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The Anti-Muslim predjudice on A2K is wrong.

 
 
Reply Sat 9 Jul, 2005 06:44 pm
The Anti-Muslim attacks that are prevelant on this forum really make me angry. This thread has three purposes:

1) To debunk the prudjudice, distortions and outright lies people here use to justify ethnic hatred.

2) To have one place to express my disgust, anger, revulsion for ethnic hatred that is being expressed in other threads. This includes pseudo-intelligent rationalisations of predjudice, to outright name calling.

3) To show that this kind of ethnic hatred (not the victims of it) are the cause of the worst atrocities that humanity has commited.

First the debunking...

There are several reasons people have put forward to justify their hatred of Islam as a religion, and Muslims in general.

1) Muslims are involved in more wars than any other religion. This is easily shown to not be true. In the current active wars, There is a major Christian involvement in conflicts in Columbia, Uganda, Congo, Sengal, Ivory Coast, Afganistan, Iraq, and Chechnya. There is a major Muslim inolvement in Iraq, Afganistan, Israel, Aceh, Algeria, Somalia and Sudan. There are some wars (e.g. Nepal) that neither religion is involved in.

Of course one of the distortions used to support predjudice is to classify any war that contains a Muslim nation or interest as a "religious" war, and any war that waged by Christian nations as something else. This is obviously nonsense.

Muslims and Jews lived peacefully together for centuries before they started fighting over land. Yes... the conflict between Israel and Palestine is over land, even though religious rhetoric is being used by both sides.

2) The Muslim religion is intrinsically more violent than other religions. People support this predjudice by two means. They look at history, and they look at religious writings.

There are a couple of obvious fallacies to this arugment. First of all, if you use the same means to judge almost any any religion you will get the same result. Christianity has certainly commited its share of barbarism, as have Hindus and Muslims. There are passages in the Jewish/Christian Bible that advocate killing "immoral" women and homosexuals. In the Bible, The Judeo-Christian God advocates the slaughter of men women and children after a militar victory.

Of course, there are millions of Christians, Jews and Muslims who value their religion, don't advocate murder and are normal people trying to live good peaceful lives.

Picking out one religion for slander, while ignoring the exact same traits in the other major religions, is hypocricy.

3) Muslims have commited more atrocities than other religions, both in the past and presently. People commit atrocities because they are evil people, not based on their religion. Religion has been used to advocate barbarism... but this is not necessary or relevant.

The most brutal atrocity commited in recent history was the genocide in Rwanda. Rwanda is 95% Christian and their is strong evidence that Churches not only stood by, but participated. Is there anyone who is pinning this atrocity on Christianity as a religion?

European anti-Semitism, which led to the Nazi horrors, and still persists today was part of Christianity. Martin Luther (the father of Protestantism) was famously anti-Semitic and blamed the Jews for murdering Jesus, and the Catholic led Inquisition was infamous for killings and forceable conversions of Jews.

Christians, Hindus and Muslims have all committed atrocities ... both in the past and in recent times. Again singling out one religion is hypocricy.

4) Muslims are only the religious group that advocates terrorism or other barbaric acts. Again it is very easy to show that this is not true. Many Christians in the United States explicitly advocate terrorism. The KKK is an overtly Christian group who commited their acts of terror-- "in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ." The doctrine of a Christian based racial holy war is still prevalent in American Extreme Christian groups.

Of course not all Christians accept this, but is is the extreme. It is also true that there is a Spectrum of Christianity. Many Christians accept parts of the KKK message, for example gun-rights, the belief America chosen by God, and anti-immigrant beliefs, even though they reject the message.

Terrorism as warfare has been used in by many different groups-- from the Irish, to the Basques to US supported anti-communist forces. The groups that turn to terrorism are the groups from a militarily inferior cause that they are desparate to win. The "Christian" west doesn't need to use terrorism, and the militant forces in the Middle East, who unfortunately use religion but have a political cause, use terrorism the reasons any other group has in the past. Many Christian, Jewish and Hindu groups have used terrorist tactics and just as strident religious rhetoric as the terrorists.

I am not supporting terrorism. I am just saying that the religion is not to blame. We all oppose the actions of Al Qaida and we want to see them defeated.

The point is you don't stop Al Qaida by attacking Muslims, any more than you stop the KKK by attacking Christians.
------

I am not opposed to religion-- although some are, and maybe based on the evidence I should be. I believe there are good people who find meaning in all religions. There are also extremists in each religion who use faith to justify barbaric acts.

But it is clear that when compared, no religion is clearly worse.

Why can't we condemn people who do bad things-- regardless of their religion-- and accept the rights of the rest of us to live peaceful lives without facing ethnic hatred and predjudice?
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Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Jul, 2005 06:50 pm
This was much, much worse at AFUZZ after September 11th. It is the primary reason i left that site never to return.

What disturbs me as much as this hatred is the tendancy to attack those who see and explain the causes of resentment in the Muslim world as being allies of or supporters of the terrorists. There is an awful lot of black bile slung around, both at Islam, and anyone who speaks out against a blanket condemnation of Muslims.
0 Replies
 
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Jul, 2005 06:51 pm
You have my agreement and support, ebrown.
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Lash
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Jul, 2005 06:53 pm
Why can't we condemn people who do bad things-- regardless of their religion-- and accept the rights of the rest of us to live peaceful lives without facing ethnic hatred and predjudice?

I AGREE! Why are we not allowed to condemn terrorists?
0 Replies
 
littlek
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Jul, 2005 06:54 pm
Go EB!
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kickycan
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Jul, 2005 06:54 pm
Good thread, ebrown.
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FreeDuck
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Jul, 2005 06:56 pm
I would also argue that the people who are the most vocal in this regard more than likely have never been to an Arab or muslim country and probably don't associate with many of either. This would be perfectly ok if they weren't so absolutely positive that they had all the answers.
0 Replies
 
BumbleBeeBoogie
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Jul, 2005 06:56 pm
e-Brown
e-Brown, thank you for your post. I'm still trying to calm down from a shocking example of what you describe on "The ethical thing to do" thread started by Dyslexia---and is now locked.

BBB
0 Replies
 
dyslexia
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Jul, 2005 06:57 pm
EB!!!!!!!!!!
0 Replies
 
ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Jul, 2005 06:58 pm
Lash wrote:
Why can't we condemn people who do bad things-- regardless of their religion-- and accept the rights of the rest of us to live peaceful lives without facing ethnic hatred and predjudice?

I AGREE! Why are we not allowed to condemn terrorists?


You can. I condemn terrorists.

I am strongly objecting to the use of racial epithets, crude stereotypes and the defamation of the members of a religion.

Condemning terrorism and racism are two completely different things. You should be able to do one without the other.
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BumbleBeeBoogie
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Jul, 2005 06:59 pm
FreeDuck
FreeDuck wrote:
I would also argue that the people who are the most vocal in this regard more than likely have never been to an Arab or muslim country and probably don't associate with many of either. This would be perfectly ok if they weren't so absolutely positive that they had all the answers.


Dys will be really surprised to read your opinion FreeDuck because he was raised in Saudi Arabia and was educated at American University in the Middle East.


After hours of talking with him about this topic, I find him to be very informed and fair in his views.

BBB
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Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Jul, 2005 07:01 pm
I think you misread FreeDuck, Aunt Bee . . . he is remarking on the ignorance of those who express racist hatred for Muslims . . .
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dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Jul, 2005 07:03 pm
I doubt there is anyone here who does not condemn terrorism. That is a given that is only carried on about by people who see any criticism of the strategies of the US and UK and Oz as being pro-terrorist. - That common tactic is a dishonest and low strategy, in my opinion - worthy of regular naming and dismantling.

If people want to condemn terrorism, go right ahead - one would think it possible to do so without condemning a whole large group of people.

Kinda like condemning the IRA without going on about ignorant bog Irish with attendant ethnic slurs, no? Or condemning Baader-Meinhof, without slurring the Germans - or Shining Path, without carrying on about ignorant South American peasants, living in the stone age?

It's really not hard.

In my view, the stuff that often happens here re Islamic people is a mirror image of the ridiculous fundamentalist Islamic rhetoric about the west - and the US in particular.

If we mirror and reify such dreck, in my view we have lost the very intellectual liberty we claim to have so superiorly (is that a word?) over such fundamentalist prejudice.

Every bit of prejudiced nonsense that is written about Islam flies to our own hearts and minds - just as the ridiculous rhetoric their extremists carry on with is similarly adding bars to the prisons encompassing their minds.

We can criticise policies and actions and particular beliefs without prejudice and ignorance.
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BumbleBeeBoogie
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Jul, 2005 07:03 pm
Set
Setanta wrote:
I think you misread FreeDuck, Aunt Bee . . . he is remarking on the ignorance of those who express racist hatred for Muslims . . .


Set, I think you are right. Never mind. Sorry FreeDuck. I guess I'm still so pissed I can't read.

BBB Embarrassed Embarrassed Embarrassed
0 Replies
 
Diane
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Jul, 2005 07:03 pm
E brown, this is a badly needed thread.

To me, those who condemn all people, based on either ethnicity or religion, are from the same mold as those they condemn. It is hatred speaking, which has always served to exacerbate violence in the most tragic ways.
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FreeDuck
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Jul, 2005 07:03 pm
You read me correctly, Set, but maybe my language wasn't as clear as could have been.
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BumbleBeeBoogie
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Jul, 2005 07:11 pm
FreeDuck
FreeDuck wrote:
You read me correctly, Set, but maybe my language wasn't as clear as could have been.


{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{hugs)}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}

BBB
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FreeDuck
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Jul, 2005 07:12 pm
Back atcha, BBB. No worries.
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Lash
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Jul, 2005 07:16 pm
Towelhead isn't an ethnic slur, and all this false indignation about that word is pathetic.

If it is considered some kind of slur, it is certainly in league with honky and cracker. Meaningless.

Meanwhile, bodies rot in the London subway...

I haven't seen any anti-Muslim prejudice. I've delivered plenty of anti-terrorist venom, though.

EB, this is just like your immediate and WRONG assumption that I'd said something racist on the Mexican stamp thread. It's funnier than you know that you keep the quote. It is a remembrance of your other knee-jerk assumption. My statements there were based on interviews with Mexicans who were buying stamps.

Instead of blindly attacking what I said with no justification, prove it wrong.

But, you won't do that. Because you can't. The statements I made about Arab Civilization were based on research--because I wanted to know the background of what is going on.

And, I do.
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dyslexia
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Jul, 2005 07:17 pm
I would like to state that I was a towelhead for most of my youth. Living in Saudi Arabia during the 40's and 50's I often wore a "towel" on my head because all my friends did, they also thought I was pretty weird being the only blond-haired/blue-eyed "towelhead" in the country. Sometimes I wore a red Fez which I still have somewhere around the house.
0 Replies
 
 

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