Wednesday, February 08, 2006
No, I'm not talking about members of The 700 Club rioting and burning down his crib, or Pat Robertson coming after him with a scimitar. Kanye's instincts were sound in that direction -- generally speaking there's easy, low-risk publicity to be had ridiculing Christian belief in today's America. But Kanye forgot you're supposed to look both ways before crossing the street, and he forgot to check whether there might be an Islamic truck looking to run him over from the other direction.
If Kanye had bothered to ask the AP, they could have warned him:
Maybe Kanye wouldn't take the AP's word for it. And given their track record, I guess that would make sense. But what about a more reliable outfit with good Islamist connections like Al-Jazeera?
"The Quran clearly forbids anyone from belittling a prophet, whether Jesus Christ, Abraham or Muhammad -- peace and blessings be upon them -- and it stresses they must be accorded utmost respect," said Ragab Zaki, a Muslim Sunni senior cleric at Egypt's Ministry of Endowments.
"Ridiculing any prophet is a crime, according to the Quran," he said.
Well, they don't exactly sugar coat it, or mince words. But just to be sure, before doing anything that risks provoking religious wrath, it would always be a good idea to run it by the experts over at CAIR before putting your neck on the block:
Muslims deem images of prophets disrespectful and caricatures blasphemous
And if even that wasn't enough to convince Kanye, maybe he should have checked with our little friend here:
Islam forbids visual depictions of the prophet and regards violations by Muslims as highly sinful and by non-Muslims as the ultimate insult.
The prohibition is in part an application of the Quran's strict opposition to idolatry, the worship of a physical object as a god, including any hint of such devotion toward the faith's revered human prophet. [...]
The Quran does not specifically address artistic depiction of Muhammad, and through history a few Muslims have painted him. But the ban has been virtually universal in all branches of the faith from its earliest days.
The rule extends to artwork showing others regarded as prophets by Islam, including Jesus, even though Christians have often visualized their divine savior in paintings, statues and films.
Hmmm. Not good. Kanye is probably waking up with cold sweats right about now, Pat Robertson totally forgotten, as Kanye watches day after day of death threats and burned out embassies on the news, all over a few poorly drawn cartoons.
I suspect the only thing keeping Kanye alive today is that he didn't break that final taboo -- at least he didn't don a pig snout for this inflammatory picture. He must have a publicist who knows how to keep his head on.
Uh oh. It looks like Kanye didn't demand the negatives.
I hope Kanye has a nice obscure crib somewhere far away where he can hide for the foreseeable future.
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