So said Geert Wilders, the man at the center of the shooting in Garland Texas.
Wilders, a flamboyant 6’4” Dutch MP with slicked-back blond hair and a grin that would make Willy Wonka blush, is the leader of the right-wing Party For Freedom. In 2008, he made the statement “I don’t hate Muslims, I hate Islam.”
Fair enough, Geert. But what are you doing giving a keynote speech in Texas?
Well, it was the “Draw the Prophet” contest, of course. Considering Islamic teaching bans graphic renditions of Muhammad, doesn’t that sound a bit provocative? And with SWAT standing by, is it possible to deduce these Texans were in fact expecting trouble – perhaps even inciting their Muslim fellow citizens?
In the 1969 case Brandenburg vs. Ohio the Supreme Court ruled that the First Amendment does not allow citizens to incite “imminent lawless action.” So were our patriotic Texans in the wrong? Because clearly, the event did foster lawless action, in the form of two AK-47-toting gunmen bent on murder.
But did artist Andres Serrano need a SWAT team on stand-by when he unveiled his “Piss Christ,” a photograph depicting a crucifix submerged in urine? Did militant Jesuits show up with an arsenal of automatic weapons, right on cue?
They did not.
Though yes, it was disrespectful to Muslims, and to this writer’s mind distasteful, the “Draw the Prophet” contest was primarily a stand against intimidation.
“The statement of every single person in this room is very clear,” said Wilders. “We will never allow barbarism. We will never allow Islam to rob us of our freedom of speech. Never.”
And that is exactly what the First Amendment is for – preventing one group from using threat, violence, or coercion to silence another group.
Wouldn’t it be great to see groups of Americans across the country hold Muhammad drawing competitions, and show that Americans will stand up to theo-fascism and the threats of violent bullies?! (Even if POTUS will not)
But isn’t it true that the majority of Muslims are non-violent, decent human beings?
Isn’t it true that many if not most Muslims come from countries where education levels are low, and they have never been exposed to anything else? Come on now, how do you expect them to know better?
Even in the Middle East, aren’t there more Muslim countries stating they are opposed to terrorism than sponsoring it?
Doesn’t the Koran have many valuable verses in it, full of beautiful moral theology?
Yeah, sure. This is only a tiny fringe movement within an enormous religion… Yada yada. In 1400 years of existence, a belligerent element of Islam has always existed. Not just here and there, not sporadically, not just one crazy person acting alone. A radical, military element of Islam has acted as a spearhead, constantly and without exception. Unlike any other major religion.
“By their fruits you shall know them.”
That’s correlation, man, not causation! Oh, is it? It’s a mere coincidence that nearly all the greatest iconoclasts and conquering hordes have been Muslim? It’s a fluke of fate that just about every current war zone in the world has Muslims on one side of the battle? Well, and I think Geert would agree on this one, if you find a 100% correlation over a 1400 year period, you can safely lay your microscope down – you found the source of your problem.