Thursday, February 02, 2006

bacon and beer

I don't think the Danish economy will be that seriously affected by the current Middle Eastern boycott in response to the Muhammad Cartoons. After all, two of Denmark's major exports are bacon and lager, and neither of these products are permitted to Muslims.

Meanwhile Bendt Bendtsen, a Danish politician, claims that the cartoons are as offensive as some paintings of Jesus with an erect penis - maybe they are to some people, but the difference is that that artist has not had to go into hiding in fear of his life. Yesterday Jyllands-Posten staff had to be evacuated in response to a bomb threat. There is also an editorial explaining the paper's intentions in publishing the cartoons.

Apparently the offence was caused by the fact that the cartoons depicted Muhammad's face at all, not so much by the actual content.

This is an issue of freedom of speech. Other religions have to put up with depictions of their iconic figures, both inside and outside their religion, so I don't see why any religion should get special treatment.

Maybe Google could produce a special image search engine for the Muslim world which filters out this kind of thing.

1 comment:

The Silver Eel said...

Quite apart from the rights and wrongs of publishing the cartoons, it's interesting that the world has become so interconnected that something published in Denmark (something which is, in the grand scheme of things, pretty minor) can spark unrest in Gaza. In a way, that might actually be a good thing - it means that we're sufficiently close to have a positive influence on one another, if we so choose.