Hey there! Sign in to join this conversationNew here? Join for free

If we can't insult Muhammad, should the Qur'an also be banned? Watch

    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    14
    ReputationRep:
    Deleted
    • Study Helper
    Offline

    18
    ReputationRep:
    Study Helper
    (Original post by Lady Comstock)
    Now I don't think either should be the case, HOWEVER, I have seen numerous posts by users suggesting that people should not have the right to insult Muhammad, the publishers of Charlie Hebdo were stupid for proceeding to publish such images after receiving threats, that publishing images of Muhammad offends Muslims, etc.

    The problem with his logic is that insult and offence are incredibly subjective and relative. One man's insult is another man's satire. One man's insult is another man's beliefs.

    If we were to prohibit insulting Muhammad (by banning publication of images as an example) then, logically, we would also have to ban the publication of the Qur'an and other Islamic texts. The Qur'an contains numerous passages that are subjectively insulting to gay people, feminists, non-believers, etc.

    This goes to show that people who stand firm that you should not have the right to insult or satirise Muhammad don't think, and don't appreciate that it would also lead to the Qur'an being banned. The freedom to disseminate things which are offensive to people works both ways.
    This isn't about it being offensive. You don't shoot a bunch of people just because you're "offended". These people genuinely believed that the publishers of the cartoon were an affront directly to their God and that they had some kind of a sacred duty to defend their faith and kill them. Now obviously that's absolutely insane, but you've got to understand that these people were driven by something more than simple offence. They wouldn't put someone insulting their faith, the thing that is probably most important and sacred in their lives, in the same league as offending other people. So that logic wouldn't really work for them.

    The fact of the matter is that the cartoonists should be allowed to publish whatever they want and the attackers were obviously completely and totally in the wrong for the crimes they committed and should be punished for that. However, I don't understand the idolisation of the cartoonist. I completely believe that the cartoon should be allowed to be published but I also think that it's incredibly offensive, totally unnecessary, unhelpful, inflammatory and generally pretty disgusting (along with a lot of that cartoonist's other works). That's not worthy of respect, that's just unpleasant.
    Offline

    14
    ReputationRep:
    You're going the wrong way.

    You're saying that currently it is: Insulting Mo is prohibited but offensive Qu'ran is allowed

    You want to go to: Insulting Mo is prohibited and offensive Qu'ran is prohibited

    We should instead have: Insulting Mo is allowed and offensive Qu'ran is allowed
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    This is absolutely absurd logic.
    To argue about this is creating the feared paradox of freedom . Because we can ever have equal freedom and equality. Is it acceptable to have freedom to hate ? Well it seems rather one sided. But however this is not the point I want to make.

    I wish to challenge you, how is the Quran in any way or sort offensive ? Once again , you fall for the common propaganda that Muslims create hate and fear . This is only because I guess, bad stories make the news? And recent events have done no justice to my faith I know. But the thing is, they're not from my faith at all, we see it through the same lens as you, we condemn them like yourself, yet we are constantly forced to make these 'apologetic' statements, and everyone expects Muslims to have some connection. It's like asking the common Christian to condemn the lynching done by the KKK, it's absurd.

    My faith teaches peace and understanding. You only need to look back at history , to the great empires of the Islamic faith where science , peace, knowledge , freedom truly flourished. Where the Christian , Jewish and Muslim scholars would work together , researching and translating. Even if you're trying to make the point of Islam being sexist (which it is by far the complete opposite, making women's rights of utmost importance) the first university to ever exist was opened by a Muslim female scholar!

    So I ask you. Do not judge my faith by your propaganda tinted glasses. Learn before you judge. And understand, true freedom is in love and understanding, not through freedom of hate and abuse.

    Thanks
    • Study Helper
    Offline

    18
    ReputationRep:
    Study Helper
    (Original post by Lady Comstock)
    Yet the root of their motive still lied in taking offence at the cartoons. It does not matter that from that root up until their actions they embellished such a motive with notions that it was a sacred duty, and so on. A gay mentally ill person may read an article calling gay people an abomination and proceed to kill the publishers. The root of his motive was taking offence at the article, it does not matter whether he also thought it was his duty as a member of a fabricated Gay Revolutionary Corps or whatever.

    Anyway, my post primarily refers to the people who have been commenting on this atrocity who do not view it as their sacred duty to kill the publishers of blasphemous cartoons, but have specifically said that they are "offended" by them and that such a right to offend should not exist. My argument is that, by that logic, the Qur'an should also be banned.

    That's your subjective, and rather irrelevant, opinion. I am sure many found their satirical tone humorous. And the cartoons probably would not have been published to such an extent but for the incredibly offensive, totally unnecessary, unhelpful, inflammatory and generally pretty disgusting response from fascists who despise freedom of expression.
    There's a difference between "satire" and purposely going out of your way to be as offensive as possible. A lot of people are trying to dress this up. I enjoy satire and I'm not that that easily offensive but even I think that a lot of this cartoonist's work goes too far. I can't really see any particularly sophisticated message hidden in it that couldn't have been communicated in something less provocative. As I've said, I am 100% in favour of freedom of expression and do not think that his work should be censored. That doesn't change the fact that I think it's in terribly bad taste and is purely meant to be inflammatory rather than being satire (calling his work satire is just like calling someone who yells "Penis" out in public a comedian).
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Lady Comstock)
    The above paragraph does not make sense and you failed to explain how it is "absurd logic".



    That's the point: offence is subjective and relative to the person. The Qur'an and other Islamic scripts contain many references to women, gay people and non-believers which many would find subjectively offensive. It wouldn't take much of a search to identify these texts.



    This is completely irrelevant to the topic of the thread. I struggle to see what you are arguing against here that is in my OP?



    More irrelevancy. As to your last sentence, that's the whole point of offence - you may think Islam is a gleaming beacon for female empowerment, but many others would find it grossly offensive. Just as you may find an image of Muhammad grossly offensive, others may find it amusing. That's why there shouldn't be a prohibition on the right to offend.



    Again, you're going into your own speech here. How is this relevant to my OP?

    Ok so, my point is, you're speaking as if the Quran is offensive. And now you've explained, I've realised I've made my point completely irrelevant and almost preachy. I shall recollect and write what I actually intended .
    • Study Helper
    Offline

    18
    ReputationRep:
    Study Helper
    (Original post by Lady Comstock)
    Again, this is subjective conjecture. Many will have considered it humorous satire and a middle finger to fascists who wish to deny free expression.

    Regardless, most people have the capacity to switch off an offensive television show or discard an offensive leaflet. As Charlie Hebdo is quite an insignificant publication, you would pretty much have to search for it in order to experience the subjective feelings you list above.
    The aim of satire is to persuade people to change their opinions. Do you honestly think that you're going to change people's opinions by making profane and if we're being honest, pretty aggressive swipes at the figure they regard as most holy? No, you're just going to enhance their conviction that Western culture is disgusting. People like these are exacerbating the problem, not solving it. And whilst I understand that you enjoy using the word "fascist" as many times as possible, opposing free expression does not make you a fascist.
    • Study Helper
    Offline

    18
    ReputationRep:
    Study Helper
    (Original post by tengentoppa)
    You're going the wrong way.

    You're saying that currently it is: Insulting Mo is prohibited but offensive Qu'ran is allowed

    You want to go to: Insulting Mo is prohibited and offensive Qu'ran is prohibited

    We should instead have: Insulting Mo is allowed and offensive Qu'ran is allowed
    But if you allow the Qu'ran, then you can't insult Mo (as we have seen). The best solution would be to ban the Qu'ran and eradicate islam.


    Posted from TSR Mobile
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    It's ridiculous. To say we should not do something just because it offends someone is a root fallacy. Well so what if you are offended? People CHOOSE to be offended, they can CHOOSE not to be.

    People also have this idea it is better to "fight them over there" - utter nonsense; we fight 'them' everywhere or not at all.
    Offline

    16
    ReputationRep:
    Following the same lines of logic, yes, I can see how that conclusion could be drawn.

    I don't think 'finding something offensive' should be grounds for a ban or legal action (at least not on its own). What somebody finds offensive is highly subjective, and by siding with one group of people on this issue (i.e. with Muslims on the drawing of Muhammad), one is being unjustly preferential. Many would find the notion of not being able to draw Muhammad highly offensive. Probably more people than all the Muslims in France, the UK and Canada put together.

    It's also important to remember that Muslims are simply taught to be offended by drawings of Muhammad. It's an ideological offense only.

    The people experiencing fear, physical violence, and erased freedoms in these situations are mostly the unoffended non-Muslims. And, ironically, those creating the real hurt are people who say they are upset, offended and 'victimised'' by cartoons.
    • Study Helper
    Offline

    18
    ReputationRep:
    Study Helper
    (Original post by Lady Comstock)
    How would you feel about a caricature of Catherine the Great, Elizabeth I or even Jesus which depicted them in a ridiculing fashion? What if people found those grossly offensive, and all of the adjectives you have used so passionately? Would you offer the same condemnation as you have in respect of caricatures of Muhammad? Or are caricatures of Muhammad the only type of "offensive" cartoons which you would condemn so passionately?
    My problem isn't with his work per se, it's a) the reaction to his work and b) the fact that it's been so widely publicised. I don't like how people are idolising him for this. I'm personally not massively offended by what he's drawn but it isn't pleasant in the slightest. He obviously shouldn't have been shot and anyone asking for it to be censored is unreasonable, but anyone acting as if what he has done is somehow noble or heroic is equally as mistaken. I don't have a massive problem if people make stupid comments in little communities but when you have something like this blow up to the proportions it has reached, you can create real problems. Not only has this obviously resulted in the deaths of many people and possibly resulting in more draconian anti-terrorism laws that achieve precisely what the terrorists want in the first place, but it has also resulted in serious backlashes against the wider Muslim community. They're already used as scapegoats for pretty much everything that goes wrong in Europe and there's already a high level of violence against the wider community (i.e. people who have absolutely nothing to do with this whatsoever) and this is only going to escalate.
    Offline

    16
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Lady Comstock)
    More irrelevancy. As to your last sentence, that's the whole point of offence - you may think Islam is a gleaming beacon for female empowerment, but many others would find it grossly offensive. Just as you may find an image of Muhammad grossly offensive, others may find it amusing. That's why there shouldn't be a prohibition on the right to offend.
    Surely using this logic there is no wrong and right as according to you everything is subjective?

    Posted from TSR Mobile
    • Study Helper
    Offline

    18
    ReputationRep:
    Study Helper
    (Original post by Lady Comstock)
    Wide publication isn't inherently wrong in itself. It just means that, objectively, more copies have been disseminated.

    In respect of reaction, you are walking on ice-thin logical ground if you measure offence, and the condemnation you ascribe to such offence, by the level of reaction. David Starkey may have a fit of upset and rage if you caricatured Elizabeth I; whereas, one particular Westernised Muslim may have merely a minor annoyance at a caricature of Muhammad. It's logically unsound to rely on the level of emotion and anger, as it is entirely relative to the particular individual.

    Satire isn't supposed to be pleasant.

    My view is that such a belief is not mistaken in the slightest. Continuing to print the cartoon, in an effort to stand up for freedom of expression, even in the face of threats from extremists, is noble. It's not too dissimilar to people who printed caricatures of absolute monarchs and kept printing them even though they faced arrest and execution.

    But why should you sacrifice your freedoms in order to placate extremists?

    Say the far-right grew extremely militant in Europe. Should Muslims close down their mosques and stop publishing the Qur'an in order to avoid "problems" and reprisals? The answer to that is no. They should not have to sacrifice their freedom to worship and their beliefs in order to satisfy the whims of extremists, even if those extremists' actions cause difficulties.
    What's happening at the moment isn't noble. It's a macho, "we're so tough" knee-jerk reaction. People campaigning for equality for everyone are noble. People drawing increasingly profane images with the sole intention of targeting a group of people is not. There's nothing noble about trying to be horrible to people, particularly when the vast majority of those people are completely innocent. You're mixing up "using freedom of expression as an excuse to be vile" with "noble". Just because you've got the right to say what you want doesn't mean you should do that, particularly if what you're saying is achieving nothing constructive apart from hurting people.

    And with your last paragraph, surely you can see what an absurd argument that is? I'm not asking people to stop practising their religions or to stop expressing their views, I'm asking for some basic human decency.
    • Study Helper
    Offline

    18
    ReputationRep:
    Study Helper
    (Original post by Lady Comstock)
    You're acting as if the images are being posted through the doors of Muslim households. You have to go out of your way to find them, and then look at them without pressing the red "x" button, or throwing away a hard copy.

    I am sure many view these images as "profane" as satirical images of politicians and other historical figures. I do not believe they are published purely to be vicious to ordinary Muslims, but to show that Muhammad was not perfect and should be subject to ridicule like any historical figure, and as a protest against those who believe such cartoons should be banned. If people are subjectively "hurt' because they go out of their way to find these images then it's frankly tough luck. It's as tough luck as those who kicked up a fuss when satirical images of Margaret Thatcher were published. People may have found them "profane" and disrespectful, but they were published to show that she was not flawless and to highlight the gross sycophancy at the time.

    How is the analogy absurd? Your argument is that some Muslims are offended by Muhammad images, and therefore human decency should be shown by refraining from publishing them. The far-right's argument is that they are offended by the Qur'an and proliferation of mosques, and therefore human decency should be shown by refraining from publishing and building them. Both are entirely subjective, with neither view being objectively higher than the other. That is the nature of offence.
    I'm not entirely sure what images you're looking at, but the cartoons circulating at the moment are vastly more extreme than any other caricaturisation of any figure I've ever seen in the popular media. I don't know about you, but you don't tend to find cartoons of politicians screwing pigs (bearing in mind that this is one of the biggest insults you could possibly do against Islam) circulating around in the popular media. That's not some sophisticated attempt to humanise Islam, that's just insulting.

    There's quite a flipping big difference between asking people not to publish images with the sole intention of hurting others, and asking to ban a millennium-old text that's at the heart of a major world religion. One has the sole intention of inflaming, the other does not.
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    The Quran is offensive to Muhammad. Let's face it, it says he is homophobic. I bet he was a great guy really.
 
 
 
  • See more of what you like on The Student Room

    You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

  • Poll
    Has a teacher ever helped you cheat?
  • See more of what you like on The Student Room

    You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

  • The Student Room, Get Revising and Marked by Teachers are trading names of The Student Room Group Ltd.

    Register Number: 04666380 (England and Wales), VAT No. 806 8067 22 Registered Office: International House, Queens Road, Brighton, BN1 3XE

    Write a reply...
    Reply
    Hide
    Reputation gems: You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.