Blasphemy in a cartoon, again

This time sadly in secular Turkey. According to this report, cartoonist Bahadır Baruter is going to be put on trial there for drawing this cartoon :

The Istanbul chief public prosecutor’s office charged cartoonist Bahadır Baruter with “insulting the religious values adopted by a part of the population” and requested his imprisonment for up to one year.

Baruter’s caricature depicted an imam and believers praying in a mosque. One of the characters is talking to God on his cellphone and asking to be pardoned from the last part of the prayer because he has errands to run.

Within the wall decorations of the mosque, Baruter hid the words, “There is no Allah, religion is a lie.” The cartoon was published in the weekly “Penguen” humor magazine.

The concept of blasphemy is one of the things that we freethinkers and nonbelievers need to combat and tear down most urgently. No religion, and no believer in the supernatural has a right to not be offended, or a right to not have their beliefs and assertions questioned or mocked. Religions, and in particular Islam, have done well in shielding themselves from criticism and critical examination by threat of death, social shunning or imprisonment over the centuries. This is what you have to do when you have nothing, no proof, no evidence, just translations of hearsay stories from centuries ago, you have to make sure that nobody examines your claims, or questions or mocks your fabrications.

Christianity generally does it a little more subtly these days, by ways of expulsion from the social group, shunning, making someone effectively lose their eligibility to be elected to public office, the thread of breaking up families, that kind of thing. For Islam, it’s still the threat of murder, violence or incarceration that is used to silence dissent, criticism or even critical study of the cult’s claims and traditions. But really, if that is all you have to keep your madeup belief system turned religious tyranny together, what does that say about it in the first place ? In the end, truth will prevail, and people will realise that religion really has nothing, like a busted poker player.

So for the supposedly secular nation of Turkey to be putting this cartoonist on trial for blasphemy will hopefully only achieve 2 things : That this cartoon gets reposted all over the world, and that the Turkish state receives a loud and clear message that it is making no friends for itself with this court case.

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