Should we all pick up a pencil for Charlie Hebdo?

I’m talking about retaliating to these terrorists by challenging their attack on the freedom of speech by drawing more insulting drawings aimed at the beliefs of these terrorists.


I didn’t really want to talk about terrorism and such on my blog but this has gotten to a stage that I cannot ignore it anymore. I think as a Muslim, I should share my opinion on this matter just so that I can say I don’t condone the killing of innocent people even if they degrade my religion. That is not my religion.



For those that disagree, there are plenty of stories of prophet of Islam and what he would do when he was degraded by those that were against his message. He would turn the other cheek much like Mahatma Gandhi.

Here is a quote from the great Gandhi himself.

Mahatma Gandhi, statement published in “Young India”, 1924:

“I wanted to know the best of the life of one who holds today an undisputed sway over the hearts of millions of mankind… I became more than ever convinced that it was not the sword that won a place for Islam in those days in the scheme of life. It was the rigid simplicity, the utter self-effacement of the Prophet the scrupulous regard for pledges, his intense devotion to his friends and followers, his intrepidity, his fearlessness, his absolute trust in God and in his own mission. These and not the sword carried everything before them and surmounted every obstacle. When I closed the second volume (of the Prophet’s biography), I was sorry there was not more for me to read of that great life.”


Considering he is the guidance to the life a follower of Islam should lead, you can clearly understand this is not the way of the Muslim. He taught to be humble, gentle and affectionate to all, be they believers or non-believers. He taught us tolerance and equality; that the color of the skin meant nothing at all.


So what is happening in the world right now that the Muslims are acting out and joining an ‘evil’ organisation such as ISIS.

Let’s start with the basic fact that there are bad people in the world that are hungry for power. There are people who are selfish and are willing to use others in their quest to accomplish their selfish desires.

These are the type of people I class the leaders of ISIS under. I think they are so filled with hatred, the only thing they want is to hurt as many people as they can so that they understand the pain they have felt in the past. These people could simply be victims of the war on terror; once innocent young people who just wanted to live their lives in peace but not merciless killers.

They could also be warped individuals who garnered a hatred for the west because it was rich and they were living in third world countries. They might even just be bat-shit crazy or truly evil. I don’t really know. The point I’m trying to make is we need to first understand who these people are and what they want to understand the whole situation that has arranged itself so disastrously.


Now these leaders understand the pain the new victims are experiencing such as the young who have lost their families in the crisis that has continuously been experienced through-out the middle-east over the last century in countries such as; Iran, Iraq, Lybia, Syria, Palestine, etc.

They have so many vulnerable pawns at their disposal that it is very easy for them to carry out such massacres that left 12 people dead in Paris over something as trivial as a cartoon drawing of the Prophet of Islam.


How can we rectify this situation?

I don’t know. I honestly do not see a way out of this without because the whole world is filled with hate. The East hates the West and the West hates the East. I’m not talking about each and every individual because there are many people in the world who can clearly see that this is completely wrong but unfortunately, these are the logical people who can be reasoned with. Those who can’t be reasoned with are the ones who are currently causing the chaos.

The only answer is to tolerance, education and love. Reform the society for the future generation. Show the people in the East that the West isn’t evil and all they want to do is rid the world of Evil Oppression. But how can they do that when they allow the bombing of innocent civilians in order to eliminate terrorists?

Perhaps putting these individuals in reformation camps and teaching them the true message behind Islam and the sacredness of every single life might help. Perhaps the world mourning the deaths of their loved ones would help. Perhaps the U.S. military sending their condolences to them might make them realise that although unfortunate, the mission to eradicate terrorism is important and that the casualties that took place and unfortunate accidents.

The war on terror so far has just made things worse in my opinion. Its like trying to mop up spilt pot of dye on a polished floor. It’s going to stain the whole place the more you continue mopping it. (I’ve experienced this in a science lab, the effort is futile.)


The freedom of speech is another issue at hand here because a journalist was killed for expressing his opinion.

An opinion of an individual should not be oppressed and there should be the right to freedom of speech. However, not in the state the world is in at the moment where some people aren’t even educated enough to understand what freedom of speech is and how ridiculing the beliefs of a terrorist organisation can be dangerous.


There are a billion muslims in the world. A drawing degrading the prophet of Islam is going to offend every single one of them. Yes, you have a right to freedom of speech but that right should not be abused at the expense of a billion people.

But that doesn’t mean any one of those billion people respond with acts of violence and terrorism. They should be tolerant and simply let their disapproval know by peaceful words. Then again, reacting to such cartoons will only further ignite the situation until it becomes controversial. It’s like responding to the insults of a bully. If you let the bully know you are feeling the effects of his provocation, he is bound to do it again. Ignore it and it will eventually not be an issue.

Just like ridiculing the Jewish people about dreadful events such as the holocaust is classed as wrong and unjustified, it should be the same to offend the most beloved thing to all Muslims in the word. It is beyond doubt the worst thing you can say to someone of the Jewish faith that the Holocaust was a joke or that it was deserved. Likewise it is the worst thing you can say to a Muslim is degrade the prophet of Islam.


I’m not sure why everyone is ‘surprised’ by what has happened? I mean clearly there is an ‘Islamic State Army’ composed of unreasonable terrorists who are declaring war on the west. Why would you provoke them? It’s like going up to one of the school bullies and calling his mom a whore. How do you think he will respond?

So if people think picking up a pencil and drawing more insulting cartoons is the answer, by all means do so. But we all know that will only add fuel to the fire that is already consuming the world. In other words, it’s as an illogical act as the killing of Charlie Hebdo. Don’t make more people suffer the same fate at the hands of these animals. They don’t understand the concept of freedom of speech so your words of outcry do not hold any power whatsoever.


As for the whole freedom of speech being under attack here; yes there is a right to freedom of speech as I mentioned before but that right should not be abused. Just like in France Pro-Palestinian protests are banned. Just like in France in 2011 fashion designer John Galliano was found guilty of making anti-Semitic comments in a Café in Paris. Just like in the comedian Dieudonné M’Bala was accused of being anti-Semitic and moves have been made to prosecute and ban his performances.

These are all examples of freedom of speech that were judged by the French to be criminal. If this is the case then there isn’t really a complete freedom of speech for all. It is partial. Abusing that freedom is not accepted in society and thus those pictures should have been publicly condemned in my opinion just like anti-Semitic comments are.

And is this the first time a journalist has been killed? Where were the outcries and the tributes to the 17 journalists that were killed in Gaza? Was that not an act of terror on their poor lives? Freedom of Speech is a very partial term in today’s day and age. Be careful of what you say under this false pretence because you can be accountable for it.


So if you want to pick up a pencil is support of Charlie Hebdo and the Freedom of Speech and the Rights of Humanity, do it in the right way and don’t make the same mistake. Don’t be partial about the subjects that are being discussed. Do not be afraid to broaden your perspectives on different subjects. Do some research and do not write or draw out of ignorance. Write about all the injustice that is taking place in the world and be the word of reason.

Write against all crimes against humanity and build a sense of community for all those that are suffering around the world. Be the voice that the journalists are supposed to be; the voice of those that can make no sound. If the media is partial with their journalism, it will only further divide humanity into us and them rather the right and wrong. Just like we have taken a stand for the Freedom of Speech for Charlie Hebdo, do it for all such incidences in the world otherwise our efforts are worthless.


That is all I have to say on this matter. Stop the partiality, the hate and the discrimination. I’m talking about all the people in the world. Muslims, Atheists, Hindus, Christians, Buddhists and those of the Jewish faith; it doesn’t matter what religion you follow or what beliefs you hold, just treat each other in respect and consideration. Have love for each other and care for humanity because it’s the only way to save this world from self-destruction.



2 responses to “Should we all pick up a pencil for Charlie Hebdo?

  1. You write with compassion and make your points very well. With every right there comes responsibility. Too often these rights are shouted out without acknowledging that they must be used wisely. One which fits this bill is when some US citizens abuse “the right to bear arms”. The War on Terror has become self-perpetuating. Armies go for mass destruction. Terrorists have smaller cells which can infiltrate anywhere. Both thrive on propaganda and ignorance. We can only hope that somehow there will one day be a majority who shout out that we have all had enough, and we learn how to live peacefully with each other

  2. Pingback: Should we all pick up a pencil for Charlie Hebdo?·

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