Skip to comments.U.S. Supreme Court depicts Muhammad
Posted on 02/07/2006 6:07:59 PM PST by wagglebee
Frieze depicts Muhammad among 18 "lawgivers" on wall above Supreme Court justices' bench
The stone sculptures of 18 lawgivers, from Hammurabi to John Marshall, are meant to signify the law's foundation in a stable society. Included is Moses with the Ten Commandments.
The artwork, which is high above the justice's mahogany bench, was designed by sculptor Adolph A. Weinman for the building, which opened in the 1930s. Muhammad is between Charlemagne and Justinian.
The Muslim cartoon controversy erupted in violence a week ago over satirical drawings of Muhammad published in September by Denmark's Jyllands-Posten. The paper said it wanted to make a point about media self-censoring criticisms of Islamic terrorism.
Omar Bakri Mohammed, the radical British Muslim cleric, told BBC Radio 4 yesterday the cartoonists should be tried and executed under Islamic law.
In 1997, the Council on American-Islamic Relations, or CAIR, protested the Supreme Court's Muhammad sculpture, saying, according to its annual report for that year, "While appreciating the fact that Muhammad (p.b.u.h.) was included in the court's pantheon of 18 prominent lawgivers of history, CAIR noted that Islam discouraged its followers from portraying any prophet in paintings, sculptures or other artistic representations."
CAIR also said it was concerned that Muhammad "was shown with the Quran, Islam's Holy Book, in one hand and a sword in the other, reinforcing long-held stereotypes of Muslims as intolerant conquerors."
Responding to the complaint, then-Chief Justice William Rehnquist told CAIR the image could not be changed and explained that swords also were used throughout the court's architecture as symbols of justice.
"Altering the depiction of Muhammad would impair the artistic integrity of the whole," Rehnquist wrote. "Additionally, it is unlawful (under the U. S. Code) to remove or in any way injure an architectural feature in the Supreme Court."
But the federal government revised tourist literature at the court to show more respect for Islamic beliefs. Text that called Muhammad the "founder" of Islam was changed to say Muslims believe ''the divine word of God ... was revealed to Muhammad.''
The literature also added, "The figure is a well-intentioned attempt by the sculptor to honor Muhammad, and it bears no resemblance to Muhammad. Muslims generally have a strong aversion to sculptured or pictured representations of their Prophet."
The Muhammad cartoons at the center of the current controversy have been reprinted in Bulgaria, France, Germany, Italy, Ireland, Jordan, Spain, Switzerland, Hungary, New Zealand, Norway and Poland.
In response, protesters in Turkey marched outside the Danish consulate, terror groups in the West Bank threatened Danish and European interests, the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades an offshoot of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas' Fatah Party briefly kidnapped a German and thousands of Muslim demonstrators in Beirut clashed with police Sunday, storming the city's Danish consulate and setting it ablaze. A nearby Maronite Catholic church also was attacked, prompting fears the protests could turn into a sectarian clash.
Saturday in Damascus, the evacuated Danish and Norwegian embassies were burned during protests that also damaged the Swedish embassy. Rioters reportedly tried to storm the city's French mission but were held off by police.
By tomorrow the average Abdul in the Middle East will be taking some more time off from beating his wife to bloody ribbons to riot and throw fire bombs in the Middle East and scream for the destruction of the US Supreme Court. The screaming protests, the death threats and bomb scares at the SCOTUS, and the heaving of rocks and firebombs in DC will start shortly thereafter, along with the demands by the NYT to stop "defiling" the Religion of Peace by removing the offending frieze.
So give CAIR all of the credit for the riots that are sure to be hitting our shores soon. I'm sure Joe Farah is deeply disappointed that he didn't get this out first.
I make a bold prediction. There will be no riots no outcry on the "muslim street" because of what is on our Supreme court. THis is being controled and managed by govts with agendas.. There is no wide spread MUslim white eyed anger here. THis is all being put out by Govts to get their incompetence off the front page. THis was inflamed in particular to Get the mess that happen in Saudi Arabi not long ago off the Islamic newspapers front pages. There is nothing to indicate to me yet that nothing beyond the wild actions of a few are behind all of this. We are all better off supporting Denmark economically, having our Govt tell Arab GOvts not to do this again, and most importantly preparing our allies in the MIddle East for an possible attack on Iran with regards its Nuclear program.
I say we replace it with the cartoon figure with the bomb in his turban. I liked that one.
LOL - I was gonna say the sword was for clients who don't pay.
Is that really the smart way to hold a sharp sword?
But you have the double-edged sword of your tongue! LOL!
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