In issuing their fatwa on the Muslims who are calling for the heads of people whose mightiest weapon is the pen, the North American pyjamahadeen have gone too far, using the incident as another reason to bash Muslims and sow further divisions between what are already "clashing civilizations." It's like they have been waiting for just this opportunity.
Note to Zerbie: To have a ‘clash of civilizations’ requires there be at least a minimum of two or more civilizations. As far as I can tell there is only one group that is supporting civilized discourse, and just to make it easier for you - they are on the side that welds the pens and keyboards rather than the flames, stones, guns and swords.
But the Zerbie attempts to grind her ink and center out Kathy Shaidle of Relapsed Catholic for special attention:
Case in point: Toronto-based blogger Kathy Shaidle (a.k.a. Relapsed Catholic) whose religious politics would have easily qualified her as chief judge and bonfire builder during the Spanish Inquisition. The woman never misses an opportunity to insult Islam. And so, it was hardly surprising that, not only did she publish the offending cartoons, she giddily took up the torch and ran with it.
On Sunday she posted a Tom McMahon cartoon claiming that when it comes to skyscrapers Muslims "destroy" them, and when it comes to cartoons Muslims "riot about them" — as if this applies to every single Muslim every single minute.
Why she doesn't call her blog the Daily Auto Da Fe — for the public burning of heretics in Spain — is beyond me.
The cartoon uproar has merely added fuel to her fire, one she and others of her ilk had been hoping for ever since the calls for Muslim blood over the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001 calmed down.
I have happened to have met Kathy Shaidle from Relapsed Catholic a few times and found her utterly delightful. She’s just as smart and witty as one would expect from reading Relapsed Catholic. I was totally disarmed by her warmth and charm. I can’t say the same of the Zerbie, but I will be fair and say I didn’t exchange a word with her at the last Toronto blog meet up. Perhaps the Zerbie has charm, but this is far too public an ink grinding on an uneven playing field for my tastes.
Besides Kathy is one of the few people that I can actually say I can ‘lord over’ -considering that I am about a half an inch or so taller. She may be petite but she has the heart of an Amazon and she is more than capable of rising to her own defense and she is not entirely friendless. What the Zerbie failed to advise her readership is that extremist Muslim radicals aren’t the only ones to feel the sting of Kathy’s keyboard ire. Relapsed Catholic does not hesitate to hit out on all forms of religious hypocrisy – from the Amish to the blessed Mother Church have all been stung at one point or another. But the screed doesn’t end there. And what concerns me far more is this bit of lunacy:
In terms of the North American corporate media, only a few dailies, including Montreal's Le Devoir, have republished the cartoons, which are not particularly good, not very funny and not necessary to understanding the story. As many editors have explained, merely describing the cartoons is sufficient for making the point.Actually, No. Describing the cartoon is not sufficient for making the point. Not at all, and not by a long shot. The days when editors and journalists had carte blanche to do our thinking for us proles is long gone, and high time in my opinion. The less Jason Blair and ‘fake but accurate’ new stories are far better consigned to the past then to be the legacy of the future discourse. And seeing the cartoons is critical to understanding the story. If you haven’t seen the original cartoons that ran in Jyllands-Posten then there is no context. As a matter of fact, the Danish Imams were so unhappy with editorial cartoons that Jyllands-Posten published that when they opted to go on a public relations tour to drum up support in the Mid-East for Muslim victimhood in Europe, the original cartoons published by Jylland-Posten were deemed insufficient and not inflammatory enough for their cause, so the original 12 published cartoons were supplemented with far more offensive cartoons of rather vague and dubious origins.
But the Zerbie can’t leave well enough alone. She has to go further out into the void:
After all, when Irshad Manji published her controversial The Trouble With Islam: A Wake Up Call for Honesty and Change in 2003, no harm ever came to her despite so many — again right-wing — bloggers' musings that it would. That said, their fears helped Manji move a lot of books around the world.Three words: Theo Van Gogh. But the real difference between Irshad Manji and Theo Van Gogh lies in the concept of “paid security”. All in all, I can’t help but wonder what Salman Rushdie would think of the Zerbie’s threat assessment.