January 8, 2015
In 1988, the Ayatollah Khomeini put a price on author Salmon Rushdie’s head. Rushdie wasn’t wanted “dead or alive.” Khomeini wanted Rushdie dead. I don’t know what the original price tag was for one dead author, but as of 2013, the price on Rushdie’s head was over 3 million pounds.
The Ayatollah is gone. The prices on artists’ heads are not.
In 2004, Dutch filmmaker Theo van Gogh was shot dead on a busy Amsterdam street. The first bullet took Theo off his bicycle. He tried to make it across the street. Theo’s murderer followed him on foot and shot him again. Then Theo’s murderer slashed Theo’s throat and stuck a letter to his chest with a knife. Theo was 47 years old. His crime was a short fiction film aired on Dutch public television depicting a Muslim woman’s difficulties in an arranged marriage.
In 2005, Danish cartoonist Kurt Westergaard’s drawing of Muhammad with a bomb in his turban put him on Islam’s hit list. There have been multiple attempts to murder Kurt. He lives in a home rivaling a Brinks security office and under police protection to this day.
Also in 2005, Danish publication Jyllands-Posten’s former editors Carsten Juste and Flemming Rose made the hit list – for publishing Westergaard’s drawing.
In 2006, Swedish artist Lars Vilks made Islam’s hit list. He, like Rushdie and Wetergaard, is still alive. He sleeps with an axe by his bed.
In 2010, South Park creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker received death threats for their depiction of Muhammad in a bear suit in their animated cartoon. They were assured they too were on the road to Theo van Gogh’s fate. A photo of Theo with his throat slit and a knife in his chest was attached just to make things festive. The South Park guys are still breathing. Probably because stations caved and censored a lot of the episode.
In 2010, in response to the South Park threats, Seattle artist Molly Norris, who worked for a Seattle paper, publicly suggested an “Everybody Draw Muhammad Day.” Molly received so may death threats she quit her job, fled Seattle, and changed her name. As far as I know, she’s still in FBI protective custody.
In 2011, the Paris offices of satirical French magazine Charlie Hebdo were firebombed, forcing the publication to move after its offices were destroyed. Editor Stephane Charbonnier, you guessed it, was on Islam’s hit list. Had been for a while, fending off litigation and death threats. Charlie Hebdo’s crime? A few satirical and not particularly tasteful cartoons featuring Muhammad.
Apparently Muhammad seriously does not have a sense of humor because In 2015, armed men stormed Charlie Hebdo’s new Paris offices with automatic weapons and shot Stephane Charbonnier and 11 other people dead.
There is now an Al Queada Most Wanted poster being passed around the internet showing Charbonnier’s face struck out in red.
Think about that. These murderers, these serial murderers, don’t just keep little photos of their victims to themselves they can cross your face off of. They put your photo on the fucking internet. With a big red X through it.
THAT is fucking blaspheme.
The above is the short list. There are more.
And that’s a long time span.
17 years. For 17 years, artists, filmmakers, satirists, journalists, comics, authors, editors, gallery owners have been threatened, attacked, murdered in the name of defending the honor of a man who heard voices in a cave and has been dead for 1500 years. In Switzerland. Sweden. The US. France. Denmark. All over the fucking globe, artists are targeted, intimidated, threatened, and murdered.
A few bad apples, I am told. Most of Islam is not like that, I am told. Most Muslims are just nice people trying to go about their daily lives, I am told.
You know what a few bad apples are? The Unibomber. He was a bad apple, with a couple buddy bad apples.
This is a fucking orchard.
It’s time to burn that orchard down.
The Silencing of Theo van Gogh
FBI Warns Seattle Cartoonist About Threats
Salman Rushdie bounty increased amid anti-Islam film controversy
Al-Qaida’s ‘dead artist club’
Charlie Hebdo editor Stephane Charbonnier crossed off chilling al-Qaeda hitlist
Swedish Police Hide Threatened Cartoonist
Seattle Cartoonist in Hiding After Death Threats
The Danish Cartoonist Who Survived An Axe Attack
Jihad Against Danish Newspaper
South Park censored after threat of fatwa over Muhammad episode
France manhunt: Police raid homes, arrest several suspects after Charlie Hebdo massacre
Paris Killers Got Wrong Door Before ‘Decapitating’ Magazine
Satirical Magazine Is Firebombed in Paris
March 23, 2014
Once upon a time a long long time ago —
Three men were talking to God, and God gave each a bag of gold.
One man’s bag of gold was kind of small.
One man’s bag of gold was medium.
One man’s bag of gold was huge.
And God said, Hey, go out and do what you will but I expect at the end of this set period of time [which I don’t remember] you to come back and report on what you did with this gift of a bag of gold.
[If God is sounding kind of like a loan shark to you there, he did to me too, but the story went on to say God did not go for things like usury so God was an okay guy and it would all work out.]
[This is also when the Sunday school teacher started looking at me real hard a lot if I raised my hand.]
[Back to studio!]
So the three guys go out and one invests the gold, and he loses it all. Ahh!
And the other goes out and invests and gets rich as the Koch Brothers. Yay!
And the last guy, he burries the gold in the ground because it is God’s gold and he doesn’t want to lose it.
It is report back on the gold day and the guys hook back up with God. And God says, Okay, guys, what did you do with the gold —
[At the time I hear this story, I am suspecting this is going to go very badly for “Lost It All Guy.” But I am wrong. God is not a loan shark in the traditional sense after all.]
So, report back to God time….
“Lost It All Guy” is screwed and knows it. But God taps him first so he says —
[Okay here I would have maybe tried to lie, but “Lost It All Guy” is apparently also “Freakishly Honest Guy” — yet another reason some of these parables are suspect but anyway…]
“Lost It All Guy” says —
“Sorry God, lost it all.”
God forgives him and says, “No worries.”
“Made a Mint Guy” is thinking, “Fuck that! Lost It All Guy, that ain’t fair I made a profit!” But he is not stupid enough to say that to God out loud so says,
“Yo, God, made a mint!”
God says, “Good job.”
“Buried It In The Ground Guy” is thinking he is home free and says, “No worries, God, got it all right here, I have kept it safe!”
And God says, “You are so in trouble, ‘Buried It In The Ground Guy.'”
And “Buried It In The Ground Guy” says, “Whut? Why? I saved your gold, I did not piss it away like ‘Lost God’s Gold Guy’ did why am I in trouble?”
And God says:
Because I gave you a gift to risk and use.
And instead of risking or using it, you buried it in dirt.
December 18, 2013
[And don’t think it is easy typing those names.]
Are in a bar pounding Dixie Beers and arguing – as people pounding Dixie Beers do — about who knows more people.
Thibodeaux knows every girl who’s ever won the pretty girl festival.
Boudreau knows every girl who’s ever won the pretty girl festival AND every judge who’s ever judged the pretty girl festival.
Thibodeaux knows every oyster shucker from New Orleans to New Iberia.
Boudreau knows every oyster shucker from New Orleans to New Iberia AND every fisherman who caught every oyster from New Orleans to New Iberia.
[Damn that Boudreau!]
Thibodeaux knows every reveler on every float in every Mardis Gras parade —
Boudreau knows every reveler PLUS every baton twirler in every Mardis Gras parade.
Thibodeaux has had enough.
“God Damn It, Boudreau, who don’t you know!”
Boudreau shakes his head. “I don’t think no one, Cher.”
“Not the Pope, you don’t know him.”
“Oh yeah, Cher, the Pope, I know him.”
At this point, Thibodeaux might have just broken off the neck on his Dixie Beer bottle and slashed Boudreau’s throat, which would be sort of justified for being such a know it all and also the end for our wayward heroes, or at least one of them —
But that would be a wrongful waste of Dixie Beer and also this is not a drama, this is a joke, so it cannot end here and next thing, Thibodeaux and Boudreau are on a plane to Vatican City.
[Also this joke was created before insane airport security so Boudreau and Thibodeaux both have lighters AND shampoo AND a caseload of Dixie Beers each on the plane and neither one of them get naked-alien-space-rayed by TSA or body cavity searched or anything yay!]
Thibodeaux and Boudreau hit Vatican City and the guards at the Pope palace do not let just anyone in who shows with a case of Dixie Beer.
The guards know Boudreau and sneak him in —
Thibodeaux is left outside cooling his heels in the square with the unwashed Vatican Square masses — and a few wayward bottles of Dixie Beer. [And yes, annoyed, good thing for the calming effects of Dixie Beer.]
The crowd cheers!
There on the balcony is a guy dressed just like the Pope!
And also —
Thibodeaux, skeptical, pokes a stranger. “Yo, Columbus, that is really the Pope?”
“Columbus” shrugs. “Dunno about the guy in the dress, but that guy next to him? That is Boudreau from New Iberia.”
*This is also — okay “actually” — my favorite Boudreau and Thibodeaux joke but “pope” is hella easier to spell. Do not worry if you do not get it though. That just means, well, you’re stupid [oops] or just haven’t spent enough time in the South. I’m going with “haven’t spent enough time in the South.” You’re welcome.
January 13, 2013
Wants to tell everyone else what to do. What god to worship, what person to marry, what food to eat, what drugs to take, what to drink, what to smoke, what to wear, what to drive, what gun to own, what books to read, what websites to visit, what movies to see, what television to watch, what radio to listen to — cripes, people. How about everyone just go worry about their own freaking god/marriage/food/drugs/drink/smoke/clothes/car/gun/books/internet/movies/television/radio and leave mine alone?
PS: While we are at it, what is the freaking story on 21 years of age drinking laws? If you are a “legal adult” at 18 and can get married, pay taxes, and pick up a gun and DIE for your country, you ought to be able to legally decide for yourself whether or not to drink an alcoholic beverage.
October 11, 2009
August 22, 2009
“18,000 US citizens die every year needlessly, because they can’t access the care they require. That’s equivalent to six 9/11s, every year, year on year. Yet the Republicans have accused the Democrats who are trying to stop all this death by extending healthcare of being “killers” – and they have successfully managed to put them on the defensive.”
:::read the entire article:::
August 20, 2009
I have a new follower —
On Twitter. Probably to keep an eye on me. I am vocally pro health reform enough it is catching some people’s attention and not all of them are happy with me.
This follower falls into the unhappy category. Someone with an entire Twitter page about not passing health care reform. The reason is, if I am reading that page right —
If the fifty million uninsured and more than fifty million underinsured in this country had access to medical treatment, um, one of them might try to get an abortion!
I see. Millions of American’s should live [or die] without medical care to stop a few from possibly trying to obtain an abortion.
Say has it ever occurred to one of you troglodytes if people had medical care they could maybe afford to bring a baby to term?
I thought not.
July 11, 2009
I have this student —
Who has this protagonist who is a teacher at a Catholic school and also tends bar on the side.
In my notes I say, I am not sure a religious school will be okay with an instructor tending bar.
My student emails me: Well now I know you are not Catholic.
[clearly i spent way too much time in the bible belt]
July 7, 2009
Ooh la la, what will those whacky scientists cure next? Myself, I vote for the psycho-hater gene therapy cure. We could really use one of those.
June 12, 2009
I am not posting today.
I want you to read something else instead :
Death at the Holocaust Museum and the Degradation of the American Dialogue
~ by Michael Rowe
Ann Coulter, the self-described “conservative Christian” right-wing talking head, is much on my mind as I contemplate the horrifying images that came out of Washington from the Holocaust Museum, where white supremacist James von Brunn opened fire in an attempted mass-murder of Jews. His killing spree was cut short by security guard Stephen Tyrone Jones who put himself in the line of fire and died so others might live.
I am remembering an October 2007 segment of the Donny Deutsch Show where Coulter asserted that America would be better off if everyone was Christian and that “the Jews” merely needed to be “perfected” through conversion.
*interestingly i do not think it has occurred to coulter if her postulations are correct that means christians all just need to be perfected through conversion to islam — mohammed was the prophet/messiah following on jesus’ heels after all
*do not skip :::more:::