The only proper answer to a demand for submission is defiance, absolute and vigorous. Anything else is, at best, a concession to the oppressor… or, at worst, negotiation for terms of surrender.
Terrorists thrive on such concessions. They’re very sensitive to displays of weakness from their prey. They generally begin with the assumption that the prey is weak, timid, and prepared to bargain for peace. They believe their opponents are hypocrites, and not nearly as passionate about their ostensibly cherished principles as the terrorists are. Of course, when the terrorist sees himself as an agent of divine authority, he also thinks he is righteous, and his prey secretly knows they are not. Getting the prey to admit they are insincere and unrighteous is a major objective of the holy warrior. Very small concessions will do at first. Such concessions are the sound of civilization’s armor cracking.
“Moderates” can hear that sound quite clearly. They hear the fanatic on one side, telling them civilization is weak and blasphemous… while on the other side, the ostensible champions of civilization admit, in word and deed, the fanatics have a point.
The power of this signaling cannot be underestimated, although virtually no one in America’s political and media elite seems to understand it. When killers say, “Those who defy our sacred laws must die!” and the response is, “Killing is wrong, but we agree that defying their sacred laws is also wrong, and we’re prepared to hold the blasphemers at least partially responsible for the violence,” what message do you think “moderates” are getting? Let me give you a hint: they don’t hear a single damned word of the self-righteous jibber-jabber about how the highest, purest liberal values of tolerance lead the elite curiously lead them to agree with violently intolerant fanatics.
Every point made above is explicitly stated in communication between terrorists and their supporters, in public speeches, sermons delivered by radical imams, and Internet forums. Unfortunately, our cultural elite pretends they can’t hear any of that over the sound of Pamela Geller giving an award to a cartoonist.
Let me help out by providing a handy field guide for submission to Islamist speech codes. Every one of the statements below translates to: I submit to sharia law.
“My message is simple – protect our police. Do not recklessly lure them into danger and that is what happened in Garland, Texas at the Mohammed cartoon contest.” That’s a literal quote from Greta van Susteren of Fox News, who also blamed Pamela Geller for deliberately inciting a terrorist attack with her Mohammed Art Exhibit, asserting that “everyone knew this event would unglue some who might become violent.”
Van Susteren is explicitly accepting the authority of violent fanatics with these statements. She concedes they have power to control the speech of those who do not accept Islam’s beliefs or rigid laws. She implicitly accepts those laws, enforced by terrorist gunmen, supersede the U.S. Constitution and its guarantee of free speech, by holding the victims largely responsible for the attack – in other words, they violated an unwritten law, and unreasonably expected their government to protect them from the consequences.
This is also a bit difficult to square with the official mantra of media elites, and the U.S. government, that Islam is a peaceful, tolerant religion hijacked by only a tiny handful of illegitimate violent extremists, whose views have absolutely nothing to do with the authentic Muslim religion. “Islamophobia” is supposed to be irrational, but van Susteren is explicitly stating it’s not only rational, but a fear everyone should share, and pretending otherwise is “reckless.”
“We must not display the cartoons from Garland in news reports, because they will give offense.” This seems to be the attitude of many news networks. It explicitly accepts the Islamist position that cartoons of Mohammed are uniquely offensive. Most of these networks have no problem displaying images offensive to Christians, Jews, and so forth – some of them strongly offensive, deliberately designed to provoke an angry response. The eminent example is Adres Serrano’s “Piss Christ” photograph, which displays a crucifix submerged in urine. Major media organizations displayed this image without hesitation, universally classify it as legitimate “art,” and as Andy Levy noted, treat the angry reaction – including vandalism – of offended parties as validation for the artist. Absolutely no one in our cultural elite would dream of holding Andres Serrano even slightly responsible for the sledgehammer attack on his artwork in France.
If you take offense from sharp criticism of other religions, including the common habit of militant atheists degrading them as “stupid,” it’s your problem. But if you give offense to Islam, it’s your problem. That’s submission to the core sharia contention that Islamic law is superior to all other religious creeds, which are allowed to exist under Islamic domination provided certain submissive conditions are met.
“Critics of Islam have a theoretical right to free speech, but they should shut up because they’re horrible people who just want to insult Muslims for fun, incite violence, or make money.” This is the attitude in most liberal “think pieces” offering tepid defenses of Pamela Geller’s free speech rights, either before or after they spend several paragraphs insulting her. This translates to “I submit to sharia law” quite easily, because the people saying it offer no such qualifications for the free speech rights of those who criticize Christians, Jews, or various other groups.
None of them think the same-sex marriage militants who insult Christians with very stern “fighting words” should shut up because they’re inciting violence, or using bully tactics to enforce conformity. Not even those who threaten the livelihood, or physical safety, of Christians under those circumstances are denigrated the way Pamela Geller is.
This is, quite obviously, because liberals don’t think Christian pizzeria owners, bakers, or florists are likely to avenge insults with violence. In other words, they submit to sharia law because they fear it will be enforced.
“Drawing a picture of Mohammed is hate speech that shouldn’t enjoy First Amendment protection.” We’ve talked at length about the Left’s bizarre hallucination of a “hate speech” exemption to the First Amendment that renders the entire concept of free speech completely moot – only speech some ruling junta certifies as “hate-free” would be allowed. Unless you’re prepared to shut down all “insults” against every religion as hate speech, forbidding cartoons of Mohammed on those grounds is a gesture of submission to sharia law.
“Criticizing Islam carefully and with great sensitivity is okay, but vulgar mockery should be prohibited.” There isn’t much concern about vulgar mockery of other religions, is there? Allow me to share with you a scene from the movie A Very Harold & Kumar Christmas. It was released by a major Hollywood studio in 2011, and grossed some $35 million, according to its IMDB entry. One of the stars of this movie, Kal Penn, worked for the Obama White House. Let me know how this rates on the scale of vulgar offensiveness compared to the winning entry in Pamela Geller’s Mohammed Art Exhibit. Content warning for violence and nudity:
So there you have it! Any variation on the above statements can be employed as a discrete gesture of submission to Islamic law by infidels who still wish to pretend they are champions of free speech and religious liberty in a tolerant, pluralistic society. Note well that indulging people who express their intolerance through violence is not “tolerance,” but the status-conscious submissive will want to pretend otherwise, by attacking the people who oppose violent Islamist domination as supremely guilty of “intolerance” themselves.
Feel free to draw cartoons depicting Pamela Geller or Geert Wilders as intolerant monsters. Just remember who you are not allowed to caricature, ever, and you’ll be just fine. You may obey in silence, if you still have some vestigial shred of pride and dignity that prevents you from declaring “I submit to sharia law” in so many words.