The Sudanese police arrested a British schoolteacher and accused her of insulting Islam after she allowed her 7-year-old pupils to name a class teddy bear Muhammad, Sudanese officials said today.
According to BBC, Ms. Gibbons, 54, asked a seven-year-old girl to bring in a teddy bear and for her classmates to pick a name for it.
“They came up with eight names including Abdullah, Hassan and Muhammed,” Mr. Boulos said.
When it came time to vote, 20 out of 23 children choose Muhammad, one of the most common names in the Muslim word.
The article notes that if convicted of this "crime", Mrs. Gibbons faces punishment including lashes. The article also gets to the nub of the matter, somewhat unintentionally:
In Islam, insulting the Prophet Muhammad is considered a grave offense, and the law of northern Sudan, where Khartoum is located, makes this a crime.
Where is it written that "insulting the Prophet" is a "grave offense" ? Is it in the Qur'an? Hadith? Upon what jurisprudence is the law of Sudan based? Far from this law being based in Islam, it's actually invented without a single source of Islamic law to justify as source. The law of Sudan is, in effect, bida'a.
That is all beside the point, however. No rational person can consider naming a teddy bear "Mohammed" to be an insult. Especially given that Mohammed is the single most common name in the muslim world.