We wish to make a statement about the recent concern expressed over issues related to conflicting views on depictions of Prophet Muhammad.
We recognise that, when it comes to this question, some Muslims of various persuasions may take different views. However, we also recognise that there are many Muslims who have taken offence, and we assert that images of the spiritual leaders of all religions should be deemed to be respectful.
Stop right there.
No. Your religion is your religion, and it is not binding on me or on anyone else who does not choose to be bound by it. I don’t have to be respectful of it. I don’t have to even in the mild sense that I should bow to that assertion. I don’t accept that should. I reject it.
I don’t even accept that “spiritual leader” is a meaningful or reasonable category. I think it’s a stupid phrase, that does harm. I think it’s just a flattering label for a theocratic bully, someone who uses god and goddy language to make arbitrary power look holy. I think that dressing up of arbitrary power should be debunked and undermined by every means available, including cartoons and caricatures and mockery. So no.