Some blogs on the cartoon "controversy":
Eteraz (1, 2): "[I]f you are a Muslim living in the West, chill out. If you are a non-Western Muslim upset with Denmark, feel free to boycott all Danish goods; also feel free to encourage your country to propose UN resolutions. Finally, if you are a Western non-Muslim, hope you realize the economic disincentive of mocking a faith that numbers 1.5 billion and buys a whole lot of your goods. Ikea in Dubai. KFC in Karachi. Hans Christian Andersen fairy tales, in uh — well, when they become Disney movies."
Yusuf: "There was one well-known case, although I don't imagine that it was unique, of Muslims (visitors from the UK in this case) being dragged from their cars and murdered in Gujarat, to say nothing of the organised "rioting" and murder which went on in the same state. I never got any messages telling me not to buy Indian goods until the murderers were brought to justice. I don't know of any boycott of French goods in response to their discriminatory policies against Muslim women in the health and education systems. Why on earth are people talking about punishing all Danish companies for the actions of one newspaper? To say nothing of the workers in the factories making their goods under licence in the Middle East, who would no doubt be the biggest losers in this story."
Farah: "And one last thing, death-threats do not exactly do Islam's "image" any real good. My good people of the Muslim world, do we have to keep reminding the rest of the planet that we live in the year 2006 B.C? Good lord, was it not you who taught us that the holy prophet (Peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) faced wrong-doings with kindness? I agree with the lot who said an incident like this one should have been used to prove just how tolerant Islam is. Which translates into: please do not have a cow, (or do, on a second thought) and twist the extra publicity into something that benefits him, not something that frightens people away from him and his followers. Must I drag in last year's example of Muslims handling it all wrong? *V-a-n G-o-g-h, ring any bells?*"
Steve: "And yet, Muslims have every right to respond to this in a thoughful and equally discriminatory way. If Muslims are accused of “not speaking out against terror” and blanketly targeted by Norwegians, then perhaps Muslims are fittingly accusing the Danes of not “speaking out against racism” and targetting the whole country. And truth be told, the boycott has already accomplished its mission - letting the whole world know that the 1.5 billion Muslims of the world should be respected like all other religions. A cartoon racistly depicting an African American, a Jewish American, an Asian American, etc would be regarded as unacceptable in the 21st century. And yet, this cartoon found one too many defenders in the year 2005."
Safiyyah: "The over-the-top reaction just shows me how much excess energy and strength the ummah retains worldwide. Frankly I wonder if Muslims are not doing a greater disservice to the Prophet when we close our eyes to the suffering and oppression in the rest of the world. There are bigger problems to tackle than the publication of 12 silly cartoons. Now, if we could only put our efforts to better purposes…"
Svend (translating a Danish op-ed): "In a more humanistic climate, Danish Muslims wouldn’t have toured the Middle East with fake versions of the JP cartoons or otherwise embellished their account, but instead given a matter of fact account of the many years of discrimination and increasing disrespect they’ve faced in Denmark [...] But that climate is nowhere to be found, of course, so we face a situation where the whole Muslim world is about to boycott Denmark and certain Islamic regimes find it convenient to support these “popular” expressions of outrage, in some cases with intense hypocrisy. JP should have used its freedom of expression to mock these regimes instead, as then it would have been in keep in with freedom of expression as it would have been aimed at dictators."
Iqbal: "In any belief system, what really matters is one's own journey towards self actualisation - becoming that person which your belief system says you ought to be. Therefore, it is really quite secondary whether others are critical of or lampoon your beliefs. Yes, I can see that protecting religious and ethnic groups from vilification is important. But something like a cartoon. Seriously, get a life Arab League."
Living Tradition: "I am glad that Muslims are beginning to get their act together and are using their brain for a change. Instead of burning books, attacking shops and indulging in violence for the most part, they have realised that in Denmark, as elsewhere, the worship of Mammon reigns supreme.Till a few days ago, neither the newspaper in question nor the Danish government was willing to even offer a semblance of an apology. But the moment the economic boycott began to hurt them, there has been a climbdown of sorts. Not the best of apologies but a retreat nevertheless.Money talks and how!"
The Angry Arab (1, 2, 3, 4): "This is absurd. In Arabic newspapers, some Western companies took out ads to declare that they are not Danish. This while Arab governments are doing business with Israeli companies. Personally, I boycott Israel and Israeli products, but will not boycott Denmark or Danish companies. Also, I don't need lectures about cultural or religious sensitivity from people who abuse their Sri Lankan maids in Lebanon or in Gulf countries."
Snooo: "I'm finding it difficult to find a way of defending the Danish newspaper which decided that the way to demonstrate against censorship is to roll out stereotypes about stupid Arabs with swords, suicide bombers seeking virgins and jokes about how Muslims would stick out in an ID parade, whilst at the same time deliberately trying to provoke people by printing an image of Muhammad. While free speech is essential to democracy, I despair when this is held up to be an example of that exercise."