freedom to, but I think the message will be a lot cleaner and more well received if it was short and to the point.

  5. My humble cartoon blog and I will be participating, for sure. I’ll draw the Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) in a most snarkily respectful way.

    I can’t watch the video now and so I don’t know if Rebecca mentions this, but there’s a Facebook page that’s currently over 38,000 people strong.

  6. I will follow the lead of the person who thought up the idea and sent it around the net. I shall say it’s a great idea, then bail.

  7. @Stevie: That’s an interesting analogy, and something to think about, for sure.

    But at the same time, I don’t think it’s entirely similar. For example, I can’t have a Sports Illustrated swimsuit calendar in my cubicle, because I have to share my workspace to a certain extent with coworkers, many of whom might be offended by it. Especially when I have to face my coworkers on a daily basis, and maintain a working relationship with them. However, when I’m at home, there’s nothing stopping me from watching hardcore porn. (Except maybe my wife.)

    Some people might be offended by you or I reading Harry Potter, but too bad for them; like it or lump it. They don’t have to read it, and my reading it is no imposition on them. But drawing a chalk character on a sidewalk; a shared public space, is demonstratively different than my private choice of reading material. One day, you’re making a stand for free speech, but when that day is over, you still have to share that public space with your neighbours.

    Admittedly, not the best analogy; a workplace is the employer’s private property, while a sidewalk is public space, but you get my drift.

    Being willingly, knowingly, and deliberately, offensive for the sake of being offensive just isn’t my style. Though I have been known to forget myself and deliberately offend in spite of myself, (fairly recently, as it happens, which admittedly might play some small part in my desire to sit this one out) I try to make it a point to recognize those failings.

    While I stand by my earlier comment, you do make an interesting point worthy of further consideration.

  8. @Peregrine:
    “I try to avoid deliberate and unprovoked offense when possible.”

    Me too and if death threats to cartoonists don’t constitute sufficient provocation to deserve being a little offended with some more innocuous drawings, I will never know what does. I support Rebecca 100%.

  9. @Magnus H.: Me too and if death threats to cartoonists don’t constitute sufficient provocation to deserve being a little offended with some more innocuous drawings, I will never know what does. I support Rebecca 100%.

    This is the main argument I keep trying to show people. Peoples lives are being threatened because they are doing nothing but drawing a picture. Sometimes a rally that stirs emotions is the only way to get people to listen.

  10. Sure, drawing a picture doesn’t hurt anybody, but it’s pretty easy to get Americans similarly inflamed about pictures and symbols…

    Burning crosses, for instance, don’t hurt anyone either, but they’re deeply offensive. And they don’t really get any less offensive if somebody says “what, it’s not a cross, the pieces aren’t quite at 90 degrees to each other! Heck it’s almost more like 45!”

    A drawing of a noose is offensive, and doesn’t really get any less offensive if somebody says “What do you mean? That’s just a lasso! You know, for cows!”

    Or how about the supreme court deciding that sex offender can be held indefinitely after civil committment — his crime was receiving child pornography, from what I understand. They’re just pictures!

    The child porn taboo in our culture opens us up to a lot of questions similar to the ones the South Park guys raised about pictures of Mohammed. Does it count as child porn if it’s hand drawn? (I think some manga is so classified.) What if it’s real children but the obscene parts are photoshop work? What if it’s models who are just over the age of consent, but chosen because they look younger? And of course, there’s the old chestnut of what pornography is anyway, beyond “I’ll know it when I see it.”

    I don’t have a firm opinion on any of these borderline cases, but I don’t really see where Muslim society is any worse than our own on this kind of thing. Same issues, different taboos.

  11. @mks.mary: Wow. You are comparing the drawing of a simple religious figure (offensive, sarcastic drawings aside) to child pornography, nooses and burning crosses?

    Burning crosses, nooses, and child porn are offensive because they are symbols of hate or taking advantage of those who can not defend themselves or consent to such a decision.

    I could see what you are talking about if it was “Burn images of Mohammed Day,” or “Burn the Koran Day” but it’s not. I would fully expect you to eat a ham sandwich next to a Jewish person or a vegetarian — is this offending that vegetarian or Jewish person, maybe but you have every right to eat it and it’s not explicitly harming that individual nor did you set out to blatantly offend them.

    There is no comparison. Not in the slightest.

  12. As something of a tangentially related aside (Nothing for or against, this time, just… something interesting that I’d been considering), I recently listened to a Stephen Batchelor podcast (This one, around the 30 minute mark) where he discusses the tradition of iconography in Buddhism, which came from Greek influences depicting the Buddha similar to Apolo. In the pre-iconic traditions the Buddha was depicted as an empty throne, or footprints, implying someone who was gone, but had left a trace. There’s also some discussion about how the absence of iconography “allows us to think of identity as an open possibility”, which I think is an interesting perspective. These idols, Buddha or Jesus, are supposed to be a model, or unattainable ideal that we’re meant to strive towards. The absence of the idle represents the potential within us to attain, or to improve, or to build upon ourselves, but also the need to let go of our own self image.

    If you take that aniconic philosophy, and impose iconic imagery on it, Batchelor suggests that you can view that figure in an anthropomorphic way.

    Anyway, I thought it was an interesting discussion, and I think its quite a coincidence that I happened to listen to it, and then a few days later decided to get involved in this discussion.

    Coming from a Catholic family, I’d often thought it ironic that the first commandment forbids graven images, but at the front of a church was a statue of Jesus on a cross. I wouldn’t go so far as to call it hypocrisy, but there was a definite change in policy somewhere in the church’s history. The Jesus iconography that we’re familiar with likewise tends to show Greco Roman influences. The bearded figure is sometimes compared to Zeus or Heracles, and the artwork is not dissimilar. (Possibly a relic of the expansion of the Roman church, but that’s just idle speculation)

    I suppose Christianity and Buddhism have something in common, in that they both have a history of aniconic traditions – indeed traditions in which iconography was often expressly forbidden – that eventually develop an iconography of their own.

    Islam, likewise, expressly forbids images of the profit. I have no idea if Muslems see the abstract idea of the prophet in a similar way, but interesting nonetheless.

    There is something interesting going on that I think speaks to the problem of the abstract versus the anthropomorphic. (It’s getting late, so I could very well be rambling. But then, it’s not like I’ve never been known to ramble. I don’t know. Let’s see where this leads.) In several Christian vs. atheist or believer vs. atheist debates, the person arguing for the believer’s side has often denounced what they feel is the atheist image of the “bearded man in the sky”, and admit that they don’t believe in “that” either. There is a pronounced denunciation of iconography going on here, because once you describe something, once you anthropomorphise the abstract, you’ve locked it into a concrete personification that can too easily be dismissed. This is why parody religions like the Flying Spaghetti Monster or examples like Bertrand’s teapot fall flat with believers. Of course the Flying Spaghetti Monster can’t exist, because you’ve described it. It has a wealth of iconography associated with it, and if you can’t point out something that looks exactly like “this” then you can’t prove it exists. But the believer’s notion of “God” or the “divine”, this many faces, many names, this alpha and omega, is abstract. It defies description. A flexible, all-encompassing mold that can fit whatever you can find to fit in it. Not only the proven, or the yet-to-be-discovered, but the notions of divinity from other cultures as well.

    So I think there’s a motive, subconscious or otherwise, in resisting or forbidding the iconification of the prophet. It may be spiritual, or defensive, or possibly both. Once you’ve cast the image on the abstract, it looses it’s abstraction. For good or ill, Its power is diminished.

    Anyway. That’s what I’d been considering the last couple of hours or so.

  13. Totally support Rebecca. I don’t support offending people for the hell of it, but I very, very strongly support the right for people to say (or draw) whatever they want without fearing for their lives to do so!

  14. Stevie:

    Obviously I’m not as offended by a picture of Mohammed as I am by my other examples, but that’s because I’m not Muslim. If I were, I would absolutely be more upset by that than by a burning cross (which is, after all, another religious symbol.) I think you’re missing the point that these examples are exactly how Muslims see images of Mohammed. Profane, obscene, threatening. Sure, it doesn’t seem that way to you. But I think “everbody draw children having sex day” is a pretty good analogy, if you want to know how this will come across to a devout Muslim.

    Why? Well, if you’ve never been religious, I get that it’s hard to imagine how it could be that offensive. But to religious people… Children are of God. Morality is of God. Innocence is of God. Joy is of God. Life has meaning only insofar as God has a purpose for it. Mohammed brought God to us, and what is good in life, our love for our families, our personal consciences, our comfort in the face of death and pain, we owe to him. To mock God is to mock everything that someone who believes this holds to be meaningful in their life. And drawing Mohammed is a way of mocking God, to them. Plus, since clearly the only reason for us to do it is because they don’t want us to, it’s hostile, with threatening undertones. Like mocking someone’s mother.

    I’m an atheist, but I wasn’t always. I think a lot of atheists really don’t understand how personal religion can be to religious people, how deeply tied in it is to their families and their identities.

    I actually don’t have a problem with what South Park did (though I haven’t seen the episode.) Religious satire is an old tradition, and it doesn’t hurt to make religious people think about the implications of their beliefs once in a while. I don’t even have a problem with “everybody draw Mohammed day,” because it was sort of provoked, a show of solidarity after the over the top reactions that the Danish cartoons got.

    But I don’t fool myself that it’s any less offensive to Muslims than our own most deeply offensive pictures and symbols are to us.

  15. @mks.mary: I have been extremely Catholic. It took a long time for me to accept my atheism, having morphed from Catholic, to pagan, to agnostic, to atheist. I have been offended as a Catholic and as a pagan (when I unfortunately succumbed to the “burning times” spiel as well as Christians thinking I was worshipping the devil.)

    NOTHING that offended me has ever come CLOSE to anything as horrible as child molestation/pornography.

    Burn a cross, or a pentacle WHATEVER but when you step into the realm of abusing children you fall into a completely different ballpark and they are NOT the same. You offend my religion and you offend me — you show me child pornography you aren’t just offending me, you are a contributor to the very torture, molestation, and rape of an innocent.

    The fact that you see them as the same thing really, REALLY disturbs me.

    Where do you draw the line when it comes what we can and can not do? If drawing Mohammed is the same as burning a cross should nobody ever draw Mohammed just because it offends a Muslim? Should nobody ever consume pork because it might offend a Jewish person or a Jain or a Seven Day Adventist? Should we stop teaching evolution in science classes because it offends the extremely conservative? These people can feel just as passionate about those religious ideals as a Muslim would be about drawing a picture of Mohammed.

    Drawing a picture =/= contributing to the rape of a child or supporting the idea of linchings, etc.

  16. Stevie, I feel like you’re not actually engaging with my points. You ask “Should nobody ever draw Mohammed just because it offends a Muslim?” even though I just said I didn’t really have a problem with this event (as long as those participating recognize just how offensive what they’re doing is — it’s not trivial, but it’s not a completely inappropriate response to the riots and threats of violence we have seen.)

    You ignore the points I tried to make about pornographic images not necessarily requiring harming any actual children — but still being illegal (and cause for indefinite detention!) under US law, and highly offensive to Americans. In any case, once the image is made, reproducing it or looking at it does not harm anyone directly — it is “just a picture.” Now whether these kinds of images harm our culture and encourage further sick practices is another question — they do — but I hope you can appreciate that Muslims have similar concerns about cultural corruption. (Note, I said “similar”, not equivalent.)

    Anyway, I really feel like you’re missing the point, that the outrage you feel toward me right now for even mentioning these kinds of images is very like what Muslims feel when they see their prophet denigrated, and by extention, their values mocked.

    To be clear — no that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t ever do it. If I thought it was important to avoid ever offending anyone, I wouldn’t be offending you so much right now, would I? But we should know what we’re doing and why when we do.

  17. @mks.mary:
    I think there’s a big difference between a burning cross or a noose, and a picture of Mohammed, and it’s this: the symbolism of the burning cross or displaying a prominent noose (in America, anyway) makes a credible and tangible threat of bodily harm. The purpose of such symbols is to tell black people to fear for their lives. It’s an unambiguous part of the culture of American terrorism. It’s taboo only in the sense that it’s “taboo” to stand on a street-corner threatening to murder people.

    Child-pornography is in a similar but different category. While I think most people feel an innate revulsion to it, it’s prohibited not just for the sake of the revulsion, but because we presume that producing and consuming it either harms or promises to harm innocent people. (I’ve read some things that make me question that conclusion in the case of purely cartoon or manga pornography, so I can imagine a case where the law revisits those possible exceptions to the rule. But…ewwww.)

    So…how does a drawing of Mohammed — even an innocuous drawing that exists only to make the point that I’m willing to draw the dude — rise to the level of these threats of actual harm to living people?

    I can imagine that some Muslims might feel threatened by the act: “You wouldn’t willfully violate my taboo unless you hated me and want to harm me.” But so what? Millions of Christians in America trot out that complaint whenever an atheist suggests that we should protect the freaking First Amendment. A non-Christian asks for equal treatment under the law, so all the righteous demagogues get riled up about how “America is a Christian Nation” and claim that an absence of privilege would be the same as active discrimination.

    Neither the Muslims nor the Christians are demanding equality or civility with their complaints, whether they’re about drawings of Mohammed or about separation of church and state: they’re demanding the presumption of supremacy.


  18. @mks.mary: Anyway, I really feel like you’re missing the point, that the outrage you feel toward me right now for even mentioning these kinds of images is very like what Muslims feel when they see their prophet denigrated, and by extention, their values mocked.

    If you read my responses as being really emotional and heated, I didn’t intend them that way, I just disagree with the pornography comparison.

    Muslim’s do not draw Mohammad because they feel like depicting their prophet would enourage people to start worshipping idols. Drawing Mohammad is not intrinsically denegrating their prophet.

    Second — depicting child porn, whether that be an actual child, or just a drawing of such is advocating the action. Drawing Mohammad because Muslim’s feel it will encourage idol worship is not the same. Even for Muslims who feel the act of drawing him is a denegration (I don’t want to assume, but I think that it’s the majority,) it is still not the same thing. Muslim’s might emotionally FEEL the same way — but that doesn’t mean it IS the same thing.

    That’s all I am trying to say. If I misunderstood your explanation about how Muslims might feel like it’s the same thing, than ok. I completely understand. I suppose I was mostly worried that someone was saying it is the same thing.

    Muslims might feel offended because that’s how much Mohammad means to them, but that doesn’t make it an acceptable excuse.

    So, that being said — are we really just arguing the same thing but in different ways therefore arguing over nothing? lol.

  19. I’ll do it. I think that the freedom of speech is very important. Perhaps the most important freedom we have. I will do it not because I want to offend but because I will not bow to threats.

  20. mslongjr: You’re not wrong. That’s why I said “similar, not equivalent.” The images I gave which are offensive in our culture are definitely more directly connected to physical violence. Most Muslims would probably also be offended by these things for that reason, so they’re not specific to our culture in the same way either.

    But the original point I was trying to make was that there is no such thing as “just a picture.” Any more than “just words.” Words and pictures have meanings, and you can’t pretend those meanings don’t exist, or that Muslim or other religious people are somehow different from us in being upset by them. We get upset about pictures too, though, as you point out, the reasons are different.

    The other point I originally wanted to make was that the meaning is not in the details of the depiction, so a Mohammed stick figure isn’t really any less offensive than a crooked burning cross. If the meaning is clear, it’s clear, and it’s the meaning that’s offensive, not the lines on the page.

    Plus I was actually hoping people might try to debate whether hand-drawn pornographic magna featuring children ought to be illegal, because I really don’t know.

  21. Man, a lot of people in this thread are missing the frigging point by a mile. Yes, it is offensive to muslims to create images of Mohamed, but people aren’t doing this to piss off muslims, they’re doing it to defy those who would threaten people’s lives (and actually follow through) based on those drawings.

    Get it?

    Act of defiance, not act of aggression. In the previously given swimsuit calendar example, I would never put a swimsuit calendar up to piss off my coworkers, but if there was a group whose method of suppressing swimsuit calendars was threatening violence and death to people who hung them up I would damn well put one up to defy that methodology.

  22. @mslongjr: I’m afraid I don’t really understand your point. The fact the all people can be made offended or upset by images and words isn’t in dispute. (Is it?)

    That’s what I didn’t understand? I can’t figure out if we were arguing the same thing or not.

  23. Well, what I was replying to originally was “This is the main argument I keep trying to show people. Peoples lives are being threatened because they are doing nothing but drawing a picture.

    As if we would never react that way to a picture…

  24. @mks.mary: Ah, now I see. I still stand by my remark though, which says nothing about Muslims beind offended. It speaks only of the fact that extremists are threatening to kill people for drawing a picture. I don’t think drawing a picture means someone should die — no matter how offended that individual is.

  25. The death threats are a very wrong, but, IMO, very human reaction.

    And if, in this country, we don’t have the death penalty (yet) for drawing pictures, we will lock people up indefinitely for looking at them. It’s not such a stretch.

    I just feel like a lot of people are treating this event as a joke, because they see the Muslim reaction is ridiculous. But it’s not ridiculous. It’s human. And if we’re going to provoke them, it should be as a serious protest, a hunger-strike type protest, not a middle-finger type protest… We should try to be aware of just how important this is to them, which I don’t see from a lot of the internet discussion (not just here — I kind of used your comment as an excuse to post opinions I’ve been thinking about a lot as I read all the coverage out there…)

  26. Is it just me or are your arguments becoming more and more vapid? You’re trying the patience of several people here and I think you’re a troll.

    How in the hell does the fact that a particular act or reaction being “human”, in any way diminish its potential ridiculousness? Know what else is human? Rape and murder. “But your honor, my client is is only HUMAN after all! Can’t you please take that into consideration when deciding his sentencing for serial homicide?! This is just something humans do from time to time!”

    This IS a serious form of protest. People’s lives have been threatened FOR DRAWING PICTURES. You don’t get to decide what forms of protest are and are not serious enough to earn a gold seal of “serious business” approval.

    I guess you probably think those uppity, entitled activists in the early 60’s who organized sit-ins in the segregated restaurants of Greensboro were just being “deliberately offensive” with their “middle-finger type protests” to the majority white population of the town.

    Why, they should’ve just starved themselves to death instead if they really wanted to be taken seriously! The white townspeople in mid-century, jim-crow America had very strong feelings about the inferiority of the black race and the racial segregation that naturally should follow from such circumstance! I mean, don’t you realize “just how important it is to them” to retain their long held convictions of racial superiority?? Very culturally insensitive of you if you don’t!

  27. Okay, well, I thought it was a pretty interesting discussion and actually led to some good consensus, but I guess I’m not going to make my thoughts any clearer at this point and if you don’t agree with me that the Muslim protestors aren’t being ridiculous, then you ain’t gonna, so I’ll quit trying.

    I will say I think its weird that you’re identifying the mostly white American Mohammed-drawers as the victimized minority in your civil rights analogy, but whatever.

  28. @mks.mary: “We should try to be aware of just how important this is to them,”

    The point is to show THEM how important freedom of expression is to US. That we are not going to bury our freedom in some unmarked grave just because they are in desperate need of anger management.

  29. @mks.mary: I figured since you’d already taken the initiative to set the tone for mild exaggeration when you compared drawing a Mohamed cartoon to making child pornography, it wouldn’t be too much of a stretch.

  30. Well, here’s my drawing, calculated to offend lots of people and not just Muslims.

    @mks.mary: I think it’s fine to point out the oversimplification of “nothing but drawing a picture.” But you’ve rooted your argument in a number of false equivalences while overlooking the most obvious comparison. Offensive speech like a burning cross (for example) resembles not the act of drawing Mohammed to make a point about free speech, but instead most closely resembles the act of issuing death threats to cartoonists and editorialists who have the uppity presumption to draw Mohammed or criticize Islam.

    And while it’s true that there’s plenty to criticize and correct within Western culture, that’s no argument for putting up with stupidity and violence from Islam.

  31. We all need the freedom to criticise and even ridicule whatever we want. If it offends someone, then they should be free to talk about why it’s offensive but they shouldn’t try to stop people from speaking out. Imagine if you couldn’t draw political cartoons because making fun of [insert name of favoured poltical leader here] offends someone. We in New Zealand don’t have to imagine since we don’t have free speech laws and our media is not allowed to show footage of Parliament that satirises or ridicules politicians.

    I understand that drawings of Muhammed offends people. I don’t want to be deliberately offensive, but I will be if I think what I have to say is more important than protecting people’s feelings. How are we going to criticise Islam without offending anyone? You can’t. Drawing Muhammed is just a small symbol to say, “You can’t keep us from speaking out”.

  32. My “Vanity” contribution to Everybody Draw Muhammad Day,

    I feel entitled and compelled to participate.

    Whenever a mob focusses its burning anger on a single individual, I feel alienated and utterly disgusted: Reason falls prey to an acute stroke, and a witch-hunt ensues.

    There is a righteous urge to stand by that person, that is alone and overwhelmed by the sheer size of a raging mass. And it doesn’t matter, who that person is, or why they are after him. It suffices that he is alone, because there cannot be justice confronted with an emotional mob!

    Death threats and religious fervour over drawings is exactly the above.

    “Everybody Draw Muhammad Day” proposes a way of support that is as elegant as it is non-violent: Widen the target, reduce the mob’s pressure on the individual and disperse it over a group of our own. Thus, make it bearable, where else the induvidual can but collapse.

    That is a brilliant, effective, and non-violent strategy and deserves implementation.

    Fear of disproportionate response by religious zealots crept into our society, and adversely affects the individual’s choice to openly speak their minds. The very cornerstone of democracy. We cannot have this, democratic values must trump religious piety.

    [My noble motives end here.]

    Muslims are reasonable people, and they will shake off a few silly drawings as a bad joke, if they disagree at all. The fundamentalists and enablers, however, will rampage and murder, whether you participate or not.
    It gives me some satisfication to hit those where it hurts them, and only them, the most. A change of tune to otherwise powerlessly bearing witness to their atrocities. Thus, take a pen-and-paper swing of your own.

  33. @Zapski: I had the same thing happen to me a few minutes ago but now it’s up and running. Yesterday it was acting up pretty weird too. Maybe hackers are trying to bring it down?


  34. I want to offer a different perspective. I watched Rebecca’s video soon after it was posted and it bothered me for a couple of reasons. I do not object to (and agree with) the sentiments expressed here in resisting attempts to stifle expression through violence. But I think it is wrong to simply call Ms. Norris a hypocrite and then recommend that everyone move forward with what we claim was her intent.

    In some of the discussions supporting making these acts of defiance, there is an element of personal responsibility. However, by participating in Everyone Draw Mohammed Day, I believe we are transfering our personal responsibility to Ms. Norris. It may be the case that each drawing adds to the ‘sin’ of Molly without individual artists actually putting themselves at risk. For every obscene drawing produced on this day, some part of the “offense” will be laid at Ms. Norris’ doorstep.

    It is for this reason that I do not support Everybody Draw Mahammed Day. If I am being defiant, I should be the one responsible and should not be putting someone else on the hotseat.

    I would feel differently if Rebecca had offered to have some independent Skepchick event in support of the sentiments expressed by Ms. Norris. But something feels wrong to me to dogpile onto the mess that Ms. Norris has created for herself.


  35. @Rebecca, I would love if it were true. Somehow I do not believe that every artist who posts a picture gets their picture, their work and home addresses, and other personal information posted on some revolutionary islam website. It is my belief that the more difuse this “action” becomes, the more anger gets focused on the person “responsible” for this. Do we all think that posts of Mohammed (whether “funny” or “obscene”) makes Ms. Norris safer by distracting attention from her? Is she really removed from the controversy by everyone associating their drawing with HER cause?

    I just do not want Ms. Norris to be endangered any further by my actions. (It would be a classic example of No Good Deed Goes Unpunished.)

    I readily admit that I may be missing the boat on this one – I readily admit I do not understand the mind and motivations of violent radicals.

    I think that all these drawings have some chance of still being about her – because she remains the one target rising above the general noise level.

    Just my alternate perspective. And I do support your support of the issue, and understand your intent, but I wonder if it leads to the outcome you hope.


  36. @YourSkepticalGuy:Yeah, you are pretty much the only one making that connection, I guess. They are all over Facebook and nobody really worries about Ms N anymore.

  37. @YourSkepticalGuy: Yeah, I really don’t see any attention on her at all. And if some extremist does decide to get to her, she’s made it quite clear that she’s backed down from her initial poster and that she wants nothing to do with any of it.

    But I haven’t seen her mentioned at all amongst the thousands of pictures and videos I’ve seen posted today.

  38. @Rebecca Watson: Yeah, I barely even knew this whole thing was started by a cartoonist.

    Besides, the fact that she even drew a cartoon about it in the first place makes her a target for angry Muslims. I don’t think the fact that there is a day dedicated to it now makes her more of a target then she was before.

  39. @Rebecca Watson: For me, the point is not what the posters of the Mohammed images are saying, or to whom they attribute their motivation(s). I do not know what websites you review or frequent.

    I do not read or speak Arabic. I do not know which websites to review outside of my comfy little niche in San Francisco to gauge the reaction of the radicals to these postings. That “we all” are fine with this does not make “them all” fine with it.

    I see Pakistan has blocked Internet access to at least ~400+ websites, including Facebook and YouTube. Some of these articles mention Ms. Norris (many do say she has backed off of her position and many leave her name out – maybe for her safety?)

    I did not find any reference to this “day” on Al Jazeera, but again, I do not imagine I know where to look and research reactions from the radical fringe (I hope fringe).

    We can all evaluate this in the context of rational, critical thinkers, but that group does not include those who may wish Ms. Norris harm.


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