Tag Archives: islam

Drowning in a Bathtub

It’s been an interesting day on the personal responsibility front at the Beeb.

First, the coverage of the Koran burning protest protests:

President Hamid Karzai said the stunt had been an insult to Islam, while Indonesia’s president said it threatened world peace.

Who’s doing the violence? Who’s threatening world peace? The protesting Muslims. Sure, it’s provocative, but anyone protesting and turning to violence made a choice to do so. Since when are we all robots? Since when are we all victims?

Many of Friday’s protests in Afghanistan were held after worshippers emerged from mosques, following Eid prayers marking the end of Ramadan.

Demonstrators burned a US flag and chanted “Death to Christians”.

They want to kill all Christians because some are burning Korans (or rather, were going to burn them)? Who exactly is being extremist and provocative?

In an Eid message, President Karzai said: “We have heard that in the US, a pastor has decided to insult Korans. Now although we have heard that they are not doing this, we tell them they should not even think of it.

“By burning the Koran, they cannot harm it. The Koran is in the hearts and minds of one-and-a-half billion people. Insulting the Koran is an insult to nations.”

The president of Indonesia, the world’s most populous Muslim country, warned in a nationally televised address on Friday that Mr Jones’s plan threatened world peace.

In a speech marking the end of Ramadan, President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono said: “I’m of course aware of the reported cancellation of the deplorable act by Terry Jones. However, none of us can be complacent until such a despicable idea is totally extinguished.”

They shouldn’t even think of it? The idea is problematic? In other words, we’re talking about thought-crime here. Even to consider it is evil.

Now compare this to the reaction of to the Manhattan mosque proposal. Do we have masses protesting and suggesting all Muslims should be killed? Are protesters suggesting that such thinking should be “extinguish”?

And just how are we going to extinguish these thoughts? The most radical way would be to extinguish the thinkers. Surely that’s not what these protesters are thinking. Islam is a religion of peace. They don’t make threats.

In a related story, American Muslims talk of being warned by imams to keep their Eid celebrations low key.

Members throughout the area are being advised to keep their celebrations low-key and private.

Keep a low profile. Don’t offend anyone. With America in the midst of a debate about the literal and figurative place of Islam in society, this seems to be a time for caution.

But not everyone is happy about that.

But with rows over where and when it’s acceptable to build a mosque, and with a pastor threatening to burn the Koran in Florida, some of the worshippers here sound frustrated.

“It’s none of their business.”

“I think they should understand that just like they celebrate Christmas every year, we celebrate our Eid after fasting for a month and praying,” says 15-year-old Mim Sharna.

I think that’s good advice for those suggesting violence in return for the Koran burning protest. America is a free country; it’s none of their business, silly and even offensive as it may be.

Yet lest anyone think I’m suggesting that this “oh, it’s not our fault; they made us do it!” mentality resides only in the Muslim community at the moment, the last quote, also from BBC:

An ally of German Chancellor Angela Merkel says she will resign from a top party post after suggesting that Poland may have been as responsible as Hitler for the outbreak of World War II.

Erika Steinbach said Poland had mobilised its troops months before the Nazis invaded in September 1939.

Poland was massing troops, see? We were afraid we were about to be attacked, see? We were worried our panzer divisions would be overrun by the Polish mounted cavalry, see? We weren’t totally responsible…

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L.A. Protest

At approximately 4:30 into the video, watch for the gentleman shouting Hitler’s praises, and calling for Jews to be sent to ovens.

The irony: if Hitler had killed all the Jews, he’d have turned to someone else next, and after that, yet another race — eventually, Arabs.

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Calling All Pakistanis – NYT

On Feb. 6, 2006, three Pakistanis died in Peshawar and Lahore during violent street protests against Danish cartoons that had satirized the Prophet Muhammad. More such mass protests followed weeks later. When Pakistanis and other Muslims are willing to take to the streets, even suffer death, to protest an insulting cartoon published in Denmark, is it fair to ask: Who in the Muslim world, who in Pakistan, is ready to take to the streets to protest the mass murders of real people, not cartoon characters, right next door in Mumbai?

NYT

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Woman Fired For Eating ‘Unclean’ Meat

Has anyone heard about this? It happened back in 2004.

A Central Florida woman was fired from her job after eating “unclean” meat and violating a reported company policy that pork and pork products are not permissible on company premises, according to Local 6 News.

Lina Morales was hired as an administrative assistant at Rising Star — a Central Florida telecommunications company with strong Muslim ties, Local 6 News reported.

Woman Fired For Eating ‘Unclean’ Meat – Money News Story – WKMG Orlando.

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How to Beat Your Wife

Your wife is not your merchandise. Men, if you choose to beat your wife, there are some simple guidelines you must follow.

See — the Islamic rules on treatment of women are not that barbaric…

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Why Hijab Is Oppressive

Many Muslim women have claimed that the wearing of the hijab — head-covering scarf — is not oppressive and that they do it voluntarily.

Could it be worn voluntarily and still be oppressive?

The answer lies in why it is commanded. Verses 30 and 31 surah 24 (The Light) read:

Say to the believing men that they cast down their looks and guard their private parts; that is purer for them; surely Allah is Aware of what they do. And say to the believing women that they cast down their looks and guard their private parts and do not display their ornaments except what appears thereof, and let them wear their head-coverings over their bosoms, and not display their ornaments except to their husbands or their fathers, or the fathers of their husbands, or their sons, or the sons of their husbands, or their brothers, or their brothers’ sons, or their sisters’ sons, or their women, or those whom their right hands possess, or the male servants not having need (of women), or the children who have not attained knowledge of what is hidden of women; and let them not strike their feet so that what they hide of their ornaments may be known; and turn to Allah all of you, O believers! so that you may be successful.

The list of who might see an uncovered woman can be distilled thusly:

  • husbands
  • fathers
  • fathers of their husbands
  • sons
  • sons of their husbands
  • brothers
  • brothers’ sons
  • sisters’ sons
  • women
  • those whom their right hands possess
  • male servants not having need (of women)
  • children who have not attained knowledge of what is hidden of women

There are two things that immediately stand out.

  1. Almost everyone mentioned here is a man.
  2. The only men who can see a woman are family members.

Additionally, notice that the instructions given to the men are much less demanding than those given the women. Men are to cast their eyes down and to protect their private parts; women get a whole shopping list of requirements.

The Koran also addresses hijab in Sura 33 (The Clans), verse 59:

O Prophet! say to your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers that they let down upon them their over-garments; this will be more proper, that they may be known, and thus they will not be given trouble; and Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.

It all tends to smack of women being the possession of men, doesn’t it?

Yet it’s also a bit demeaning to men: it suggests that men have no self control, that men will automatically turn any and all women in to sexual objects, and that the only way men can notice a woman’s mind is if the women are covered.

Caveats

Caveat one: The New Testament, in 1 Corinthians 11, commands women to cover their heads when in prayer. A couple of caveats to this caveat: first, this is only in limited circumstances, specifically in prayer and when prophesying. Secondly, most Christians have philosophized that away.

Caveat two: Not all Muslim women wear headscarfs. There is a caveat to this, though: to do so in many Muslim countries is to risk condemnation or worse.

Notice: it’s a woman delivering the correctives, but a male police officer is close at hand, showing who the real authority is. Notice also that when the woman is discussing a poor stranger’s clothes, discussing her “sarafan,” a man walks by in a tight-fitting Western shirt, looking must un-Islamic. Nothing is said to him.

Caveat three: Nuns cover themselves. This is, however, an unequal comparison. Becoming a nun is a voluntary addition (or modification) to being a Christian. One can move into and out of a position that requires the head covering. Muslim women cannot do this.

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“There is no Islam without a Khilafah”

[There] you have it, according to the moderate Muslims I have talked with in recent months. Reporters who want to cover this debate must realize that, as one scholar told me: “It is all about Shariah.” Can Shariah come to the West? Will governments in the West allow that and, if they do, are the political leaders who back that development prepared to deal with its affects on public life?

There is no Islam . . . without a Khilafah

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Open Comments

One of the dangers of having a controversial website that is also open to viewer comments is the threat of visitors’ words being attributed to the site owner.

As an aside, Dennis Prager rehearses the now-common (but still pretty good) observations about the difference in reaction in insulting Islam and insulting other religions. He points out the absurdity of the Federal Koran-in-the-toilet suit versus the crucifix-in-urine modern art piece. Putting a Koran in a toilet and putting a crucifix in urine are essentially the same thing, but the reaction is entirely different.

In this video, Ibrahim Hooper, of CAIR, makes just such a claim against Robert Spencer and his site Jihad Watch. “[Hooper] quoted a genocidal comment that was made on this website yesterday, and made it appear as if I had written it,” Spencer writes.

His response: “In reality, someone kindly alerted me to the existence of the comment shortly after it was posted, and I removed it and banned the poster.”

So it was on the site for a short period of time, but then disappeared. How then would Hooper have known it was there? Someone emailed him? Someone at CAIR monitors Jihad Watch continuously?

Spencer continues,

The comment itself seemed to me and to others who posted on the same thread to have been written by a provocateur — someone who wanted to discredit Jihad Watch and me by planting a comment here. Such people come through here fairly often. And now, after Hooper’s use of this comment despite its being deleted, I suspect even more strongly that it was written by a provocateur. (Jihad Watch)

Could it be that someone who is critical of the site posted such a comment to make the site look bad? It seems entirely possible.

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Restrained Freedom Part II

I’m not sure what to make of this, except to say that, combined with the David Irving conviction earlier this week, freedom of speech in Europe is not all that it’s made out to be:

German court convicts man for insulting Islam

I wonder if he’d have been convicted — or even prosecuted — if he’d simply stated on a web site that he had made toilet paper with the word “Koran” printed on it, but in fact actually hadn’t.

But can you imagine what would have happened if he hadn’t been convicted?

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Malkin Reconsidered

Thud pointed out an interesting piece via email by August Pollak regarding Malkin’s “selective memory.” Several points taken.

But…there’s always one of those…

Pollak writes,

Are the cartoons freedom of speech? Well, yeah. Of course you have the right to print shitty, racist cartoons that serve no purpose but to inflame Arab sentiment and make racist right-wingers feel good about themselves.

“Inflame Arab sentiment?” It’s done a great deal more than that.

Yet I can be extremely angry and yet keep my urge for violence in check.

If I piss someone off and get hit, even if I deliberately tried to piss the person off, he’s still responsible for his actions. No matter what I said.

Self-control.

Same applies here.

Pollak accuses Malkin of being a racist. I don’t really follow Malkin’s commentary — scratch that. I don’t follow it at all. Maybe she is a racist. Maybe she isn’t. The “right-wing” part of the epithet is true enough.

Still, does that somehow disqualify what the pictures (which she’s simply assembled from various web sites) tell us about the reaction of a fairly significant portion of Muslims? Sure, the tag, “No, you go to hell,” is a little silly — but I do think the pictures speak for themselves. Am I saying _all_ Muslims are reacting irrationally violently? No — I am only privy to what the media presents to me.

Still, while purposely insulting someone is immoral, wanting to behead someone because of it is on quite another level.

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Conversion

From “Capitalism Magazine:

Implied in the claim that images of Mohammed constitute blasphemy, is that anyone who creates such an image is guilty of blasphemy. What the Muslims are demanding is that non-Muslims accept that religious tenet. Thus, “respect” by non-Muslims of the tenet, at the price of surrendering the right to criticize Islam, means virtual conversion to Islam, a major step in the direction of actual conversion.

No emphasis added.

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Deadly Doodling II

So the Arab world is upset at “offensive” cartoons published in a Danish daily. They’ve been boycotting Danish products, burning Danish flags, and threatening to kill Danes abroad as well as bomb the offices of the newspaper in Denmark. It seems that instead of typing “PBUH — Peace Be Upon Him” every time after mentioning Muhammad, the newspaper made fun of the guy. In September.

Now other newspapers have come out in support of the Danish paper’s right to print anything, no matter how blasphemous, by reprinting the cartoons themselves. Provocative, to be sure, but not without reason, and making an excellent point. I’d like to see more newspapers do the same.

I understand the offense. Mixing sacred and profane, obliterating taboo — that’s nasty business for believers. Officially registering offense is an appropriate measure; boycotting is an appropriate measure — but threatening violence?

Most strikingly this shows that there is a real disconnect in the Muslim world about what democracy and freedom of speech is. This is highlighted by the calls from Islamic nations for the Danish president to punish the newspaper.

Government ministers from 17 Arab nations have asked the Danish government to punish the Jyllands-Posten newspaper for what they called an “offense to Islam.” (Washington Post)

It’s what they would do, and so it’s a logical request. But it’s not a request — it’s a demand, backed up with threats of death and mayhem.

What is really pathetically ironic about the situation is that the protests that “Islam is not a violent religion and this cartoon presents stereotypes that it is” are shown to be so empty by the behavior of so many Muslims around the world: bounties placed on the head of the cartoonists, calls for targeting Danish soldiers in Iraq. We are painting the Muslim world with broad strokes, they say, then express their desire to kill Danes who had nothing to do with the cartoons themselves, for clearly all Danes hate Islam.

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