Thursday, February 23, 2006


(click to enlarge)

How cartoons can be classified as offensive and used as 'weapons of mass hyseria' I truly cannot and probably will never understand. I like cartoons. Like they say, a picture speaks a thousand words and to me, cartoons speak extra volume. It's meant to be looked at the lighter side of things and works by putting a smile on your face, not hatred. I feel that cartoons teach us a lot of things and the most important thing that it can teach us is not to take things too literally.

It's downright scary how petty people can be nowadays. The mass demonstrations (some peaceful but mostly violent) and the destruction of public (and private) properties seen around the world for so long now is really mind-boggling. The Pakistani Muslim cleric offering a bounty for the death of the Danish cartoonists is totally unacceptable. The Iranian paper organising a competition for the best Holocaust cartoons only adds fuel to the already tense situation and does not help in any way. Like what the wise Mahatma Gandhi said, "an eye for an eye, makes the whole world blind." Till today, so many months after the printing of the controversial cartoons, the end to this sad situation is nowhere to be seen.

Malaysians have also fallen victim to the poison that is plaguing the world at the moment. The 61 year-old Sarawak Tribune was suspended indefinitely for reproducing the controversial cartoons here in Malaysia. Guang Ming Daily was suspended two weeks just because they printed a picture of a someone holding a newspaper with the controversial cartoons! And this week, another newspaper finds itself in hot soup for allowing to go to print a somewhat insensitive cartoon in its comics section and (stupidly and/or arrogantly) reproducing it again a few days later. The New Straits Times has been issued a show cause letter for its actions so far and a suspension is likely to follow, be it the newspaper or just the editor, if recent developments are anything to go by.

It's really amazing how this has spun out of control and Malaysia is not spared from this vertigo. True, the Danish newspaper should have known better than to publish the controversial caricatures of Prophet Muhammad which the Muslims consider as blasphemous since they do not condone any drawings whatsoever of Allah or the Prophet. To rub salt to injury, the caricatures were outright insulting to Muslims. However, that does not give you license to vent your anger in such a manner that buildings are destroyed and lives lost. How is it that these actions are any better than the publishing of the insensitive cartoons? In fact, it's much worse!

If everything has to be politically correct, we would probably end up not being able to do anything at all! We would probably have nothing interesting to read. We would have nothing funny to laugh about. Seriously, when that time comes, I will feel very offended!

UPDATE: NST escaped punishment which is a good thing but this action just screams double-standards. Lift the suspension of the other dailies too to be fair. Stop the witch-hunt! It's so simple for anyone resourceful enough to source out the controversial cartoons from the internet if they really want to find them! We are living in an age which we should be able to tell right from wrong. Freedom comes with a price yes but let us be the judge of that. (updated 25/02/2006)


  1. Yeah! I agree. But I guess thats just human nature. You don't see rabbits going on strike just because Elmer Fudd chases Bugs Bunny all over the woods to shoot him do you?! Nope! Its just us humans, coz we have nothing better to do than violently control our own population. Joy to the world...

  2. all i ask for is just some common sense....that's all.

  3. freedom of speech always comes with a price nowadays but one must always be understanding and considerate of others regardless of what the circumstances.

    one should never abuse the freedom of speech and should be extra careful and responsible when it comes to anything but there should also be some room to manouver given by the powers that be.

    all that is needed is some understanding and common sense...try to look at the good side more than the bad and the world will hopefully be a better place...