ALLAH AKBAR, BABY!
Dear editors of USA Today,
I only saw your “ALLAH AKBAR, BABY!” “Cartoon” this evening and immediately felt compelled to write…even though I am pretty sure the reactions will be a chorus of derisive guffaws as you plan your next “Target Islam” move.
I was not shocked, life in the US has presented us Muslims with so many attacks of so many different kinds…all hiding behind the Carte Blanche of “Freedom of Speech”…that one has become numbed by it all. I saw the cartoon and I tried, very hard, to find some justification for the graphic.
Nazis equal to slaughter, fine, I am with you.
Boko Haram and Al-Qaeda being variants of Nazis…yup, I can’t argue; ISIS too, I get that.
Taliban and Extremism too, is undeniable.
The inclusion of “JIHAD” tells me the cartoonist is an ignorant bigot, who does not even care to understand his subject matter. Similarly, the inclusion of Iran, Hamas and Hezbollah, suggest a catering to the Israeli-promoted notions that these are murderous cults simply because they oppose Israel’s actions in Palestine. Nauseating as it is to see such blind, partisan conflation, I guess we can bow our heads and try to ignore the point of view presented by this “Cartoon”. After all, we do respect our much vaunted “Freedom of Speech” don’t we? especially when the powerful are aiming it at us, the down-trodden Muslims. The line of thinking that created the “cartoon”, reminds me of the patronizing cartoons about Blacks and everybody who was White, chuckled over the sub-human antics of the Black “boys”. I am sure it was simply hilarious, as this cartoon must also be, for like-minded publishers and readers.
The crowning insult to the growing sense of injury was the loud and large, “ALLAH AKBAR, BABY!”
Wow, you and your cartoonist really wanted to drive home the point that Nazism lives in the form of Muslims, didn’t you? And of course, since it is the fashion du jour, to bash Islam and Muslims, why should you not toss your noose over the thick branch, for us Muslims?
“ALLAH AKBAR, BABY!”, man! You certainly left every Muslim who saw or even heard of this “Cartoon”, breathless with surprise and, dare I say, shock. You with your liberal, egalitarian minds, sitting at the top of the heap, above us minorities, certainly see no insult and why should you? None of you feels the evisceration of such a “cartoon”. And most likely the Blacks and the Jews and the Japanese and the women among your groups have forgotten what it felt like when cartoons were published, showing a Black man being hanged with a White man tossing off a one-liner. The “jokes” about rape that were so popular (among the men, of course) were also made without regard for how the women might have felt. Or the Slants, or the Wetbacks and the Kikes…the folks really had a keen sense of humor back in the “good old days”, didn’t they? time to bring the humor and “Freedom of Speech” back I say!, but this time let us just stick to the Muzlems (it’s safer!).
Not to try to defend the bad guys in the above groups or even to defend the “kitchen sink” group you threw in for a good measure, but there is nothing any of them have done, that hasn’t been done or exceeded by the Most Wonderful, Freedom-loving, Pillars of Democracy in the US and the Judeo-Christian West, not a single act; Rape, mass slaughter, looting cruelty, sadism, you name it and the Great Masters in the West, have done it and are still at it.
But this is “Freedom of Speech” and you wanted to observe the 70th anniversary of the Shoah and this is nothing you would not do to any other religion, I am sure! I bet you have reams of Cartoons showing people with stars of David, slaughtering Palestinians…the last time someone published such a “Cartoon” (in Britain), Rupert Murdoch himself published an apology.
Want to publish one of a US soldier walking out of an Arab hut and making some one-liner about Arab women?
How about one with Jesus in a Nazi uniform, marching with The Lord’s Resistance Army, or with the Serbs? or with the Croats?
The possibilities are limitless but the only targets without serious negative consequences, are Islam and Muslims; I get that too. Just spare me the platitudes about “Freedom of speech” in this great “Democracy”.
Now I must try and explain to my son and daughter, why this act of bigotry should not injure their psyche and why my fellow Muslims should celebrate such “Freedoms” instead of feeling the sickening knot in their stomachs, that only a humiliated minority can feel.
Jafar “Jeff” Siddiqui,
American Muslims of Puget Sound