Media

Just Admit it, Newspapers: You're Scared of Muslims

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RUN FOR YOUR LIVES!!!

As Radley Balko noted in yesterday's Morning Links, the Washington Post and other newspapers pulled Wiley Miller's syndicated "Non Sequitur" cartoon from their comics pages two Sundays back, because Miller pulled a familiar-to-Reason-readers "where's Waldo?" gag with the Prophet Muhammad, satirizing the new 21st century taboo on the depiction of even jokes about the fear of depicting a historical figure who really existed.

As is typical of the genre, Washington Post editors tried to play their own "where's Waldo" with the censorship process:

Style editor Ned Martel said he decided to yank it, after conferring with others, including Executive Editor Marcus W. Brauchli, because "it seemed a deliberate provocation without a clear message." He added that "the point of the joke was not immediately clear" and that readers might think that Muhammad was somewhere in the drawing.

If the Post's new standard for comics is to make jokes "immediately clear," then it might be time to kill the comics page altogether. No, Martel/Brauchli, you pulled the cartoon because your fear of Muslims outweighs your commitment to free expression, period.

Now comes L.A. Times media critic James Rainey, who, even while concluding that the cartoon should have run (the L.A. Times, to no one's surprise, suppressed it), makes sure we understand that fear was not a factor, nosiree:

That's not to agree with some commentators who have called the refusal to run the comic a cowardly retreat from radicals. I'd say the ax that fell on "Non Sequitur" had more to do expediency. Moving in a hurry, with many other decisions that seemed more pressing at the time, editors probably killed the item rather than face the possibility of a furor for a piece they honestly felt was not of high quality.

Uh-huh. This is really how these gut-checks work. A boundary-stretching case comes before you, and suddenly everyone's an art critic. (Rainey: "I didn't find the panel especially powerful or witty.") I'll never forget how many people reacted to the fatwa against Salman Rushdie by saying that, the thing is, Satanic Verses really isn't a very good book, and it's understandable that Muslims would take offense, etc. Faced with the fear of being blamed for (or the target of) a mysterious cartoon dog whistle that sends 1 billion of the planet's humans into a homicide-bombing frenzy, editors bring to the table levels of scrutiny literally never used on the media in question. As is underlined by Rainey's own reporting:

[Boston Globe] Deputy managing editor Christine Chinlund said via e-mail: "When a cartoon takes on a sensitive subject, especially religion, it has an obligation to be clear. The 'Where's Muhammad' cartoon did not meet that test. It leaves the reader searching for clues, staring at a busy drawing, trying to discern a likeness, wondering if the outhouse at the top of the drawing is significant — in other words, perplexed."

Said Alice Short, an L.A. Times assistant managing editor: "If they had produced a 'Non Sequitur' cartoon that said 'Where's Jesus?' I probably wouldn't have wanted to run that either."

Is that the least believable media quote of 2010? Why yes, I think it is. This exchange at the end of the piece gets closer to the matter:

At the Austin (Texas) American-Statesman a senior editor named Drew Marcks told me when I asked about the cartoon, "I'd rather not talk about it."

I pressed. He hung up.

Advice for my newspaper friends: Listen to Penn Jillette. "[W]e haven't tackled Islam because we have families," he says. "[A]nd I think the worst thing you can say about a group in a free society is that you're afraid to talk about it." There, that wasn't very hard, was it?

I wrote about trying to convince the L.A. Times to reprint Danish cartoons of Muhammad in this piece from May.

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238 responses to “Just Admit it, Newspapers: You're Scared of Muslims

  1. Everybody Draw Mohammed Day 2: Electric Boogaloo

    http://www.facebook.com/pages/…..52?ref=sgm

    1. No. You’re missing the joke here. Nobody Draw Mohammed Day. Make sense now?

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  2. What if they actually did admit it? It’s not like fear of being murdered for depicting Muhammad in a cartoon is completely illegitimate. I think these editors are a pack of gutless pushovers, but I do at least understand why they’re nervous.

    1. If you read the last paragraph, I think that’s the point. Just admit it. Don’t do that ridiculous dance and say completely unbelievable things like the LA Times editor said.

    2. To admit it would mean having to admit a politically incorrect truth. Once they did that, their lefty worldview would start to collapse. Hence the cognitive dissonance on display.

      1. Bingo.

    3. Because in J-school they all swallow the line about how their profession is noble and only they have the true spirit to speak truth to power.

      If they admitted that they were craven hacks who were afraid to call out islamic terrorists then they are just as grubby and mean spirited as the rest of us.

      1. Ding ding ding, we have a winner. Everyone wants to have their cake and eat it too.

    4. Because to admit it would mean that they were agreeing that Muslims are violent- and if you call Muslims violent, they’ll kill you.

    5. Sadly, the media has received the message explicit in the murder of Daniel Pearl loud and clear.

  3. It’s pretty obvious where Muhammed is. He’s in the outhouse at the top of the picture, taking a holy dump, PBUH.

    1. No, he’s at the ATM getting cash to pay for the ice cream his wife is waiting on line for.

    2. No, he’s at the bottom of the lake. He was trying to impress his 5-year old girlfriend by trying to walk on water like Jesus or Kris Angel. But poor Mo, being from the desert, never learned out to swim. BTW, anyone ever read the on-line comic “Jesus & Mo”?

    3. As soon as I saw the outhouse, it reminded me of this BC comic:

      http://sheikyermami.com/2009/0…..ims-alone/

    4. As soon as I saw the outhouse, it reminded me of the B.C. comic strip from 2003 that I can’t link to as it’s marked as spam by this site.

  4. A boundary-stretching case comes before you, and suddenly everyone’s an art critic. (Rainey: “I didn’t find the panel especially powerful or witty.”)

    And yet they ran Cathy for years.

    1. Damn you, that was the joke I was going to make.

    2. I recently read a newspaper comic section for the first time in years. There is nothing powerful or witty in there at all, except for the classic Peanuts.

      1. Au contraire…

        Dilbert. Get Fuzzy

      2. Some papers still run Calvin and Hobbes.

    3. When I last saw a copy about five years ago, the Post had 2.5 pages of daily comics, including such fossils as Mark Trail.

  5. “you’re fear of Muslims outweighs your commitment to free expression” should be “your fear of Muslims outweighs your commitment to free expression”

      1. haha, what a rube

        1. They’re’s just no excuse for that kind of error.

  6. Is it true that “Not Me” from the Family Circus strips is really a depiction of Muhammad? Bil Keane is sneaky that way.

    1. Ida Know!

    2. He walked all the way from Jiddah to Tabuk and then Unayzah before he went to Mecca. Silly Mohammed.

      1. Did he leave a big dotted line behind home along the way?

        1. Yes, showing how he avoided the packs of dogs and pig shit on the way…

  7. Full marks to Marcks for being honest about his position. (as much as “I don’t want to talk about it” is a position)

    I’m not sure how memes like “it’s not of high enough quality” get started, but it is pretty amazing that you found everyone else singing from the same choir book. Humor is in the eye of the beholder, but you really can’t claim that this cartoon is of lesser quality than any other. And as comedy and commentary it works. It also works as a piece of pop-art. So a complete whiff on the criticism there guys…

    You really do have to wonder why they didn’t just come out and say “we’re not going to run pieces on this topic” and be done with it. You don’t even have to go as far as Penn Gillette in explaining that you fear a violent reaction, just say you aren’t going to run that topic. We’ll all know it is because you chickened out, but at least you won’t come off as a hypocrite and a coward while slandering someone’s work.

  8. He added that “the point of the joke was not immediately clear” and that readers might think that Muhammad was somewhere in the drawing.

    Translation: Our readers are dumb.

    Which may be true, considering the “loyal” readership of the WaPo, but the trick SHOULD BE not to make it obvious… at least.

    1. The cartoon is only funny if Muhammad isn’t in it.

      Where’s Muhammad? Nowhere, because we’re not allowed to show him.

      1. And that’s the message, one the deliberately obtuse editors refuse to understand.

  9. So the El Diario de Juarez model of speaking truth to power is the way to go: “we’ll stop writing about you: please don’t kill us.”

    http://tucsoncitizen.com/view-…..in-mexico/

    I get it. I makes sense. It’s better than making lame excuses.

    But who’s excuse was lamer, WaPo’s, or Reason’s: let’s support free speech by promoting an event where everyone draws funny/provocative cartoons of the leaders of Muhammed, then NOT publish them or any comments, because they were “offesive”, and running an image of a fucking pipe. If Reason backed down because of death threats, or fear of them, why aren’t they following Penn’s example and saying so?

    1. I can’t help but agree.

  10. Where’s Mohammed?

    I believe he is in the outhouse masturbating to gay porn. But I could be wrong.

    1. Gay child porn involving sheep (and lawyers).

      1. That’s disgusting. Mohammed would never do a lawyer.

  11. I never cared for Wiley Miller especially when his attempt at humor was to equate (in a cartoon) the free market with fascism.

    1. Funny, I get that vibe from Doonesbury.

    2. Same here. I actually got into into an argument with him once.

      He’s your basic lefty dickstain who thinks that progressives are the One Truth?.

      1. Miller or Trudeau?

  12. “I didn’t find the panel especially powerful or witty.”

    Considering that Non Sequitur tends to be a few intellectual notches above the overwhelming majority of syndicated Far Side rip-offs and minority sitcoms that pass for comics, this statement is colossally absurd.

    1. That’s not to say I give the strip a pass overall though.

    2. “… syndicated Far Side rip-offs…”

      Much as I love the Far Side, it’s worth pointing out that IT was a syndicated rip-off of Gahan Wilson’s work…

      Whose cartoons were derivatives of Charles Addams’!

      1. That’s funny… I thought Far Side was a Kliban ripoff.

  13. He won’t be standing next to the impure dogs, that’s for sure!

  14. “it seemed a deliberate provocation”

    Of course it was. But so what? Didn’t Doonesbury deliberately “provoke” so many decades ago when it was allegedly funny and edgy? But to be fair, once in a great while a paper would refuse to run that day’s strip. So this is nothing new.

    1. Heavy emphasis on the “allegedly”. Trudeau’s competition for relevance and wit included Breathed (Bloom County) and Bill Watterson (Calvin and Hobbes), both of which are far, far funnier and have far more insight into the human condition.

      Hint: “Republicans are bad” is neither insightful nor funny. The same goes for “Liberals are cool”.

      1. Trudeau’s competition for relevance and wit included Breathed (Bloom County) and Bill Watterson (Calvin and Hobbes)

        Those strips came along in the ’80s. Trudeau’s glory days were the ’70s.

        1. General, why is it that after you’ve dug yourself into a deep hole, you insist on calling it a tunnel?

        2. Trudeau as good right up until Nixon resigned, then he became mostely irrelevant.

          1. I think he did some terrific stuff in the Ford/Carter/Jerry Brown/John Anderson era, bleeding into the early Reagan years. He lost his mojo when he took his sabbatical.

            1. Trudeau never recovered after his ‘sabbatical’ circa 1982 (after which he stopped actually drawing the strip himself).

          2. He and Hunter S. Thompson were after the same white whale. Once it was taken down, both their careers began to languish.

        3. I liked Reagan, but did think the Doonesbury strips touring Reagan’s brain were funny.

          btw … did anyone else spot Molly Norris in the ‘Where’s Mohammed’ strip?

  15. When a cartoon takes on a sensitive subject, especially religion, it has an obligation to be clear. The ‘Where’s Muhammad’ cartoon did not meet that test.

    So, you’ll print my ‘F*** Muhammad’ cartoon?

    1. After giving careful consideration to your cartoon, we must refuse to publish it. Readers might think that “F***” means “Find”. We’re certain you understand why many might find judge this to be offensive.

      the point of the joke was not immediately clear”

  16. Is there room in the outhouse for a sheep?

    1. You know who else likes sheep?

      1. That attorney whatsisname we were talking about a couple weeks ago?

  17. Wasn’t somebody just remarking on the growing influence of Pamela Geller, in spite of her nuttery?

    Stuff like this drives journalistic credibility down even further, to the point that many people don’t trust anything written on the subject in a major news source. That’s what drives so much traffic to people like Geller.

    1. I’d also point to the rise of anti-immigrant/anti-muslim parties in Europe. The media and elite opinion was very successful at suppressing any questioning, or even discussion, about the immigration – other than a praise of the latest fancy humus bar and beauty of diversity. Since a lot of people know that it’s total bullshit they turn to more extreme opinions.

    2. Well, that and she’s smoking hawt for a 52 year old.

    3. No, thank you. People go running to Geller precisely BECAUSE the MSM and the leftard intelligentsia is in an unofficial Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact with the Islamic Fascists.

      The bien pensant crowd over at the Editorial Desks are willing to suppress Non Freaking Sequitur because he’s running a commentary on the fact that a fellow cartoonist has to live in the Witness Protection Program because of these people.

      No one wearing the Color of Authority was willing to stand up to them. This makes what Geller writes look reasonable and prescient.

      Gush Emunim, anyone?

      1. And we all remember what the Nazis did to the commies shortly after that-20 million Russians dead.

  18. I sure as shit wouldn’t print any Muhammad cartoons. I’d rather not be on the run and have crazy people attack my house with an axe or live under a fatwa. I like that I don’t have to have a panic room because I exercised my first amendment rights.

    So for whiny liberals to claim people are racist against Muslims, they’re not – they’re just legitimately scared to express themselves freely or be on the run for the rest of their lives.

    1. Don’t you realize that that chicken-hearted attitude rewards threats of violence? Fuck that. I’d rather die than live as a man who is cowed by the threats of the wicked.

      I don’t have a family yet, but if I did, I wouldn’t use them as a criticism shield either. They should be ready to die too.

      1. Tulpa, aren’t you the dude who’s always whining about being beat up by women? You sure sound like a coward.

        1. Getting beat up by women isn’t cowardly. Running from the women while screaming at the top of your lungs is cowardly. As far as I know, Tulpa doesn’t do the latter.

          1. It would be foolish, anyway. You can’t run very far if you’re screaming.

      2. Also, I don’t think you’re in any danger of starting a family. It sounds like any time a woman gets near you, she wants to beat the shit out of you.

      3. The only real solution is to make the fanatics more afraid of us than we are of them. Few right now have the stomach for what that will entail. I assume after the next series of attacks and murders this will change.

        1. The muslim fanatics fear nothing, and welcome death. They number in the tens of millions. The only solution is to kill them all.

        2. It will, unfortunately.

          And that is a sad thing. I have a pet theory of mine about the Islamists, and I don’t think it’s too far off. The Arab world was largely bypassed by Passchendale, the Somme, Dresden, the Tokyo Firebombing, the Battles of Moscow, Stalingrad, Kursk, and lastly, Hiroshima, and Nagasaki. All too many in that part of the world apparently have a romantic view of armed conflict, as the Victorians did. Witness the religious zeal that too many of them approach the notion of armed “jihad”.

          The nations of the west, although they engage in far too much conflict for thier own good, at least don’t clothe military butchery with the victorian nonsense that enabled the Imperialism of the 19the Century.

          I don’t see that Arab culture has largely developed that insight born of the experience of world war. And so, I suspect that their zealous young men will do stupid things that will get the entire culture into trouble.

          1. @section9 — that’s one theory, but it doesn’t jive with the objective evidence as i can see at least.

            After the continuing war with Israel, Beruit, Iraq v. Iran, Operation Desert Storm, Operation Enduring Freedom, Afghanistan, Russia v. Chechnya, 1000 years of Romanian wars; they may be romanticizing war. But surely they’ve seen plenty of the real thing.

  19. I was against the whole Draw Mohammed Day thing of course, as it seemed likely to degenerate into a cesspool. And call me Nostradamus, it did just that, which is why Reason had to shut down all the comment threads regarding it as the momentous day approached.

    But seriously, libertarians should threaten to blow people up for drawing cartoons insufficiently praising of libertarianism too.

    1. I was in favor of the whole Draw Mohammed Day thing, as it seemed likely to degenerate into a cesspool.

      Something is wrong with you.

      1. Unlike other libertarians, I’m not fond of cesspools.

        1. Who said I was fond of them? I avoided that thread.

          I think cesspools, like chaos, is a good thing.

        2. Cesspools are greatly preferable to sewage in the streets.

        3. Without a cesspool, the whole palace stinks.

  20. For what it’s worth, I like Wiley.
    At some newspaper I know pretty well, the editors said they chose not to run the cartoon because they didn’t understand it, nor what point it was trying to make. Two top editors said they’d never heard of “Draw Mohammad Day” nor of the surrounding furor.
    And in my heart I believe this is true.
    Watta world.

    1. “the editors said they chose not to run the cartoon because they didn’t understand it, nor what point it was trying to make.”

      Hence the name of the cartoon.

    2. Do they typically do this for cartoons they don’t understand, or is it only for cartoons they don’t understand enough to know whether lunatics will try to murder them because of the cartoon?

  21. Do any of the links tell which papers did run the thing?

    1. Does Pamela Geller have a paper?

  22. The idea of not being able to depict Muhammad is exactly the sort of idolatry the religion is supposed to be AGAINST. Only morons would equate a drawing of Muhammad to a false God. For ALL intents and purposes, a false God can only be in one’s mind.

    1. You sort of hit the nail right on the head… “Only morons…”

      CB

    2. Muslims take more literally the injunction against “graven images” in the Second Commandment (“Thou shalt not make an image of any thing that is in heaven…’) than most Christian denominations.

      A few of the early Protestant denominations did so, which is why the smashed the Catholic Crucifixes and images of the saints.

      1. In fairness, Catholicism is idolatry. I can see where the Koran is coming from on this point. But Muslims seem to be ludicrously sensitive about it.

        1. The hell it is. Catholics know exactly who they’re worshipping and who they’re merely venerating; worship goes only to God and veneration to the saints.

          1. In practice, what’s the difference? And which category does praying for heavenly intervention fall into? Cause from where I’m sitting, that sounds a lot like some semantic bullshit designed to excuse an obvious contradiction.

            1. change your seat and get a better view

              1. Go catch syphilis in a nursing home.

            2. Intercessory prayer — asking a saint to intercede for you — is no different than asking a friend, family member, pastor, etc. to pray for you. Our God is the God of the living and not the dead.

              Also, you are right that the difference between veneration/reverence/worship is largely a semantic difference. The word “worship,” if my etymological history is correct, only came to apply exclusively to God after Biblical translations to English became more common. Before, it meant “to acknowledge the worth of” or “to show respect to”.

              In the same way, “orar” can mean to pray or to speak in Spanish. We do the same thing in English when we say we pray to God, when we simply mean that we’re talking to God. That’s why Shakespeare says, “prithee” and Bromptons Oratory in London is a house of prayer.

              So, when you say there’s no difference, what are you saying exactly? Obviously, you don’t believe that people should speak to God and God alone. You know that Catholics do not conceive of Saints/saints as being gods. Is there something else that bothers you about honoring the Saints?

        2. Isn’t this injunction against drawing of Mohammed raising him to the level of a god? Seems the ‘graven images’ injunction would be against depicting Allah. Christianity & Judaism still practice pretty much the same injunction as God is only referred to, but not by name.

      2. Most Protestant denominations still do to some extent. They use a plain cross and not a crucifix.

      3. (“Thou shalt not make an image of any thing that is in heaven…”)

        What I find interesting about this is…how does anyone who depicts an image of what is in heaven, actually know what the image depicted looks like?

        1. Please wait while I transfer your prayer to Resurrection Services Dept.

          BEEP.

          To speak to Jesus, press 1.
          To speak to Lazurus, press 2.
          To speak to St. John the Devine, press 666 or, if you are Gnostic, press 616.
          For all other enquiries, please hold until the Rapture occurs.

          *Trumpet Music Plays*

        2. You shall have no other gods before me. You shall not make for yourself a graven image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth.

          Think about the organization here. Sky, land and sea. I.e. do not make idols that are birds, beasts or fish. The word “heaven” or “heavens” is often a poetic way of just saying the sky. Remember, in the Old Testament you’re not yet talking about a Christian conception of Heaven.

      4. But clearly non-Muslims have no intent to idolize Muhammad, so it’s a disingenuous application of that rule. Besides which, Jesus and Moses were just as much prophets as Muhammad (in Islam), yet Muslim radicals don’t flip out over depictions of Jesus. The respect they’re demanding for Muhammad (no pictures, ever, under any circumstances) is much more like the respect they’re supposed to pay to Allah. Which means they are in fact idolizing Muhammad.

      5. Iconoclasm goes back much farther than that. There was a wave of “idol” smashing in the 8th century, headed by Emperor Leo III the Isaurian.

        1. Emperor Leo III the Isaurian

          “Leo the Lizard”? Wasn’t he in one of the Dune sequels?

  23. Looking at the cartoon, I think I see Mohammed in the bacon bits that the ice cream vendor is using as sprinkles.

  24. I’d love to see Paul Coker’s take on all of this…

      1. According to Wikipedia he is…

        I’d actually like to see his entry in The Draw contest…

  25. Do we have to worry about a libel suit from Mohamed? If not I hear he has relations with Ovis aries. If so then I hear that the previous statement is, in fact, satirical and more than likely false.

  26. Anything that is your holy or sacred
    I’m gonna desecrate and use in jest
    But you’ll never hear a crack about Mohammed
    Cuz I don’t wanna get shot in the chest

    –Fat Mike

  27. I think Greg Gutfeld summed it up pretty well on Monday when he wrote:

    So, in a blinding feat of profound wussiness, the Washington Post removed the October 3rd “Non Sequitur” cartoon from its rag. The reason? It mentioned Muhammad. Let me repeat: it was yanked because it “mentioned” – not showed – Muhammad.

    There wasn’t a picture of him in the strip.

    But the Post, and some other papers, still pulled it. Admirably, Post ombudsman Andrew Alexander asked his Style editor why- and he said, “it seemed a deliberate provocation without a clear message.” He added that “the point of the joke was not immediately clear.”

    Yeah. That’s why you did it: ambiguity. Weasel

    And here we see another float in the parade of pussies – a callow editor making a cowardly decision based on a fear of upsetting religious fanatics (a fear he cannot even admit to coworkers).

    Which leads me to my only point. Why is it that the media keeps reminding us that we shouldn’t exaggerate the threat of a small group of radicals – but completely changes tact, when it comes to their own personal safety?

    Think about it: if the average Joe expresses fear or anxiety over Islamic fundamentalism, they are called Islamophobes. But if an editor with balls the size of electrons removes a comic in which Muhammad isn’t even present – that’s not honest-to-Allah Islamophobia?

    No, that’s just being sensitive.

    Look, the media can’t have it both ways. They cannot criticize the public for concerns over Islam, and then eradicate anything in their midst that they perceive might elevate their risk for getting stabbed buying a chai latte at Starbucks. If their governing principle in the newsroom is fear, then they should admit it – and get the hell off our backs for feeling the same way.

    I would have simply posted a link, but his website’s been down since yesterday. (dailygut.com)

    1. “I would have simply posted a link, but his website’s been down since yesterday. (dailygut.com)”

      uh oh……d’ya suppose “they” got him?

    2. dailygut.com is up, but the quote cannot be found anywhere.

    3. “Balls the size of electrons.” Ouch.

      1. I’d have said neutrinos.

        Electrons have more mass and have a charge.

  28. Out of curiosity has reason had any credible threats or any threats at all over any Mohamed articles?

    1. Well, there was the South Park kerfuffle.

  29. Well to make lemon out of lemonades,change the title of the cartoon to “how many fatwas can you issue ”
    1. The dogs are unclean.
    2. The unveiled woman needs stoning.
    3. The little girl needs to be honor killed for giving uncle Tanus a boner.
    4. Listening to music may be haraam.
    5. The giraffe’s markings may be a dirty arabic limerick.
    6. Newsweek say a soldier is flushing a Koran in the outhouse.

    1. Don’t forget the kite. Talibanian jihadis HATE kites.

    2. …is giving the kite-flying Mohammad look-alike a boner.

  30. Where’s Muhummad? Rotting in his fucking grave.

    1. Corpses in the desert don’t rot — they dessicate.

      TCM has a block of mummy movies this Friday night– look for an uncredited appearance by Muhammed (PBUH).

  31. ^^I wonder whose dick this is^^

  32. DOn’t these people realize that Muhummad is the most popular name in the world. There is nothing in the cartoon to suggest that we are looking for the Prophet Muhmmaad (who by the way was often portrayed in Islamic art with a veil on) or some kid named muhammad

    1. An American teacher in some Muslim country had a stuffed bear in a classroom. She asked the students what name the bear should be given, and a boy named Mohammed said, not surprisingly, “Mohammed”.

      This was fine for about a month, until some of the Islamtards found out, and then put her on trial for “mocking the prophet” PBUH!

      Fortunately, she was allowed to get the fuck out of there with her life.

      1. You lie as part of the conspiracy by Jews and infidel crusaders to defame the true and holy status of Islam!

        That teacher was British.

      2. So if I buy a teddy bear for $10, name it Mohammed, and then sell it for $20, have I made a prophet?

  33. Are Muhummad Limericks okay? How about Muhammad Haiku?

    He takes a child bride,
    His followers lust for blood,
    Who is this prophet?

    1. I once met a man on hajj from stanbul
      Who said he wanted to get some use for his tool.
      I said “I know what you mean,
      But all these girls are unclean,
      And they’ll stone you at the gates, you damn fool.”

  34. The Village.
    That color of which we do not wear, and of which we do not speak, except that we incessently chatter about not speaking of it…and never, ever talking about those whom do not want us to never wear the color of which we do not wear,nor speak, except of course when we are talking about not speaking about it, because if we didn’t talk about not speaking about it, how would we know not to speak of it? Well, I guess we could write about it, but I’m pretty sure we’re not to write about the color that we shall not speak about, except when we’re writing that we not to speak (or write for that matter) about the color of which we do not speak, and now, not write, either.
    purple Muslims
    Got it?

  35. editors probably killed the item rather than face the possibility of a furor for a piece they honestly felt was not of high quality.

    Mr. Rainey,
    I hope you have taken some time to glance at this thread. I have a question for you (Now Skeeter . . .). Do you have kids? How do you look them in the eye when you wake them up in the morning knowing they have a deceitful coward for a daddy? They might as well not even have a daddy because his very hugs are little lies given to them every day. When they expect strength and security when their daddy holds them all you have to offer them is a closet to hide in.

  36. If they had produced a ‘Non Sequitur’ cartoon that said ‘Where’s Jesus?’ I probably wouldn’t have wanted to run that either.

    But don’t Christians tell us we need to find Jesus?

    1. Plus, it would have no relevance to the matter as it is entirely a false equivalence. ‘Where’s Mohammad?’ points out their attempt to pretend the 800 lb gorilla of speech suppression in the room isn’t there. I have seen plenty of cartoons about clergy men and Christianity in the papers, and the only cartoon of that ilk I have ever seen rejected was one of my own. For Hustler, where I drew a picture of Jesus emerging from a smelly outhouse sighing, ‘Ah, the shit of shits for the king of kings!’, and they only rejected it because it was too much in the style of their in house guy (which not coincidentally was what I was going for.)

    2. And in case you are wondering, several much more milquetoast cartoons of mine did get published elsewhere. My freshman and sophomore years in college, looking for something to occupy my time after being cut from baseball. It didn’t pay well (you would laugh at how little, I know verse writers for greeting card companies who were paid better), and my interest drifted.

      1. Not to beat the dead horse I road in on, but I actually submitted the Jesus-Outhouse when I was still in high school. The successful material only came about later.

  37. Wouldn’t the easiest fix be to stab or blow up a few people for refusing to run Mo cartoons? Then they have to face the fact that someone’s going to try to kill them either way, and just do what their conscience says.

    1. conscience? doesn’t that get removed in grad school.

  38. I wonder if Charles “the Hammer” Martel is in any way related to Ned “the Powderpuff” Martel…

  39. On April 6, 2006, after Borders bookstore caved to threats, the Rome (NY) Daily Sentinel published two of the Danish Mohammed cartoons, a cartoon from an Iranian newspaper in response, and two Israeli follow-ups along with an editorial, “Courage to stand up to thugs.”

    We concluded, “Find courage by understanding that thugs who try to hijack religion threaten all of us. Society stands on individual shoulders — starting with Borders, with newspapers, and with you.”

    Matt, please email me for more about individuals, journalism, and society.

  40. A new meaning for “Yellow Journalism”.

  41. I was in High School with Marcus B. — he hasn’t changed, still a person with a big mouth and no stones.

  42. . . . if there were such a thing as a Christian suicide bomber . . .

  43. “the point of the joke was not immediately clear”

    Someone needs to be demoted or transferred laterally.

    Non Sequitor isn’t always about “jokes.” Haha.

    Where has he been?

  44. I dunno. I’d be critical of a newspaper avoiding a controversial story about Muslims or chickening out on publishing an Editorial Page cartoon that shows Mohammed, but I just can’t bring myself to criticize a newspaper that wants to keep its Comics page light and fluffy.

  45. Todays Newspapaers are really not about fearless reporting, they are only concerned with promoting leftist propaganda, which is why they have become virtually irrelevent.

    1. It’s all about speaking “truth to power”, which means going after powerless white males in some kind of perverse, gleeful sadistic ritual. But going after the REAL power of Islam – forget it.

    2. I used to work in the newspaper business.

      As much as the Editorial staff hates to acknowledge it, it wasn’t about reporting at all. It was all about selling ads.

      For the readers, it was as much, if not more, about the Sports page, the crossword, the comics, the Entertainment section, and the weekend sales.

  46. It’s clear as a bright sunny day. There IS NO MoHamHead in the pic. It’s a joke too subtle for most. (For those who don’t “get it”: If there IS NO pic of Mo, the cartoonist won’t have a fatwa against him. That is, he WON’T GET KILLED. Ha. Ha. ) Why is it, in this country that supposedly values free expression of opinions/free speech, that writers must resort to this sort of muffled subterfuge? I think the answer to that question lies in the cartoon’s title.

    1. You really think he wouldn’t get a fatwa? Muslims keep pushing the threat envelope. Soon they’ll be saying that infidels better not even mention the name Mohammed or they will get a fatwa. Then it will proceed to thinking about Mohammed. They will never ever stop until we fight back.

  47. Can’t you see him? I see him! He’s a ghost, but I know he follows me everywhere.

    Trick or Treat?!?!

    Trick. Problem is, most muzlims don’t know that it’s a trick on THEM. They still believe in the DEAD, the dead ghost of Mo the Zombie. They need to get over it: he’s dead, OK? Not coming back. Neither is Jeezus. Gone. Over. Move on.

  48. What if you make an image of Mohammed in your mind? Is that not fatwa-worthy?

  49. BTW – if you think Muslims aren’t monitoring blog posts like this, you’re gravely mistaken. They’ve got armies of “internet” jihadists browsing every single article and collecting email addresses. So I’d highly recommend posting anonymously.

    1. Screw em…..

      (This comment won’t actually be published, will it? If so, please change “screw em” to “praise Allah”)

      Thank you,
      WP

    2. Tolerance of the intolerable is cowardly and pathetic. I never post anonymously: I stand by my statements and do not wish to disassociate myself from them.

      For what it’s worth, I think Mohammed was a bloodthirsty paedophiliac Bedouin pirate, the Koran is a diseased congeries of lies and hate, and the religion that it espouses has been a blight on the planet for 1400 years.

      So come and get me, you pussies.

  50. Hey (slightly off topic), Why not have a contest–Everyone draw Osama bin Laden, or Everyone draw the American dude in Yemen.

    1. Or just have everyone draw some poor guy named Mohammed.

  51. I haven’t read the entire thread, so excuse me if this is repeated. The style editor, Ned Martel, cowardly decided to kill the cartoon. On the other hand, Charles Martel,The Hammer, defeated the Muslims in the Battle of Tours in 732. Had he lost, Europe might well have been Muslim for a thousand years well before now. How ironic.

    1. Great post! I think that the “radical” Muslims believe they are still fighting the same war. We need another Charles Martel, and fewer Ned Martels.

  52. Here’s my question:
    If a bigoted thug in Yemen can decree what’s available for me to read in Sacramento, what the hell use are all those billions and trillions we spend to ” defend freedom”, and for “homeland security”?

  53. No doubt, if the cartoon had instead depicted the abominable “Piss Christ” picture of someone walking on an American flag, then I’m sure the editors would have said it was OK to show, eh? Such random hypocrisy! They should just admit they censored the cartoon through their fear of Muslims. Cowards!

    chicopanther

    1. There is nothing random about hypocrisy.

  54. Er, that should be “…picture *or* someone walking…” and not *of*! Terribly sorry about that typo.

    chicopanther

  55. Ned Martel is actually the editor’s name? I guess the Martels ain’t what they used to be. Sad.

  56. Of course, they are cowards, they chose a “profession” with no standards, no requirements, and no downside to making a mistake because no one has the brains or knowledge to even recognize one..

    Anyway, if Rainey were correct that it was just deadline pressure, I expect that now that they’ve all had time to consider, they are running it, right?

  57. The newspapers’ are only afraid because they know the government won’t lift a finger to protect citizens from Islamic murderers, when citizens so-called “blaspheme” Mohammed. That’s the truth.

  58. Our “leading” newspapers are despicable cowards when it comes to this particular issue.

    And since everyone’s an art critic on this matter, I thought it was a pretty good cartoon, and unlike the editor of the Globe, I got it.

  59. Teror is one way of controling people. The Muslims have been more efficient at this than Stalin or anyone in history for that matter and the liberals who support and “respect” them (but not Christians) are the most controled. They (liberals) are those born without backbone so they live their lives with incredible guilt–which accounts for all the policies they support. (Don’t defend something, don’t work for something, just throw (other people’s) money at the problem. That is the liberal way–and most newspapers are liberal.)

  60. When the Muslims got upset about the South Park, Muhammad in a bear suit episode, I always wondered why they were more upset about that than they were about God being depicted as a monstrous platypus type creature.

  61. Wow, so now the LAT cares about the “quality” of the artwork associated with cartoons. They must have a lot of time on their hands if they can scrutinize every detail of a comic panel. Any chance they will scrutinize liberal pols with the same microscope? Nah, just daydreaming here.

  62. I found him;; he’s in the shithouse giving birth to another obuma.

  63. These cowardly editors, and their families, sleep soundly in their beds at night only because rough men stand willing to do violence on their behalf.

    And the march into dhimmitude continues…

    1. Voted the best comment.

  64. Uh, guys, it’s about the markets, like it always is. If you’re a major newspaper, you don’t insult/alienate part of your readership for no real reason, because that means you lose money.

    And this is America, not Europe – the thugs firebombing buildings and assaulting cab drivers are the islamophobes.

    1. You are boneshakingly stupid. Ever hear of the LA El-Al counter shooting? The DC snipers? The Army major mass shooting, complete with yelling Allahu Akbar? The defused truck bomb in Manhattan? But the real problem is capitalism, huh? You might as well “revert” and just be done with it.

      1. Are you kidding? Markets are awesome. I like not living in a third-world communist dicatorship. I’m pointing out that in a market economy, you can expect newspapers to try to increase, not annoy away, their readership. That’s called the free market. The market doesn’t stop working in situations where its results don’t support your preconceived notions. If you don’t like living in a pluralistic, capitalist country, move to Europe.

        1. got a point Royal, but the nice thing is we can still complain about it.

          still the other point this article made was the editors were not being honest about their reasons for rejecting the cartoon.

          if they’d said we think this offends Muslims so we’re choosing not to run it, the decision might still be criticized. however, we’d then be arguing over whether it was the right decision to run or not run the cartoon. since the editors were not honest, they lost most of their reasonable defense.

          1. I think it’s pretty clear that they A. didn’t want to lose readership by offending Muslim readers, and B. when asked about it, gave a standard-issue non-answer in order to minimize controversy.

            My guess is that regardless of editorials like this one, no one’s going to cancel their subscription over not running a cartoon. From a business perspective, they made the right call.

  65. The comic does have a point, namely, where is Muhammad relevant? In fact it is a funny joke.

  66. I don’t get why everyone is so scared, has any American been killed inside America over a Muhammad cartoon? I can’t think of one but I could be wrong.

  67. Being the dumb redneck that I am; I thought Ho-hammed was a chick that liked her pork?

  68. As a former newsroom worker who was often in these meetings, I can say they are afraid of losing even one reader. What they are clueless about is they lose way more readers with the lack of content in these awful rags these days.

  69. MSM Journalists – dhimmwits of the year.
    Of course, the left is in bed with Islam anyway – the enemy of my enemy (Western Culture) is my friend, you know? Craven callow pricks, all of them.

  70. You know, they are well within their legal rights to dump this cartoon–it’s their paper and they can say what goes into it–it belongs to them–not you.

    All you people who are getting on their case are just bigots.

    1. I do love how people who ostensibly like private enterprise apparently don’t like it enough to respect the rights of private corporations to make private decisions.

      1. Someone needs to add “They have a right to do what they want, but I have a right to criticize them.” to:

        http://reason.wikia.com/wiki/Standard_libertarian_disclaimer

        1. correct. no one here is arguing that government should force them to run the cartoon.

  71. Yeah, they’re scared of Muslims and Jews. Try making fun of a Jew and you’ll be call an anti-Semite until they run you out! They’re not scared to rag on a good ol’e Christian, though.

  72. Mr. Welsh did a great job pointing out that our media needs to acquire a spine.

    The media has no problem attacking and limiting Christian’s Constitutional rights of Free Speech and Expression, i.e., Florida Pastor Jones’ Koran burning stunt… he and his church were labeled as nut-cases.

    I personally loved the “Where’s Mohammad?” cartoon because of it’s subtle satire of the media, and how it highlights the fact that political correctness that has gone amuck when treating radical Islam.

    I also love the notion of some middle-eastern cleric, with scimitar in hand, pouring over the cartoon for hours under candlelight, and then finally realizing, with the help of his 9 year old son, that “Mohammad is nowhere to be found not in this cartoon at all!”

    Robert J. Thorpe, author of “Reclaim Liberty: 3-Step Plan for Restoring our Constitutional Government”

    http://www.reclaimliberty.us, http://www.Amazon.com and http://www.barnesandnoble.com, “Laus Deo”

    1. Would you also love a cartoon of a computer, a webcam, and a bridge which asks “Where’s Tyler Clementi?”

      Not running a cartoon like this would lead to the same conclusions about the media being spineless and political correctness running amok, wouldn’t it?

  73. and they wonder why they are going out of business.

  74. I’m more afraid of the US Government taking away my rights than I am of people terrorizing me in the name of Islam.

    So where’s the good laugh I should be having when I replace the punchline with:

    “Where’s Vicky Weaver?”

    I’m also more afraid of big government statists, so why not hassle newspapers for not publishing the knee-slapper with the punchline:

    “Where’s Paul Krugman?”

    Penn Jillette’s show couldn’t “tackle” Islam, if it tried. But, if it did, the show should feature interviews with the family of former NFL player Pat Tilman and his experience “tackling” Islam.

    You want to tackle Islam? Then ask:

    “Where’s Gary Gordon?”

    Ah?.but that was back before Reason had anything at all to say about Islam.

  75. *~@:{(>

  76. So the Brooklyn Museum of art hosted an exhibition that included a dung splattered painting of the Virgin Mary. While Christians protested vehemently and non-violently, liberals defended the artist. Apparently they saw the meaning behind the art and it must not have been hate and intolerance or they would have spoken against it.

    So I suggest the BMoA host another exhibition from the same artist but this time it’s a dung splattered painting of Muhammad. Of course, liberals will be the first to support the exhibit in the name of art, won’t they?

  77. These people with their cowardice are letting the 9-11 bombers win. They are showing physical cowardice.

  78. Its much safer to denigrate Christianity in the pursuit of providing support for atheism and thus erecting the subterfuge of being anti-god, than going after mOHAMMED. But what about the pursuit of appearing anti-god. What’s that about? Its all about providing support for atheism. As for mOHAMMED, as strange as it sounds, he’s really an ally of atheism, so why fight it?

  79. Noboby seems to have thought this thru. If they published anything that caused a Muslim reaction especially in the USA. The public would see the Muslims as unreasonable and conclude the ground zero mosque is truly a bad idea. After all the first places this Muslim reaction would happen would be in Mosques (places known to lead in anti-Americanism) and specifically at the ground zero mosque.

    All this Anti-Americanism would only secure in the minds of American voters that Islam is not a religion of peace as the liberal would have us believe.

    So they have concluded that criticism of Islam is not in their best interest.

    They show NO respect for the constitution and prove themselves bigots of the highest order.

  80. Tony Carrillo’s comic F- is the most hilarious comic I’ve come across in years, don’t know which papers run it tho but it is often pee-in-your-panties funny!

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