Accusations that Everybody Draw Mohammed Day is all just hate speech are baseless. Let’s not forget that over a hundred people died in 2005 because someone depicted Mohammed in a satirical cartoon. And Western media did in fact choose to censor itself and trade in on our most fundamental values out of fear of violence retaliation. And now millions of citizens of Pakistan are having their freedoms trampled on to accommodate the violent fanatics as well.
This is squarely an issue of defending free speech against those who threaten violence and murder against those who don’t play by their rules. And many are indeed willing to make good on those threats. Demanding respect with a sword brings not unity but tyranny.
As Frederick Douglass once said:
Those who profess to favor freedom, and yet depreciate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground. They want rain without thunder and lightning. They want the ocean without the awful roar of its waters. This struggle may be a moral one; or it may be a physical one; or it may be both moral and physical; but it must be a struggle! Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did, and it never will. Find out just what people will submit to, and you have found out the exact amount of injustice and wrong which will be imposed upon them; and these will continue until they are resisted with either words or blows, or with both. The limits of tyrants are prescribed by the endurance of those whom they oppress.
I go more in depth on this issue in an article I wrote for Examiner here. Please check it out and spread it around.