“Every time we draw a cartoon of Mohammed, every time we draw a cartoon of prophets, every time we draw a cartoon of God, we defend the freedom of religion,” – Gérard Biard,.
Firstly as a Muslim, I do not support the mass shooting at Charlie Hebdo’s office and it must not been done in the name of Islam because it is wrong according to the teaching of Islam Ahli As-Sunnah Wa Al-Jama`ah, as what we practise in Malaysia.
Now, it is always interesting to see how people interpret freedom of speech and freedom of religion and use them for their own agendas.
I do not understand why humiliating and disgracing religions can be regarded as defending freedom of religion.
Freedom of religion means the rights for everybody to manifest his or her religion in teaching, practice, worship, and observance; and not the rights for everybody to insult religions.
So people who support freedom of religion must respect these rights and not the other way around.
When one make fun and disgraces a religion, the person no longer respect the rights of the believers of that religion; hence there is no more freedom of religion.
Then talking about freedom of expression and freedom of speech, some people believe in total freedom and that they have the rights to do anything or say anything they like, including to purposely hurting or insulting others and there is no limit to how far they can go.
I cannot comment about the French law regarding freedom of expression and freedom of speech because I do not know about the constitution of the country; however as a civilised and responsible person I think that it is weird to purposely make fun and insult religion just because the law allows one to do so.
Just because my mother bought me a big box of my favourite chocolate, it does not mean that I should eat them all at once, because that will not be healthy; and so I must think before I do something.
It is a good thing because we must learn to respect each other and while some people love to insult others, most of them do not like to be insulted in return.
And while the supporters of Charlie Hebdo want others to respect their freedom of expression and freedom of speech, they themselves cannot respect the freedom of expression and freedom of speech of others.
They slam Pope Francis for saying:
“There is a limit. Every religion has its dignity … in freedom of expression there are limits,” and that “one cannot provoke, one cannot insult other people’s faith, one cannot make fun of faith.”
And Gérard Biard denounced the Western publications that have declined to reprint his paper’s controversial cartoons, he told NBC that:
“When they refuse to publish this cartoon, when they blur it out, when they decline to publish it, they blur out democracy.”
Isn’t democracy means the right for everybody to choose what we want?
So if Gérard Biard and his supporters believe in democracy, freedom of expression and freedom of speech, they must not slam the Pope and those publications for not following their ideas.
Reading Anwar Ibrahim’s statement makes me feel so irate because he had gone too far to politise and sensationalisethis issue and maliciously condemning JAKIM, the authority and the government.
It is a defamatory attempt to disrepute the Islamic authorities and the Malaysian government.
Calling the government as “a government in a state of paranoia” is just like calling the Malaysian Muslims who are angry and hurt by Eric Paulsen’s series of humiliating and spiteful tweets as also being in the state of paranoia.
So now Anwar is trying to say that the people who are doing their best to protect peace and harmony and prevent hatred between the multiracial Malaysians are paranoid?
Or could it be that it is Anwar himself who is paranoid because he is too troubled by all the problems that he’s facing?
Anwar wrote that Eric Paulsen did no offense by tweeting his spiteful tweet, when Eric Paulsen not only made false and wild accusation towards JAKIM but indirectly humiliates Islam and spews hatred towards the Muslims who support JAKIM.
“… the over-reaction to Paulsen’s tweet also signifies the rising tide of religious intolerance that appears to be engulfing our multi-racial multi-religious nation. And fanning the flames of communal suspicion, hatred and hostility are the usual suspects who owe their existence to political patronage.”
Anwar accused the authority for “over-reaction to Paulsen’s tweet”, so my questions are:
What kind of tolerance does Anwar Ibrahim ask from the Muslims? Is Anwar asking the Muslims to become ‘Liberal Muslims’ who do not follow the rules of Islam, do not fight for Islam and do not bother if others humiliate Islam?
Who is actually “fanning the flames of communal suspicion, hatred and hostility”? Isn’t it Eric Paulsen who did that by maliciously accusing JAKIM as promoting extremism in its Friday sermons and continuously humiliate Islam and the Muslims in his other tweets?
Anwar is actually looking for trouble and is spewing hatred by making such statement; and if the government is really “in a state of paranoia” as accused by him, he would already be charged in court.
I seriously wonder, how can Anwar Ibrahim, a person who used to be regarded as a great Muslim political leader, has the heart not only to support those who defame Islam but also to defame Islam and the Muslims in order to support them.
He wrote that, “Jakim sermons have on various occasions made unwarranted attacks”, which is untrue and humiliates Islam because what ever was said in JAKIM’s Friday sermons are in accordance with the teaching of Islam Ahli As-Sunnah Wa Al-Jama`ah.
Anwar Ibrahim must sit down and think back of the things that he had said during the time when he was the president of ABIM and realise that the Malaysian Muslims are not Liberal Muslims because Liberal Muslims do not follow the teaching of Islam.
Even Pope Francis says there are limits to freedom of speech and that, “One cannot provoke, one cannot insult other people’s faith, one cannot make fun of faith.”
Remember what Karpal Singh once said? “Anwar Ibrahim has created enough problems for the country. Anwar Ibrahim harus bertaubat”.