Of The Good Muslim, Paris, “1984”, And The Compulsion To Deny The Truth

"Now listen carefully: those aren't Muslims. Muslims are good. If someone is bad, he isn't a Muslim. Trust me. There is nothing to fear from Muslims. But FOR GOD SAKE DON"T PUBLISH THAT CARTOON OR THEY"LL %$#&! KILL YOU!!!"

“Now listen carefully: those aren’t Muslims. Muslims are good. If someone is bad, he isn’t a Muslim. Trust me. There is nothing to fear from Muslims. But FOR GOD SAKE DON”T PUBLISH THAT CARTOON OR THEY”LL %$#&! KILL YOU!!!”

Oddly, nobody is refusing to call Lassana Bathily a Muslim, perhaps because he is one, but also because he’s a good Muslim, as most are.

He is the young clerk at a Paris Kosher grocery store who saved several people by hiding them in a walk-in freezer when a gunman began shooting up the store on Yesterday. Actually, I don’t see why his religion is relevant in the least, but that is leading most news reports front and center.

The terrorists who mounted a bloody attack on the satiric publication Charlie Hebdo, however, and who did so while spouting Islamic slogans as planned revenge on cartoonists for engaging in blasphemy against Mohammed, should not be called Muslims. Why? Because they’re not good, you see. Since they’re not good, ignorant and hateful bigots in the United States will attribute their characteristics to all Muslims, and use this as an excuse to harass discriminate and persecute them.

Howard Dean, who is the left’s answer to Sarah Palin: you interview him knowing he will say something that drives conservatives nuts, immediately clarified the rules:

“You know, this is a chronic problem. I stopped calling these people Muslim terrorists. They’re about as Muslim as I am. I mean, they have no respect for anybody else’s life, that’s not what the Koran says. …But I do not think we should accord them any particular religious respect, because I don’t think, whatever they’re claiming their motivation is, is clearly a twisted, cultish mind.”

Okay, maybe “clarified” is too kind. In addition to being utter fantasy, Dean’s statement is pundit malpractice. Radical Muslims have respect for life; they just don’t have respect for cartoonists who make fun of Islam. They certainly made that crystal clear to everybody but Howard. All the pusillanimous U.S. news organizations who are concocting excuses not to show the offending cartoons get it. (I especially enjoyed watching the AP get hoisted on their own petard when they claimed that policy had long reigned preventing the new service from publicizing “deliberately provocative images.” Then the Washington Examiner pointed out that AP  continued to carry a photo of Andres Serrano’s 1987 “Piss Christ,” the “deliberately provocative” piece of art  that was the caused tremendous anger in the Christian community.   Caught with its hypocrisy down. the AP took “Piss Christ” image off its website.)

Howard Dean obviously doesn’t know what’s in the Koran, or his is lying: Howard habitually displays both irresponsible ignorance and dishonesty. The Koran says to kill infidels, which would fit those cartoonists to a T:

“Slay them wherever ye find them and drive them out of the places whence they drove you out, for persecution is worse than slaughter.” – 2:191

“Fight against them until idolatry is no more and Allah’s religion reigns supreme. (different translation: ) Fight them until there is no persecution and the religion is God’s entirely.”  – 2:193 and 8:39

“Fighting is obligatory for you, much as you dislike it.” – 2:216

Yes, rational Muslims ignore the crazier parts of the Koran just as rational Christians exercise discretion and judgment regarding the Bible.  But taking the holy book at its word doesn’t make the other kind less Muslim, unless you think like Howard Dean. Someone should also explain to Howard that all religions have the characteristics of cults.

Then we have President Obama. To read his statement on the Paris attack, one would conclude that the attack was made by rival cartoonists: Islam had nothing to do with it.  As Jonathan Turley points out in his always restrained way:

“Obviously, these murderers were motivated by their view of Islam, even yelling “Allahu akbar” as they fired and screaming that they have “avenged” Mohammed for being put into cartoons. Obviously, some Muslims agree with such violent action given the murder of dozens of non-Muslims after the Danish cartoon controversy in 2006…I would be more convinced if the murderers were not expressly acting in the name of their faith and simply happened to be Muslim. It would then be inappropriate in my view to call murderers who acted for other purposes (like personal or economic crimes) by their faith.”

I’ll be less diplomatic. Dean, the President and others (remember Whoopie Goldberg walking out on Bill O’Reilly on “The View” (in 2010) because he insisted that Muslims killed Americans on 9-11?) are consciously engaging in Orwellian indoctrination techniques, bending the truth to alter public perception, then making that perception the new truth. This has been an increasingly evident strategy among those I would call civil rights extremists, or perhaps liberal fascists. If facts lead to conduct they regard as harmful, deny the facts, and assert false facts that will promote conduct they regard as virtuous. If the public doesn’t think of terrorists who kill in the name of Islam as Islamic, then they won’t unfairly attribute such conduct to innocent and law-abiding Muslim. Problem solved! Thus, the likes of Dean and the President reason, it is ethically justifiable to speak and behave as if the truth is false. In their minds, there is nothing wrong with this at all. It fights bigotry. It makes bigotry impossible. The ends justify the means.

This conduct is corrupting when activists engage in it (“Hands up! Don’t shoot!;” “1 in 5 women are sexually assaulted on campus;” “Women earn only 77% of men in the same jobs”) and terrifying when engaged in by the government—think of the mind-bending assertion by the Bush administration that waterboarding isn’t torture—especially when the news media is complicit. This portends “1984” in the making. Fortunately, this particular example is so excessive and outrageous that most of the media is ignoring it, and so blatantly illogical that few members of the public will fall for it. It is valuable, however, and attention must be paid, because such attempts at airbrushing facts out of existence to manipulate our thoughts, opinions and political views shows the strong totalitarian tendencies among some of our leaders, activists and politicians. They would deliberately deceive the public “for their own good.” And they see nothing wrong with that.

Fact: Muslim terrorists slaughtered the Charlie Hebdo victims. Pay attention to any public figures who say or suggest otherwise. They are untrustworthy, and not just on this topic.

________________________

Source: Jonathan Turley

49 Comments

Filed under Around the World, Character, Government & Politics, Leadership, Literature, Religion and Philosophy, U.S. Society

49 responses to “Of The Good Muslim, Paris, “1984”, And The Compulsion To Deny The Truth

  1. The new mantra is that it’s 1 in 4 women who are sexually assaulted in college. Keep up, man. Keep up.

  2. Chris Marschner

    Officials and the media have no problem identifying members of white supremacy groups at the drop of a hat. They have no problem investigating civil rights violations or demanding a hate crime enhancement for a single utterance of a racial epithet during the commission of a crime. Should we mention the tar and feathering Congressman Scalise is undergoing right now for making a speech where white supremacy was claimed to be the ideology of the group? http://thehill.com/homenews/house/229017-black-dems-push-scalise-apology-tour

    Why then is the administration and the media loathe to call such attacks exactly what they are? The attacks are by radical Islamists to promote their perceived theological superiority over all others.

    Answer: They are cowards and bigots themselves. They know that white Christians, Jews, Hindi, and other major religions will not become radicalized and seek to kill them when they have the chance for making such accusations against that race or theology. You cannot make the claim that hateful words and images will encourage radicalism among Muslims if you cannot bring yourself to acknowledge that is their faith that leads them to violence.

  3. Jeff H.

    Here’s my thoughts on it: if you think it would avail you any to talk to one of the men who perpetrated this act and say, “It’s OK! You’re not really Muslim!”, then you can go ahead and say they’re not Muslims.

    If you ARE a Muslim who notices the hypocrisy in someone claiming to be a Muslim carrying out an act of terror in defiance of parts of the Koran, I wouldn’t have a problem with them saying he’s not a Muslim.

    I saw someone call them “pretend Muslims,” and I sort of like that term, but that sort of implies that they don’t believe in the faith itself, and that’s not really for anyone to say. But if we’re calling them pretend Muslims because they don’t adhere to the parts of the Koran that would mitigate violence, they could call everyone else pretend Muslims for not participating in violence. Or, those who have intercourse before they’re married and trim the edges of their beards could be called “pretend Christians.” Let’s see how far that goes.

    I really hate to hand it right to the jerks who will use this against the vast majority of peace-loving Muslims, but trying to deny it just kicks the can down the street. Pretending not only that it has nothing to do with it, but that it doesn’t even exist, ends up having the equal and opposite reaction on the other side that insists all Muslims secretly crave violent revolution.

    What is especially bothersome is when people are like, “well, they’re Muslims, what do you expect?” I hate to cry ‘racist,’ but… that is totally racist. It is racist to assume that Muslims are not expected to control their anger, or that they cannot help themselves because of their ethnic background. This is why I was furious when I heard people hoping the perpetrators of the Boston bombing would turn out to be white.

    Congratulations, you wretched tin-eared pinheads. You got your wish. The Tsarnaevs were white. They were Caucasian MUSLIMS from Chechnya. I hope that makes some kind of difference to you.

    But just because jerks will use this to blame all Muslims (which is deeply regrettable), that doesn’t mean the response is to pretend Muslims are incapable of violence. That’s just carrying water for the next person of any belief who wants to do something unspeakable to their next critic.

    What I want to see is a statistical analysis of acts of violence like this, the alleged beliefs of the perpetrator, and see if any group of beliefs makes someone more likely to do something like this. The goal is not to attempt to smother any belief except the belief that your opinion gives you the right to hurt someone else.

    Yes, those who perpetrated this attack identified themselves as Muslim. Now the question is: “So what?”

    • Red Pill Ethics

      ‘Yes, those who perpetrated this attack identified themselves as Muslim. Now the question is: “So what?”’

      You lost me there. This seems to imply that their belief system isn’t relevant to the acts they perpetrated.

    • dragin_dragon

      Jeff, I hate to tell you this but Islam is not a RACE, it’s a religion. Just like Judaism is not a RACE, it’s a religion. Thus, being anti-muslim is not racist, nor is being anti-Semitic racist. However, both are the worst kind of bigotry…if you don’t believe as I do…

  4. Query: Are the Lord’s Resistance Army Christians?

    I agree that by the doctrine of abrogation, where the later, more bloodthirsty parts of the Koran are supposed to abrogate and replace the more humane parts, that in theory Islam itself is a threat.

    In fact, no-one who’s remotely sane does that.

    Just as no-one who’s remotely sane follows the equally bloodthirsty parts of the Torah and Old Testament.

    With Christianity, the Genocidal bits were abrogated with Compassion and Mercy. In theory. With Islam, it’s the opposite. But just as a few really do follow Islam, so a few prefer the original YWHW, who was a bloodthirsty tyrannical sadist. Hence the LRA, Phineas Priesthood and other religious Christian – or if you prefer, “Christian” – terrorists.

    • Yes, but—so what? When there are Christian terrorists, and there have been, then that’s what you call them, because that’s what they are.

      Sanity is all a matter of perspective. I know YOU know that.

    • Red Pill Ethics

      I knew this was going to come up. Yes, there are Christian terror groups (and it’s perfectly okay to all them Christian) just like there are Islamic terrorist groups (and it’s perfectly okay to call them Islamic). The fact that Christianity has terrorist groups doesn’t somehow make it hypocritical, wrong, or unethical, to criticize Islam for it’s terror groups.

      Now if we’re talking about the degree of that criticism, then you’re right. Islam receives far more criticism than Christianity. But ask yourself is that wrong? How many Christian terror groups are there in the world? How active are they? How popular are the groups in the larger religion?

      To answer our rhetorical questions: not many, not very, and not at all. To answer our rhetorical questions for Islam: too many to possibly keep track of, too active to possibly contain them all, and too popular to hope that the religion/culture will police itself.

      The LRA is tiny, spends more time running from the multi-national regional coalition chasing it than it does committing large scale terror attacks, and is so unpopular that they are forced to resort to gun-point conscription of children as their main recruiting tool. In comparison, Hamas operates globally, commits terror attacks on a near daily basis, and is so popular that they were elected to represent an entire quasi-nation and regularly receive outside support and funding.

      The kicker is that Hamas is just one of the many terror groups that operate at that level. For Christianity, terror groups are a laughably small and unsuccessful anomaly. For Islam, terror groups are depressingly chronic and successful trend.

      Regardless of how uncomfortable it may make you to say so, the value systems surrounding Islam are more tolerant of extremism, less tolerant of opposing view points, and (most importantly) more resistant to growth and evolution. Christianity and Islam used to go toe-to-toe for title of most barbarous religion back in the middle ages. The difference is that the value system of Christianity was better at encouraging and absorbing effective self-criticism (indeed, it’s a major part of the religion) and because of this, Christianity and the cultures that bought into it have a much better ethics learning curve than Islam and the cultures that surround it.

      For a final rhetorical question: could it be that Islam has earned a greater degree of criticism because it has a greater degree of fault? The answer is: of course, and that recognizing it is vital to fixing it.

    • Isaac

      Zoe could probably have answered her own question via Google…but the answer is no.

      Since Joseph Kony believes in witchcraft, and believes himself to be the spiritual successor to his Aunt, a voodoo priestess, I wouldn’t call the LRA Christian. Kony believes that he consults with disembodied ghosts who advise him on battle strategies, and most of his practices and superstitions come from African animism. Apart from a fetish for the Ten Commandments and some literary flourishes form the Bible, the LRA doesn’t borrow much from Christianity.

      But since you also said that the “original” YWHW was a bloodthirsty tyrannical sadist, (doesn’t God kill everyone, even those who die of old age? That doesn’t really make sense…) I can tell that you’ve given as much objective thought over this as a high school freshman with Marilyn Manson posters all over his walls would.

      A Christian terrorist is bound to exist, just as a meat-eating vegetarian and a fat undisciplined ninja surely exist somewhere. Terrorism is mostly political and in human nature under certain conditions. The question is whether one’s belief system allows the behavior or not. A Christian terrorist is a hypocrite, a Muslim terrorist is not.

  5. fattymoon

    Thoughts on this short piece from StormCloudsGathering? (Disclaimer – I find StormCloudsGathering provocative and intelligent. Your mileage may vary. I don’t always agree with their evidence/conclusions.)

    Published on Jan 10, 2015
    “This is footage of the Charlie Hebdo shootings which has been restricted or taken down from a number of websites. As you will see it contains no blood, gore or graphic violence. It does however punch a major hole in the official story. Transcript & sources: http://stormcloudsgathering.com/charlie-hebdo-shootings-censored-video

    Meanwhile, in a land far away, I find myself fascinated with the subject of medieval castles. So much so that I’m now playing Stronghold: Crusader, wherein I can play as the Christians or the Muslims. The best of both worlds, castle building and sieges. You feel like slaughtering some Muslims, now’s your chance. Or maybe you’d like to massacre some infidels?http://www.armchairempire.com/Reviews/PC%20Games/stronghold-crusader.htm

    Here’s a bit of gameplay to whet your videogame appetite. The game is now in HD and runs on modern systems and rigs. http://youtu.be/KBkJkIOakQk

    Ciao.

    • Of course uneducated reporters on first glance will call that a head shot, as from that distance it appears the barrel is pointed at his head. On closer inspection the rifle still forms a gun-target line that hits SOMEWHERE on the policeman’s body. Based on perspective, I’d guess the neck or upper torso. And no, there wouldn’t be a ton of blood *initially* from one of those shots.

      The so called “dust cloud” doesn’t line up with the gun-target line either…as your conspiracy theorist implies the gun wasn’t fired at the police officer. The logical explanation is derived from the ballistics of a bullet through a liquid. The round, fired at the officer, easily would have deflected inside his upper torso’s liquid creating the “dust cloud” offset from the line of fire as it ricochets off the sidewalk.

      And as for videogames, Medieval: Total War and Medieval 2: Total War are the winners.

      • fattymoon

        Yes, tex, for 3D combat, I agree. I’ve played Rome:Total War and had a blast. But these days I’m primarily interested in castle building (although I note that Medieval 2: Total War does feature castles).

  6. fattymoon

    In my comment above should have added this link to the official Stronghold: Crusader site.
    http://www.stronghold-game.com/

    • fattymoon

      Jack, you do realize that the “comment above” I refer to is not to be seen. Whether it was deleted by mistake or intention makes no difference to me. Without my missing comment, however, my link to the Stronghold game makes little to no sense. Please feel free to delete it too.

      • FM: I didn’t realize that, and just searched for it in the trash and spam files. It was in the spam files, and I swear I didn’t put it there. As you know, sometimes links do that. Don’t get paranoid on me, now…that BlameBlakeart’s realm.

        The comment has been restored, and I apologize for the alarm. Sometimes WordPress has a mind of its own.

        • fattymoon

          No need to apologize, Jack. I was never concerned, never paranoid. (A little voice within me just questioned that assertion.) I was basically detached, except that this morning I thought it might be prudent to bring it to your attention. Thanks for restoring my somewhat giddy post.
          And thanks for BlameBlakeart,,, I shall investigate.

          You know, I had a near death experience in May of 2011. Ever since then I keep a wary eye on world events. Below are two excerpts from my Posterous blog post that explains what happened to me and, perhaps, acts as a warning both to me personally and to the world at large. (Now that’s grandiose thinking!)

          “My eyes closed and my breathing became very shallow. The tunnel lay just ahead. It was a black tube with no light at the end. A black hole. I was losing track of time. The news had begun, so I knew it was some time after 4 p.m.. As I listened I realized that, as I lay dying, the world was exploding. I caught the undertone in the reporters’ voices, a catch in the throat, as it were, as they reported on the flash points in the Middle East, the flooding along the Mississippi, the demonstrations, the misuse of power, the senseless killing. The dream I’d had the night before – I was repeatedly putting out fires in the kitchen – was an indicator of world events as well as the state of my own psyche. Of the four elements, fire was highest and strongest, both within me and across the globe. (Here are some of the symbolic meanings of fire.)

          “Yes, there was a voice, silent but quite clear. It said I was being given a gift. I could leave now and avoid all the insanely bad things that were queued up in Earth’s timeline. I liked the idea. This was just like rolling off a log… peaceful, easy feeling…

          “It was then I began to object. I don’t know why. I was not afraid, yet I felt strongly that I did not want to die alone. I wanted company. I asked for a postponement. The answer was an unspoken No. Actually, there was no No, spoken or unspoken. I simply kept moving towards the tunnel, my breathing calm and shallow as I began slipping away from shore…

          “Back to square one. A dichotomy this – should I roll off that log, or should I fight to come back? I decided to fight. I brought up excuse after excuse. And with every excuse I halted my journey towards the black hole/tunnel. (I suspect the reason I never saw a light at the end of the tunnel is because I never actually entered it.)

          “Please! Let me let Slider in! (Tried to get up, but couldn’t.)

          “Please! I really really really need a drink of water. (Tried to get up. Couldn’t.)

          “Please! I have things I want to do! (The reply – Why haven’t you done them already?)

          “At some point there was an imperceptible shift, and I knew I would live. The shift was accompanied by a final message which went something like this – Oh, alright then. I’m tired of your whining. You don’t wanna go, so stay here already. Meshugana! (Later, in recounting this to Stella, I described my experience as “wrestling with an Angel,” and I came out on top.)”

          So, Jack and friends, are we on the razor’s edge, or am I truly paranoid?

  7. Bill G

    Would somebody please elucidate us with the moderate version of this:

    “Slay the unbelievers wherever you find them” (Quran 9:5)

    Glad I’m a guy:

    “Men have authority over women because God has made the one superior to the other.” (Qua’ran 4:34)

    Write the president, we need an ObamaHead program:

    “When you meet the unbelievers in the battlefield, strike off their heads and, when you have laid them low, bind your captives firmly” (Qur’ran 47:4).

    Etc… Etc… and so forth. How could this religion of peace possibly be hijacked so very often?

    Oh, and the above “abrogate” the earlier, more tolerant writings as per the work itself.

    Spare me the Christian/Jew/Hindu/etc… bashing. I am an agnostic.

    • Bill G

      Let me be perfectly clear: If you like your head, you can keep your head!

    • deery

      Most of religious writings have crap kike that in there. This I from the Christian Bible: Deuteronomy 17
      If there be found among you, within any of thy gates which the LORD thy God giveth thee, man or woman, that hath wrought wickedness in the sight of the LORD thy God, in transgressing his covenant; 17:3 And hath gone and served other gods, and worshipped them, either the sun, or moon, or any of the host of heaven, which I have not commanded; 17:4 And it be told thee, and thou hast heard of it, and enquired diligently, and, behold, it be true, and the thing certain, that such abomination is wrought in Israel; 17:5 Then shalt thou bring forth that man or that woman, which have committed that wicked thing, unto thy gates, even that man or that woman, and shalt stone them with stones, till they die.

      And the writings on women even worse. I think I agree with Jeff above. If we identified the terrorists as Muslim…then what? What is expected to follow from that? Obviously people who are insisting that they be identified as such believe that it has some salience and something should follow from there, but what? The overwhelming majority of Muslims commit no crimes, so if some religious nutjobs go off and do something crazy, should all Muslims be tainted?

      • Bill G

        “so if some religious nutjobs go off and do something crazy, should all Muslims be tainted?”

        If they self identify with an ideology that promotes these things to this day, they yes they should all be tainted.

        Muslims identify with a militant, totalitarian, supremacist ideology with a 1400 year legacy of atrocities that continues to this day. It is a legacy that includes murder, rape and slavery. Muslims self identify with the murderous ravings of a lunatic that promote crimes against humanity that rage as I write this.

        Of course, all of the above means nothing compared to the Christian Crusades that ended 800 years ago… lets focus on that instead.

      • Irrelevant. The quote was in response to Dean’s ignorant/dishonest assertion that the Koran DOESN’T have crap like that in it. I didn’t say it was the dominant crap, I didn’t say other religions don’t have similar crap. I didn’t say most Muslims believe or act on the crap. Dean said it didn’t exist. It does exist.

      • Isaac

        Well deery is wrong to begin with, there is nothing similar in the Bible about women. They are described from page one as being equal in stature and made in God’s image along with men. The apostle Paul goes as far as to say that ‘there is neither male nor female, we are all one in Christ Jesus.’ That was so radical at the time that it was one of the reasons the Romans considered the Bible ridiculous. They believed that women were imploded males.

        Don’t just pull stuff out of your butt.

        More forgivably, the passage you quoted, like all such violent Biblical fodder for those who google “violent passages in the Bible”…are from civil laws in the Torah concerning a theocratic government. The distinction may not sound like much, but it’s the reason why few of the described stonings probably ever happened. They were punishments against “those among you, within your gates” because these were laws for a country. There was no mandate to invade and expand Israel until it overtook the world. And the grand purpose of said laws was to make clear God’s severity against sin. The Israelites could never consistently keep those laws and standards (indeed, there are relatively small slivers of Jewish history during which said laws were in force) and the lesson learned was that the Israelites (and by extension, everyone) needed grace or else had no chance.

        Since the Torah civic laws aren’t part of Christian morality or doctrine anyway (for reasons anyone who took a high school regions class should know, and NOT because they just weren’t pleasant)…Old Testament passages are irrelevant to comparing Christianity to Islam. The Quran is analogous to a competing New Testament, so get it right.

        • Bingo, between you and Red Pill Ethics, yall have handled everything I wanted to discuss here.

          Well done.

        • deery

          “Old Testament passages are irrelevant to comparing Christianity to Islam.”

          Matthew 5:17
          Don’t misunderstand why I have come. I did not come to abolish the law of Moses or the writings of the prophets. No, I came to accomplish their purpose.
          Jesus

          “Let your women keep silent in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak. And if they would learn anything, let them ask their own husbands at home: for it is shameful for a woman to speak in the church.” (1 Cor. 14: 34-35) (New Testament)

          “I permit no woman to teach or have authority over men; she is to keep silent.” Timothy 2:11

          “But if this thing be true, and the tokens of virginity be not found for the damsel: Then they shall bring out the damsel to the door of her father’s house, and the men of her city shall stone her with stones that she die: because she hath wrought folly in Israel, to play the whore in her father’s house: so shalt thou put evil away from among you.” (Deuteronomy 22: 20-21)

          Christianity, like most major ancient religions, clearly has an anti-woman bias. It can’t really be distinguished from Islam in that way, if people closely follow the dictates of the bible as instructed. Most modern Christians just ignore the ugly bits and move along.

          • No, the culture in which early Christians lived had an anti-woman bias, everywhere. Rational, intelligent, ethical practitioners of most religions recognized this and adapted accordingly.

          • Michael Ejercito

            And what about Jews regarding the Old Testament?

          • Ethics Alarms

            Texagg touched on it but my response to Zoe above applies equally to the comment stream here. I’m not a big fan of Christianity as a value system but trying to claim equivalent value system failure between Christianity and Islam is asinine.

          • Ulrike

            I’d like to make the claim that 1300 years ago, in almost any society women were the losers but now the distinction can be seen by anyone who has eyes. Christians moved on from those times and their nations became succesful world powers. On the other hand, oil seems to be the main driving force behind anything in the Arab League.

            And yes, in the beginning Islam had a positive influence on the scientific community in so far as it united the Arabic world which up to that date was splintered into tribes. Arabic became the lingua franca and facilitated the trade of knowledge and commodities. The Arabs become the driving force in translating ancient Greek literature – I could go on and on, the list is long, but I’m too lazy. So while we still lived like Neanderthals, the Arabic world had flourishing cities that were the trade centers of the Orient.
            Now here’s the rub: The decline of science and the renunciation of modernity can also be attributed to Islam. How can that be, when I just stated that it was a major factor in the rise of science. Well, not Islam as a religion facilitated this rise but its role in uniting the arabic world economically and territorially. But when the Muslim faith came to be the established force behind everything and anything its disciples started to consolidate the belief that science was equal to renouncing Allah.

            If you set yourself the task to name any invention in medicine, chemistry, physics or engineering from the last two hundered years that originated in the Arabic world – you have your answer which faith benefited progress more. Christian society developed towards modernity and Muslim society turned away from it…

            And though women’s rights were slow in coming, even in medieval Europe women who joined a convent could study and publish their scientific findings.

            So in the end, two very very old books both contain passages that reflect a motto of “Ladies last” – but one thousand years on, one society came to the conclusion that that is rubbish and the other didn’t…

            • Michael Ejercito

              I’d like to make the claim that 1300 years ago, in almost any society women were the losers but now the distinction can be seen by anyone who has eyes.

              this does beg one question.

              why?

              It seems awfully coincidental that in almost any society, women were the losers, even though those societies had independent origins. If this were true, it would mean that women were somehow intrinsically inferior to men. But if women are not intrinsically inferior to men, then they would not have been losers in almost every society.

              • Define losers. Do you mean not leaders? Not respected? Treated badly? Not equal in some defined way?

              • Penn

                “if women are not intrinsically inferior to men, then they would not have been losers in almost every society.”

                Unless there was a deliberate omission of the word THE before “losers” it should be noted that in common English today there is a distinct difference between being “the losers” (not the winners; lesser in importance) and being “losers” (unregenerate, disrespected failures).

                I know we all make typos here — it is in the nature of the engaged mind to be fumble-fingered at times — but it is difficult enough to have half a dozen commenters posting back and forth on 3,000+ years of major religious philosophy, law and behavior without having changes made in others’ vocabulary that alters the meaning of their text. Unless, of course, women being “losers” is what you meant. In which case, you would be making a syllogistic as well as a grammatical fallacy.

  8. Matthew B

    I’m wondering if the president is going to stand up and say that the Westboro Baptist Church isn’t Christian? The Klan? Abortion clinic bombers and / or abortion doctor murderers?
    They all self identify as Christian. They profess a belief in Jesus Christ as the savior. They’re nuts, but they’re Christians.

    Those groups make a good analogy for non-Muslims to understand what it must be like for peaceful Muslims. Just as Christians are repelled by the beliefs of the Klan, many Muslims are repelled by the killers.

    But wishing that the Klan isn’t Christian isn’t going to suddenly make them non-Christian. Neither will wishful thinking make Muslim extremists not Muslim.

    • Isaac

      Here’s the thing, though. You don’t have to just take the definition of Christian as “anyone who professes a belief in Jesus Christ as savior.” That’s a nice starting point, but there’s an entire New Testament’s worth of very clear doctrine and morals/ethics that defines Christianity. Just as the Quran functions for defining a Muslim.

      A group such as the KKK…well, their core purpose- keeping the races separate- has no place in the New Testament. Therefore I most certainly can say that they aren’t Christian. They can reply “yes we are.” And I can hold up a Bible and say “prove it.” And I will win that debate. They won’t stop believing that they are essentially Christian, but it doesn’t matter. Self-identificaction doesn’t make you something. I can say I’m a Jedi Knight. So?

      The problem here as it relates to Muslim terrorists…to what extent does the Quran vindicate their actions? If it clearly does (and it seems to, although there are also some passages that generally talk up peace too), then the terrorists are non-hypocritical Muslims. Unlike the KKK, the terrorists are not “highjacking” their faith, they are practicing it, and this may account for their success in recruiting other Muslims, who may believe that it is the MODERATES who are “hijacking the faith” and they have the scriptures to prove it.

      • Bill G

        Good points Isaac. I think that the term “Radical Muslim” is used in a misleading way. The TRUE radical muslims would be the reformers – those that reject both Sharia Law and Global Jihad.

        The so-called “crazies” are really muslim fundamentalists.

        A third group would be like Deery – those that know little about it and believe the feel-good propaganda dispensed by George W. Bush and the like.

      • Michael Ejercito

        Islam teaches that enforcement of the sharia law must be left to lawful authorities. (this is similar to Leviticus 20.)

        • Bill G

          “Islam teaches that enforcement of the sharia law must be left to lawful authorities. (this is similar to Leviticus 20.)”

          Lawful how? Do you mean that Sharia must be upheld by state actors… i.e. police, courts, etc…? Thats not a feature of Islamic doctrine that I am familiar with. Of course, then that segues into a discussion of how do you define a state, and more specifically, how does Islam define a state? If a state (say Iran) DID order those killings by proxy (through Hezbollah, say) would that qualify.

          The attack may not be an enforcement of Sharia Law *per se*, but thats not really relevant to the central issue – Those 2 were muslims following the dictates of their religion. If they were technically vigilantes, then that does not really vindicate the ideology in any meaningful way:

          • Bill G

            When I said “must be upheld” I should have said “can only be upheld” i.e. Sharia cannot be upheld by any non-state actor per doctrine.

    • Catherine Rendahl

      Matthew, while there are nutjobs and extremists that self proclaim their religious views…….and try to use that as some sort of justification for atrocities…….. the difference is that these groups are loudly, publically, and almost universally denounced by the rest of the Christian community. That cannot be said for “moderate Muslims.

  9. Isaac has thoroughly covered the discussion about the irrelevancy of the Mosaic law for comparisons between Christianity and Islam. One will be hard pressed and discover it impossible to squeeze a verse from the New Testament that mirrors the kind of horrifying commands found in the Koran. And that even the extremely rigorous standards created in the Torah, showed that Man could not be perfect, and that there was a remedy in place to bring man back into communion with God – that is a sin sacrifice. (I’m not sure if the Koran has anything like this which makes someone “right with God” other than the open ended commands to make war on all non-believers.

    Red Pill Ethics has covered the other topic I would have discussed:

    1) Christianity has 0 commands in it’s foundational document to make open ended war or to persecute any non-Christian. So, any followers doing such are making up their own doctrine.

    2) Judhaism has 0 commands in it’s foundational document to make open ended war on any non-Israelite. It DOES have several commands to make war on specifically identified tribes of Canaanites. So, unless you can find a spare Canaanite around anywhere, those “Holy War” commands are irrelevant for comparison.

    3) Islam DOES have several directives to KILL and PERSECUTE all non-believers and encouragement via “Taqiyyah” to play innocent and peaceful until enough muslim population exists to begin imposing Sharia will on an area, in which case it’s a no holds barred kill-fest according their scripture.

    This really isn’t a difficult distinction to make. And anyone drawing parallels is compelled to pretend like the distinctions don’t exist. We call that dishonesty.

    No True Scotsman

    A topic that needs further clarification is the fallacy of No True Scotsman. When any group is labeled, and some members of that group engage in conduct that is embarrassing to other members of the group, the others will often say “They just really aren’t one of us, so don’t look down on us.” There are times however that this IS NOT a fallacy.

    It is a fallacy, WHEN AND ONLY WHEN, those claiming that certain members are not actually members is when they use a standard of differentiation that is not a component of the basic definition of the group. If the definition of an American is one who is born within the national borders of the country called America, that is a simple simple example.

    If I say,”people who love Polyphonic Spree are not Americans” and you say, “well, I was born in California and I love Polyphonic Spree”, and then I replied, “well, you are no TRUE American”.

    This means I have *added* via my own opinion to the definition of American, and I am not applying the actual definition.

    No True Scotsman IS NOT a fallacy, that is to say it is a false accusation of No True Scotsman, when indeed the “members” conduct in question actually IS in direct violation of the definition of the group of which they claim to be part. That is:

    If Religion X’s 1st rule to be part of that religion is to REFUSE ALL meat, never eat meat, EVER. And then Person X who says he’s a member of that group, but eats meat, and I said, “Well you aren’t a True such-and-such”. That is not a use of No True Scotsman, but an actual fallacy.

    Things really get complicated, however, because NO SINGLE group, especially religious groups, has a single component of their beliefs one defining standard. They often have very overriding standards that can trump other standards (which leads to gray areas in whether or not No True Scotsman accusations are fair or fallacious).

    So where does that leave us with terrorists within religions? As alluded to by the previous commenters…if members of a religion instructing peace (such as Christianity) engage in violence, perhaps all we can say is that they are really really bad Christians, if they engage in enough violence, a whole lot of violence and generally practice life in a non-Christian way? You absolutely can call them No True Christian.

    Muslims? Sorry, their originating text doesn’t give them that out. There are enough direct commands of open ended war on non-believers in their foundational text that when they engage in violence they are merely being Muslim. In fact, one could say that the Muslim who DOESN’T engage in violence against non-believers is No True Muslim.

    • Michael Ejercito

      Judhaism has 0 commands in it’s foundational document to make open ended war on any non-Israelite. It DOES have several commands to make war on specifically identified tribes of Canaanites. So, unless you can find a spare Canaanite around anywhere, those “Holy War” commands are irrelevant for comparison.

      Judaism (and by extension,. Christianity) commands death for men who lay with beasts, who lay with other men, and who lay with their widowed or divorced stepmothers.

      • You must have clearly not read what I wrote or what Isaac wrote. Go back re-read his exposition on this. Then come back when you’ve had a breather.

        • Michael Ejercito

          The answer, of course, is that the temporal punishments described in the Bible are to be carried out under the authority of the state.

          Why can this not be argued for Islam as well concerning the violent sections of the Quran?

    • To be clear, if the Muslims want any equivalency of a reformation, they’ll need to delete out entire passages of their foundational documents.

      For starters they should probably do away with most of the hadiths and several select parts of the Koran.

  10. fattymoon

    Gotta put this out there. Remember, think for yourself. Me? I have no idea.
    http://stormcloudsgathering.com/charlie-hebdo-cover-up

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