In the USA the case of Bill Hobbs has become a cause célèbre for the Right.
In February, as part of his defence of Jyllands-Posten’s decision to publish anti-Muslim caricatures, Hobbs invited readers of his weblog to “exercise your right to free expression by drawing pictures of Islam’s Prophet Mohammed”. As his own contribution to this worthy cause, Hobbs posted a stick drawing of the Prophet holding a bomb. The cartoon was entitled “Mohammed Blows”.
In response to a (Christian) critic who accused him of showing “distasteful insensitivity to people of other faiths”, Hobbs wrote: “I am insensitive toward religions that have a large number of adherents who are running around blowing stuff up and threatening to kill non-believers over cartoons. Yes, I plead insensitivity. I would prefer my children not grow up in a world governed by Islamofacists.”
As a result of the furore, Hobbs resigned from his job as an editor and news writer on the marketing and communications staff at Belmont University in Nashville, the assumption being that he jumped before he was pushed. Hobbs was immediately adopted as a hero by right-wing bloggers in the US. And now Daniel Pipes has waded into the fray. According to Pipes, writing at FrontPage Magazine, “this firing in Tennessee amounts to a capitulation to Islamic law. Each surrender means the Shari‘a will move inexorably forward.”
I used to think that Pipes was perhaps marginally less barking than Robert Spencer of Jihad Watch, but these days it’s becoming increasingly difficult to tell them apart.