Skip to comments.(Muhammad)Cartoon debate heats up at forum
Posted on 02/22/2006 12:59:47 PM PST by Thunder90
A wide range of panelists assembled Tuesday to discuss the wisdom and ethics of the decision to reprint a controversial cartoon in The Badger Herald last week.
The cartoon, which depicted the Islamic prophet Muhammad with a bomb in his turban, accompanied an 800-word editorial advocating the sacred right of freedom of speech.
The cartoons original Sept. 2005 publication in a Danish newspaper continues to spur a heated reaction sometimes violent from Muslims worldwide.
I believe a newspaper, when possible, should give people the information they need to conduct intelligent, well-informed debate, Mac VerStandig, editor in chief of The Badger Herald, said at Tuesdays forum.
While none in attendance questioned the Heralds right to print the cartoon, several panelists including University of Wisconsin history professor emeritus Kemal Karpat argued the newspaper abused that right.
Here is the danger of freedom when it is in the hands of people who are not sufficiently understanding of the world in which they live, Karpat said. Such freedoms can be abused when people have the means to utilize them to express their own personal preferences, likes and dislikes.
But VerStandig insisted the Editorial Boards decision to print the cartoon was based on its newsworthiness, rather than any religious or political statement the Herald itself wished to convey. Specifically, he said, the decision came after University of Illinois Chancellor Richard Herman reprimanded the college newspaper there for reprinting six of the original Danish cartoons, bringing the issue from an international focus to a regional one.
I believe in the libertarian principles that say that we gave you all the information, you can each draw your own intelligent conclusions about whats going on in the news, whats going on in Illinois and whats going on throughout the world, VerStandig said. We printed this cartoon to help give you that information. We printed this cartoon because other people werent.
Suri Kempe, the MultiCultural Student Coalitions representative on the panel, said the Herald made an editorial decision to endorse the anti-Islamic speech the cartoon represented.
Implied in the protection of freedom of speech, Kempe argued, is that the defender of speech The Badger Herald, in this case is protecting speech that it believes in.
I mean, what is the point of publishing something just for the sake of publishing it? Kempe said. By reprinting this picture, The Badger Herald as an institution claims the right to clearly express that it believes [that Muhammad] is a terrorist, and that by extension its calling all Muslims terrorists.
VerStandig, however, continued to defend the ethics behind the newspapers decision, referencing the accompanying editorial.
The editorial we wrote alongside this cartoon made absolutely clear that we think it is a repugnant and disgusting cartoon and that we dont endorse the ideology that comes with it, he said. Following the formal panel discussion, VerStandig entertained questions from an audience largely critical of the newspapers stance.
UW Chancellor John Wiley attended the discussion, and in his introduction to the event he promised all attendees would leave with memories and increased understanding the likes of which would not be encountered in any ordinary classroom experience.
This is really in many ways what a university is all about, Wiley said. This kind of debate about real issues that are on us at the moment not things that are considered in a theoretical context in a classroom things that are actually happening and affecting peoples lives.
Well, take into account that muzzies want to be as close to mod-mo's way of life as possible, and given the known history of that pedophile...your guess is as good as mine.
There are many anti-christs. Not so many false prophets.
1 John 2:18
Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time.
I haven't checked Ask The Imam about that but I have seen several questions where they ask if it is still valid under Islam to have sex slaves. The Imam agree "yes" but say that slavery is out of fashion for now. Also they say that the slaves must be seized in jihad and taken to an Islamic territory to be divided up.
The standby answer is that Mohammed was the last prophet and so no Islamic laws will ever change. Whatever "went" in the days of Mo' are still okay today.
When we (the American left) say "Free Speech/Press" - we don't mean for you.
"The People" can't handle freedom - that's why they need us.
Stop the War! was also at that sit-in.
Kemal Karpat is just another mindless Mad Moe butt boy.