It’s Draw Muhammad Day!

Nobody should be threatened with violence or death for drawing a picture. But some Muslims want to use threats to force everyone, including people who don’t share their beliefs, to comply with their doctrine against depicting their prophet Muhammad.

Because some people are currently living in fear of being hurt or killed by extremists for doing nothing more than putting pen to paper, I’m joining in on Draw Muhammad Day. I support this day because (a) it’s fun, (b) it’s peaceful, and (c) I believe that if we’re flooded with images of Muhammad, depicting the prophet will be viewed as less shocking (and eventually banal), and Islamic extremists will have less power over our freedom of expression.

Since I’m terrible at drawing, I pasted together some Google Images and some Word Art. Here’s what I came up with:

In case you don’t recognize the image on Jesus’s shirt, it’s the cartoon (minus the words, which I added in) drawn by Kurt Westergaard, the Danish cartoonist who now has to live under constant police protection as a result of drawing it.

24 Responses to “It’s Draw Muhammad Day!”

  1. 1 angryandconfused May 20, 2010 at 1:47 am

    Not to start an argument or anything, but I don’t think you quite understand why Muslims get so offended by the depiction of Muhammad. Your reasons for why you are joining are okay I supposed, except for number two. I don’t see how poking the lion with a stick is peaceful. To put it in perspective, drawing Muhammad is like making Jesus into a pornographic image. Perhaps it’s not the same thing, but the it’s the same magnitude. Take it or leave it, but my advice to you is to stop trying change the belief of the Muslim world and perhaps try understanding why they would get so angry in the first place. Just saying.

  2. 2 fiyenyaa May 20, 2010 at 6:21 am

    No. We won’t stop trying to change the belief of the Muslim world, and it is in no way like making a picture of Muhammad fucking Jesus (or the other way round – I don’t know who’d be the top and bottom in that relationship).
    The whole reason behind this day is to confront Islam with it’s own beliefs. It’s to make every Muslim who sees one of these pictures (the vast majority of which are totally non-offensive stick-figures with a label on them) and think “is this really worth getting angry over?” If we make anyone change their mind and think “actually, it doesn’t really matter” then it was worth it.

  3. 3 EnlightningLinZ May 20, 2010 at 6:44 am

    angryandconfused – it doesn’t matter why they get offended, they still aren’t justified in threatening violence. If they want to respond to depictions of Muhammad with peaceful discussions about why they wish we wouldn’t draw Muhammad, that would be great!

    By the way, I googled “Jesus porn” (I don’t recommend you do it), and trust me it’s out there – but I don’t see Pat Robertson encouraging Christians to murder those who made it.

  4. 4 Iain May 20, 2010 at 7:09 am

    >To put it in perspective, drawing Muhammad is like making Jesus into a pornographic image. Perhaps it’s not the same thing, but the it’s the same magnitude.

    No, no, no. Do you know what would be the same thing as making Jesus into a pornographic image? It would be making Mohammed into a pornographic image.

    Just like the Catholics have to learn about the communion wafer: a cracker is a cracker is a cracker.

    And now the Muslims have their own lesson to learn: no amount of violence, no amount of feigned offense, no amount of anger, no amount of hatred could EVER be justified in response to a cartoon of Mohammed. It’s a cartoon, that’s all.

    If your values say that a cartoon of a man deserves an offended response (let alone violence) then you only betray that your values and thinking are simply “out of this world”. The sooner people start thinking about real world actions and real world consequences on real world people – and less about pleasing or angering gods, fairies, and spirits – the sooner humanity can mature and flourish.

  5. 5 wolfshowl May 20, 2010 at 7:52 am

    This is awesome!! Don’t listen to the naysayers. No one should be held to the precepts of a religion that is not their own. It is just art, and it is incredibly pretentious and prideful of Muslims to think that they can dictate the art drawn by non-Muslims.

  6. 6 eediatg May 20, 2010 at 10:52 am

    I understand the edict of not depicting Mohamed is to guard against that image being idolized by muslims at the expense of the teachings of islam.

    If this is so then any depiction of mohamed in a cartoon form, surely, will never be idolized by any muslim anywhere.

    makes them threatening cartoonists even more an irrational act than it first may seem to apologists (angryandconfused).

    no one is trying to change the beliefs of muslims, they are just making a very pronounced declaration that they will not bow to ignorant, hateful and violent people, the same people that makes the “Religion of Peace” the be a lie.

  7. 7 seanrude May 20, 2010 at 12:52 pm

    Here is my contribution. I cannot draw for shit, so I made a collage and took a photo.

    I am not trying to get the muslim world to change their beliefs. I just want the muslim world to understand the futility of threatening violence over pictures, no matter how blasphemous they believe those pictures to be. Are they going to kill all of us? Nope, and they will further realize that these dopey pictures will do nothing to shake their strongly held faith.

  8. 8 Laborum May 20, 2010 at 5:58 pm

    “To put it in perspective, drawing Muhammad is like making Jesus into a pornographic image.”

    What a novel idea!

  9. 9 soothsaber May 20, 2010 at 6:51 pm

    Angry and confused- They get so offended because they are so out of touch with good will and so completely wrapped up in a religion. To appease them is the opposite of what we should be doing. They need to realize that the rest of the world will not tolerate such terror.

    This is a great post, is this an actual day? What day is it? There should be a day deemed, “draw Muhammad day”. I would even put up one on my facebook for this day.

  10. 10 Sharmin May 20, 2010 at 10:06 pm

    I love the picture!

    I still have to figure out how to put pictures in posts, so I settled for writing a post in support and linking to pictures I liked.

  11. 11 morrkevi May 20, 2010 at 10:29 pm

    It seems there are a few things you don’t understand.

    Firstly let me start by saying that I am neither Muslim nor Islamist. In fact I’m an atheist.

    You gave three reasons for participating:
    (a) it’s fun,
    (b) it’s peaceful, and
    (c) I believe that if we’re flooded with images of Muhammad, depicting the prophet will be viewed as less shocking (and eventually banal), and Islamic extremists will have less power over our freedom of expression.

    So you claim it is fun. Okay sure, I will let that one pass but that alone is not sufficient reason to do something that upsets other people.

    You claim it is peaceful. I don’t know if I can fully agree with this one, especially if you throw a picture of the Prophet with a bomb on his head on Jesus’s T-shirt. This is depicting the Prophet and Islam for that matter in a horrible way. This is probably one of the furthest things from peaceful. If you were to have drawn a picture of the Prophet just plain and simple, then sure I could let the peaceful thing pass, but this picture is a little beyond peaceful, this shows Muhammad as a war monger. I saw some people comment saying that Islamic people are out of touch with good will, can you explain that to me with regards to this picture?

    Finally you believe that it will be less shocking and Islamic extremists will have less power over freedom of speech. This isn’t a matter of freedom of speech as much as a respect for your fellow humans.

    And no, it is not like drawing Jesus as a pornographic image. The reason why Islamic people don’t want the Prophet drawn is so that no one ever worships the Prophet as they are only supposed to worship their God. It is more like breaking one of the 10 commandments in Christianity, specifically the second one.

  12. 12 BB May 21, 2010 at 3:56 am

    It does not say anywhere in the Koran that someone cannot draw Mo’. In fact there are loads of images of Mo’ created by Muslim artists during the earlier centuries.

    The Koran is the rule book only for Muslims, not EVERYBODY. If I were a devil worshipper and went around telling everyone to dance naked under moonlight and sacrifice goats or I will kill them, I do not think that would go down too well?!

    The trouble particularly is that extremist Islam is spreading throughout the west like a black cloud and governments are running scared. That Muslim Obama is not going to protect you people from the disease. It is a slow creeping infestation that will start to affect every aspect of your life, before you know it you will have to face east and pray.

  13. 13 Laborum May 21, 2010 at 7:35 am

    @ Morrkevi

    “Firstly let me start by saying that I am neither Muslim nor Islamist. In fact I’m an atheist.”

    That’s exactly what most apologists begin with. We’re not really fooled, so you can stop.

    “If you were to have drawn a picture of the Prophet just plain and simple, then sure I could let the peaceful thing pass, but this picture is a little beyond peaceful, this shows Muhammad as a war monger.”

    Muhammad is a war monger and murderer, as much if not more than your friend’s christian god. Have you read the Koran? It tells it’s believers to wipe out anyone of another religion, that anyone that doesn’t convert is your enemy, that it’s believers should kill anyone that leaves it’s religion.

    What is the punishment for apostasy in the Muslim religion? Ask any muslim, nevermind whether they’re funamentalist or “middle-ground” muslim, they will tell you the punishment is death.

    “This isn’t a matter of freedom of speech as much as a respect for your fellow humans.”

    I respect my fellow humans. I do not respect their religions. Nor, do I cater to their religion’s archaeic sensibilities. Unfortunately, some people have… become… their religion, in that it’s what governs every aspect of their lives. At that point, they become god-bots and no longer demand any respect from me. They’re still humans, sure. But, they’re misled to the point of no return and will tell you you’re going to hell or an infidel no matter what you say to reason with them.

    Bash their religion to peices (notice, I don’t say to bash the person as religions would have you do) and hope others will notice how insane they are.

  14. 14 Laborum May 21, 2010 at 7:38 am


    “That Muslim Obama is not going to protect you people from the disease. It is a slow creeping infestation that will start to affect every aspect of your life, before you know it you will have to face east and pray.”

    … your delusions are many. Seek help.

  15. 15 EnlightningLinZ May 21, 2010 at 9:21 am

    @morrkevi – yes, fun isn’t a good enough reason on its own, that’s why I gave three reasons.

    I didn’t draw the Muhammad picture that I used, it was drawn by Kurt Westergaard, the Danish cartoonist who now has to live under constant police protection because he drew a picture. He has had death threats and murder attempts, because of a cartoon. It’s ridiculously stupid. And since the fact that everyone is threatened by Muslim extremists into following their religion’s rule is what Draw Muhammad Day is protesting, I thought it was a fitting image to use. It could have been any picture, but I also feel that that’s possibly the most recognizable depition of the prophet because of the controversy surrounding it.

    Regardless of the meaning of the picture, it didn’t deserve the reaction it received from extremists. And drawing a picture is peaceful – there’s nothing violent about throwing a few images together in photoshop.

    The respect thing…well Laborum responded to that nicely so I don’t need to expand on that.

    If Muslims don’t want to worship a drawing, they don’t have to. It’s like these extremists don’t think they have control of their own bodies. They think that if they see a depiction of Muhammad they’ll worship it, what, they can’t help it?

    Fortunately Christians, even fundamentalists, don’t try to kill people who break the second commandment.

  16. 16 EnlightningLinZ May 21, 2010 at 9:26 am

    BB – I agreed with you up until the Obama part…that’s just weird. Obama’s not a Muslim, but even if he were the separation of church and state in the United States prevents him from forcing people to practice a religion. So defend the separation of church and state and you won’t have to worry.

  17. 17 Cambrico May 21, 2010 at 12:43 pm

    We all are offended everyday: the driver that turns without signaling, the antivaxer or other woo masters that claim idiotic cures that can kill children, the fanatic that wants to proselitize his faith in front of you because you are a “lost soul without direction”, etc, etc. But we don’t react demanding the beheading or throat slicing of those people.
    This Mohamed drawing day would be a childish prank without any consequence if not for the reaction of many muslims. Their reaction is a clear proof of what they would do if had the power. This day is for showing them: “Hey, your anger is ludicrous and you don’t have any special rigths over the rest of the world”. “Get used to live in a multicultural planet or return to your cave and stop annoying us”.

  18. 18 Laborum May 21, 2010 at 8:17 pm

    I had to catch a plane (Atlanta had delays so I had some time here) before I could finish. I apologize that I seem to have lost track of my thoughts, for rambling a bit and more than likely misspelling a few words… like that one. I also apologize that I’ve had one or six beers in the hotel room.

    The point is, I embrace and respect the muslim, but deny any respect to Islam. The muslim, just like any christian I meet, has simply lost their way (this sounds like jesus-speak, and I apologize). They were either young when affected by their parental dogmatic teachings, or they were at some point weak and needed a crutch to prop up their hope that life had purpose.

    I’m not covering all situations of course. I understand that I’m generalizing. But realize, as a christian or muslim reading this, do you fit in either of those pigeonholes? I know I did, and a vast majority of people I know did, or do, as well. So… where does your faith come from? Did it come from your upbringing, a trajic situation or, quite possibly more realistic, your boredom?

  19. 19 Lukmahn May 23, 2010 at 10:49 am

    Hi guys,
    I don’t need to be told I’m out of my league here, but hey, who gives a #*@&.
    I must add for the record that I totally disagree with almost everything and reason I have been enlightened with on this blog, but then again…who gives…!!
    I just have a few questions, will I be granted the courtesy of posting them and maybe even getting responses??
    1. Why do you feel the need to enlighten or criticise the ‘Muslim” or the religion of “Islam?” The thing and it’s scripture have been around…unchanged, in many places on this earth…for close to 1500 years and believe me not always in such a civilised and condoning world?!!…LOL!
    2. As much as expression and its freedom is one of the fundamental rights any individual has, so is faith (religion) and the expression and practice thereof. What makes you so different from some fanatical, fundamentalist Muslim out there if in expressing your freedom of expression and speech, you are trampling over the former’s equally basic rights?
    Last. Why must you get impetus or drive from someone else’s offense…even if positive criticism was your goal…and I’m still juggling that pill in my throat, in vain it seems…your basic social skills should tell you that offending people (however much it may be your right) is a rather poor way of getting the point across!! But then again I’m working on the basic pretext that it is your intention.
    Your methods, I’m afraid to say, are in all rationality not very productive. Fighting fire with fire is an effective way of handling some things but passionate, fanatic or bigotic faith or opinions just isn’t one of those.
    It always suprises me that for a long time before 911, Sadam, Israel/Palestine, Islam did exist on this planet, with all its undesirable features/practices, fundamentalism and fanatical submission and name whatever more vice one might find therein, but MINUS and I stress that part, all this hate back-lash it is getting today.
    So, Laborum, forgive me for asking, but isn’t this new found religion of yours (for you seem to display equal intolerance and fanaticism as the same Muslims you abhor therein) borne out of some oil-greedy politician’s offense against the Arab and inevitably Muslim world? Aren’t you being equally influenced by an oppressive past or rebellion towards world religions in claiming atheism as your creed?
    As I said, forgive me for asking these seemingly offensive questions, but the purpose was to point out that faith, unlike ‘reason’ and ‘science’ and whatever else you may propose as an alternative to these ‘pathetic Muslims’ isn’t merely learned, it is affected, and by a myriad of factors that can’t be easily tackled by an aloof and derogatory inquest into the topic. I mean, you are an atheist, do you think you could elaborate your choice of faith to me (a Muslim BTW) in a matter of words, or book references or whatever? Not that you are obliged to, or that I would care anyway…it is your life-choice, and I wish you happiness and satisfaction therein. Could I possibly hope for the same from you…on a human level, I mean??…LOL
    Have a great day guys, and please, PLEASE do take offense in what I have just attempted to do!!

  20. 20 EnlightningLinZ May 25, 2010 at 2:11 pm


    1. It’s not just Islam that I criticize, I feel the need to criticize any religion or ideology that tries to impose its will on others without good reason. There’s no good reason why I shouldn’t be able to depict Muhammad, but people are threatened by some Muslims for doing so. I would be remiss if I didn’t criticize that.

    2. I’m not trampling on anyone’s right to express their religion, I’ll defend their right to express their religion. But when somebody’s beliefs impose on my freedom to express my disdain for religion, I’ll protest that by not silencing myself. I have the right to depict Muhammad, you have the right to tell me it’s stupid, but if we value free speech neither of us will force the other to censor themselves.

    If drawing an offensive picture (a depiction of the prophet, to some Muslims – not necessarily yourself, can be as innocuous as a stick figure labelled “Muhammad”) in this case is a poor way of getting the point across, what do you suggest would be better?

    It’s unfortunate that since 9/11, as you say, Muslims have been treated with more hatred simply because they’re Muslims. I believe individuals should be taken on their own merits, and a whole group of people shouldn’t have to suffer for the misdeeds of a few. You’re a Muslim, yet obviously you’re open-minded enough to consider an outsider’s point of view, so you shouldn’t be painted with the same brush as terrorists who would hurt somebody for drawing a picture. Please know that when I criticize these people and their actions I don’t think that it’s all Muslims. If I’m criticizing your religion, or people who practice your religion, I’m not judging you as a person. If you read my blog you’ll find that I’m critical of many types of beliefs, if I don’t find that they aren’t reason-based ideologies.

    I’m rambling a little so I’ll wrap this up, but you asked why I’m an atheist so I’ll answer that question. I wasn’t always an atheist (former Christian), but once I began to doubt my beliefs and explore what kind of evidence there is for the existence of a god (there is none), I realized that I no longer believed in any gods.

    Atheism isn’t a faith or a creed, it’s simply the rejection of theism. I haven’t been convinced by any theist arguments, therefore I’m without-theism, a-theist. I would change my mind if presented with evidence for a god. There are no other ideological beliefs that come with the word “atheism”, there’s a quote that goes something like this: “atheism is a religion if non-stamp-collecting is a hobby.”

    Humanist, freethinker, and naturalist are more useful words to describe who I am than “atheist”.

    I hope I’ve answered some of your questions, and don’t worry you haven’t offended me in the least!

  21. 21 lukmahn May 27, 2010 at 11:02 am

    Thanx EnlighteningLinz,
    Your response to my post was both enlightening and provocative at the same time. And just for the record, much of what I wrote/ posted was just playful/ argumentative debate. I also wasn’t really serious about your (or actually Laborum’s) reasons for your choice of ‘atheism.’ I believe that to be an individuals most private sanctum, though I appreciate the effort on your part.
    But I do appreciate your analysis of the individual believer in a faith/ religion as opposed to the belief system subscribed to by an individual. That, I strongly support as the core focus in the entire debate of religion and its merits/ demerits in any society. As the good Book tells us, “…not all the call me Lord are of the kingdom of heaven..” And I’m referring to the context of the statement, not as a further irritation in quoting scripture!
    Anyway, all in all, it is still an attack on a person or group’s rights to believe in and express their faith/ religion when trivial issues such as this topic of discussion, eventually lead to harsh and stereotypical limitations on the entire religion, based on the reaction of a fraction of the followers. True I am and was offended by the original act of attempting to draw the prophet (our prophet PBUH), but not so much by the drawing itself as by the message it portrays! I mean, who really cares if a non-Muslim draws a pic of a bearded, supposedly Arab male and labeled him “Muhammed”…that isn’t even a supposed likeness of the man. So the original argument of creating a likeness or image of the prophet ends up null and void. However it did anger many mainstream Muslims and caused a reaction, which is now used, as in this blog, as the basis for myriad and random attacks and ill-informed chastisements of both the religion of Islam and ALL its followers. And this isn’t an isolated incident either, nor does it apply to Muslims only.
    That bit does constitute an infringement on the rights of a people/ individual, and in doing so…whether the critic is Muslim or not and whether the victims are Muslims or professors of other faiths/religions. The cause just doesn’t justify the eventual or final reaction thereto…and in so doing people are imitating the same radicals/fanatics they claim to be criticising!
    Thanx again for the time and forum…and I never, by principle, intend to offend other people, though it does occur every once in a while, and at which point I simply revert to my basic right to offend!! LOL!!

  22. 22 krikkruk May 12, 2012 at 10:33 am

    why dun u just leave Islam n muslims alone..if u want to make fun of other religions, go ahead..but not Islam!! btw u guys should learn more on Islam before u talk or do rubbish about it..!!we never draw any cartoon of ur jesus o watsoever,,so just tink about it if u still sane!!

  23. 23 tim Jon July 23, 2012 at 10:27 pm

    take that ya goat sniffin camel jockey ragheads!

  1. 1 On Everybody Draw Mohammad Day « The Eternal Bookshelf Trackback on May 20, 2010 at 9:52 pm

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