It should be front-page news in every newspaper in the country: Seattle cartoonist Molly Norris has given up her job, her home, and even her identity because of death threats for Islamic supremacists. That Islamic jihadists can force an American citizen into hiding for exercising her freedom of speech is bad enough; that her cause has aroused only indifference from the media and the nation's leading officials is even worse.
Norris was a popular cartoonist for the Seattle Weekly. Her life changed forever a few months ago when she announced "Everybody Draw Mohammed Day" on Facebook. It was a lark, but with a serious point about violent threats and intimidation: if Islamic supremacists were threatening to murder European cartoonists Kurt Westergaard and Lars Vilks because of their cartoons of Muhammad, and anyone else who dared to draw him, then if everyone drew him, the thugs couldn't possibly kill us all, could they?
And now Norris herself has become a living illustration of how right her point was in the first place, and yet the political and media elites are not standing with her. "On the insistence of top security specialists at the FBI," the Seattle Weekly explained, "she is, as they put it, 'going ghost': moving, changing her name, and essentially wiping away her identity. She will no longer be publishing cartoons in our paper or in City Arts magazine, where she has been a regular contributor. She is, in effect, being put into a witness-protection program–except, as she notes, without the government picking up the tab."