In the wake of the controversy surrounding Pamela Geller’s “Draw the Prophet Mohammed” contest, comedian Dean Obeidallah, a left-leaning comedian (but I repeat myself) who is also a Muslim has decided he will use his radio show to have a “Draw an Islamophobe” contest. Obeidallah writes a column over there at the Daily Beast and, albeit in typical left-handed fashion, has nonetheless stood up to defend Geller’s right to free speech. While he titled the piece“Muslims Defend Pam Geller’s Right to Hate,”defend her right to free speech he did, writing:
And Muslim-American leaders I spoke with outside of Texas universally defended Geller’s right to draw cartoons. For example, Linda Sarsour, a New York City Muslim community leader, explained to me that Geller can “draw any damn cartoon she wants and I defend her right to do so. I have always fought for her right to be a bigot and I have the right to counter her bigotry with my own speech.”
I couldn’t agree more. In fact after the terrorist attack against the cartoonists at Charlie Hebdo’s offices in Paris, I appeared on numerous media outlets urging the media to show every cartoon they had drawn of the Prophet Muhammad. The very essence of freedom of expression demands that we defend the broadcasting or publishing of images that we may not like or even find offensive. That is how important freedom of expression to our nation and it is a principle that Muslim-Americans agree with wholeheartedly.
I, along with Muslims across America, are hoping and even praying the two gunmen involved in this shooting were not Muslim. But if it turns they were, I can assure you that Muslim-American community and religious leaders will swiftly denounce it as well as make it clear that we absolutely defend freedom of expression. The only hope is that the media covers our responses with the same zeal they cover the attack.
As it turned out, of course, not only were the two Garland attackers Muslim they were in fact sent by ISIS.
Once the initial tumult died down, Obeidallah, who hosts a Sirius XM radio show, was out there announcing that he too would now hold a contest — a “Draw an Islamophobe” contest. His announcement said in part:
Do you know how to draw, even just stick figures? Do you hate bigotry? Then I hope you enter my “Draw your favorite Islamophobe contest” that I announced on my show this past Saturday.
You can draw a cartoon or image of any person or group that is actively stoking flames of hate towards Muslims. It can be Pam Geller or an elected official like Republican Oklahoma State Rep. John Bennett who has called for cutting American Muslims out of our country like a “cancer” to media figures (I’m looking at you Fox News) or ISIS, which is truly one of the most anti-Muslim groups out there.
Well. Now we’re talking. So with an advance apology — an inability to draw figures for this article — I will link to pictures of some of America’s most notable Islamophobes.
For those not inclined to tap into all those links, the photos of these hate-filled Islamophobes are of President Obama, Hillary Clinton, Arthur Sulzberger Jr. (the publisher of the New York Times), MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow, Hillary Clinton ally and Media Matters guru David Brock. And, as I said, last but not least — Dean Obeidallah himself. There are more — oh so many more. But that short list will suffice.
A more blatant group of Islamophobes, bigots, and haters who — using Mr. Obeidallah’s own words are “actively stoking flames of hate towards Muslims” — would be hard to find. Some have gotten there reluctantly — like Mr. Obama and Mrs. Clinton. Others are quite out there with their contempt for Islam. Publisher Sulzberger regularly use his paper to make plain his passionate hatred. And shockingly Mr. Obeidallah himself has gone out of your way to put his hateful feelings for his own faith in print for all to see. Wow.
Where and when did Obeidallah make such a blatant display of hating what is supposedly his own faith? Why, right here in the cyber pages of the Huffington Post. In which he wrote:
Why do you support discrimination against a group of Americans? This is just one of the questions that I ask myself when I encounter people opposed to gay marriage. Other questions that pop into my head include: What makes Americans who are gay less American than you? Why are they not entitled to the same protections under our system of laws that you are?
The issue of marriage equality to me is not a nuanced legal issue. It’s not a moral issue. It’s simply a question of: Do you think all Americans should be treated equally?
I have long supported marriage equality simply because I oppose discrimination against any American, whether it’s based on race, gender, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation or for other reason people on the right can think of to try and divide us. There is nothing more un-American and inconsistent with the values and ideals of this nation than discrimination.
Wow again. Talk about a Geller-esque insult to Islam. An article brimming with such a virulent hatred and bigotry towards the Prophet — from a self-professed Muslim — would be impossible to imagine.
As Obeidallah surely knows, Islam forbids homosexuality. In fact, as seen here in the Washington Free Beacon. The Beacon headlined the story of Islam’s view of gays this way:
Iran Executes Two for ‘Perversion’: Third dealt death sentence for ‘insulting the prophet’
The story reads in part:
Iran executed two gay men on Sunday for the crime of “perversion” and has sentenced a third individual to death for “insulting the prophet,” according to human rights activists tracking the situation.
The head of Iran’s judiciary department in the northern city of Rasht announced on Sunday that two homosexual men had been executed for “perversion,” which is considered a severe crime under Iran’s hardline Islamic law.
… The two men had been held in central prison near Rasht before being killed. The crime of “perversion” is a cover-all under Iran’s hardline brand of Sharia law and typically accounts for offenses that are seen as going “against morality,” according to (Iranian political and human rights activist Banafsheh) Zand.
Just last year the Washington Post thoughtfully headlined:
Here are the 10 countries where homosexuality may be punished by death
The ten countries, all of whom were following Islamic law, are Yemen, Iran, Iraq, Mauritania, Nigeria, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sudan and the United Arab Emirates.
In Britain, there is the Muslim Research and Development Foundation. The MRDF says:
The foundation is devoted to the articulation of classical Islamic principles in a manner that provides a platform for Islam to be the cure for all of humanities ills. We believe that this will be achieved through developing Muslim leaders, scholars and intellectuals who are well founded in Islamic knowledge and are able to promote the pristine teachings of Islam to Western audiences. The foundation is devoted to the articulation of classical Islamic principles in a manner that provides a platform for Islam to be the cure for all of humanities ills.”
So? So what we have here is an American Muslim — Mr. Obeidallah — quite openly advocating gay marriage — when simply being gay (forget about gay marriage) will get the practitioners executed in one Islamic country after another for violating Islamic law. Or, as it were, insulting The Prophet.
Thus making of every supporter of gay marriage a version of Pamela Geller. Which is to say, if we are following Mr. Obeidallah’s beliefs, supporters of gay marriage are about “actively stoking flames of hate towards Muslims.” Simply being gay is every bit the Islamophobic insult to the Prophet that was Geller’s “Draw the Prophet” contest. If you doubt, just check that Washington Post list of countries where the mere fact of being gay will get you executed.
So we wish Mr. Obeidallah good luck with his “draw an Islamophobe contest.” There are so many potential Islamophobes to draw. Beginning with President Obama. And not least Mr. Obeidallah himself.
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