muhammad cartoonist attacked

Published May 11th, 2010 by Bobby Henderson

Here’s a video of Swedish artist Lars Vilks being attacked during a presentation on free speech today at Sweden’s Uppsala University.


Lars was the guy who drew the cartoon of Muhammad as a dog that made a bunch of Muslims go apeshit.

This latest attack bugs me a lot.  Here’s the disclaimer: I’ve received tons of hatemail and many threats and had more than a couple disturbing run-ins with religious nuts, and few if any of those nuts were Muslim.  By and large all the Muslims I know are awesome and not at all nutty.  I find Christian nuts the creepiest of all the religious nuts.  But I am way more scared of nutty Muslims than nutty Christians.

Lars has become a symbol for the right to criticize religion.  That’s a right we can’t lose.  I don’t believe this is about religion or values, I think it’s about dogma.  There is nothing inherently evil or wrong with what nutty Christians or Muslims believe – what’s wrong is that it’s no longer a set of beliefs, it’s a set of Truths that can’t be questioned, and that’s a dangerous thing.  Lars is completely right that it’s important to be able to criticize religion.

Lets see if we can come up with something to help Lars.

Also, the FSM does not mind if you draw him as something unclean.. like a stripper.

46 Responses to “muhammad cartoonist attacked”

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  1. Keith says:

    Well, I suppose these infantile idiots will argue that free speech involves using violence to shut someone up. I am always amazed by people who claim their god is omnipotent. If he is so all-powerful why does he need mere mortals to handle his affairs? Notice the guy in the red shirt (top right corner) about 30 odd seconds in who does the power salute, mouths off and then picks up his (what seems to me) distressed kid: great parenting lamebrain!

  2. Asgardian says:

    I would like it if we can do something as a collective to support Lars in this case. Although he is a non-believer, I guess he has got to be touched by his noodly appendages in someway to fight for his cause. And therefor deserves some support from our deeply religious brother, sisters and pirates of the church.

    Would be great to send him a shirt to wear for his next presntation :p.

    I like your words on religious nuts. It’s not the religion that is so bad, it’s the groundpersonal that’s so fucked up.

  3. Brian Fritzen says:

    If a cartoonist portrayed Jesus as a dog, Xians would be in an uproar.

  4. Josh Rrr says:

    While we like to joke and laugh at the site here, and make fun of some hate-mailers, this attach is very real and very revealing. Religious nuts are all scary, regardless of what creed they follow. Perhaps a distaste for that sort of militarism is what has brought many people to this site.

    Really, though, we’re not too many steps away from Lars in our commentary about religion. He has to be worried for his life because he drew a cartoon (seriously, just a cartoon) of Muhammad. What about us?

    I hate to say it, but I find absolutely no light side to this issue. This is just plain sad; for him and for us.

  5. Impossibly Stupid says:

    “There is nothing inherently evil or wrong with what nutty Christians or Muslims believe . . .”

    I’m going to have to disagree with that. When religions of peace condone acts of violence and religions of abstinence condone acts of molestation, all in the name of God, what could possible be more wrong and evil?

    Also, the whole “images of Muhammad” thing strikes me as little more than a thought crime. I mean, it certainly sounds like an image is OK if it is merely labeled “bearded man as a dog”. Likewise, couldn’t you slap the label “The Prophet Muhammad” on *any* picture of a person and suddenly make it prohibited?

    So my suggestion for support is this: Sell a t-shirt featuring the iconic image of the FSM and a tag line something like “Ceci n’est pas une Muhammad” a la


    Out of fairness, you could sell versions *not* featuring Jesus Christ, Joseph Smith, Sun Myung Moon, or anyone else you could count on being . . . profitable!

  6. ATSAP REVOL says:

    The law in Pakistan and some other Muslim countries requires that blasphemers be put to death or imprisoned for life. A blasphemer is defined as anyone that insults Muhammed or Islam. Ain’t religion wonderful?

    Christians, at least, haven’t burned anyone at the stake, hung them, or stoned them for a couple of centuries (except for the Klu Klux Klan, of course). Ain’t religion wonderful?

    Take your dogma and put it where the sun don’t shine, religious nuts.


  7. Skelliot says:

    Drawing is fun.

    On that note, couldn’t that Muslim Dog be any bearded muslim? I find it funny that it is somehow mohammed. I mean, I know Lars said it was Mohammed, but what is to stop a muslim from saying, “No, that is his brother, Pete.” and not get so angry about it.

  8. UUniversal Love says:

    Well, look… The first thing I would say about Vilks’s drawing is that it’s culturally insensitive. What I would say about these borderline extremists is that their actions reflect cultural ignorance. Ignorance tends to make people more reactionary.

    As much as I could say about the problems with their beliefs, I would also say this: While I find some value in witnessing the reaction the drawing provoked, I don’t see how the piece was meant to provoke positive change. To me, it seems it was meant to expose an absurd ideology; its purpose was the reaction itself. From an artistic perspective the work is a valuable examination of culture, but I don’t think we should confuse this with a valuable activist cause.
    I hope nothing I’ve written is taken as a denunciation of Vilks’s art; I’m just afraid that in the process of defending his expression we end up denouncing tact.

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