Arsalan Iftikhar : Fight Ann Coulter NOT South Park

In an editorial for CNN, Arsalan Iftikhar takes both the mainstream media and the ridiculous (New York based) Muslim radicals to task for causing a ludicrous uproar over an episode of South Park.

Iftikhar rightly asserts that the media took an inane, baseless empty threat from a U.S. basedMuslim Group‘ and turned it into a spectacle that would only further the Islamophobic vitriol spewed by Ann Coulter et al.

To Iftikhar, instead of focusing on a baseless threat, the media should be calling into question the statements of Islamophobic Right-wing media pundits whose pursuit for air time and relevance is only working to further divide the country.

Though Iftikhar did not address this in his editorial, the true danger of this division that the likes of Ann Coulter are creating is that it will only embolden the Islamist youth movements within the West. The more ostracized these Muslims feel, the more likely they are to buy into ridiculous notions like “it is impossible to be Muslim in the West.”

Iftikhar did miss one point however, though he took many opportunities to belittle the U.S. based “Muslim Group” throughout his editorial, he missed a clear opportunity to call out other Muslims to stand up against such ridiculous threats from divisive, mis-informed, and downright ignorant “Muslims”:

Fight the REAL Enemy:

Instead of conjuring up fake controversies involving the equal opportunity offenders ofSouth Park,” we should focus on professional political polemicists, such as Ann Coulter, who has publicly stated that we shouldkill their [Muslim] leaders and convert them to Christianity” — or the Rev. Pat Robertson of “The 700 Club,” who once told The Associated Press that neither American Muslims nor Hindus should be allowed to serve as U.S. federal judges.

These right-wing professional fear-mongers have nurtured, facilitated and expanded the growth of Islamophobia after the tragedy of the September 11, 2001, attacks to the point where Muslim is almost a slur in America.

Freedom of Speech:

In any free democratic society, the concept of free speech can only be combated with more free speech, not censorship. If the creators ofSouth Parkchoose to depict the Prophet Mohammed, that is their First Amendment right, and they should be able to do so freely without any threats of physical violence and retribution.

No-name radicals vs. ‘South Parkjust a distraction [CNN]