Tag Archives: teddy bear

Teddy Bear Teacher’s Own Story Of Captivity

Ms. Gillian Gibbons told Elizabeth Day of the Manchester Guardian the real story behind her captivity in a Sudan prison after being charged with the ridiculous crime of giving a name to a teddy bear. She said it was difficult to explain what she went through during her days of ordeal. “It’s hard to describe what it’s like. I was just terrified, absolutely terrified” being in a hot sweltering prison with dirt and noise as her constant companions. Ms. Gibbons also revealed that parents of the children knew all about the teddy bear being given a name of Mohammed and not a single one objected. “For the children, it was a member of the class,” said Ms. Gibbon, and “the parents had to ask(if their children could borrow the teddy bear for a night at home)so they write and say, ‘Can we borrow Mohammed?’ and they’re Muslim parents, so you can imagine that I had no idea at all that I’d done something wrong because none of the parents said anything.” It wasn’t until two months after the teddy bear was named that a school employee, Sara Khawad expressed her anger at the school by going to authorities and complaining about the teddy bear naming.

Ms. Gibbon noted that when first arrested, she was interrogated in Arabic, a language in which she had three weeks of instruction. According to Ms. Gibbons, at the trial, an irate prosecutor brought the offending teddy bear into the court room, placed it on a table and roared at Ms. Gibbon, “Is this the bear?” She spent the days in jail with great fear and was ridiculed by the guards for being upset, and they wanted to know why she had these feelings. “Well, I’ve lost my job, I’ve lost my home, there’s a mob baying outside that wants to kill me, I’m in prison, and I’m going to get deported, and you ask me why I’m crying?”

This entire incident is obviously a set up. The parents knew about the teddy bear being named Mohammed and not a single one uttered a word of complaint. The Sudan government could readily have contacted the school after Ms. Khawad came with her complaint, and the entire incident never would have happened. It is blatantly cleared they wanted an issue, they wanted to get a mob in the streets shouting something about England or Europeans being hostile to the Muslim religion. The “crime” of Gillian Gibbons is really the “crime” of a Sudanese government which was trying to divert attention from its “crimes in Darfur.” As Shakespeare put it, the teddy bear naming was much ado about nothing.

Teddy Bear Terrorist Goes Home!

The storm in a teacup episode created by the Sudan government over an issue that was much ado about nothing finally concluded with a gracious pardon by the government and releasing Ms. Gillian Gibbon from jail. The Sudanese got their “riots” from “angry mobs who felt insulted” and Ms. Gibbon was spared the six months in jail and forty lashes that could be inflicted on those who “insult the Muslim religion.” This writer believes the entire episode was fabricated by the Sudan government in order to deflect world opinion away from its horrendous policies in Darfur which are leading to the death of thousands. The entire episode was akin to a Kabuki dance in which everyone played their role, an “angry mob,” expressions of concern from noted “religious figures,” cries about insulting the Prophet Muhammad, and then serenity when Ms. Gibbon was released with a pardon.

The most interesting facet of this case was the complete absence of anger from any Muslim group other than the 600 member mob of “protestors” who suddenly appeared on the streets of Khartoum. The world’s Muslims stood by in bewilderment at the idiotic behavior of a government that caused the world to feel anger toward the Muslim religion. For those who respect the Muslim religion, it is the Sudan government which deserves six months in jail and forty lashes. It is expected Ms. Gibobn will be flown out of the Sudan within days.

Teddy Bear Fiasco Allows Intolerance to Flourish

The British schoolteacher who was convicted of insulting Muslims by having her children name a teddy bear Mohamed is being placed in a secret location because a mob of 600 protestors shouted, “Shame on the UK,” and “No tolerance, Execution.” The Sudan government has placed itself into a quandary, by allowing the silly situation to even begin. It has enabled just about every fanatic in the Sudan to rush to grab the limelight of extremism by shouting hate and anger against a Westerner. Noted hard line cleric Abdul-Jalil Nazeer al-Karori, urged on people bent on hate with, “Imprisoning this lady does not satisfy the thirst of Muslims in the Sudan.” Fortunately, in England, the British Federation of Student Muslim Societies denounced the sentence as being out of all proportion to the crime.

There are some who support sentencing a teacher who named a teddy bear on grounds each nation’s culture should be respected. One can understand another culture, but this does not mean accepting it makes any sense when practices go against universal codes of conduct and morality. Genital cutting of women is deplorable even if it is defended on grounds that “it is our culture.” Nazi Germany had its “own culture” but few today defend its practices. The Sudan government used a silly incident as a means of reinforcing its own power and of pretending to stand up against Western critics of its failed and deplorable policies in Darfur. This entire matter has nothing to do with naming teddy bears, it is a blatant play to the crowd effort by a pack of sadistic rulers of the Sudan who kill thousands and then supposedly become upset because of a teddy bear.

Teddy Bears And Muhammad–The Saga Concludes!

People of the Muslim faith are encountering discrimination and prejudice from religious bigots throughout the world and the last thing they needed was for the clerical bigots in the Sudan to add fire to the flames of anti-Muslim feeling. In a decision that would have seemed logical to the 15th century mind, Ms. Gillian Gibbons of England, a primary school teacher working in the Sudan, was found guilty of “insulting religion” because the children in her class chose the name of “Muhammad” for a teddy bear. The British Foreign Office is furious and British Muslim groups are distressed because the court case is a God-send to every idiotic bigot in their nation who wants to make a case that the Muslim religion is backward and bigoted. It now turns out that a member of the school staff– Sara Khawad, was the one who told religious authorities about the “crime” and even testified against Ms. Gibbons. The judge who heard the case, Mohammed Youssef, said “We are happy with the verdict. It is fair. We will be very sad to lose her.” Huh!

Every time situations like this occur, Muslims confront anger from those who believe their religion has scant relevance to life in the 21st century. This writer knows the overwhelming majority of Muslims believe Judge Youssef and the Sudan court system behaved in an incredible stupid manner by even identifying this situation as an example of “insulting religion.” The best solution at this time is for every ambassador to leave the Sudan for a month in protest against the close minded fools who actually believe naming a teddy bear Jesus or Muhammad, or Moses, or bin Laden or teddy makes a difference in our lives. So, let me print it, the name of the teddy bear in the Sudan was Muhammad.