Hopefully, one day Islamist clerics will grasp that attempting to suppress an idea only fuels interest in the ideas. Ever since Danish cartoonists drew a sketch that depicted the Prophet Muhammad as a terrorist, the Muslim world has been thrown into a turmoil whenever someone decides to draw a sketch that is deemed an example of blasphemy. Kurt Westergaard, who began the furor, now notes with glee the existence of an “Everybody draw Muhammad” contest, which at last count, had accumulated over 6,700 Muhammad cartoons on the Internet before it was closed down by Pakistan officials. He thinks the entire situation is “very funny” even though during the past few years dozens of people have lost their lives due to the mania which grips all too many Muslims.
He regards the cartoon wars as an issue of freedom of speech. “The initiative should be understood as a manifestation of the freedom of speech, where Muhammad and my drawing have become icons for this cultural battle.” Ironically, what began as a jest has gathered its own force to stir debate and the original sketch is now forgotten.
Sometimes, silence is golden.