After the January 2015 massacre by Muslim jihadists of 12 staffers of the Paris satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, the New York Times was one of several major print media that refused to reprint a Hebdo cartoon of Muhammad.
In an email, a NYT spokesperson explained why:
Under Times standards, we do not normally publish images or other material deliberately intended to offend religious sensibilities. After careful consideration, Times editors decided that describing the cartoons in question would give readers sufficient information to understand today’s story.
Notwithstanding its professed standards of not publishing images that “deliberately intend to offend religious sensibilities,” on May 29, 2015, in a Scott Reyburn article on the sale of Chris Ofili’s controversial painting “The Holy Virgin Mary,” which shows the Virgin Mary clotted with elephant dung against a porn-collage background, the same New York Times saw fit to publish a photograph of the painting that is offensive to Christians, especially Catholics.