The creators of South Park, Trey Parker and Matt Stone, get it.
They get the free-speech significance of the Danish Muhammad cartoons epitomized by Kurt Westergaard's bomb-head Muhammad.
They even get it across.
"It's so sad, the whole Muhammad, the whole Danish cartoon thing," said Stone, Parker seated beside him during a joint interview with the entertainment website Boing Boing.
Don't laugh. "Boing Boing" here goes where "elite" media fear to tiptoe, let alone tread. The subject was the 200th episode of South Park, which, in unusually clean if satirical fashion, focused on Islam's fanatical, and, to Western sensibilities, ridiculous prohibitions on depictions and criticism of Muhammad, who is at one point presented in a bear suit disguise. (Now you can laugh.)
Stone continued: "It's like, if everyone would have just, like, (done what they) normally they do in the news organizations, (and) just printed the cartoons..." "Everyone would have rallied together," interjected Parker.
"Now that guy (Westergaard) has to be hiding and all this (bleep) because everyone just kind of left him out to dry. It's a big problem when you have the New York Times and Comedy Central and Viacom basically just (wimping) out on it. It's just sad. I was, like, really sad about the whole thing."
This -- despite the grubby vall-speakish patois of the astronomically successful Hollywood postmodern -- is a singularly powerful statement. It is powerful in its sincerity, and it is singular in its, well, singularity. No other American "name" I can think of, no one tops in pop culture, has spoken out against (or even mentioned) the Islamic threat to Western freedom of expression as exemplified by the Sharia dictates against "Muhamtooning." Certainly no one has produced creative content about it. Rather, such dictates have been religiously followed -- no pun whatsoever intended -- just as though our society were itself officially Islamic. This makes South Park's message the closest thing yet to a mainstream declaration of independence from Sharia. For rejecting both the threat of violence and the emotional blackmail emanating from Islam over critiquing Islam's prophet, the two South Park creators deserve a medal.
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