Draw Muhammad Day

Today, throughout the world, artists and non-artists alike are protesting against Islamic interference in free speech, and especially against recent violent attacks, by drawing representations of Muhammad. They want to show that they are not cowed by violence in the same way many lily-livered politicians seem terrified by Muslims.

Some people in the West, often left-wing and vociferous, seem determined to believe that Muslims are being violent in reaction to previous domination by Western countries or Muslims are reacting because they are an under-valued minority. What they seem unwilling to accept is that there have been few, if any, nations that have converted to Islam by the free choice of the indigenous population. Most have converted after repeated and sustained violence by immigrant Muslims, or invasion by other, already converted, Islamic nations.

Violence and Islam go together in the same way that violence is used by any other religion – to impose its will on non-believers. Christianity, especially Roman Catholicism, has long been associated with violence: the Inquisition, ‘witch-finding’ and the deliberate murder of members of non-conforming sects or individuals, among others. Only since the Enlightenment and the rise of the scientific method has the influence of the Catholic Church been diminished. Although no longer violent, attempts to silence dissenters still exist. Most recently, there has been a willingness on the part of victims to admit to being sexually abused by paedophile priests and to call for their prosecution. During subsequent investigations, the involvement of high-ranking church officials in hiding the extent of the problem has become apparent. Imagine what would have been the result of victims’ cries for justice had the Catholic Church still been a significant influence on public perceptions of morality. Given the history, it is quite possible that victims would have been burnt at the stake, accused of heresy or witchcraft.

It doesn’t matter what the religion, violence is, or has been, used to hide malfeasance. It is imperative, therefore, that those who believe in free thought, free association and free expression stand up to religions and say: we have a right to know the truth. People must be allowed to show their anger and contempt for religious violence, preferably in a non-violent way. So today, people throughout the world are saying to Muslims: you have your beliefs and you are entitled to hold them – but don’t try to impose them on us!

Friendly Atheist by @hemantsblog » Draw Muhammad Day: A Compilation

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