"G-string underwear [...] emblazoned with [a] picture of Buddha"
In the game Shogun - Total War, when you're visited by a Buddhist Emissary, he sometimes leaves with the words "May you come to Buddha's hand some day"...!
US online apparel outfit CafePress today dropped "G-string underwear and T-shirts for dogs* emblazoned with [a] picture of Buddha" after Thailand went ballistic at the outrage. According to Reuters, Thailand's Foreign Ministry spokesman Piriya Khempon yesterday said the products had "offended Thais and Buddhists" and duly …
Does this pet exploitation company also sell coats for pigs printed with verses of the Koran ? or how about Crucifix toilet brushes ?
Apart from finding the idea of fashion for pets ludicrous, the sort of stupid idea Americans are world reknowned for, using religious imagery on commercial products is insensitive and disrespectful.
This is just reinforcing the USAs image as totally self-centred and ignorant of other countries beleifs and values. Building "museums to creationism" whilst mocking other faiths.
Unfortunately, the g-strings are for regular human girls, not for doggies..
The site actually prints t-shirts, panties and whatnot with whatever text or image you want. Here's g-string with jesus:
And pic of the offending buddha:
If I remember correctly - and I really can't be bothered to do an in-depth investigation on their site - is just a place that does clothing, cards, etc. (primarily T-Shirts) with any design you like on it. Users just chuck up their own designs that other people can then buy through CafePress and the designer gets a cut... it's hardly a "pet exploitation" company - it's just that amongst all the other stuff there happens to be 1 tiny section where you can get T-Shirts for dogs.
If CoF hadn't already done it you could create a T-Shirt that says "Dead girls don't say no" with an _appropriate_ picture... I don't see how this shows that the whole of the US is ignorant of everyone else's beliefs and values, the person that designed the shirt, maybe.
Don't make out that Europeans are any better either, wasn't it a Dame who got himself into hot water by depicting Mohammed? Look at any Islamic art, it's largely geometric in nature, Islamic religious art is non-pictorial.
Re The offending underwear - the general guidelines for peaceful co-existence are that we are all essentially free to do as we please, as long as we do not harm or offend others. Using any religious image in such a way is bound to offend. This is not about American ignorance specifically. It is about the general ignorance of the commercial world and its consumers. Much as 'public interest' is used to justify intrusion into people's private lives by media, so 'freedom' is used to justify almost anything. The world is a varied and finely-balanced place. It is not helped by clumsy ignorance, of which this is an example.
Re John L. Lee - I can only assume you are yet another shit-stirring troll, and that I have bitten.... but in case what you said is in any way based on a genuine opinion I must ask you to educate yourself before beginning to type. Generalisations such as yours are utterly illogical, offensive and pointless. May I ask on what grounds you make your assertions?
I wasn't aware that a stipulation of a person's freedom is "as long as you don't offend anyone." Freedom itself is offensive to oppressors, so really, that argument is completely bogus.
I have the freedom to mock your religious figurehead if I so choose. You too, have the right to mock mine. Am I going to throw a hissy-fit over "Buddy Jesus"?? No. Why? Because I'm not an oversensitive jackass.
Yes, it really is THAT simple.
Thailand should quit crying and get over their self-important asses.
...and don't even get me started on the Islamic world. Let's see, which is more reprehensible...an artist drawing a picture of Mohammad, or people committing murder by blowing themselves up in bus stations and restaurants??? Can we drop the double standard? Please??
There are limits on our freedoms and these include those that maintain 'general welfare' and 'morality'. I would say that that would include offending other religions under certain circumstances:
Universal Declaration of Human Rights Article 29 (2): In the exercise of his rights and freedoms, everyone shall be subject only to such limitations as are determined by law solely for the purpose of securing due recognition and respect for the rights and freedoms of others and of meeting the just requirements of morality, public order and the general welfare in a democratic society.
Underpinning all our rights is the notion of tolerance and brotherhood:
Universal Declaration of Human Rights Article 1: All human beings...should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood
I guess the point I was trying to make in my post was that it would do everyone a huge favour if people stopped and thought about their actions before blundering on. I accept that we all have the right to mock each other's dearly-held beliefs and revered figureheads, but this is not very conducive to peaceful co-existence. In the mostly secular West we are largely ignorant of the strength of religious feeling on a daily basis.
However, this is the way of the world, so Thailand probably should just accept that a large part of the world doesn't care for their beliefs, but it is hardly in keeping with the spirit of brotherhood that underpins all our rights.
Also, don't overlook the fact that murderers and bombers constitute a tiny minority of the world's religious. I agree with your point that killing is far more reprehensible than drawing a picture of a prophet (this is what you and I believe, however, and nothing makes it intrinsically correct) but I fail to see on whose part it indicates the existence of double standards.