This teddy bear case worked its way through the media wringer all last week, culminating in a 15 day sentence in a Sudanese jail for Ms. Gibbons. As absurd as it might sound for someone to receive 15 days in jail for naming a teddy bear Muhammad, her final sentence is actually the least absurd feature of this entire farce. Instead of 15 days in the pokey, Gibbons could have been facing years in prison along with 40 lashes of a whip. Now that she has been given such a "lenient" sentence, her real troubles have only now begun. Now she must face the fury of the practitioners of the Religion of Peace, whose blood lust has not been satisfied. In fact, another protester was quoted as saying, "Imprisoning this lady does not satisfy the thirst of Muslims in Sudan." Thirst for what? Ice water?
Last Thursday, Ms. Gibbons received her jail sentence. The next day, thousands of Muslims poured out of their Mosques after being riled up by the sermons of their Imams at their Friday prayers and marched through the streets of Sudan's capital city of Khartoum. Apparently, 15 days in jail for naming a teddy bear Muhammad wasn't what they were looking for as far as an acceptable punishment. Instead they were chanting charming little ditties such as, "Kill her, kill her by firing squad!" and "No tolerance: execution!" Did I mention that this was all because of a teddy bear being named Muhammad?
What I find most amusing was the mob's assertion that, despite Gibbons' protests to the contrary, the British school teacher INTENTIONALLY named the teddy bear Muhammad. Let's ask Yassin Mubarak what he thinks:
"It is a premeditated action, and this unbeliever thinks that she can fool us?" said Yassin Mubarak, a young dreadlocked man swathed in green and carrying a sword. "What she did requires her life to be taken."You can't make this stuff up folks. Notice how Mubarak refers to Gibbons as an "unbeliever". Makes you wonder what pisses him off more: that a teddy bear was named Muhammad, or that it was an "unbeliever" that did it? And he was carrying a sword for crying out loud. Was that just in case he had a chance face-to-face run-in with Gibbons? I don't fully know what kind of copyright violations I am committing here - here is a link to the full article with picture - but I have to show you this guy. His image serves as a perfect representation of the insanity that is running rampant in the Islamic world. I give full credit to the Associated Press for running a picture of this clown:
There is the face of the Religion of Peace as he calls for the violent murder of a 54 year-old British woman who allowed her 7 year-old Sudanese students to name a teddy bear Muhammad. I mentioned in the beginning of the post that the full name of the above clown is Yassin Mohamed al-Mubarak. That made me wonder about something. If it is blasphemous to name a teddy bear Muhammad, why isn't it blasphemous to name a person Muhammad? Muslims are not even supposed to draw pictures of Muhammad - imagined or otherwise. Yet, Muhammad is one of the most popular names for Muslim boys. That has always confused me.
The most important part about Mubarak's statement is his outrage from believing that Gibbons intentionally insulted his dear prophet Muhammad. The important thing to consider is: SO WHAT IF SHE DID! That is the true difference between us (the decent) and them (the indecent): Decent people rationally discuss disagreements; they don't arbitrarily threaten to shoot or decapitate the person with whom they disagree.
Whether it's Salman Rushdie's Satanic Verses, or the murder of filmmaker Theo Van Gogh over a film about the abuse of Muslim women, or the political cartoons featuring images of Muhammad (See? That drawing thing again), or a teddy bear named Muhammad, it seems the Muslim world always has its collective beard tied in a knot about something. In each of these cases, murder has been either threatened or carried out. The worst thing that the western world could do would be to kowtow to these religious thugs who would have us abide by their rules, by their definition of what offends and what does not. I believe in respecting someone's culture just as much as anyone, but only because I want to, not because I am threatened with violent death if I do not.
Good Day to You, Sir