Dear Defenders of Allah, Mohamed (PBUH) and Islam:
I won’t ask the usual obvious questions like why Allah needs you to defend Him, why His Prophet (PBUH) needs you to take his part, or how Islam can be so fragile as to be endangered by silly things Westerners do. No, I won’t ask those obvious questions.
But I will ask:
Have you ever actual seen the Internet? Have you ever actually seen the sheer volume of printed material that comes out of the various publishing concerns in the West? Do you not realize that every single day every single religion in the world is ridiculed, maligned, insulted, questioned, admired, praised, and championed in thousands of new publications and new web pages?
Why do you behave as though a particular YouTube item or a particular cartoon or a wacky backwoods preacher among a million similar videos, cartoons and preachers is some new, particular insult to your God, his Prophet (PBUH) and/or your religion?
I have a suspicion of what the real answer is, and that suspicion arises out of those murderous riots that erupted a few years ago over those ridiculous cartoons. Do you realize that those cartoons were published one day and ignored and forgotten by everyone except a single Muslim fellow who packed a selection of them around the Islamic world in his brief case, showing them to everyone he could for months — for months! — until finally some Imams with a bit of a voice started screeching about them. And then the mob rose up, their buttons well and truly pushed.
This time the anniversary of those attacks of 2001 was coming up so, I suspect, an industrious Imam or two started combing through YouTube looking for something with which to push the buttons of the dutiful mob. And it worked exactly as planned. The apparently very internet-not-savy crowds reacted as though their God, His Prophet (PBUH) and Islam itself were under some sort of new, unique attack such as had not been seen since Richard the Lionheart faced off against Saladin the Kurd.
But that’s not what actually was being done to Islam. What actually was being done was some two-bit hack in Southern California made yet another of millions of cheap, embarrassing bigoted basically verbal attacks on a religion. Is there not an Arabic version of “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but names will never hurt me.”? Surely Mohamed (PBUH) included a sura about that?
I’ve heard it said that somehow this bit of video trash “hurt religious feelings”. Are your religious feelings seriously that tender? How were those feelings hurt? What sort of power do you give to this little California hood that his malignant opinions carry any weight against your religious feelings or the teachings of your Imam?
Or is that it? Did your Imam tell you that Allah, His Prophet (PBUH) and Islam were being insulted and your religious feelings were being hurt?
But, what do you feel? Do you feel that your faith in Allah, His Prophet (PBUH) and your faith in Islam itself is somehow compromised or endangered by an ex-con in California making a piece of schlock? If that is actually the case, I think you might want to take some time to examine the strength of your own belief.
And, these hurt religious feelings: now that U.S. flags have been burned, buildings have been destroyed and a number of people have lost their lives to your indignant mob-violence — now that all these uplifting religious actions have been taken, do your religious feelings feel better? What about the thousands of new videos, tracts, web pages, books, cartoons, opinion pieces that have appeared since September 11? Are they hurting your religious feelings? Do you need to defend Allah against those? Do you need to defend Islam against me?
Don’t ask your Imam: what do you think?
A guy who thinks you could probably do better things for Allah, His Prophet (PBUH) and Islam (and for yourself, your family, and your nation) than burning down buildings and killing people