In the wake of the new terrorist incident in London, one is left once again feeling helpless. What can we do to counter this sort of atrocity?
London is not new to bombings. There used to be the IRA. But then, at least, it had a clear purpose, and a clear demand. It was a demand that the UK leave Ireland. In the case of the ISIS and Al Qaeda attacks, there is no actual demand. “Get out of the Middle East”? The US was not there, when 9-11 happened. Other than Afghanistan, Obama pulled out; bombings intensified.
In the end, to radical Islamists, it is an unacceptable offense simply not to be Muslim. That makes you a “kaffir,” and properly to be slaughtered.
Under these circumstances, there is simply no path of appeasement available.
So how to respond?
Simply catching and punishing the criminal will not do it—obviously. These are usually suicide attacks. The perpetrator is expecting death; no penalty for getting caught is meaningful.
Those planning such attacks must somehow be shown that they do the opposite of what is intended.
Someone once suggested that, whenever a Muslim terrorist attack occurs, a mosque should be blown to rubble. Starting with the most prominent. We have the drones and missiles. We can time it for the middle of the night, so that casualties are limited.
I think that has possibilities, but I think it is misdirected, because it does real harm to innocent Muslims. As well as to some of the world’s shared heritage. I have another idea: cheaper, simpler, less destructive.
You remember that fad years back when cities were putting up fiberglass statues everywhere? I think it started with Chicago and cows. Then Toronto did moose, Dubai did camels, and on and on.
Obviously, these statues are not terribly expensive to produce.
I propose that whenever a terrorist attack occurs, for each resulting death, a fiberglass statue of a large pig be erected, with the nameplate “Muhammed” on the pedestal. On or near the site of the attack.
Nobody is harmed. No Muslim is harmed. It is just a pig named Muhammed.
Islamists will go crazy. Fine, if you are inclined to go crazy over it, that pretty much proves you are an Islamist of the sort who opposes our traditions of freedom of religion and freedom of speech. You have just carefully self-selected as an appropriate target for the insult.
Add closed-circuit cameras to catch anyone trying to smash the statues. They have self-identified as potential terrorists. Great. Now we know.
And for any pig that goes down, we put up two in its place.
Will honest, responsible Muslims also be offended? Only if they have not accepted our traditions—Christians put up with this kind of thing all the time. Even insisting on seeing the statues as religious is a matter of interpretation. It’s just a pig named Muhammed. We like pigs.
At the same time, if the intent of the terrorists is to glorify Islam, this makes their efforts counter-productive. The pigs go up in direct response. Moreover, they go up exactly where the terrorists have chosen to leave their own message—usually places of maximum publicity, like Westminster. So from now on, indefinitely, Westminster Bridge and the Houses of Parliament will be decorated, for all the tourists to see, with big brightly painted pigs named Muhammed.
This brings Islam into disrepute, you say? And who exactly, has brought Islam into disrepute? Isn’t this just a reminder of that fact? Isn’t this what they wanted? Doesn’t this just show what they did?
Picture three thousand big bright pigs in lower Manhattan.
It also sends the message: we will not be cowed. We will not adjust our own ideals to please Islam. We accept no blasphemy laws. We demand freedom of speech.
Who’s in? We can start a private fund. Perhaps it is best if governments can just shrug their shoulders when dealing with Muslim countries and say, “What can we do? It’s our tradition of freedom of speech.”
A good lesson in itself.