Monday, September 27, 2004

I Just Don't get The "Cat"!

I remember when Salmon Rushdie's book The Satanic Verses was released. The news of the reponse to the book back then wasn't fully appreciated or understood, as the state the world is in today attests to.
I recall the most intense news item, maybe the only way the story reached into homes of American families, was when the Ayatollah Khomieni of Iran put a 2 million dollar bounty on Mr. Rushdie's head and called for his death.
OK...That got my attention. But I must admit I had no concept of the "hidden" size of the unrest. It was titanic! I can say that now, because...well just look at what's happening in the world now.
Here's where I did get emotionally and intellectually involved. A singer back then, who made me wish all radio transmissions would cease for 5 minutes when one of his 2 or 3 hit records was on, named Cat Stevens, came out in support of Khomieni and actually said Rushdie should die. Quietly, to non-Cat follow-his-every-move music lovers, Cat Stevens had converted to Islam and had undergone a metamorphus unbeknownst to 99% of the Western World. Also he had changed his name to Yusuf Islam. Which, I have to tell ya, really made the Cat Stevens listening experience even more unbearable.
Here is where, I guess I should call him Yusuf Islam, stood in 1989: Islam fully supported the Ayatollah's declaration. Called a fatwa, it called for Rushdie's death and 2 million dollar bounty. Here is what Cat Stevens said at that time:
"The Qu'ran makes it clear if someone defames the Prophet, then he must die." Suffering through his songs "Moon Shadow", "Peace Train" and one called "Father And Son" absolutly stunned me when I heard this.
Well, now, I assumed I wouldn't have to listen to "Moon Shadow" or anything else by The Cat after that bomb shell.
But to my amazement, puzzlement, bewilderment, all the other "ments" I was all too aware that the media kept playing his music! In the 21st Century I would still hear "Moon Shadow" and was bewildered as to why he was still being "propped" with royalties from American broadcasting companies! Every time "Moon Shadow" would come over the airwaves I would actually get angry and frustrated at not having a way to ask these folks just what the hell they were doing. Don't they realise this man called for the death of another human being? For writing a BOOK, no less! But on it went. "Here's an oldie from WIMNUTZ, "Moon Shadow."
EVERY time it hit me in the heart, hard. When the media ignorance of the scope of this "artist's" stand on the order of humanity is so alien to the concept of the music being played and that these music programmers and radio station owners would continue, like sheep, playing this drivel. Drivel of a self professed believer in the killing of a person for writing what that person believed!

And here he is again! Speaking with his British accent, wooing the "journalists" with his declarations of being misunderstood! That he really didn't "say" it per se. That it's written in the Qu'aran. He said it! And he meant it!
Where do you think these royalties went? I believe to finance the fatwa. Israel says he donates thousands to Hamas and God knows what other groups. Tonight, September 27, 2004, Peter Jennings, again I believe, not fully understanding America, profiled him on ABC News Report in a conciliatory manner in relatonship to his being taken off a jet-liner heading for the United States. As if the United States Government were acting like the keystone kops. I JUST DON'T GET IT!
Sure, Yusuf Islam gives royalties to charity. Al Capone and John Gotti gave thousands and thousands of dollars to charity. This makes him ok?, safe to trust?, with what's going on today?
Yusuf Islam has been denied entry to Israel! I wonder why. Check out the Senate hearings he was involved with in the 90s and you can read his quotes of how evil The Jews are. Israel is very aware of who's a threat. Here in America? Why our media say [sic]Come on in and sing "Moon Shadow" for us.


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