The Instigator
QandA
Pro (for)
Losing
6 Points
The Contender
isoltan
Con (against)
Winning
7 Points

Strong Muslim outrage over satire related to their religion cannot be justified.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
isoltan
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 9/27/2013 Category: Religion
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,203 times Debate No: 38186
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (6)
Votes (2)

 

QandA

Pro

I have tried debating this before but have been unsuccessful as a result of opponent forfeits so I'm looking for a good and thorough debate here. I will be for the notion that it cannot be justified. Round one is an acceptance round only and then back and forth argument as expected. Good luck!
isoltan

Con

This is an interesting topic. I'll be arguing against this statement. I look forward to a fruitful debate. Take it away.
Debate Round No. 1
QandA

Pro

Thank you for accepting the debate.

My main point is the idea of Muslims feeling as if they deserve some kind of special treatment when it comes to satire. Turn on the television on any given day and it will be filled with shows that are poking fun at politicians, celebrities and religions. Is everyone who receives a little insult allowed to riot? How come Christians for example don't feel the need to riot on the streets over a cartoon Jesus? Yet Muslims will outrage over a cartoon Muhammad all the way from protesting to rioting. What I want to know is what gives them the right to cause such outrage over petty satire whereas other religions can just take it on the chin. Why should they deserve special treatment over everyone else? We are all made fun of at some stage and it's something we just have to accept. There is a right to free speech, which therefore includes satire, however there is no special right that allows Muslims not to get their feelings hurt, unlike the rest of us. I look forward to your response.
isoltan

Con

First of all, it is of unequivocal importance that you realize that Muslims are indeed forbidden by there religion to depict god and prophet Muhammad or even think about how they might look. Whilst on the other hand, Christians have countless depictions and portrayals of how Jesus and other religious figures within the context of Christianity look. Therefore, it is not fair to juxtapose the reactions of Christians to bad depictions of their god to Muslims' reactions to mere depictions of their prophet (good or bad).

Comparing Islam to Christianity might seem like the ideal example for this debate as both religions have many things in common. Nonetheless, it is important to note that the example you've manifested in your previous argument is an utterly futile one. That is mainly attributed to the fact that Muslims believe in Jesus as a prophet, he is a religious leader and an idol to them just like he is to Christians (in a different way of course). Therefore, muslims would be offended by satirical depictions of Jesus just as they would be if Prophet Muhammad was depicted falsely.

The two aforementioned points set up the context for my first and most important argument, which is that you cannot compare Islam to other religions where depictions of god exist to a large extent.
Debate Round No. 2
QandA

Pro

I have minimal knowledge of the Qur'an however I'll take your word that the it forbids Muslims to depict Muhammad and God but this does not justify anything. I don't think the Qur'an says that if people do in fact draw pictures of Muhammad or God then you have the right to riot over it. The strong outrage is all down to Muslims themselves. It is nothing to do with their religious teachings or scriptures. Therefore the Qur'an has nothing to do with how Muslims react to such pictures so it can not be a means of justification. The strong outrage is all man-made. Likewise with Christians, the Bible has nothing to do with how they react to satire yet they can remarkably take it well. Therefore religious scripts have nothing to do with a religion's REACTIONS over satire.

Christianity and Islam can almost be identically compared in this sense as they both believe in a God and a prophet.

Muslims DO NOT believe in Jesus as a prophet, where are you getting that from? He IS NOT an idol to Muslims as he is not a part of the Islam religion. How do you know that Muslims would be offended if they saw a satirical depiction of Jesus? Jesus has nothing to do with them.

Islam can indeed be compared to other religions here. In comparison to Christianity for example. How can a depiction of Jesus be somehow less harmful than a depiction of Muhammad? Both religions have similar principles and faith so why should one feel the need to cause such strong outrage over the other. Why can't Muslims, like Christians or Jews just know themselves that satire is satire and just shrug it off. After all you would think that because their faith is strong, they wouldn't care what anyone else thought. I get offended by all sorts of things but I don't feel the need to riot on the streets over it. Such reckless behaviour puts other people's lives in harm's way and how can you say that such strong outrage over petty, insignificant jokes which we all receive can be justified, especially when people are at risk.
isoltan

Con

A holy book provides individuals with knowledge that pertains to a set of values of which the follower of the book's religion must undertake. No holy book will tell you whether you should riot over abuse of your religion, god and prophet. This is up to the perpetrator, he/she can choose how they react based on their faith. If they have great faith in their religion, then the natural reaction to any bad or falsified depiction of their god and prophet is obviously going to be unpleasant. If the holy book states that followers of the religion must not depict the relative god in any way shape or form, then it is very natural that someone believes in such values to feel offended and react in whatever way pleases him/her.

You initially state that you "have minimal knowledge of the Qur'an" but then make claims that Jesus is not a prophet in Islam. If you had at least a basic understanding of Islam you would know that Jesus is one of the most revered prophets in Islam. The only difference between Christianity and Islam is that in Christianity Jesus is allocated divine characteristics. Definitely do some research on "Jesus in Islam".

Furthermore, it is important for you to realize that different individuals react in distinct ways relative to specific phenomena. This does not only exist within the context of Islam, it exists within the context of every religion and phenomena. The arresting of Pastor Terry Jones as a result of him planning to burn the Qura'an in an event that he set up is one example of this. If he went through with the burning of the Quran he would have put other people's lives in danger (as this will be the cause of retaliation by Islamic parties).

You have got to realize that depictions of divine members of the Islamic religion do not exist and that this makes it more offending to them if someone where to depict their god and prophet in a falsified way let alone depict their god and prophet at all.
Debate Round No. 3
QandA

Pro

"No holy book will tell you whether you should riot over abuse of your religion, god and prophet."

This is my point exactly. It is all down to the individual or denomination in this case. I'm glad we can agree on that.

"If they have great faith in their religion, then the natural reaction to any bad or falsified depiction of their god and prophet is obviously going to be unpleasant."

Are you saying that Christians or Jews, for example, don't have great faith in their religion and that's why they DON'T cause such strong outrage? Christianity and Judaism requires just as much faith as Islam so it cannot be that Christians or Jews have a lesser faith in their religion than Islamic people do. With this in mind, you don't see such a strong reaction from these religions when it comes to satire so therefore the natural reaction is NOT obviously going to be unpleasant. Why are Muslims so special in this that they feel the need to cause mayhem over something which every religion receives (or person for that matter) especially when other religions can take it remarkably well. There is no logical reason as to why Muslims should deserve special treatment from petty satirical jokes over everybody else.

You argue that "If the holy book states that followers of the religion must not depict the relative god in any way shape or form, then it is very natural that someone believes in such values to feel offended and react in whatever way pleases him/her." This is not necessarily true at all. The idea of blasphemy is a common condemnation in every religion. Most world religions that I know condemn blasphemy in their texts which is the exact same principle. Therefore it is not very natural for someone who believes in such values to react in whatever way pleases them because Christians (example) don't do this, yet condemnation of blasphemy occurs in the bible a lot (http://skepticsannotatedbible.com...)
Remember I am just using Christianity as an example of comparison.

So we arrive at the platform that the religions are all equal when it comes to receiving satire which makes it hard to try and justify the strong Muslim reaction compared to everyone else's.

I apologize for my hazy knowledge of the Qur'an but it just so happens that whether Jesus is a prophet or not in Islam, it is totally irrelevant to the topic on hand. We are not debating "Jesus in Islam".

I understand that individuals react in different ways to different things but in actual fact we are not dealing with individuals per say here, we are dealing with the general denomination's view. The idea of Individuals is too narrow here. If we talk about a Muslim's individual reaction to satire then it can be argued both ways that not all individuals are offended but at the same time there are individuals who are offended. We are dealing with Muslims as a whole here and the general Muslim reaction to satire is usually one of strong outrage. The supposed justification that people react differently to certain things doesn't work here for two reasons:
1) Every religion is receiving the same thing (satire) so it cannot be justified for Muslims to cause mayhem over something in which everyone else receives and especially when other religions don't.
(2) With this equality of treatment of religions in mind, Muslims undoubtedly react much stronger than other religions when it comes to satire. And this is the Muslim group as a whole, not as individual people.

Basically, Individual people can react differently to certain things but when we are talking about denominations it is not just by chance that the majority react in a strong way. There has to be a reason behind this and as I have refuted the reasons you suggest, the only reason I can come up with is the Muslim desire for special treatment as opposed to everyone else who can just let petty, insignificant satire be just that. Again there is no special right that allows Muslims not to get their feelings hurt unlike the rest of us.
isoltan

Con

I understand that " Jesus in Islam" is irrelevant to the topic, but you continuously use it falsely as an example.

Allow me to make this clearer to you through using a recent example. Pastor Terry Jones, which I've mentioned in an aforementioned argument, promoted a satirical film aimed at Muslims not too long ago. It was an islam mocking mini film that initiated the act of large numbers of muslims (mobs) taking to the streets in Arab countries. After seeing the film, it would be difficult for any rational human being on this mother earth to still carry the notion that this is a satirical film. Actions in the film are inexplicably juvenile, to a point where it is difficult to point out what the film is trying to satirize in certain scenes. Furthermore, Prophet Mohamed is coherently portrayed as a a pervert and a buffoon, which is also inexplicably heavy satirical material that is too heavy-handed to be considered clever, or even funny at times. But, for the Western population, whose red lines in media have disappeared decades ago, it is a shock that someone actually went through the tedious process and funding of this film just to depict a revered leader of the Islamic religion in a so called satirical way.

In the Muslim World, red lines do in fact exist to a large extent. Prophet Mohammed is indubitably one of these red lines. You may not be able to understand this constant obsession with protecting the reputation of a human being who passed away long ago to a point where Muslims will kill other living human beings for satirical depictions of him. This is mainly attributed to the fact that whole areas of thought and history should sometimes be beyond examination and mockery within the context of Islam. This is a notion that has been eradicated by Western universities and Media in the Western world many years ago. It is undoubtedly preferable to think that human beings are the same wherever you go, but this is unfortunately a lax view of the world. Until members of the Muslim World become intellectually free (they may never reach that point), all other religious civilizations must continue to respect their religious, cultural, communal, and familial values. You say that there must be a strong reason behind rash muslim reactions to satire directed towards their religion, well this is a considerably strong reason.
Debate Round No. 4
6 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Posted by Junglekat 3 years ago
Junglekat
umm if someone cant handle a little trash talking they need to stay in their cave, trailer or tent. i can say what i want to who i want. and if someone gets mad enough and wants to do something about it then as a man challenge accepted.. and brant, our oil executives and banksters started a war. they did 9/11. if you do any research you find that truth self evident....
Posted by devin.cooper64 3 years ago
devin.cooper64
Can you back up your statements, using any riots or attacks or anything on the matter that was sparked via a satire piece?
Posted by devin.cooper64 3 years ago
devin.cooper64
Can you back up your statements, using any riots or attacks or anything on the matter that was sparked via a satire piece?
Posted by QandA 3 years ago
QandA
Yes ironknight that is essentially what I am saying however I am talking about STRONG OUTRAGE which can range anywhere from protesting to rioting to worse...
Posted by ironknight47 3 years ago
ironknight47
Could you clarify exactly what you mean by this? I don't know exactly what you are saying. I'm assuming you are saying that Muslims who see Muslim-related satire and get offended have no right to do so. I'd be willing to accept if you could clarify.
Posted by brant.merrell 3 years ago
brant.merrell
"Strong Muslim outrage" meaning what? Sitting in front of their computer, fuming at a video, making death threats over youtube like a 13 year old boy? Or starting a war?
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by miketheman1200 3 years ago
miketheman1200
QandAisoltanTied
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Total points awarded:07 
Reasons for voting decision: This debate ended as soon as Con made the point that in islam it is absolutely not allowed to depict god or Muhammad. right there is where the outrage to them is justifiable. I gave conduct to con because of Pros continual bringing up jesus in islam which has nothing to do with the debate and from this debate we see he knows little about islam. Pros arguments that asks about christians and jews not having just as much faith because they don't react the same way was entirely silly. Potraying their god is not something forbidden and that's the whole point. I ask that other voters see the bigger picture and that con not only had better arguments but negated the resolution rather quickly. Im giving extra points to con because of Weiler not giving any real reason for his vote.
Vote Placed by Weiler 3 years ago
Weiler
QandAisoltanTied
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Total points awarded:60 
Reasons for voting decision: Sources to Pro, he only had one, but it was the only one in the debate. Con's arguments fall on their face, honestly, pro could've forfeited every round except the first and only lost conduct points.