Disgrace: Yale removes Mohammed cartoons from book about … Mohammed cartoons

posted at 7:47 pm on August 12, 2009 by Allahpundit

I’m tempted to call this unbelievable but that simply wouldn’t be true. In fact, the very first words of the Times’s piece are “It’s not all that surprising.” Not only do research universities purportedly devoted to free inquiry now censor primary sources in the interest of “safety,” but I’ve experienced it myself: Imagine, if you will, the absurdity of a panel discussion about images which the audience isn’t allowed to view. It’s come to that. This is the scholarship equivalent of Yale donning a burqa to suppress the temptations its immodesty might otherwise inspire in Muslim men. Good work, academia.

Yale University and Yale University Press consulted two dozen authorities, including diplomats and experts on Islam and counterterrorism, and the recommendation was unanimous: The book, “The Cartoons That Shook the World,” should not include the 12 Danish drawings that originally appeared in September 2005. What’s more, they suggested that the Yale press also refrain from publishing any other illustrations of the prophet that were to be included, specifically, a drawing for a children’s book; an Ottoman print; and a sketch by the 19th-century artist Gustave Doré of Muhammad being tormented in Hell, an episode from Dante’s “Inferno” that has been depicted by Botticelli, Blake, Rodin and Dalí…

John Donatich, the director of Yale University Press, said by telephone that the decision was difficult, but the recommendation to withdraw the images, including the historical ones of Muhammad, was “overwhelming and unanimous.” The cartoons are freely available on the Internet and can be accurately described in words, Mr. Donatich said, so reprinting them could be interpreted easily as gratuitous.

He noted that he had been involved in publishing other controversial books — like “The King Never Smiles” by Paul M. Handley, a recent unauthorized biography of Thailand’s current monarch — and “I’ve never blinked.” But, he said, “when it came between that and blood on my hands, there was no question.”

And there you have it. It’s a small mercy, at least, that they’re making no bones about what’s driving this decision; occasionally, this sort of appeasement-by-self-censorship is dressed up as high-minded progressive “cultural sensitivity.” To see just how bad things have gotten, read the entire Times piece (which, thankfully, acknowledges that the paper itself cowered in the face of terrorism by refusing to publish the cartoons when the story broke). Not only were the “expert” recommendations that Yale should suppress the images unanimous, but not a single person quoted in the story offers a full-throated defense of a university’s obligation not to sacrifice knowledge on the altar of totalitarianism. The closest we get is Reza Aslan arguing that it’s “idiotic” to omit the cartoons now that the controversy’s died down and the risk of reprisal is low. If the risk was high, presumably he’d think differently. In lieu of an exit question, let me make a recommendation: If you know a right-wing academic or public intellectual, make sure to bring this item to his or her attention. Hopefully it’ll make them think twice about doing business with Yale in the future.


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This is disgraceful that a such a institution bow to the demands of a few over depictions of Mohammad in art.

It is ridiculous especially when you take into account that even within Islam such images were not banned at all until the 17th Century. Even with such restrictions such paintings are still made. Many images of Mohammad in full were produced, particularly among the Shi’a (who often depicted him alongside ‘Ali). However those who were uncomfortable with showing their so called ‘prophet’ (yuck!) in full painted him with a veil covering the face. This doesn’t include images of him without a face, those had been originally full portraits that were later defaced, pardon the pun. At least as I understand it

Zombietime has a good collection of such images at his website here: http://www.zombietime.com/mohammed_image_archive/

Shogun144 on August 12, 2009 at 9:06 PM

So much for academic freedom

next time will they remove sacriligeous things about Jesus?

I bet not

SavedOrCreated3MillionMarxists on August 12, 2009 at 9:17 PM

The cartoons are freely available on the Internet and can be accurately described in words, Mr. Donatich said, so reprinting them could be interpreted easily as gratuitous.

Maybe not for long if this trend of self-censorship continues.

RightOFLeft on August 12, 2009 at 9:18 PM

When did Yale become a madrassa?

coldwarrior on August 12, 2009 at 9:22 PM

next time will they remove sacriligeous things about Jesus?

I bet not

SavedOrCreated3MillionMarxists on August 12, 2009 at 9:17 PM

There’s two parts to that. First is that we Christians are still trying to prevent total moral collapse of society with our silly old rules and restrictions. Modern liberalism despises any sort of control over personal behavior – be it administering every chemical known to man into one’s hide or butchering the unborn for convenience.

Second – Muslims don’t subscribe to the whole ‘turn the other cheek’ bit. This is why the bra-burning harpies won’t take them to task on their woman-enslaving behavior, nor the ivory-tower elite challenge them in any way. Quite simply they are quite willing to hit back physically, and we are not. The likely threat of death by bomb or sword for the slightest offense (real or imagined) gets through really well to even the densest libtards…and since they don’t believe in squashing the towelheaded cockroaches, the only remaining option is surrender.

Dark-Star on August 12, 2009 at 9:36 PM

Be sure to read Ezra Levant’s new book Shakedown, about his adventures as one of the only publishers to run the cartoons — and how it cost him $100,000 in legal fees.

Great book!!

fivefeetoffury on August 12, 2009 at 9:41 PM

Oh for the love of political correctness!

bobkat on August 12, 2009 at 9:52 PM

These maggots can try to get a toehold here, there’s only one law of this land, the Constitution. Everyone’s welcome to worship, but extremism is unacceptable. Censorship is extremism. This is America, not Afghanistan.

Sam_I_Am on August 12, 2009 at 9:54 PM

Allah hates you this I know
For the Koran tells me so
Infidels Christians and Jews we bomb
They are weak but we are strong

Yes Allah hates you! Yes, Allah hates you! Yes, Allah hates you,
The Koran tells me so.

Allah hates you, you will die
Blow your ass up to the sky
Say the salat, chop off head,
Eat falafel, go to bed.

Yes, Allah hates you! Yes, Allah hates you! Yes, Allah hates you!

The Koran tells me so.

Aleph on August 12, 2009 at 10:00 PM

Internet content can come & go but good books are forever. Yale U Press’ rationalization is disgusting and their book is not worth buying. It is an insult to intelligence almost as great as Islam itself.

BTW here is a large collection of Mo images:

http://zombietime.com/mohammed_image_archive/

including one that our Supreme Court refuses to remove

http://zombietime.com/mohammed_image_archive/misc_mo/

The literature there absurdly & cowardly says, “The figure is a well-intentioned attempt by the sculptor to honor Muhammad, and it bears no resemblance to Muhammad.” – Now how would they know (beside the point anyway).

And here is an ex-Muslim girl victim on Islam

http://www.jihadwatch.org/archives/027200.php#respond

Chessplayer on August 12, 2009 at 10:02 PM

Yale Chickenshit

profitsbeard on August 12, 2009 at 10:04 PM

Censorship is extremism.

What about the Production Code?

aengus on August 12, 2009 at 10:04 PM

Aleph on August 12, 2009 at 10:00 PM

Pack a lunch.

Sam_I_Am on August 12, 2009 at 10:04 PM

As a right-wing academic myself, I can honestly say I’ve never been particularly interested in working with anyone from Yale anyway.

Which is not to say I’d refuse a job offer from there… gotta make a living you know.

joe_doufu on August 12, 2009 at 10:08 PM

Seven Percent Solution at 7:51 PM:

You forgot Mo‘s nose!~

Blasphemy!

VIZ:

*~@):-{>

profitsbeard on August 12, 2009 at 10:09 PM

Has Yale forgotten what “university” actually means?

coldwarrior on August 12, 2009 at 10:09 PM

The New Yale school Latin motto:

VOLO, NON VALEO

I Am Willing, But Unable.

profitsbeard on August 12, 2009 at 10:16 PM

aengus on August 12, 2009 at 10:04 PM

Yeah, wiki is a very trusted source. Not a lot of negatives about Obambi, it wouldn’t fit the agenda. I won’t be following the lemmings off the cliff.

Sam_I_Am on August 12, 2009 at 10:19 PM

If Islam is a “religion of peace” then what’s the problem here?

catmman on August 12, 2009 at 10:23 PM

Yeah, wiki is a very trusted source.

LOL. So you’ve never heard of the Hays Code then? Type ‘Motion Picture Production Code’ into Google to find a million other sources.

aengus on August 12, 2009 at 10:26 PM

As a librarian, I am AMAZED by this. What are the librarians at Yale saying, I wonder?

Rosmerta on August 12, 2009 at 10:27 PM

I bet the librarians are still too afraid of being investigated under the Patriot Act. Something like this doesn’t concern them.

JDwinston on August 12, 2009 at 10:46 PM

Of course, Google never allowed the Chinese to censor them.

Sam_I_Am on August 12, 2009 at 10:47 PM

“when it came between that and blood on my hands, there was no question.”

Ah, I love it.

I don’t want to offend them by publishing a cartoon, but I guess they won’t be offended if I say that they are blood-thirsty savages who will be incited to violence because of a cartoon.

reaganaut on August 12, 2009 at 11:01 PM

Only a bunch of PhDs could be so hopelessly, hypocritically stupid.

bgoldman on August 12, 2009 at 11:07 PM

Gutless wonders. for all the whining and posturing about academic freedom, the majority of people at most colleges and universities are simply pathetic.

Way to go, Yale Press. When do you plan to start having book burnings?

Spineless and shameless.

Orson Buggeigh on August 12, 2009 at 11:42 PM

As a librarian, I am AMAZED by this. What are the librarians at Yale saying, I wonder?

Rosmerta on August 12, 2009 at 10:27 PM

I suspect the academic librarians, like their Ph.D. colleagues at Yale, are trying to explain that academic freedom only applies to making nasty remarks about Christians, social conservatives, and Republican politicians, not Moslem fundamentalists.

Orson Buggeigh on August 12, 2009 at 11:45 PM

So, now Yale has made it official — it is no longer an academic institution devoted to research and facts.

Given the political science and other graduates we’ve seen come from there, this is not a surprise, just a confirmation.

AZfederalist on August 12, 2009 at 11:55 PM

I suspect the academic librarians, like their Ph.D. colleagues at Yale, are trying to explain that academic freedom only applies to making nasty remarks about Christians, social conservatives, and Republican politicians, not Moslem fundamentalists.

Orson Buggeigh on August 12, 2009 at 11:45 PM

Well, I guess in fairness to Yale, Christians, social conservatives, and Republican politicians do not in general make death threats, blow themselves or buildings up, or commit other general mayhem. … and, since Yale is a gun-free zone, the only people armed are going to be the PO’d moslems. So, from a strictly pragmatic viewpoint, once you’ve emasculated yourself and your student population as Yale has done, the only smart thing to do is to capitulate to the terrorists.

AZfederalist on August 12, 2009 at 11:58 PM

I don’t know why Yale is being picked on. Do I need all the fingers on one hand to count the publishers in North America who were not balless cowards at the time of their premiere and ever since?

Showing respect for Islam is the mantra to keep you from being blown up by the half dozen disenfranchised grievance mongers. You know the drivel and drill. American halls of officialdom seem to be toast. All foreign policy for things Islamic has been outsourced to Muslims. Not a real good idea from the start. I don’t know how you can escape that hole now.

BL@KBIRD on August 13, 2009 at 12:00 AM

I’ll wager that there is a collection of universities to avoid being published.

HotWeaver on August 13, 2009 at 12:31 AM

Somewhere, some liberal is reading “The God Delusion” wondering why conservatives are so intolerant towards Islam. Always pushing that pesky freedom of speech and those nasty cartoons.

jhffmn on August 13, 2009 at 12:36 AM

And the Left and RINO’s hate Palin because she doesn’t have a degree from Yale or Hawhvard….

lovingmyUSA on August 13, 2009 at 3:12 AM

Read Mark Steyn ‘America Alone’ to see how far this kind of dhimmitude has gone in Europe.One of the scariest books I’ve read on the subject(and the best).

ntmaloney on August 13, 2009 at 3:23 AM

I could say a great deal concerning the cowardice in Academia nowadays concerning the tolerance of the “stealth jihad”.
I’ll just leave my tagline from my posts at Jihad Watch where I have learned a great deal from Mr. Robert Spencer and the many informed posters there about the slavery that is islam and the threat it poses to free men.

islam is a lie and
Truth is killing it.

Army Brat on August 13, 2009 at 3:37 AM

Western academia ceased to exist several decades ago when they closed their minds to anything but leftist ideology. This is reprehensible but not surprising, not surprising at all.

johnsteele on August 13, 2009 at 4:40 AM

For all you art lovers, here’s a few apropos images from Julius Zimmerman. (mild content warning)

Splashman on August 13, 2009 at 5:23 AM

Whoops…HotAir, you should consider editing a possibly embarrassing error in you use of the English language…especially when you are critiquing academia:

Your statement reads:
This is the scholarship equivalent of Yale donning a burqa…

It should read:
This is the scholarly equivalent of Yale donning a burqa…

It’s a great quote, either way, which I used on my blog…but correcting it will avoid giving the appeasers something else to focus on.
Best,
Bruce
http://www.BrucesMidEastSoundbites.Blogspot.com

baruchadam on August 13, 2009 at 7:31 AM

Since Yale is the gayest school in the Ivies, as it acknowledges itself, maybe it figured it was already in enough trouble with the Islamofascists.

Attila (Pillage Idiot) on August 13, 2009 at 7:41 AM

Next up for the Yale University Press:

“The Colorful Paintings of Leonardo da Vinci”
- without the paintings.

“A Photo Tour of the Historical Castles of France” – without any photos.

“A Collection of Playboy Playmate Foldouts” – without the Playboy Playmate foldout photos.

albill on August 13, 2009 at 7:43 AM

Of course, Google never allowed the Chinese to censor them.

Sam_I_Am on August 12, 2009 at 10:47 PM

So you’re saying that every web page that can be found through Google is a fraud and everything on Wikipedia is a lie no matter how politically neutral? In that case go to a library and consult a print edition of the Encyclopedia Britannica or better yet check with the Library of Congress. I’ve never seen somebody go to such absurd lengths to avoid addressing a valid point.

aengus on August 13, 2009 at 7:53 AM

LOL.

this reminds me of something i read forever ago about a book that portrayed indians (“native americans”) as people with blonde hair and blue eyes who didn’t kill animals or grow crops.

somehow reality was offensive.

CarpalTunnel on August 13, 2009 at 8:02 AM

Spineless.

I read last week in “World” magazine (one of my favorite magazines) that a museum in Scotland recently put an open Bible on display and encouraged homosexual, lesbian, etc. folks to write on its pages how offended they are by scriptural warnings against their sexual proclivities.

More than one person has noted that a copy of the Koran is not receiving the same treatment, even though homosexuality also is forbidden in Islam.

Spineless. Moral cowards.

KyMouse on August 13, 2009 at 8:24 AM

Piss Christ is OK, though. I would dare say it was applauded by the fools at Yale.

allstonian on August 13, 2009 at 8:55 AM

I see that aengus is now approving motion picture censorship.

ebrown2 on August 13, 2009 at 9:06 AM

I see that aengus is now approving motion picture censorship.

ebrown2 on August 13, 2009 at 9:06 AM

Wow, is everyone here on drugs?

Here is Sam_I_Am’s original comment:

These maggots can try to get a toehold here, there’s only one law of this land, the Constitution. Everyone’s welcome to worship, but extremism is unacceptable. Censorship is extremism. This is America, not Afghanistan.

Sam_I_Am on August 12, 2009 at 9:54 PM

Then here is what I wrote:

What about the Production Code?

aengus on August 12, 2009 at 10:04 PM

I referred to an instance in 1930, which lasted almost 40 years, where the US government did use censorship on the grounds of public decency and it was not considered unconstitutional at the time.

I was expecting some kind of thoughful response e.g. “Obscenity laws should not be considered an exception to the First Amendment” or some such. Instead Sam_I_Am first refuses to believe that the Production Code ever existed – because the information appeared on Wikipedia which is not politically neutral as reagrds President Obama.

Then when I pointed out that a quick search on Google would produce millions of articles and web sites related to the Poduction Code Sam_I_Am refuses to believe any of it because Google censors web sites in China (does Sam_I_Am reside in China?) which amounts to saying that any internet source is untrustworthy.

When I then recommend two unimpeachale written sources Sam_I_Am can use to verify this information (the Encyclopedia Britannica and the Library of Congress) a second person called ebrown2 chimes in to say that I now approve motion picture censorship. It’s possible that ebrown2 has simply misread the thread but I suspect he is deliberately lying.

How to explain this strange series of evasions followed by a dishonest untruth about what I have said? My guess is that Sam_I_Am and ebrown2 are so discomfited by the fact that the US government did excerise censorship, prior to the era of modern liberalism and seemingly in harmony with the US Constitution, that they would rather use tactics of evasion and obfuscation than simply admit the truth and address the consequnces of it.

aengus on August 13, 2009 at 10:16 AM

Oh for the love of political correctness!

bobkat on August 12, 2009 at 9:52 PM

ALL PC is evil. Yale , it follows, is evil.

proconstitution on August 13, 2009 at 10:55 AM

Spineless. Moral cowards.

KyMouse on August 13, 2009

To the progressives, it is the essence of courage to stand firmly against those (Christians) who would never think to raise a finger against them.

SKYFOX on August 13, 2009 at 11:07 AM

The book should only be published in braille. At least then they could pretend to have an excuse.

Annar on August 13, 2009 at 5:45 PM

Lefties proudly flaunt their “bravery” whenever attacking Christian values, but cower like the timid, quivering, sniveling little sheep they are when it comes to confronting the most cruel, dispicable, despotic demon to slither over the face of the earth in the last one thousand four hundred years.

StimulateTHIS on August 13, 2009 at 8:54 PM

“If you know a right-wing academic or public intellectual, make sure to bring this item to his or her attention. Hopefully it’ll make them think twice about doing business with Yale in the future”.

What are the odds when over 80-90% of arts faculties are registered Dems? (Science faculties are somewhat better). Lone conservatives have to keep their beliefs hidden to get hired or receive advancement. Speaking out about something like this would be academic suicide. Note the 24 academics and diplomats consulted were UNANIMOUS in selling out the values of Western enlightenment.

To paraphrase, universities are now “islands of repression in a sea of (fast ebbing) freedom”. Marxist riddled professoriates are the first to grovel to a fellow totalitarianism.

Hopefully, there are enough Yale alumni who have grown up since they entered the real world and inflict financial pain on the sellouts by withholding contributions and telling them why.

tarkus on August 16, 2009 at 4:45 PM

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