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David Thompson

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March 02, 2010

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Karen M

"Last week Sisters In Islam called on the government to review the law that allows women to be whipped. But it has made that call before and it was ignored. No doubt it will be again. After all, as the religious adviser to Malaysia's Prime Minister explained to the media, whipping is fair – the rotan used is thin, not thick, and the officer is well trained in appropriate caning."

It's not a religion of peace it's a sadist's charter.

David

Strictly speaking, it’s a religion of submission, from which peace is alleged to follow once everyone has done the same, one way or another. Obviously, this leaves considerable wiggle room for pieties like those above.

Anna

The secret to Muhammadan umbrage is to get in it early.

"Someone not a million miles from the IFE has kindly shown me an email purportedly sent out by Musleh Faradhi, the organisation's president, last Tuesday, February 22nd. "We need to ensure Channel 4 receives a strong message from the community by being inundated with complaints," says the email. That was nearly a week before transmission... It would have been better not to be cross until you had actually seen the programme. Any sense that complaints are being "ensured" or that "articulate responses" are being "got ready" hours or even days beforehand might lead the rest of us to conclude that the outrage is somewhat… well, manufactured."

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/andrewgilligan/100028040/islamist-radicals-complain-early-complain-often/

David

“The secret to Muhammadan umbrage is to get in it early.”

But of course. The thing is, this kind of pre-emptive indignation is both staged *and* real, insofar as those doing the staging resent their activities and associates being exposed. The pretext may be disingenuous but the hostility is authentic. That these things are revealed in a damning light doesn’t lead those complaining to reflect on the nature of the problem or make any serious attempt to correct it. From the viewpoint of those organising the umbrage, there is no problem, only a need for more effective concealment and intimidation. And being outraged in advance implies an awareness of what would most likely be caught on camera.

Franklin

Typically in a free society the line of free speech is drawn at the incitement of violence and mayhem. It presents a troubling problem when violence and mayhem are so easy to arouse in certain parties. It should probably not be legal to raise a lynch mob, but if one will form simply because a book gets published, we have an issue.

David

Franklin,

“It presents a troubling problem when violence and mayhem are so easy to arouse in certain parties.”

And the anticipation of violence, threats and vehement, dishonest reactions will tend to inhibit realistic discussion. In some cases it inhibits the enforcement of the law. And as the Dispatches programme reveals, the problem extends to much more than attempts to intimidate and cow dissent:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nWJuTnH6e1Q

An earlier Dispatches broadcast, “Undercover Mosque: The Return,” can be viewed here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=535jCqDT6n0

I’d say we already have an issue.

Franklin

"I’d say we already have an issue."

I agree - I'm sorry to sound so subjunctive about it. Do you know of any organization devoted to combating encroachments upon free speech by Muslims in particular or religious groups in general? Because I'd support them, and my search engines turn none up.

Jonathan

"And the anticipation of violence, threats and vehement, dishonest reactions will tend to inhibit realistic discussion."

Apropos of which:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010/feb/26/danish-cartoons-muhammad-politiken-apology

And an interesting piece by Salim Mansur:
http://www.torontosun.com/comment/columnists/salim_mansur/2010/02/19/12947001.html

newbie

David, thanks for the Dispatches link. I missed it on TV.

David

Franklin,

“Do you know of any organization devoted to combating encroachments upon free speech by Muslims in particular or religious groups in general?”

Not specifically concerned with censorship by Muslims. I’m vaguely aware of a few Muslim groups that argue against censorship but they’re small and their influence seems negligible. The Muslim Canadian Congress, for instance, has helped draw attention to the spread of supremacist preaching in Canada - and as a result received repeated death threats. Having highlighted the problem, the MCC was also targeted with accusations of “insensitivity” and of “smearing” or “defaming” Islam.

http://www.muslimcanadiancongress.org/
http://www.cbc.ca/canada/story/2007/03/22/muslim-threat.html

I scarcely need to point out how that contrasts with the openness and apparent impunity with which Muslim zealots can preach xenophobia and sedition at mainstream mosques here in the UK - often while being flattered by politicians and assisted with taxpayers’ money - as shown by the Dispatches programmes. What’s interesting is how quickly and readily the language of “social cohesion,” “communities” and multicultural fluffiness has been co-opted by people whose own worldview is entirely at odds with tolerance and pluralism.

Muhammad Abdul Bari, chairman of the “mainstream” East London Mosque and head of the Muslim Council of Britain, is quite breathtaking in his dissembling. Like his predecessor, Bari is an admirer of the totalitarian fantasist Syed Abul A’ala Mawdudi. (Whose wisdom includes such gems as, “[Muslims are] under an obligation to do their utmost to dislodge [non-Muslims] from political power and to make them live in subservience to the Islamic way of life.”) In 2006, Bari warned that “negative attitudes” towards Muslims would result in Britain being faced with “two million Muslim terrorists — 700,000 of them in London.” The ability to combine pretentious victimhood with barely veiled threats is one of his more charming features.

http://davidthompson.typepad.com/davidthompson/2007/06/image_problem.html

Spiny Norman

“The secret to Muhammadan umbrage is to get in it early.”

I would imagine so, because is not umbrage the Sixth Pillar of Islam?

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