I just have to reply Abdal Hakim Mura’s article in The Telegraph today

Abdal writes today that “Scorning the Prophet goes beyond free speech – it’s an act of violence”. I disagree. Maybe you are claiming that you feel that it is violence, but it comes nowhere near the real violence supposedly enacted in response and the continued violence enacted far away from the original “offence”.

You talk of the Second Commandment, and of the “wickedness” of missing prayers or not caring for parents. I can agree with the latter perhaps, but a world that see “missing prayers” as wicked is a completely different world to mine. You claim that not making images is all about idolatry, yet surely that is in the mind of the maker not in the observer. You don’t have to idolise an image someone else makes.

You talk of “the right to protection from agonising insult, slander and abuse.”. That right applies to humans, not ideas. No idea can be beyond question. It may also not be as strong as you think, after all if you’re right then surely a lot of papers will have to sack their own cartoonists. Today’s Matt is quite innocuous. I don’t think the Beagle Space Probe will be suing for slander. Yet many newspaper cartoons depict our politicians in very negative ways. We have a history including Spitting Image in the 80s, and Monty Python’s famous Life of Brian film.

I’d like to address some specific points in the article, but that will have to wait.

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