Well, it’s official: Molly Norris, the Seattle artist who responded to the recent South Park Muhammed controversy by proposing an “Everybody Draw Muhammed Day,” has been pronounced the target of a death fatwa by Islamic cleric Anwar al-Awlaki.
We knew this was coming. The world is painfully aware that the murderous rage of Islamists is on a hair trigger, and that “insulting” their prophet Muhammed qualifies as a capital offense. And now Norris has been convicted and sentenced.
Her crime was to leap to the defense of free speech. She initially reacted to Comedy Central’s censorship of South Park’s satirical depiction of Muhammed thusly:
As a cartoonist I just felt so much passion about what had happened I wanted to kind of counter Comedy Central’s message they sent about feeling afraid.
But once she realized that popular support for, and participation in, “Everybody Draw Muhammed Day” was spinning beyond her control and drawing her into the sights of Islamic anger, Norris backpedaled faster than Lance Armstrong:
I apologize to people of Muslim faith and ask that this ‘day’ be called off.
Too late. As President Obama is finding out, apologies do nothing to assuage Islamist bloodlust. Writing in the new English-language al Qaeda magazine, al-Awlaki, the cleric who encouraged the Ft. Hood shooting and other terror plots, damns Norris and eight others, all European cartoonists: