The Danes did something stupid when they published cartoons depicting Muhammad, because they knew full well that any such depictions are inherently offensive to Muslims. Claiming equal treatment with other religions is nonsense. It’s a different line in Islam than it is in Christianity. The line for Christians would be more like depicting Jesus Christ as Mary Magdalene’s lover (a favorite over the years): artistic freedom to some, but patently offensive to others.
Reprinting the cartoons as some sort of solidarity statement was equally goofy, because it just pours gasoline on a fire.
Coming after the French riots and the European governments’ growing awareness of the rising alienation among ghettoized Muslim populations across the continent, this is just rubbing salt in wounds. “Fuck ‘em if they can’t take a joke” is an excellent bar room rejoinder, but it’s no way to encourage assimilation and the toleration of diversity in a civilization that’s frankly dying within because it does both so poorly.
To say the least, I disagree, but Professor Barnett puts this particular argument forward about as well as it can be put. The readers and commenters at his blog are generally giving him hell over it, too.
Thomas P.M. Barnett :: Weblog: Crying ‘Muhammad’ in crowded theater