Well, I guess it had to happen. Several weeks after writing my “Queer Muhammad” column, I finally got a call from a Muslim extremist – one who mostly shouted at me over the phone in broken English. I have decided to reprint our conversation in today’s column, hoping that it will shed some light on how to deal with the fundamentalist Muslim disdain for free speech, not to mention the fundamentalist Muslim disdain for satire.
As you read the conversation, please bear in mind that it was not tape recorded. Some high school kid in Colorado took my digital recorder to his geography class and forgot to bring it back. Therefore, I had to write this column from memory.
In the places where my memory is sketchy, I have simply supplemented the text in order to make myself sound smarter than I really am. Nonetheless, I hope you learn something from the following exchange:
Muslim Fundamentalist (hereafter MF): Mike Adams? May I speak to Mike Adams?
Methodist Editorialist (hereafter ME): Yes, this is Mike Adams. How can I help you?
MF: You are Mike Adams? You are Mike Adams?
ME: Yes, give me another sentence. I have to go to class in ten minutes. What can I do for you?
MF: You write the column on the “Queer Muhammad.”
ME: Yes, that’s me. Did you enjoy the “Queer Muhammad”?
MF: No. No. I did not enjoy it.
ME: Well, that’s too bad. Did you read it on the internet?
MF: No. It was in the paper I read it. The Boston paper.
ME: I see. They’re running my column in Massachusetts. Now, that’s progress. Maybe it’ll run in Cuba before long.
MF: You are an educated man. Surely, you know Muhammad was not queer. How could a man with education write such a disgusting column? Disgusting! Muhammad is a great prophet. He has over billion followers around the world.
ME: Well, sir, did you actually read the column? I didn’t say that Muhammad was a queer.
MF: Yes. I read it. I read it. Disgusting column!
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