The Transhumanist says that it is ok for people to make fun of Islam and in fact this should be encouraged. I disagree because that is really rude behavior and this is supposed to be a civilized society. I do not walk up to people and insult them so why do should I not be offended if same happens to me? Yes free speech is important and when I get offended by a rude insult then i will express that I am insulted and that too is free speech.
Still, Transhumanist says that humor will help lessen power of the mullahs over the people. This assumes that there is no self mocking humor in Islamic world. Well, look at what The Arabist says about a tv show in Saudi Arabia!
JEDDAH, 30 September 2006 — For years comedy has been used to satirize the state or society in the Arab world. It is said to be the only way to criticize the systems in the region without having to spend a night or two in lockups.
More than two decades have passed since Syrian icon Dareed Laham starred in his hit motion picture “The Border”. In the film, Laham criticized Arab-style bureaucracy in a production that has become a landmark for the modern history of political satire in the Middle East. Today, Arabs can get a little relief from the sometimes-frustrating realities of politics and society by watching “Tash Ma Tash,” which first appeared on Saudi TV during Ramadan 14 years ago.
"Tash Ma Tash" is somewhat of a phenomenon in the Middle East. It's one of the most widely viewed TV programs during the month of Ramadan, popular for its ascerbic attacks on the status quo. What's somewhat surprising (at least to those who have little knowledge of Saudi Arabs) is that it is a Saudi production, in Arabic, so clearly for domestic consumption.
One episode this year satirized the recruitment of terrorists, having the would-be terrorists compete in an "American Idol" type show. You can imagine how well that went down in some quarters.
Anyone who goes to Middle East can see for themselves that muslim world has very funny sense of humor. in fact sense of humor there is better than in America where everything funny is either about politics or sex.
it comes back to this simple ting: do you want good relations with someone? then don't be rude and insult them. Don't make excuses for such behavior, either.