Last month, The Independent reported that a Dutch politician, Geert Wilders, wanted to hold a blasphemous cartoon contest where participants could draw the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) to promote ‘freedom of speech.’ Wilders and his political party, Party For Freedom, are notorious for their anti-Islamic rhetoric.
They’ve also called for a ban on the Quran previously.
Obviously, this opens the avenue of discussion for where to draw the line when it comes to freedom of speech. Does it mean being disrespectful towards an entire religion and a religious figure?
Regardless, since news of this has spread, the outrage has been massive. Muslims have taken to Twitter to talk about their anger and disappointment.
In fact, #StopBlasphemousCartoonContest even started trending in Pakistan.
Pictures of protests within the country started circulating.
Pakistanis seemed to be at the forefront of this protest.
This wave of protest has also spread to Twitter where Pakistanis are encouraging others to join in.
Dearest Fellow Activists of Turkey, Palestine and Malta. If we a handful activists from Pakistan can do this in Pakistan, WHY can not you? Raise your voice with us, its a problem of whole Ummah. @neville_gafa @palestine_bs @AmazighProPal @slmhktn pic.twitter.com/e4AqC44Qp1
— سنگین علی زادہ (@sangeen_zadran) July 7, 2018
People are sharing pictures of protests to show that Pakistanis are angry.
— Muhammad Bilal Khan (@BilalKhanWriter) July 8, 2018
Moreover, some people are questioning the choices of those who are choosing to insult an entire religion.
If you think insulting someone's religion is freedom of speech then you're going in a wrong direction to live in this World.#StopBlasphemousCartoonContest
— Fatima Khan (@FAkhan2101) July 8, 2018
People are condemning Geert Wilder as well…
We condemn Geert Wilder's for his attempt to demolish entire world peace by Blasphemy contest on Prophet Muhammad PBUH. #StopBlasphemousCartoonContest
— Shahbaz Ahmad (@Shahbaz16265008) July 8, 2018
…questioning his idea of ‘freedom of speech.’
To make cartoons of other religion and religious personalities is not freedom of speech its hate speech and racism
World should understand the margin between freedom of speech and hate speech and should also strongly condemn such act of racism. #StopBlasphemousCartoonContest
— Pakistani💚 (@Mustafvi_Eagle) July 8, 2018
— Hajra Mujahid (@hajra_mujahid) July 8, 2018
Some think this is being done to ‘disrupt the peace of the Muslim community.’
Even the civilized Non Muslims are against this crime of Blasphemy. A small number of people are there to try to disrupt the peace of the Muslim community. #StopBlasphemousCartoonContest
— Um Ul Huda (@UmUlHuda_ZK) July 8, 2018
Others are wondering why more isn’t being done about this.
Why United Nation is not taking Stand Against Geert Wilders Blasphemous Competetion ???#StopBlasphemousCartoonContest
— Muhammad Ali Arif (@aliarif73186847) July 7, 2018
This contest is also being called a form of hate speech.
This is not freedom of speech… Its hate speech…..!
The netherland goverment should #StopBlasphemousCartoonContest.
— Abrar Ul Haq (@AbrarUlHaqPtiPk) July 8, 2018
Muslims all over the world are being asked to take action against this.
Governments of Islamic countries as well as the Muslims all over the world must register their protest and use all peaceful means to prevent any sacrilegious act in the name of freedom of speech. #StopBlasphemousCartoonContest
— Ansar Abbasi (@AnsarAAbbasi) July 8, 2018
Being a Muslim we all should raise our voices#StopBlasphemousCartoonContest
— Ashii Ch (@AshiiCh1) July 8, 2018
Others are calling on prominent names to speak up about this.
— Sadia Hussain (@HussainSadi) July 8, 2018
People want to boycott Dutch companies and products as well.
Love and Peace:
Say no to Dutch Companies:
Bycott their products until they don't appologise
— Marauf (@Marauf78058349) July 8, 2018
Twitter is filled to the brim with tweets of condemnation.
Our pride, our honour, our prophet Muhammad peace be upon him
We will not tolerate such nonsense against him.#StopBlasphemousCartoonContest
— faizi (@faizi_3) July 8, 2018
this is highly comdemable and all peacefull means should be utalized to stop and discourage it #StopBlasphemousCartoonContest
— محمد Karim شاہ (@mkarimshah) July 8, 2018
Do you think this will help or have the desired impact? What do you think about the situation overall? How do you define freedom of speech? Share your thoughts regarding this pressing matter in the comments below.
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