Online petition asks Wikipedia to remove pictures of Muhammad

From the International Herald Tribune:

An article about the Prophet Muhammad in the English-language Wikipedia has become the subject of an online protest in the last few weeks because of its representations of Muhammad, taken from medieval manuscripts.

In addition to numerous e-mail messages sent to Wikipedia.org, an online petition cites a prohibition in Islam on images of people. The petition has more than 80,000 “signatures,” though many who submitted them to ThePetitionSite.com remained anonymous.

“We have been noticing a lot more similar sounding, similar looking e-mails beginning mid-January,” said Jay Walsh, a spokesman for the Wikimedia Foundation in San Francisco.

A Frequently Asked Questions page explains the site’s polite but firm refusal to remove the images: “Since Wikipedia is an encyclopedia with the goal of representing all topics from a neutral point of view, Wikipedia is not censored for the benefit of any particular group.”

They’re objecting to pictures like this from the Wiki entry:


“15th century illustration in a copy of a manuscript by Al-BÄ«rÅ«nÄ«, depicting Muhammad preaching the Qur’ān in Mecca.”

How Long Was Bill Murray’s Character Stuck in Groundhog Day

Danny Rubin, the screenwriter for Groundhog Day, on how long Phil was stuck in Punxsutawney.

My original intent was that the length of time needn’t be specific, just terribly long, and in my mind, more than one lifetime. That was in fact the whole point of the original experiment, the one I hoped to play out via comedic dramatization: if a person could live long enough would that person fundamentally change? The clarity of the experiment would come from the huge exaggeration of time. He would have to live longer than a person is supposed to live, more than one lifetime. The repetition part was how I got to the immortality.

I know that I have been quoted as having originally intended for Phil to have lived “ten thousand years”, a time-frame with Buddhist overtones. I find that so incredibly cool that I put no effort into disputing it. But it’s not true. For me, any lifetime for Phil longer than one would have sufficed, and even so, that statistic never had to leave my head. As long as the audience understood it to be a very, very long time, it never had to become specific.

And I loved this part:

The studio had a note: He’s there too long. He can’t repeat the day so many times. Peoples’ heads would explode. The studio solution: Two weeks.

(via Gerry Canavan)

Izola Shower Curtains

Thanks so much to Neil from Izola Shower Curtains for sending me a shower curtain that he designs and sells (Yeah, that’s right. Bloggers get free stuff! You didn’t think I just blogged for your entertainment did you?) There are a variety of different designs but he had me at the Vegas one.

Izola offers fresh and sophisticated shower curtains that incorporate the work of groundbreaking artists, bold patterns and iconic global destinations. If you don’t find what you are looking for just let us know and check back. We are constantly adding new products to help you achieve the look you want.

Daily Dose of Ingersoll

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The real Bible is not the work of inspired men, nor prophets, nor apostles, nor evangelists, nor of Christs. Every man who finds a fact, adds, as it were, a word to this great book. It is not attested by prophecy, by miracles or signs. It makes no appeal to faith, to ignorance, to credulity or fear. It has no punishment for unbelief, and no reward for hypocrisy. It appeals to man in the name of demonstration. It has nothing to conceal. It has no fear of being read, of being contradicted, of being investigated and understood. It does not pretend to be holy, or sacred; it simply claims to be true. It challenges the scrutiny of all, and implores every reader to verify every line for himself. It is incapable of being blasphemed. This book appeals to all the surroundings of man. Each thing that exists testifies of its perfection. The earth, with its heart of fire and crowns of snow; with its forests and plains, its rocks and seas; with its every wave and cloud; with its every leaf and bud and flower, confirms its every word, and the solemn stars, shining in the infinite abysses, are the eternal witnesses of its truth.

Robert Green Ingersoll – “Heretics and Hericies”(1874)