Originally published in The Baltimore Sun
As an Ahmad Muslim, I believe Islam condemns terrorism and that there is no room for any violence in the name of blasphemy. The Qur’an constantly exhorts people to think while also telling Muslims to ignore the ignorant and provocative, not harm them.
The Holy Prophet Muhammad faced insults and ridicule throughout his life yet never punished anyone for it even when that ridicule led to violence and the killing of his followers.
The cartoonist who drew the caricatures of the Holy Prophet should know that free speech requires responsibility. That is why there are anti-hate laws in many countries.
The Holy Prophet is beloved by more than a billion Muslims worldwide, and an attack on him is an attack on them.
Such senseless provocation only alienates Muslims. While not all will turn to extremism, the rest will find it harder to integrate into society.
Muslims and non-Muslims should come together respectfully to understand each other’s values and beliefs instead of resorting to violence and senseless killing or provocative, abusive speech. This will lead to long-lasting peace and harmony in society.