Patterico's Pontifications

6/26/2007

A Muslim Holds Forth on Several Controversial Issues

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 5:59 am

The church of blogger and Patterico reader Anwyn was visited by a Muslim representative from Bilal Mosque, as part of a program to build interfaith bridges. The speaker’s message turned out to be doctrinaire rather than inclusive — especially when he was pulled away from vague generalities by Anwyn’s pointed questions. It’s unclear how representative his views are of those held by Muslims as a whole, but her post is worth reading.

116 Responses to “A Muslim Holds Forth on Several Controversial Issues”

  1. Your ignoraance, if that’s what it is amazes me. Would you ever make generalizations about Christians in the same way you do about muslims? As if Catholics and protestants are all the same, as if there are not liberals and conservatives who call themselves christian. The story refers to one man from one mosque.
    Should I assume every christian was like James Dobson? Or every catholic like Bill Donohue?

    “A Christian Holds Forth on Several Controversial Issues”

    I’m all ears, rilly.

    AF (4a3fa6)

  2. Hats off to Awynn for a provocative and insightful write-up. That this Muslim brushes off Hirsi Ali’s situation as ‘contrived’ to make money is so ridicuously absurd – as if life with 24/7 security, exile, and a fatwa on her is the way to a long life and riches – topped off with his claim of an ‘aberration’ re Van Gogh’s murder, is enough for me to write him off as a delusional whack job.

    After such an eye opener I would be forced to ask myself the hard question – why would I want to be part of a church community that seeks to build bridges with one like this Muslim? Obviously he is delusional, in denial, and justifies the most heinous of behaviors.

    Dana (36df1e)

  3. AF,

    Yeah, I really should have included some phrase like:

    “It’s unclear how representative his views are of those held by Muslims as a whole . . .”

    Oh, wait. I did. So what’s your beef?

    It’s worth a post because of the suspicion that his views may indeed be representative. For one thing, he was sent as a representative of a mosque, indicating that his views might be representative of something.

    Of course, the views of Dobson and Falwell, neither of whom are heroes of mine, are representative of the views of many as well. The difference, as I see it, is that I see little evidence of Muslims publicly condemning positions like the ones this fellow articulates. I’m sure such condemnation exists, but it is neither prominent nor organized.

    Patterico (568e28)

  4. every congregation needs someone like anwyn.

    “touch mohammed and there will be riots.” a noteworthy contradistinction to the christian attitude: i remember a few years back when an “artist” plunked a crucifix in a pot of urine; there was a lot of jibber-jabber over that but nobody got killed!

    he was a bangladeshi working for intel, undoubtedly here on one of those h-1b visas. we know intel got net value out of this; what about america? i believe america is worse off for bringing in folks willy-nilly from bangladesh and other benighted places. he obviously isn’t going to assimilate into our culture, he’s gonna dictate speech and conduct to us.

    bring your jihad to oregon and we will put it, and you, to rest.

    assistant devil's advocate (3e9be6)

  5. I disagree somewhat from Anwyn’s characterization of Muslim (and feminist) intolerance of criticism. I think it comes from a feeling of superiority–an arrogance that knows it is right no matter what the facts are.

    But if this man is truly representative of Moslems, then the growth of Western ideals in the Muslim world is going to have a very hard time. It will be at least a few more generations before they become dominant, if ever.

    kishnevi (db1823)

  6. undoubtedly here on one of those h-1b visas. we know intel got net value out of this; what about america? i believe america is worse off for bringing in folks willy-nilly from bangladesh and other benighted places.

    That’s up for debate, at the very least. If all muslims were exactly like this guy, they’d be wishy-washy/apologetic about condemning extremism, but there’d be no extremists to be wishy-washy about.

    he obviously isn’t going to assimilate into our culture, he’s gonna dictate speech and conduct to us.

    I wholeheartely disagree with this. It doesn’t seem to me that guy is sitting around in a terrorist cell plotting attack. He’s (ineptly) trying to build bridges. Again, if every muslim were like him, we wouldn’t have terrorism. Personally, I’d rather try to make sure every muslim is like him than try and declare war with muslim extremists, and ignore/dismiss muslims like him who want to build bridges.

    We don’t need to be converted to their faith. We don’t even need to believe their faith is morally/logically sound. We just need them to find the most efficient way to get rid of the dangerous ones. I’m not at all convinced that the best way to do that is to lump the wishy-washy ones in with the dangerous ones.

    To me, the more reasonable approach is to find out what made this guy a wishy-washy, personally non-violent apologist, and then do whatever we can to help make sure we get more of him and less of the scary kind of muslims.

    I seriously don’t think that the way christianity lost its extremists was through persecution and ultimate destruction of the extremists. I think christianity lost its extremists because all the christians discovered they were happier being a bit wishy-washy about their beliefs.

    Phil (427875)

  7. “It’s unclear how representative his views are of those held by Muslims as a whole.”

    I jumped too fast. I don’t think you caveat is strong enough, but it’s there plain as day and I said it wasn’t.

    my mistake.

    AF (4a3fa6)

  8. “then the growth of Western ideals in the Muslim world is going to have a very hard time.”

    What evidence is there that makes one even remotely think they want to adopt Western ideals in any way, shape or form?

    Dana (36df1e)

  9. Good for Anwyn. It’s always good for those inside the bubble of political correctness to hear a questioning voice.

    Phil, where do you get that he was a personally non-violent apologist? He pretty much happily warned “you touch Mo, you get riots.”

    And Christianity became personal and not political when it was separated from the state, something diametrically the opposite of political Islam today.

    Patricia (824fa1)

  10. In the time of Xerxes (5th century BC), a Semitic underclass, held essentially captive in the Persian Empire, adopted Persian monotheism, renamed Ahura Mazda “Jehova”, wrote a mythology around him and created Judaism. About five hundred years later, a splinter group modified Judaism to fit Greek and Roman western civilized thought and called it Christianity. About seven hundred years later a shepherd turned fortune hunter and con-man needed a religion for nasty, vicious and brutal barbarians surviving by preying on each other so he modified Judaism to fit their troglodyte mentality and called it Islam.

    nk (6061ba)

  11. One more thing, since I was stupid enough to jump in more ways than one. I’m embarrassed by that. I fucked up (it happens).

    “There is no explanation needed–God said to do it, Abraham was therefore justified in doing it, end of story.”
    A Christian literalist might say the same thing.
    [As an aside “In the Bible, Abraham’s twitchy, childless wife,”
    “twitchy?” interesting description.]

    ” He flatly stated that CNN and our other internal news sources, as opposed to CNN International, are basically a web of lies and propaganda. Yeah: propaganda against the Palestinians. Chew on that one for a minute.”
    Well actually quite a few people would agree with him on that.
    Do you want to get into a discussion once a gain of my supposed “right of return”?

    On Chechnya, the poster knows nothing of the slaughter, and it was and is a slaughter, or the desperation of the people there. That’s not a defense of the attack at Beslan.
    The man she spoke to is a sincere conservative, and the woman writing the post, discussing her interpretations of scripture is liberal by comparison, but on matters of feminism and religious doctrine, there are plenty of christian spokesmen in this country whose views would be considered simplar to his.
    All very complex, and it was my mistake to assume the worst, of the poster, of you and of the representative from the mosque.

    I’ll end with a quote from Benny Morris in Haaretz

    According to your findings, how many acts of Israeli massacre were perpetrated in 1948?

    “Twenty-four. In some cases four or five people were executed, in others the numbers were 70, 80, 100. There was also a great deal of arbitrary killing. Two old men are spotted walking in a field – they are shot. A woman is found in an abandoned village – she is shot. There are cases such as the village of Dawayima [in the Hebron region], in which a column entered the village with all guns blazing and killed anything that moved.

    “The worst cases were Saliha (70-80 killed), Deir Yassin (100-110), Lod (250), Dawayima (hundreds) and perhaps Abu Shusha (70). There is no unequivocal proof of a large-scale massacre at Tantura, but war crimes were perpetrated there. At Jaffa there was a massacre about which nothing had been known until now. The same at Arab al Muwassi, in the north. About half of the acts of massacre were part of Operation Hiram [in the north, in October 1948]: at Safsaf, Saliha, Jish, Eilaboun, Arab al Muwasi, Deir al Asad, Majdal Krum, Sasa. In Operation Hiram there was a unusually high concentration of executions of people against a wall or next to a well in an orderly fashion.

    “That can’t be chance. It’s a pattern. Apparently, various officers who took part in the operation understood that the expulsion order they received permitted them to do these deeds in order to encourage the population to take to the roads. The fact is that no one was punished for these acts of murder. Ben-Gurion silenced the matter. He covered up for the officers who did the massacres.”

    What you are telling me here, as though by the way, is that in Operation Hiram there was a comprehensive and explicit expulsion order. Is that right?

    “Yes. One of the revelations in the book is that on October 31, 1948, the commander of the Northern Front, Moshe Carmel, issued an order in writing to his units to expedite the removal of the Arab population. Carmel took this action immediately after a visit by Ben-Gurion to the Northern Command in Nazareth. There is no doubt in my mind that this order originated with Ben-Gurion. Just as the expulsion order for the city of Lod, which was signed by Yitzhak Rabin, was issued immediately after Ben-Gurion visited the headquarters of Operation Dani [July 1948].”

    Are you saying that Ben-Gurion was personally responsible for a deliberate and systematic policy of mass expulsion?

    “From April 1948, Ben-Gurion is projecting a message of transfer. There is no explicit order of his in writing, there is no orderly comprehensive policy, but there is an atmosphere of [population] transfer. The transfer idea is in the air. The entire leadership understands that this is the idea. The officer corps understands what is required of them. Under Ben-Gurion, a consensus of transfer is created.”

    Ben-Gurion was a “transferist”?

    “Of course. Ben-Gurion was a transferist. He understood that there could be no Jewish state with a large and hostile Arab minority in its midst. There would be no such state. It would not be able to exist.”

    I don’t hear you condemning him.

    “Ben-Gurion was right. If he had not done what he did, a state would not have come into being. That has to be clear. It is impossible to evade it. Without the uprooting of the Palestinians, a Jewish state would not have arisen here.”

    AF (4a3fa6)

  12. I called Sarah twitchy because only an insecure woman who judged her place would be in danger if she didn’t produce a child would invite her husband to get another woman pregnant.

    AF, when’s the last time you heard a Christian say, in those words, that something such as murder or riot is justified because God said it–and when’s the last time you heard it such that a bunch of other people didn’t shout him or her down? Example and occasion, please, as I’ve provided for mine.

    Patricia has it so right, that when Christianity became separated from government, individual Christians then felt freer to use their native judgment to decide what could and could not be the will of God–operating on such principles as “Will this cause unjust harm to another person?” Implicit in our speaker’s statement was that unjust harm is not a consideration if God says to do something. And who is telling your average devout Muslim what God says?

    Anwyn (a130c1)

  13. Phil, where do you get that he was a personally non-violent apologist? He pretty much happily warned “you touch Mo, you get riots.”

    Yeah, but he isn’t rioting. He’s just refusing to condemn those who do riot.

    If all muslims stood around and said “geeze, I wouldn’t be surprised if someone rioted about this,” then they’d be like, well, the christians, some of whom talk about nuking all Islamic nations in response to terrorism, but then don’t because they can’t come to agreement on it.

    Phil (427875)

  14. “He’s just refusing to condemn those who do riot. ”

    The point is exactly that – he is refusing to condemn what is obviously a most condemnable act. Why won’t he condemn it? Troubling at the least, revealing at the most. And let’s be clear – they are not just rioting, they are murdering, they are committing killings of their women in the name of ‘honor’, they are behaving in the most inhumane ways possible in the name of Mo. Why wouldn’t a rational person of the same faith want to condemn those publicly who shame the faith? Unless, of course, they believe it is justified.

    Dana (36df1e)

  15. If all muslims stood around and said “geeze, I wouldn’t be surprised if someone rioted about this,” then they’d be like, well, the christians, some of whom talk about nuking all Islamic nations in response to terrorism, but then don’t because they can’t come to agreement on it.

    Gee, and no one ever condemns speech like that, huh Phil??

    Pablo (99243e)

  16. I jumped too fast. I don’t think you caveat is strong enough, but it’s there plain as day and I said it wasn’t.

    my mistake.

    Good first step. The next step is to realize that it’s not an isolated incident.

    Jim Treacher (12ed69)

  17. Anwyn are you referring to this country? What would you say about Ireland?
    In this country the Christian right and its extreme fringe has produced terrorists. Google Christian terrorism. There are wars of religion all over the world, and there always have been. The founders of israel engaged in terrorism, and admitted it. The Catholic church committed all sort of crimes in the name of its god. These days those crimes are limited to lying about the efficacy of condoms in the fight against aids.

    People are capable of defending all sorts of actions. Patterico links to a site wher one post was entitled “On the Virtues of Killing Children.” The post was about how to win the war in Iraq, and there was no irony intended.
    I don’t think much of people, so i don’t expect much of them. But as you worry about others, worry not only about how many people have died Darfur (for example) but also how many have died in Iraq.
    As far as the politics and Church is concerned Daniel Berrigan hid out in our house for a while when he was on the lamb (pardon the pun.)

    AF (4a3fa6)

  18. Here’s the difference, AF, which you keep missing in your zeal to excuse one by bringing up all: give an example of a “Christian terrorist,” with proven facts, and then count how many people commenting here would say “Touch Jesus, and there will be riots.”

    Anwyn (a130c1)

  19. …how many people commenting here would say “Touch Jesus, and tehre will be riots” and then be taken at face value and not ridiculed, argued, or shouted to death.

    Anwyn (a130c1)

  20. Preemptive strike…just in case: a nutjob calling himself a Christian and blowing up abortion clinics does not represent all Christians – and be assured as has happened, Christians would be the loudest voice of condemnation to such an act. (and his claim of Christian would be in serious question, too).

    Dana (36df1e)

  21. I give you Paul Hill.

    AF (4a3fa6)

  22. Wow, Dana, it’s like you read his mind!

    Now, AF, it’s time to count the commenters here who come out in support of Paul Hill’s actions.

    Anwyn (a130c1)

  23. I dunno, Anwyn, sometimes ignorance brings out the best in me.

    Dana (36df1e)

  24. Yeah, but he isn’t rioting. He’s just refusing to condemn those who do riot.

    How do you know that? Here he is prosletyzing and excusing…explaining terrorism. It is reasonable to ask how far his refusal to condemn goes. I knew dopey Irishmen in Chicago where I grew up who contributed to NORAD, thereby arming the IRA. Is he one of those minority of millions who thinks 9/11 was an inside job and that suicide bombing is sometimes justified?

    And AF, I am not disputing your facts. But the question is, what do we do NOW? Should we abandon Israel and support Abbas to make up for wars and sins of the past? That seems to be the leftist meme, as in America’s past (Jefferson had slaves, the Mexicans were here before us) means we must suffer and pay for it NOW. But it doesn’t help the state of the world one bit, unless you believe democracy and capitalism are bad. I don’t.

    Patricia (824fa1)

  25. Eric Rudolf and Christian Identity?
    There’s even a splinter sect called the “Army of God.” Again, I’m not saying that this country is awash in Christian fascists, but they exist.
    “Touch Jesus, and there will be riots” That’s just a phrase. You’re separating christians you know from a muslim man you met. That’s fine as far as it goes, but that’s not very far. Do some research on Christianity around the world, in India or Africa. It’s no more or less a religion of peace than Islam or Hinduism, or most others. And again religion or no: how many dead in Iraq? How many refugees? How much destruction?
    Actions speak louder than words, even… especially, words of faith.

    AF (4a3fa6)

  26. Eric Rudolf and Christian Identity?
    There’s even a splinter sect called the “Army of God.” Again, I’m not saying that this country is awash in Christian fascists, but they exist.
    “Touch Jesus, and there will be riots” That’s just a phrase. You’re separating christians you know from a muslim man you met. That’s fine as far as it goes, but that’s not very far. Do some research on Christianity around the world, in India or Africa. It’s no more or less a religion of peace than Islam or Hinduism, or most others. And again religion or no: how many dead in Iraq? How many refugees? How much destruction?
    Actions speak louder than words, even… especially, words of faith.

    AF (4a3fa6)

  27. And BTW your analogy to Ireland and other religious wars is not apt. The IRA never articulated imperialist aims like radical Islam does. If they would limit their killing to their own, there would be no WOT. There is a WOT because they attacked us on our soil–yes, yes, after real or perceived “provocations” like us militarily protecting the oil tyrants or their being driven out of their land of al-Andalusia–but they came to us and killed us. The IRA did not.

    Patricia (824fa1)

  28. Patricia, ask a Quaker

    AF (4a3fa6)

  29. Ask a Quaker what? Christian or not I would never support sitting on our hands after an attack like WTC.

    It’s no more or less a religion of peace than Islam

    Flatly untrue.

    Anwyn (a130c1)

  30. “The IRA never articulated imperialist aims like radical Islam does”

    You have no idea what Hezbollah and Hamas represent. You refer to Islam in a way you would never refer to Christianity, when both are diverse. Do you know anything about Israeli expansionist policies? About the specifics of the middle east?
    Again, read Helena Cobban for a few weeks. The link on #27 Ask her. She’s a nice woman.

    AF (4a3fa6)

  31. I’m not going to respond to any more attempts to change the subject, which was the support of riots and the dismissal of murder by a Muslim, a mainstream individual who could be my neighbor.

    Anwyn (a130c1)

  32. There have probably been more killings in the past two weeks “in the name of Allah” than the _total_ number of abortion bombers. (7)

    Al (b624ac)

  33. “Christian or not I would never support sitting on our hands after an attack like WTC.”

    Are you one of the 41% of the population that believes Saddam was involved in 9-11?

    AF (4a3fa6)

  34. “I’m not going to respond to any more attempts to change the subject, which was the support of riots and the dismissal of murder…”

    I hear such defenses all the time on many sites, including this one.
    Or does the fact that its committed by a government make murder somehow less immoral?

    AF (4a3fa6)

  35. AF – It’s no more or less a religion of peace than Islam or Hinduism, or most others.

    You are the one making these claims. It’s incumbent on you to provide the evidence. So far your evidence is lacking. Isolated individuals and small fringe movements in the U.S. don’t cut it. Our invasion of Iraq is not a Christian religious war. Could you be a little bit more intellectually dishonest for everyone’s benefit? You started off the thread that way and are moving back that direction.

    daleyrocks (906622)

  36. “There have probably been more killings in the past two weeks “in the name of Allah”

    The baathist fighters in Iraq are secular nationalists. And others are moved more by nationalism than religious ideology, but of course it overlaps. I could give you a whole list of people to read who are experts on these things, if you want. Here’s another

    AF (4a3fa6)

  37. Basically AF it seems like you view a lot of double talk by a mush mouth Muslim trying to explain away violence against nonmuslims, violence against critics of Islam, intolerance of nonbelievers and oppression of women as a bravura performance. You know nothing of the level of knowledge of others on this blog and it is an insult to bluster that you do. Most of you links are laughable for their shallowness and bias and they are tewlling because they clearly form the basis for your thinking.

    daleyrocks (906622)

  38. You have no idea what Hezbollah and Hamas represent.

    Why not? All you have to do is listen to them and they’ll tell you.

    Pablo (99243e)

  39. Too funny,

    This guy comes to spread understanding and gets grilled over the actions of 2 out of 1,300,000,000 Muslims.

    I wonder how embarrassed the other churchgoers were by this rudeness?

    alphie (015011)

  40. Reading is fundamental Alphie. A lot of the conversation was one on one or in a small group, not in front of a congregation.

    daleyrocks (906622)

  41. Yeah, I read it, daley.

    Imagine if a Christian went to a mosque to talk about Christianity and he got buttonholed by someone who kept asking him why Andrea Yates drowned all her kids in a bathtub.

    An aberration of Christianinity a good enough explanation?

    alphie (015011)

  42. Were there riots in the street supporting her right to drown her kids Alphie?

    daleyrocks (906622)

  43. Does AF’s bragging about Berrigan hiding in his house betray his support for violent protest? Berrigan’s prison sentence for violent anti-war activities and subsequent destruction of property in anti-nuclear protests hopefully is not something people advocate in a democratic society as an expression of free speech. With these progressives, you never know. Malkin wrote a good book on it AF, you might want to check it out.

    daleyrocks (906622)

  44. “violent?” he burned some paper.
    And how much support for the IRA has there been in this country, up unitl recently, if not even now?
    That’s violence.

    AF (4a3fa6)

  45. I believe there were crowds of Yates supporters outside the courtroom, daley.

    And Charles Krauthammer called for her to be found innocent:

    http://www.jewishworldreview.com/cols/krauthammer031802.asp

    alphie (015011)

  46. Alphie, Sorry but that’s not the same thing.
    That wasn’t the point of the question. Understanding the root cause of an act of insanity is not the same as understanding the root “cause” of an act of choice.

    AF (4a3fa6)

  47. The “a few bad apples” defense, AF?

    You do realize that the attempt to smear all Muslims with the acts of a tiny minority of Muslims is a well-funded, highly organized political gambit, don’t you?

    You can choose not to fall for it.

    alphie (015011)

  48. It’s that “tiny minority” people are quibbling about Alphie that you keep ignoring. When people fail to condemn the violent acts of that “tiny minority” as you so quaintly label it, given repeated and ample opportunity to do so and I’m not just talking about this post, it appears we have a problem fitting certain mores of Islamic society into modern western society.

    daleyrocks (906622)

  49. “You do realize that the attempt to smear all Muslims with the acts of a tiny minority of Muslims is a well-funded, highly organized political gambit, don’t you?”

    No. I separate Al Qaeda who are extremist to the point of nihilism, from movements with a broad base of support and very specific and limited political demands.
    You are criticizing the very limited defense of a woman that argues that as a diagnosed psychotic she should not be treated as a common criminal, out of pity for her own terrible, tragic, situation.
    I would put neither Bin Ladin nor Hassan Nasrallah in that category, but for very different reasons. I also would not put Arik Sharon in that category.

    It doesn’t help to defend against oversimplification with more oversimplification.

    AF (4a3fa6)

  50. Alphie- “Imagine if a Christian went to a mosque to talk about Christianity… “

    That would never even be considered. That would be grounds for a death sentence.

    fngJD (1b5735)

  51. But Anwyn grilled the guest to her church about the murder of Theo van Gogh, AF. The act of one crazy individual. How is that any different than asking a random Christian to explain Andrea Yates?

    Many of the Muslims who commit acts of terror have histories of mental illness, including some of the 9/11 hijackers.

    Don’t they get the benefit of the “few bad apples” defense, too?

    alphie (015011)

  52. It continues to amaze me that liberals ignore liberal Muslims like these people, who believe in their same liberal values, to favor radical Muslims, whose beliefs–“you touch Mohammed, you get riots”–are completely opposite to theirs!

    You can dance and bob and weave in threads like these, but you are supporting them.

    Patricia (824fa1)

  53. Alphie- “Many of the Muslims who commit acts of terror have histories of mental illness, including some of the 9/11 hijackers.”

    I have to agree with you here. It seems that quite of few of these ‘scholars’ have rap sheets a mile long with crimes such as pimping and various other felonies before they came to their ‘religious conversion’.

    fngJD (1b5735)

  54. “Alphie- “Imagine if a Christian went to a mosque to talk about Christianity… “

    That would never even be considered. That would be grounds for a death sentence.”

    This alone should be problematic for you, Alphie -that it appears to not be is even more problematic as you continue to defend what is so indefensible.

    Dana (4cbb3b)

  55. “Free the Film Frank Gaffney?

    Frank Gaffney
    Frank Gaffney
    Frank Gaffney

    “According to multiple, well-placed sources, Frank Gaffney has a whopper of an alternative: he thinks that force, or at least the threat of force, should be used to compel other countries to recognize U.S. rights in the sea. Gaffney believes this is preferable to accession to LOS, under which U.S. legal rights would be recognized and disputes could be settled peacefully and equitably.”
    Frank Gaffney: “equated opposition to the Leader and the war with treason, and called for Senators such as Carl Levin to be hanged as traitors.”
    more here

    Gaffney is an idiot. And the film is an insult. Imagine a film by “ex-catholics” trying to reform the church.

    AF (4a3fa6)

  56. “Free the Film”
    Frank Gaffney?

    “According to multiple, well-placed sources, Frank Gaffney has a whopper of an alternative: he thinks that force, or at least the threat of force, should be used to compel other countries to recognize U.S. rights in the sea. Gaffney believes this is preferable to accession to LOS, under which U.S. legal rights would be recognized and disputes could be settled peacefully and equitably.”
    Frank Gaffney: “equated opposition to the Leader and the war with treason, and called for Senators such as Carl Levin to be hanged as traitors.”
    more here

    Gaffney is an idiot. And the film is an insult. Imagine a film by “ex-catholics” trying to reform the church.

    AF (4a3fa6)

  57. But Anwyn grilled the guest to her church about the murder of Theo van Gogh, AF. The act of one crazy individual. How is that any different than asking a random Christian to explain Andrea Yates?

    This seems unbelievably obvious to have to spell out for you, but here goes. In short, the difference is that van Gogh was killed because he offended the killer’s religion (and maybe the killer was crazy), and Yates’s children were killed because she was crazy, period, with no reference to Christianity. And when members of the same religion that was insulted are asked about the killing of van Gogh, the more proper answer is “I don’t condone killing somebody just because he offends my religion” rather than “an aberration, but riots? those are normal.”

    Anwyn (a130c1)

  58. What is “indefensible” Dana?

    Could you be more specific?

    Here’s another example that I’m confused about:

    When this cop-killer was caught:

    http://www.metrokc.gov/proatty/news/2003/Herztp.htm

    he was standing on his apartment balcony, bible in hand (two bibles, actually), preaching to a crowd of confused onlookers.

    What should I conclude about Christianity from that chilling scene, Dana?

    alphie (015011)

  59. Alphie,

    Your example might be relevant if the crowd of “confused onlookers” were replaced by a group of “enraged rioters,” but they weren’t so your example is irrelevant.

    DRJ (8b9d41)

  60. Here’s another side by side comparison…

    I am currently wearing this t-shirt.

    If I wore the same shirt, only it had The Prophet on it, and it said “Allah says: don’t be a dick”, I would have a horde after me, crying for my head.

    Christians usually find my shirt funny. Muslims would find the hypothetical shirt cause to kill me.

    Scott Jacobs (e3904e)

  61. Re: Anwyn in 12–Sarah was insecure because she had good reason to be insecure. In the culture of that place and time, barrenness was accepted as grounds for divorce. And the ancient Middle East was not the only culture in which that was true. (China is another example.)
    In fact, until about a hundred years ago, Jewish men with infertile wives were expected to divorce them so they could remarry and fulfill the commandment to be fruitful and multiply. A man in such a situation who did not, was considered exceptionally pious.

    So to call Sarah twitchy is overstating it. By that standard, a woman walking by herself in a bad part of town late at night would be twitchy if she was afraid of being mugged and raped.

    Also, in reference to the original article, given the nature of Putin and the Russian autocracy, believing Beslan was some sort of setup is not unreasonable. It just doesn’t have any evidence to back it up. But to equate the idea with something that is truly unreasonable, such as the idea that the US gov’t was responsible for 9/11, is unfair.
    There is a reason that Russia is not like the US.

    kishnevi (018e59)

  62. Alphie you’re weakening your own arguments. This one is better:

    Messianic theology is centered on the belief in a hegemonic Israel as a necessary precursor to the second coming of Christ. Although this doctrine is certainly an important part of the Christian Right’s support of a militaristic and expansionist Jewish state, fundamentalist Christian Zionism in the United States ascribes to an even more dangerous dogma: that of Manichaeism, the belief that reality is divided into absolute good and absolute evil.

    The day after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, Bush declared, “This will be a monumental struggle of good versus evil, but good will prevail.” The United States was targeted – according to Bush – not on account of its support for Arab dictatorships, the large US military presence in the Middle East, US backing of the Israeli occupation, or the humanitarian consequences of US policy toward Iraq, but simply because they “hate our freedom”. Despite the Gospels’ insistence that the line separating good and evil does not run between nations but rather within each person, Bush cited Christological texts to support his war aims in the Middle East, declaring, “And the light [the US] has shown in the darkness [the enemies of the US], and the darkness will not overcome it [the US shall conquer its enemies].”

    Even more disturbing, Bush has stated repeatedly that he was “called” by God to run for president. Veteran journalist Bob Woodward noted, “The president was casting his mission and that of the country in the grand vision of God’s master plan,” wherein he promised, in his own words, “to export death and violence to the four corners of the Earth in defense of this great country and rid the world of evil”. In short, Bush believes that he has accepted the responsibility of leading the free world as part of God’s plan. He even told then-Palestinian prime minister Mahmoud Abbas that “God told me to strike al-Qaeda and I struck them, and then he instructed me to strike at Saddam [Hussein], which I did.” Iraq has become the new Babylon, and the “war on terrorism” has succeeded the Cold War with the Soviet Union as the quintessential battle between good and evil.

    AF (4a3fa6)

  63. Yes, AF, you have discovered the Christic Conspiracy! Anwyn is the spokesperson for her region! Run for your lives to the local mosque!

    Patricia (824fa1)

  64. Here’s a better one, AF. Bush’s speech he gave a few days before we mistakenly invaded Iraq:

    http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2003/03/20030317-7.html

    He closed it with “Good night, and may God continue to bless America.”

    Whoops.

    alphie (015011)

  65. AF (re #27). The Quaker who claims that Hamas observed truces in good faith obviously never visited Sderot.

    You might also want to ask all the Christians in Bethlehem what it’s like to live with jihadi-sympathizing neighbors. And since most of them have left or are leaving, you don’t need to even go to Bethlehem.

    And there is one difference between AlQaeda and Hamas: Hamas is confining itself geographically to the Holy Land.

    kishnevi (018e59)

  66. Alphie – you mean like Reagan did with the challenger explosion, and most every other president after a casatrophy?

    Scott Jacobs (e3904e)

  67. From Anwyn’s post we know:

    This person has clearly made a declarative warning. (Don’t ‘touch’ Mo or else…) So I guess we can infer that it is not a religion of peace…”He went on to stipulate that it’s fine with him if I then turn around and say that Islam is not a religion of peace, but nevertheless, touch Mohammed and riots will happen.”

    And, “… instead of disassociating himself or Islam itself from those acts (which a rational person would) our speaker denied their existence (which would make him a liar and right up there with Holocaust deniers), then wrote them off as an anomaly or preached that we must accept them as a matter of routine when Mohammed is insulted (murder and fatwas are to be considered ‘a matter of routine if they did happen….but maybe it did happen and was an anomaly or maybe it didn’t happen?? Did, didn’t??? Is he schizo or just patently dishonest?)

    It might be me but I tend to think when you add up warnings and threats and the admonition that we are to accept murder and death threats as ‘routine’, its pretty much all around indefensible.

    Dana (4cbb3b)

  68. #52 Patricia-

    I get a laugh out of that too. In the Islamic Republic of Iran, most of the liberal supporters would be the first on the chopping block.

    Oil and water.

    fngJD (1b5735)

  69. I agree that Iraq was a “casatrophy” Scott.

    But blown up spacecraft and unjustified military invasions seems odd things for a peaceful god to be supporting, don’t they?

    alphie (015011)

  70. damnit, I can’t type today!

    Not that I ever really can, but I’m extra crappy at it today…

    But I have to say that the whole concept of a christian god just completely escapes you, doesn’t it…

    Scott Jacobs (e3904e)

  71. “Anwyn is the spokesperson for her region!”
    I did not say that. No one person is the spokesman for any religion or any belief. But radical and violent forms, or forms that allow for or call for violence exist.

    AF (4a3fa6)

  72. And should be denounced by any member of that form that disagrees with radicalism and violence.

    I would hate to think that the violence done in the name of Islam IS being denounced by those who disagree with it…

    Because that would suggest there are very few of them.

    Scott Jacobs (e3904e)

  73. I’d say the concept of a Christian god competely escapes many “Christians” these days, Scott.

    Here’s what they seem to preaching:

    Any violent act committed by a Christian in the name of their religion will be dismissed with either “they were a bad apple” or “they were crazy, poor thing” or “at least they meant well.”

    Any violent act committed by a Muslim, however, should not only be considered evil, but should also be used to condemn all Muslims if possible.

    Hardly a “let he who is without sin” kind of argument, is it?

    alphie (015011)

  74. I did not say that. No one person is the spokesman for any religion or any belief.

    The Pope will be interested to hear that, AF. And as for this:

    Frank Gaffney: “equated opposition to the Leader and the war with treason, and called for Senators such as Carl Levin to be hanged as traitors.”

    Do you really think that’s what he’s saying in a piece that says:

    It is, of course, unimaginable that the penalties proposed by one of our most admired presidents for the crime of dividing America in the face of the enemy would be contemplated – let alone applied – today.

    Reading is fundamental, AF. Thinking is good too.

    Pablo (99243e)

  75. Any violent act committed by a Christian in the name of their religion will be dismissed with either “they were a bad apple” or “they were crazy, poor thing” or “at least they meant well.”

    When was the last time a crime was committed in the name of Christ? When was the last bomb detonated by a guy hollering “Praise Jesus!”?

    Pablo (99243e)

  76. ALL the Religious leaders in Jerusalem agree on one thing

    “Traditionally, the parade would take place in liberal Tel Aviv, where it was welcomed by the city folks as much as it is in London. But religious, poor and generally grumpy Jerusalem is a far less enthusiastic a location when it comes to gay rights. Last year, the pilot Jerusalem gay parade met serious resistance in the streets of the capital, and in one incident four marchers were stabbed and injured by a militant Orthodox-religious protester.

    This year the city was already on fire, days in advance. The police were warning against severe violence and the streets have been covered with Orthodox religious posters calling people to come into town and stop the blasphemy from taking place. Leaflets explaining how to make Molotov cocktails were scattered around the Orthodox Mea-Shaarim neighbourhood, and the police reported that the parade’s opponents were gathering rotten eggs and some other, more lethal, weapons. Despite police reluctance to allow the parade to take place due to fear of riots, the attorney general, Meni Mazuz, ruled that it should be allowed to go ahead.

    One of the arguments raised by the parade’s Orthodox opponents is that members of the Muslim and Christian communities in the holy city also object to the parade. The champions of this argument tend to change their allegiance when four times a year, in the three main Jewish festivals and Jerusalem Day (a national holiday which marks the occupation of east Jerusalem in 1967), thousands of settlers march in the Palestinian neighbourhoods of the city, provoking its residents and often causing severe damage to property.

    I don’t agree with them of course.

    AF (4a3fa6)

  77. Why, Pablo, I provided you with two already.

    Both Andrea Yates and Ronald Keith Matthews committed horrific crimes in the name of their religion.

    I’m too busy to keep an LGF-style site that does nothing but list violent acts committed by individual Christians around the world.

    Too busy and too…rational.

    alphie (015011)

  78. I regularly read this site, but I rarely have the time to comment on anything. In any event, I’m an American Muslim, and I’d like to chime in and denounce any and all of the hideous acts of violence and extremism perpetrated by my so-called coreligionists. I also have dozens of Muslim friends who feel the same. But, I should also say that I (and many of my friends) no longer regularly attend services at any of the local mosques because we feel that many of the leaders in these mosques either actively support fundamentalist points of view or don’t do enough to discourage such support. In general, many of the people who end up running the mosques have views similar to or worse than the speaker at Anwyn’s church. And, this is not a new problem (obviously).

    Almost 10 years ago a Muslim leader named Sheikh Hisham Kabbani spoke at the State Department and warned them that many of mosques in this country had been infiltrated by or were run by extremists (many of whom had Saudi financial backing). I don’t think people like Sheikh Kabbani have gotten enough press or credit especially considering the backlash that he received from groups like CAIR and the AMC.

    I’d like to believe that most Muslims, in their heart of hearts, have beliefs more closely associated with Sheikh Kabbani’s, but I honestly don’t know. And, I hope that even if they don’t hold these beliefs now that they can be convinced to change and to reject this literalist fundamentalism because the religion itself is definitely just as capable of accommodating peaceful existence as it is of the current extremist dominated type.

    adams (40d1a3)

  79. “It is, of course, unimaginable that the penalties proposed by one of our most admired presidents for the crime of dividing America in the face of the enemy would be contemplated – let alone applied – today. Still, as the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate engage in interminable debate about resolutions whose effects can only be to “damage morale and undermine the military” while emboldening our enemies, it is time to reflect on what constitutes inappropriate behavior in time of war.
    Scarcely anyone seems to consider the conduct of the Congress at the moment inappropriate, to say nothing of a hanging offense.”

    “Reading is fundamental.” Yes it is.

    And of course the reference to Lincoln was a complete fabrication

    AF (4a3fa6)

  80. “Reading is fundamental.” Yes it is.

    Yes, and if you’d do it for comprehension, you’d realize that your quote doesn’t say what you say it does. And the you’d note that your quote which supposedly demonstrates that “ALL the Religious leaders in Jerusalem agree on one thing” quotes not a single one of them.

    Alphie, you know what insane is, right? I suspect you’re intimately familiar with insane. And as for Matthews, read your own freaking link:

    Matthews was also yelling intermittently that he was the “King of Slaves”, Rodney King, and Martin Luther King, Jr. The killing of Deputy Herzog was itself an irrational act without motive or reason. The fact that Matthews was acting delusional at the time of the shooting focused the attention of his attorneys and our office on his mental status.

    Why can’t moonbats read?

    Pablo (99243e)

  81. Adams, thanks for your insight.

    I don’t think people like Sheikh Kabbani have gotten enough press or credit especially considering the backlash that he received from groups like CAIR and the AMC.

    There is a fight on. Are there enough of you to beat the Wahabbis?

    Pablo (99243e)

  82. So, on this one you’re going with the insane defense, Pablo?

    Nice.

    What about that woman who drove her kids into a lake and left them there because “the devil” had infected them?

    And that woman up in Oregon who threw her kids off a bridge for the same “reason?”

    Going with the “they were crazy, poor thing” defense there, too?

    alphie (015011)

  83. alphie: Are you suggesting, by analogy, that all the terrorists are actually just a little crazy? That they murder random civilians because they are going through a psychotic break or a bad case of post-partum depression?

    That’s just not the case. These extremists are making rational decisions, and they’re making the wrong decisions. It doesn’t help to conflate them with the mentally ill. If that were the case, we could end this all by adding Haldol to the drinking water.

    adams (40d1a3)

  84. Yates was found not guilty by reason of insanity. Richard Reid, not so much.

    Pablo (99243e)

  85. It’s not just Muslim terrorists who frequently have mental problems, adams.

    Look at the individuals in our own domestic terrorist groups in the past and you’ll find a lot of mental problems.

    Free, government-funded anti-depressants for everyone who needs ’em ain’t a bad idea, and I know the drug companies would be behind it 100%!

    alphie (015011)

  86. Mental problems are not the same as psychosis (as a side note, anti-depressants generally have negative effects on psychotic individuals).

    adams (40d1a3)

  87. Whatever works, adams…

    alphie (015011)

  88. adams,
    Insightful, enlightening, thanks so much and take heart.

    Dana (4cbb3b)

  89. It is strange that some will condemn all of Christianity for the mis-deads of a very few, but refuse to condemn Radical Islam for the atrocities of many.

    This is a very strange society that we have molded. Perhaps the Constitution IS a suicide pact.

    A pox on all your houses!

    Another Drew (8018ee)

  90. And you didn’t even ask him the hard questions, like why get so worked up over make-believe.

    whitd (034065)

  91. Any violent act committed by a Christian in the name of their religion will be dismissed with either “they were a bad apple” or “they were crazy, poor thing” or “at least they meant well.”

    Any violent act committed by a Muslim, however, should not only be considered evil, but should also be used to condemn all Muslims if possible.

    Alphie, you’re missing the point here.

    When a Christiane commits an act of horror “in the name of Christ”, 99.9% of Christians denounce it openly, publicly, and loudly.

    When a Muslim commits an act of horror “in the name of Allah”, narry a peep is heard from a HUGE section of Muslims.

    Do you see the difference?

    Scott Jacobs (a1de9d)

  92. Comment #11- Who apologized for that? Certainly not Benny Morris.
    Who has ever apologized for helping to overthrow the democratically elected Prime Minister of iran and installing the Shah?
    Who’s apologized for helping to install Saddam Hussein?
    Who’s apologized for supporting the dictators Mubarak and Musharraf?
    60 years of refugee camps. Who’s apologized for that?
    How many dead in Iraq? How many refugees?
    How many children dead earlier as a result of the the sanctions?
    But none of these were done “in the name of christ”
    Just by those who use use his name in vain;
    guilt ridden over WWII, wanting an easy out and seeing strategic possibilities in the age of oil.
    Who helped make Saudi Arabia what it is today?

    Look it all up. It’s all documented and easy to find.

    Alphie you did a lousy job.

    AF (4a3fa6)

  93. “Anwyn is the spokesperson for her region!”

    I did not say religion. I said region. It was a joke, a parody of commenters like you and alphie and your condemnation of ABM (Anyone but Muslim). But of course you harbored a violent Christian in your house, so maybe you are just generally confused.

    Adams, thank you for commenting. I hope one day our government officials wise up and support people like you.

    Patricia (824fa1)

  94. Of course I harbored a pacifist Christian in my house,
    but ‘religion’, ‘region': that was a slip. The first one all the way at the top wasfar worse. That’s the one that hurt.

    AF (4a3fa6)

  95. Really, Scott?

    Christians have been known to be famously silent when certain atrocities were being committed by their co-religionists.

    I’m an atheiest, btw, Patricia.

    As Ben Franklin said, all cats are grey in the dark.

    alphie (015011)

  96. “…where they damaged nuclear warhead nose cones and poured blood onto documents and files.”

    From your link.

    Oh, destruction of property, some of it possibly dangerous, doesn’t count. Because it was all in the name of peace, and he had good intentions? Isn’t that Bush’s rationale for Iraq and open borders, that he meant well?

    But then, he’s sounding a lot lately like he’s converted to your team these days. Maybe he’s been reading your comments. Bush at Islamic Center

    Patricia (824fa1)

  97. AF’s rationalizing is amusing – Berrigan was nonviolent, he only burned paper. He’s a pacifist. Great minimization.

    Violence against the property of other is OK as long as it’s for a good cause and doesn’t hurt anyone. Vandalizing missile nose cones is nonviolent. I can see that in some sort of liberal pretzel logic fashion. As long as we don’t commit bodily harm, we are still nonviolent and pacifists! Power to the people!

    Is that the type of rationalization the ELF people used to excuse their arson campaign for animal rights? Very nuanced? Is an abortion clinic bombing nonviolent if no one is harmed?

    daleyrocks (906622)

  98. Patricia – You and I cross posted. Great minds.

    daleyrocks (906622)

  99. “I can see that in some sort of liberal pretzel logic fashion.”

    There’s a problem with civil disobedience, even when it’s in a good cause: you’ve the one defining the “good.” As Noam Chomsky’s said, there’s a danger of fascism in that. It’s something to worry about.
    So lets discuss another ‘Christian’ issue in this country: abortion.
    I mentioned Berrigan in the context of a discussion of the Christianity and islam [see #17] and a Blackfive post the title of which I repeat too much, though it still works. So, even with my own reservations, take a look at the chart on this page. Without getting into a debate on whether defenders of choice ever make false charges, the level of violence and threats of violence are on another scale from some Quakers and an ex-Jesuit breaking into a military base, denting some missiles and dumping pigs’ blood into file drawers. And no, there was no danger of explosion or radiation leak, and the physical damage was minimal. It was a PR stunt: if a few peaceniks could breach security so easily, don’t you imagine others could as well?
    If the anti-abortion movement had been closer to Berrigan in their Christianity might have helped their cause. But they haven’t been.

    [as an aside it’s become more and more clear recently just how sloppy this administration has been with classified material]

    AF (4a3fa6)

  100. Oh, I understand, it’s all a matter of degree and depth of belief and you’re the one defining both. Pitiful rationalizing.

    daleyrocks (906622)

  101. “Oh, I understand, it’s all a matter of degree and depth of belief and you’re the one defining both”
    That’s the danger yes: for all protestors who engage in civil disobedience, even those you approve of dailyrocks.

    AF (4a3fa6)

  102. I shouldn’t assume.
    “even those you might approve of”.

    AF (4a3fa6)

  103. [as an aside it’s become more and more clear recently just how sloppy this administration has been with classified material]

    Yeah… Cause the CLintons had that stuff locked up tight…

    On a table…

    And under a trailer…

    Scott Jacobs (90eabe)

  104. AF, I am having difficulty believing your wrote that with a straight face.

    Robin Roberts (6c18fd)

  105. Fnd me a defender of Sandy Berger, Scott.

    AF (4a3fa6)

  106. “defending”?

    I dunno about you, but a single word of condemnation for Sandy, and his pathetically puny sentence, would be nice from anywhere on the left…

    Scott Jacobs (90eabe)

  107. “As Noam Chomsky’s said…”

    Finally. This explains all the endless rationalizing.

    Dana (4cbb3b)

  108. Yeah, AF believes in the destruction of violent destruction of other peoples’ property as a means of “civil disobedience” because Chomsky told him it was OK, you just GOTTA BELIEVE. It’s like that old standard, “we’ve already determined what you are, we’re just trying to agree on a price.”

    Better yet, to paraphrase the sockpuppet swami of the progressive set “Are we a nation of laws?”

    I guess not, if AF supports the destruction of property as a “peaceful” means to achieving an end.

    Can everyone say SLIPPERY SLOPE!

    daleyrocks (906622)

  109. As the opposition here again and again moves the goalposts, all I can say is, read it again:

    As Noam Chomsky’s said, there’s a danger of fascism in that.

    (Hey, daley, great minds!)

    Patricia (824fa1)

  110. I dunno about you, but a single word of condemnation for Sandy, and his pathetically puny sentence, would be nice from anywhere on the left…

    Would you just cheeze it with the Sandy Berger talk, already!?! WE DON’T TALK ABOUT THAT. Geez…

    Love,
    The Left

    Pablo (99243e)

  111. Noam Chomsky? Can’t you find any one better to back up your point (actually, I agree with your point, but I have a tendency to disagree with any Chomskyism on principle.)

    Pablo: the Right is doing such a good job of condemning Berger, why do you think they need any help? :)

    kishnevi (5e1764)

  112. If you’re curious about the rule of law, check out Justin Levine
    “Judge Richard Posner Gets With The Program”

    -Rationalization.
    -Contempt for the rule of law.
    -Contempt for the Constitution itself.
    Pablo, dailyrocks, Scott:
    Any of you worried about fascism in this context?

    And on that other matter: where’s Sandy Berger’s legal defense fund? Who signed on to that?
    But who had a spy on his staff who leaked to the political opposition in the Philippines? Who [and we still don’t know] told Chalabi that we had Iranian codes (a fact that he then told Iran)?

    In another example described to my staff, a junior White House aide reported that a senior assistant to the President improperly disclosed “Sensitive Compartmented Information” to the junior aide, even though the aide had no security clearance. Although SCI is the highest level of security classification, the White House Security Office took no steps to investigate or take corrective action. …
    One example cited by the officials involved security procedures in the White House sensitive compartmented information facility (SCIF). The security officers said that Mr. Knodell and Mr. Greeson habitually brought their Blackberry devices and cell phones into the SCIF in the White House Security Office in violation of the rules. The officials said that (White House Security Office head James) Knodell and (WHSO Deputy Ken) Greeson also allowed others, such as visiting White House personnel, to bring their Blackberries and cell phones into the SCIF. According to the officials, these improper practices were allowed to continue even after security officers repeatedly informed Mr. Knodell and Mr. Greeson that the practices violated security rules and set a poor example.

    According to the security officers, the poor management and bad examples set by Mr. Knodell and Mr. Greeson caused extreme frustration and plummeting morale among White House security officers, resulting in the departure of more than half of the White House security officers within the last year.

    a record of lawbreaking and incompetence

    AF (4a3fa6)

  113. AF – You have no credibility, neither does a site like tpmmuckraker. Nice try. Thanks for playing. Move along.

    daleyrocks (906622)

  114. […] And she made LGF and Patterico before I did (not to mention […]

    Chris Penningroth’s Weltanschauung » Blog Archive » The Blog Goes Ever On (5294be)

  115. hmmmm…very interesting!
    Thanks google

    Hyloamy (20b825)


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