The Life & Times of an Auteur.

Commentary on Pop Culture, and maybe creating some of my own.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Terrorism Works...

So, Comedy Central, once again, showed just how gutless and spineless they really are. If you thought last night's bleeping of Mohammad's name was an intentional joke from Matt Stone and Trey Parker, think again.

As some of you may know, Matt and Trey started another Mohammad plotline. Some militant Muslims then started making death threats, and referenced the murder of Theo Van Gogh. Matt and Trey stuck to their guns and then... Comedy Central pussed out.


I will repeat this. Comedy Central has proven to these monsters that terrorism works. The episode is still not streaming on the official site, and Matt and Trey posted the following statement:

In the 14 years we've been doing South Park we have never done a show that we couldn't stand behind. We delivered our version of the show to Comedy Central and they made a determination to alter the episode. It wasn't some meta-joke on our part. Comedy Central added the bleeps. In fact, Kyle's customary final speech was about intimidation and fear. It didn't mention Muhammad at all but it got bleeped too. We'll be back next week with a whole new show about something completely different and we'll see what happens to it.

Well... I don't care what anyone says. Here's Mohammad:

Bomb me.

Fatwah me.

Jihad me.

My name is Greg Bishansky, and I'm NOT afraid of you.


  1. The sad thing is that South Park already did an episode about this exact same topic. Way to go people, why don't you just ring up Osama and tell him you surrender already?

  2. I'm not a huge fan of South Park (it can be pretty funny, but is generally too preachy for my tastes), but I agree with most of what you said above. Then again, while Matt and Trey have the right to speak their minds freely without government interference, Comedy Central also has the right not to play material they deem offensive. Granted, CC plays a lot of offensive material, but if they judged this cartoon to cross the line, it's equally their right to pull it. Free speech can be abused. I'm not saying mentioning Muhammad should be illegal, but context is important. If they're showing it just to offend people (which seems like something they'd do), then I'm not particularly impressed. Now, I defend people's right to say things even when I disagree with them, but I still think people shouldn't be deliberately, publicly offensive unless there's a point to it. To take an extreme example, Fred Phelps has the right to say American soldiers' deaths are God's punishment for tolerating gays, but that doesn't mean he should do it. I guess I'd have to see the episode to decide whether it has redeeming value, but sometimes I think they're deliberately stirring up controversy for no other reason than because they like pissing people off. They seem to think anyone who has a strong opinion is wrong, and the way they hit everyone regardless of the merit of their opinions seems like real life trolling.

  3. Rob> While I agree with you that in principle the people who own Comedy Central have the right to air or not air whatever they please, I tend to side with Greg on this one.

    Comedy Central didn't pull this episode because they themselves had some moral objection to it. They did it because some psychopath threatened to start killing people if he didn't get his own way. I haven't seen the episode in question so I can't really critique it, but know matter how stupid, tasteless or offensive, it doesn't give anyone the right to commit murder.

    The whole point of terrorism is to use fear and violence to impose your will on society at large. The people who made this threat are going to treat CC's decision as a victory, as vindication, as proof that the enemy is weak willed and unwilling to defend himself.

    The real question here isn't whether or not you think Matt and Trey should be allowed say nasty things about Mohammad, it's whether you're willing to live in a world where society lets it's self be dictated to by a handful of fanatics with bombs.

  4. If that's the case, then I agree. Like I said, I haven't heard much of this issue, so I was guessing about a lot of it. If it's based on principle, that's simply a difference of opinion. If it's cowardice, then there's a problem. And given the material Comedy Central does air (see Drawn Together, for instance, or what about South Park's own scorn towards Scientology or Catholicism or, I'm sure, any number of other religions), it's hard to accept that any high-minded principle is in play. Okay, I'm convinced. It's pretty pathetic.