France’s ban on religious headgear goes too far

This article was originally published in The Clarion Call.

On April 11, France became the first country in Europe to ban the hijab, the veil that some Muslim women wear to cover their faces according to religious custom.

The law, passed last fall by the French Senate by a near-unanimous vote of 246 to one, prohibits any clothing that covers the face to be worn in public.

Though controversial, the measure is popular in France, where anti-Muslim sentiment runs high amid fears of an increasingly Islamic Europe. Women in violation of the ban are subject to a 150-euro fine (about $217) and a mandatory “citizenship course.”

Perhaps those who are in favor of stripping their fellow citizens of the right to wear whatever they want and freely practice their religion (about three quarters of the French population according to polling) are the ones in need of a refresher course on citizenship. Continue reading →

Bigotry against Muslims has reached a new low

This article was originally published in The Clarion Call.

All summer, we as a nation were subjected to much manufactured outrage over the Park 51 Muslim community center set to be built in lower Manhattan, a few blocks away from the former site of the World Trade Center towers.

The vast majority of New Yorkers weren’t against it. It was established over and over that the owners of the site (which now is home to a derelict Burlington Coat Factory) have every right to build whatever they please on their property. Feisal Abdul Rauf, the New York City imam who would lead the new community center, has been demonized in the right-wing media as a terrorism-connected monster. But he was quickly revealed to be a Muslim leader with stellar moderate bona fides.

To the people protesting against Park 51, none of this matters. Continue reading →

The Religion of Peace

Click to embiggen. Originally published in The State News, Michigan State University’s student newspaper.

Blind Eye

Click to embiggen. Originally published in The State News, Michigan State University’s student newspaper.

Wichman

Click to embiggen. Originally published in The State News, Michigan State University’s student newspaper.

This is one of the only cartoons I’ve ever drawn that was pulled from publication. The cartoon is in reference to an MSU professor named Indrek Wichman who sent an email telling Muslim students to leave the country. The bomb-head element recalls the infamous cartoon depiction of Muhammad with a bomb for a turban. The State News apparently thought my reference to the controversial Danish cartoon would cause Muslims to burn the office down or something.

Mideast Peace Garden

Click to embiggen. Originally published in The State News, Michigan State University’s student newspaper.

Sowing the Seeds of Discord

Click to embiggen. Originally published in The State News, Michigan State University’s student newspaper.