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Is Islam Simply Too Dangerous?

Posted by libhom Friday, February 03, 2006

Civilized people who have followed the controversy over a few cartoons depicting Islam and Mohammed unfavorably have to be concerned by the firestorm of madness that has burst forth among militant, fundamentalist Muslims.

One could see why Muslims might disagree or object to the cartoons, but the reactions of most of the Muslim world have gone farther than that. There have been unreasonable demands that governments that do not control the media should apologize, undermining freedom of the press and freedom of expression. Even worse, fanatics have demanded that governments punish newspapers that publish the cartoons, even though this violates every developed standard of human behavior.

The worst has come from the terrorists whose bomb threats forced the Danish government and publishing newspaper to apologize when neither had any reason to do so. Religions, like all other human instutitions, are perfectly fair game for satire and ridicule. It is interesting to note that the French paper that republished the cartoons, and then fired the editor in a craven act, also published cartoons ridiculing Christ.

Also, it would be a mistake to portray this merely as a problem between Islam and Christianity and Judaism. Phony nations like Pakistan would never have become states if so many Muslims did not insist on imposing their religion on the government. Many of the world's civil wars are resulting from the obsession that Muslim-majority regions of countries have to split off and form Islamic republics. Many Muslims are as willing to trample on the rights of Hindus and Sikhs as the rights of anyone else. And, do not think for a minute that atheism is tolerated in a Muslim fundamentalist regime like the one in Saudi Arabia.

Of course, the large Christian Right here in the US shows that all religious extremism is dangerous. However, the latest incident and the terrorist campaign against Salman Rushdie have heightened the sense that many Muslims are not merely violent in response to bad social conditions or government policies. Terrorism over minor slights suggests that there is something qualitatively different between Islam and all of the other religions of the world.

I have always hoped that Muslims and non-Muslims could coexist, but the fact that so few Muslims have even disagreed publicly with this insanity, much less condemned it, makes me wonder. It would be a shame if the right actually is correct when it claims that Islam is incompatible with civilization. This would be a sad time for the right-wing's stopped clock to be correct.

2 comments

  1. MichaelBains Says:
  2. I have always hoped that Muslims and non-Muslims could coexist, but the fact that so few Muslims have even disagreed publicly with this insanity, much less condemned it, makes me wonder.

    Don't give all hope bro. There are some believers in Islam who aren't entirely sold on that censorship crap.

    There's more at my blog if'n yer interested.

    By the way, Everyone is godless. I belong to the minority that has figured this out.. THAT is beautiful! I've only read your latest post but have already added your site's RSS feed. Very cool!

     
  3. imankhan Says:
  4. Phony nations like Pakistan would never have become states if so many Muslims did not insist on imposing their religion on the government.

    I agree with a lot of your blogs, but that statement really irked me. Probably because I am Pakistani. It is true to some extent, but considering that Muslims are treated like crap in India, and that it is near impossible for someone with a Muslim name in India to get a job, I'm grateful for Pakistan's existence, even if it isn't exactly a Muslim state, like it claims to be.
    But whatever, I might have misunderstood you.

     

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