"Everybody Draw Mohammed Day" Draws Facebook Support, Controversy 0/5 rating Print ArticleThursday, May 20 2010
An online protest against censorship by a Seattle-based cartoonist has morphed into a Facebook firestorm, boycotts and death threats.
Last month, Molly Norris invited others to submit drawings of the Prophet Mohammed, naming today, May 20th, as "Everybody Draw Mohammed Day." Norris was upset over Comedy Central's decision to censor a "South Park" episode that was to have depicted Mohammed in a bear costume after an Islamic extremist website threatened the show's creators.
In protest to art censorship, Norris created posters with the image of Mohammad as a teacup, a box of pasta and a domino.
She then declared May 20th as "Everybody Draw Mohammed Day." Quickly, her idea went viral, prompting a number of Facebook pages in both support and protest.
By Wednesday, more than 41-thousand people had voiced their approval on a Facebook page, but more than 56-thousand had joined another Facebook page opposing to the event.
Norris' idea spawned death threats and prompted a court order in Pakistan to block parts of both Facebook and YouTube until May 31st because Muslims consider any depiction of Mohammed blasphemy.
Norris has now backed away from the cause, but she says at least the controversy sparked a discussion about the slippery slope of censorship.