Never underestimate the ability of offended Muslims to make trouble. My friend Florian called my attention to a piece in the Austrian press about, of all things, the Lego game “Jabba the Hutt’s castle” (below).
Well, right off the bat you can see the problem here: the castle looks just like the Hagia Sofia mosque in Istanbul! OMG! So the Turkish community in Austria is threatening legal action for this obvious calumny against religion.
The photo below shows the clear resemblance as descried by the offended Turkish people (I am assuming from the news report that the offense is largely based on a perceived insult to Islam). Since I can read and speak German a bit, I’ve translated the words in the photo below (click to enlarge).
Top right: “OBJECTION. What is going on with Lego parents regarding Christmas gifts for their kids? PEDAGOGICAL EXPLOSIVES?
First arrow from the minaret: “The muezzin as a criminal with and axe and machine gun.”
Arrow from the dome: “1:1: the same roof as the mosque.”
Arrow from circle in lower left corner: “Machine gun in the minaret?”
Bottom right: “Star Wars game for children 9-14 years.”
I don’t have time for a full translation of the Austrian complaint, so I just put some of it through Google Translate and touched it up a bit. Here’s what’s going down:
On closer inspection, the fully assembled Lego house and the associated tower are seen to be a 1:1 imitation of the Hagia Sophia in Istanbul or the Jami al-Kabir Mosque in Beirut and a minaret. The figure in the tower (Gamorreanische guard) resembles a prayer leader (as a criminal with an axe and machine gun!). In the tower there are several machine guns. Could the model also resemble not just a mosque, but also Carolingian Cathedral, the Pantheon in Rome, a Catholic Church, a Hindu or Buddhist temple, or a Tibetan palace?
Indeed, Jabba’s Palace in Star Wars was also peopled by (pseudo-Buddhist) monks. In short, the model resembles several religious buildings, whether church, mosque, synagogue or temple. The terrorist Jabba the Hut likes to smoke a hookah and kill his victims. It is clear that the figure of the ugly villain Jabba and the whole scene exudes racial prejudice and vulgar insinuations against the Orientals and Asians, seeing them as sneaky and criminal personalities (slaveholders, leaders of criminal organizations, terrorists, criminals, murderers, human sacrifice).
Also frightening is the red and black devil grimacing on the top right of the box: an obvious signal that this game should not be under the tree on Christmas Eve. The Turkish cultural community of Austria reserves and legal action considered in Germany to DStGB § 300 sedition, in Austria by § 283 of the Criminal Code to constitute hate speech against Turkey and will file a complaint with the relevant prosecutor in the form of a statement of facts against LEGO. It constitutes an incitement in the Federal Republic of Germany, § 130 paragraph 1 of the Criminal Code defines as follows: Whoever acts in a manner that is likely to disturb the public peace by inciting hatred against a national, racial, religious or ethnic background of their group, against the population or against an individual because of his membership of a aforementioned group, or part of the population, or attacks or abuses the human dignity of others by attacking a subset of a population or an individual because of his membership of in that subset, or engages in malicious belittling and slandering of that group of individuals, can be punished with imprisonment from three months to five years.
OMG, they’re gonna send Lego to jail! Maybe he’ll occupy a cell next to the teddy bear named Mohamed.