[with no apologies to Brittany Spears]

So, the Danes have published those cartoons again (not the phony ones, the real ones). And I have to say, I think this is a very good idea. Why? Why, I’ll let the man himself explain it to you:

European political correctness allows Muslims to resist integration, argues the culture editor of Jyllands-Posten. Instead, Muslims should be treated just like all Europeans — including being subject to satire. He argues that publishing the caricatures was an act of “inclusion, not exclusion.”

Not buying it? I am. And I especially like the fact that this comes in response to terrorist threats against the artists. Mindless fucking animals. If this enrages you, you deserve it. If you carry out your threats, you will only prove that we’re right and you’re a bunch of mindless fucking animals.

Oops, sorry. I was going to let the ‘dead man walking’ explain it:

Europe today finds itself trapped in a posture of moral relativism that is undermining its liberal values. An unholy three-cornered alliance between Middle East dictators, radical imams who live in Europe and Europe’s traditional left wing is enabling a politics of victimology. This politics drives a culture that resists integration and adaptation, perpetuates national and religious differences and aggravates such debilitating social ills as high immigrant crime rates and entrenched unemployment.

It’s like the pie-fight, only with open flame and death.

Look, any people who can’t accept the west’s half-millenium of secularism really can’t participate in the politics and society of the west. That’s not bigotry, that’s the price of admission. Five hundred years ago, western Europe was racked by religious wars. They’re not going back to that. And, just because some recent arrivals are having a tough time getting that through their heads doesn’t meant that Europeans have to go back through all that, either.

Why do we keep having to explain things to religious fanatics?

It doesn’t matter if it’s Judaism, Christianity, or Islam. Each of those religions developed in a brutal world. That brutal world is written in their laws and their culture. No one outside of Osama bin Laden and a few deluded fools wants to go back to that brutal world. Making the religious laws, born of brutality, into law in the here-and-now merely recapitulates their brutality. Just because they can’t think of a better answer to the problems of the day doesn’t mean that I have to piss away 500 years of my civilization.

Ignorance is not an argument. Brutality isn’t a culture.

Those images in no way exceeded the bounds of taste, satire and humor to which I would subject any other Dane, whether the queen, the head of the church or the prime minister. By treating a Muslim figure the same way I would a Christian or Jewish icon, I was sending an important message: You are not strangers, you are here to stay, and we accept you as an integrated part of our life. And we will satirize you, too. It was an act of inclusion, not exclusion; an act of respect and recognition.

If you want to join the west (or at least suck up European welfare), then you’re fair game. Hell, as an agnostic, I’m part of a widely disparaged group here in the US. But I haven’t set fire to a single damned thing as a result.

Human beings are made, not born. We are social creatures. Reject that and you are justly called an “animal.”