Archive for August, 2009

German Muslims furious at claim that Mohammed knew nothing about football

The Iranian Islamic Republic News Agency reports that Muslims in Germany have decided to take offence to the official club song of a Bundesliga football team.

<b>Mohammed knew fuck-all about football</b>: But he supports Schalke 04 anyway, apparently

Mohammed knew fuck-all about football: But he supports Schalke 04 anyway, apparently

The Central Council of Muslims has deemed that a verse in FC Schalke 04’s “Blau und Weiß, wie lieb ich Dich” (Blue and White, How I love you) “did not show sufficient respect towards Prophet Mohammad (PBUH).”

Here is the verse:

Mohammed war ein Prophet
Der vom Fußballspielen nichts versteht
Doch aus all der schönen Farbenpracht
Hat er sich das Blau und Weiße ausgedacht

Which the club’s site helpfully translates, with “no claim to lyrical accuracy,”

Mohammed was a prophet who
Knew nothing of football, that much is true
But of all the colours shining bright
The ones he thought up were our royal blue and white

Muslim fans of the team have threatened a boycott unless the verse is changed, and, according to the IRNA, the club is taking them seriously. It plans to hire an “Islamic expert” in investigate charges of blasphemy.

The song was written in 1924. Who says Muslims are quick to take offence?

(Hat tip: Islam in Europe)

UPDATE: (14:45) Earth Times has more quotes, and the allegation that “threats have been expressed on various internet forums.”

A club spokesman says they have received about 350 emails:

We are taking the situation very seriously and are in contact with police and state protection institutions.

Burhan Kesici, general secretary of the Islamic Council in Germany, told the Turkish language service of the GPA:

It is not right that the prophet is mentioned in a club anthem. I would wish that out of respect for the Muslims in this country the Mohammed-stanza is not sung.

Earth Times suggests that the reason German Muslims have taken 95 years to be offended by the club’s song is that they have become “more sensitive” since the murder of an Egyptian woman by a racist in a Dresden courtroom. The general secretary of the Central Council of Muslims in Germany, Aiman Mazy, believes “many Muslims don’t feel secure any more” after the incident.

So, naturally, they react by being more vocally intolerant and demanding of respect. Good thinking, German Muslims.

Cornish church thinks blasphemy law still applies

According to the BBC, legal action is being taken against a photographer who took some “exotic” shots on location at the St Michael Penkivel Church near Truro.
The solicitor’s letter sent to Andy Craddock on behalf of the church defines “blasphemy” as

publication of contemptuous, reviling, scurrilous or ludicrous matter relating to God, Jesus Christ, the Bible or the formularies of the Church of England.

Our clients believe that a number of these photographs constitute blasphemous material.

Perhaps it would have been more responsible of the solicitors to inform their clients that, their belief notwithstanding, there no longer exists a blasphemy law in the UK. It was abolished in 2008.

Still, outrage is outrage, and Andrew Yates, the priest in charge of the church, said:

No permission was ever sought by or given to Mr Craddock by the priest-in-charge or by the churchwardens for these photographs.

I am deeply shocked that Mr Craddock could consider taking action that will inevitably cause great offence.

Jeremy Dowling, a spokesman for the Diocese of Truro, added his tuppence worth:

The Church deplores the use of sacred space in this way. Whether he’s gone in there legally or illegally he is using the setting for an entirely improper purpose. By anyone’s reasonable standards of decency this is beyond the pale.

It looks like it may take a while for our nation’s churchmen adjust to this new reality they find themselves inhabiting, where they no longer enjoy legal protection from being shocked.

You can see Craddock’s entire “At Church” series here.

UPDATE: (7 Sept) The church has dropped the case.