‘I Hope They’re Not Muslims’

As officials scurried about Paris assessing the damage and seeking to identify the culprits, I know my Muslim friends were thinking, “I hope they’re not Muslims.”

Were innocent people killed again in the name of Allah? If so, my Muslim friends know that Muslims will once again be defined not by what they believe and how they live, but by the actions of a vicious few who pervert the meaning of Islam. They fear that “Muslim” and “terrorist” will become even more deeply seared into the Western psyche.

Muslims, Mass Shootings and the Media

The most up to date tally of mass shootings in the U.S. shows that there have been 207 mass shootings in 2015 so far (where “mass shooting” is defined as four or more people shot in one incident). Shooting Tracker, “the world’s only crowdsourced mass shooting tracker,” provides the best record of these atrocities. While aimed at the U.S.’s overly generous gun policies, the site is revealing in at least one other regard: of the 207 mass shootings so far this year, precisely 1 (the July 16, 2015 Chattanooga murders) was committed by a Muslim. The other 206? It’s hard to tell because many suspects have not been identified. But, and here’s the point, they are not identifiably Muslim and Islamic terrorism was not identifiably the motive.

موضع جالب جیمز کلارک: من شارلی ابدو نیستم

My blog in Farsi!

يكشنبه, ۵ بهمن ۱۳۹۳، ۱۰:۰۴ ق.ظ
  مسعود صادقی: کلی جیمز کلارک استاد دانشگاه نوتردام است که برای مخاطبان ایرانی بیشتر با کتاب بازگشت به عقل و نیز بواسطه سفر اخیرش به ایران شناخته می شود. مقاله اخیر او تحت عنوان آیا من باید شارلی ابدو باشم؟” در واقع آخرین یادداشت نامبرده در سایت شخصی اش می باشد که حقیر به محض مطالعه و علیرغم وارد دانستن نقدهایی بر محتویات و برخی مدعیات آن بی درنگ و شتابان آنرا ترجمه نموده و نهایتا با اجازه و ترغیب کلارک تصمیم به انتشار آن برای استفاده فارسی زبانان گرفتم. اولین پیام مهم این مقاله برای حقیر در واپسین جمله آن نهفته است: اگرچه بر آزادی بیان صحّه می نهم اما من شارلی ابدو نیستم.صرف نظر از اختلاف با کلارک در تعریف حدود و معنای آزادی بیان من با این موضع اخلاقی او موافقت دارم که می گوید هرچه حق right است الزاما خیر یا خوب good نیست. کلارک در بخشی از مقاله اش می نویسد:

“پنج میلیون مسلمان فرانسوی یک اقلیت قدرت زدایی شده هستند. جوانان مسلمان دوبرابر غیرمسلمانان محتمل است که بیکار شوند(در برخی از مناطق مسلمان نشین نرخ بیکاری بیش از چهل درصد است). ممنوعیت پوشش سر به شکلی نامتناسب مسلمانان را (در اظهار آزادانه دین خود) تحت تاثیر قرار می دهد. عدم پذیرش اعطای مجوز به ساخت مساجد موجب کمبود اماکن عبادی شده است. مسلمانان با تبعیض در اسکان مواجه هستند و بسیاری در فقر آشکار زندگی می کنند. قوانین، سکولاریزمی را که به نظر می رسد مستقیما مسلمانان را نشانه رفته است تقویت می نمایند. کوتاه آنکه مسلمانان فرانسوی از حیث اجتماعی، دینی و اقتصادی در حاشیه قرار گرفته اند.

Should I Be Charlie Hebdo?

It’s been a couple of weeks since two Islamic terrorists attacked and killed 12 people for publishing cartoons mocking the Prophet Muhammad. What lessons can we learn, when cooler headsB6wLoAvIEAAMZED prevail, from this horrific event?

The first lesson is theological. On that tragic and horrific day, Cherif and Said Kouachi, contrary to the most basic understanding of Islam, acted as gods. The first pillar of Islam is that there is just one God (Allah). And Allah alone has the authority to make ultimate decisions concerning human life. The Kouachi brothers, in assuming god-like authority over human lives, affirmed three gods – Allah, Cherif and Said.

Who Would Jesus Waterboard?

Ben Franklin once wrote that “it is better 100 guilty Persons should escape than that one innocent Person should suffer.” Dick Cheney, on the other hand, said: “I’m more concerned with bad guys who got out . . . than I am with a few that in fact were innocent.” When asked if he was bothered that at least 25 percent of those detained and tortured might have been innocent, he responded, “I have no problem as long as we achieve our objective. . . . I’d do it again in a minute.”

Democracy: Not Just for Men Any More

Remember when “government of the people, by the people, and for the people” meant “government of the men, by the men, and for the men”? A century before Lincoln proclaimed these words, our founding fathers declared: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” But they did not mean “men” in any inclusive sense: they excluded both women and black men. Democracy, in the olden days, was the special province of white men. It took a civil war and Abraham Lincoln to clarify the Creator’s intentions regarding non-white people. And it wasn’t until 1920, and even then not without great struggle, that the United States granted women the right to vote. To this day, women are still only beginning to fully realize their rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness (which have been enjoyed by men since the founding of the US democracy well over two centuries ago).

Gay Marriage: WWJD

supreme_court_buildingChristian opposition to homosexuality is legendary. Christians have blamed homosexuality on everything from the fall of the Roman Empire to the attacks of 9-11. Jerry Falwell, for example, claimed that God allowed our enemies to attack us because we made God mad — he said that the gays and the lesbians who are actively trying to make homosexuality an alternative lifestyle “helped this happen.” And all the people (OK, Pat Robertson speaking on behalf of a lot of Christians) said, “Amen.”

Why does everyone hate the Jews?

 

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Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi may have shown his true colors. In several incriminating videos which have gone viral Morsi’s apparently anti-Semitic slurs have come to light. In one, a television interview from three years ago, he calls Zionists “these bloodsuckers who attack the Palestinians, these warmongers, the descendants of apes and pigs.” In the same year, at a rally in the Nile Delta denouncing the Israeli blockade of Gaza, he declares: “We must never forget, brothers, to nurse our children and our grandchildren on hatred for them: for Zionists, for Jews.” He’s not yet finished inciting hatred. Egyptian children, he said, “must feed on hatred; hatred must continue. The hatred must go on for God and as a form of worshiping him.” Lest we dismiss these blasts from the past as mere youthful indiscretions, just three months ago, a pious Morsi, worshipping at a Mosque, can be seen mouthing the word “Amen” as the preacher urges Allah to “destroy the Jews and their supporters.”

Muslims for peace

Hedieh Mirahmadi

Last week I wrote about the most persecuted religion in the world — Christianity. So dire is the persecution of Christians, Christianity is in danger of disappearing from its homeland. Christianity is most in peril, I noted, in Muslim-majority countries where either by official policy or official laxity, Christians are discriminated against, persecuted, tortured, threatened and even killed (Christians are not alone in this; atheists, Jews, Baha’is, and Muslims judged heretical are likewise persecuted.) Since this impending threat to Christianity has been largely ignored in the West I called upon the Western media to report on these atrocities and so prod Western governments to act in support of the universal human right to the free expression of religious belief. Finally, I said it was not my place to speak for Muslims but that Muslim leaders needed to make a compelling case that Islam is not inherently intolerant.

The most persecuted religion in the world

Over the past year, I have written of the intolerance that Christians have shown to Muslims in the U.S. From Missouri to Murphreesboro, Christians have demonstrated both a lack of charity and a denial of the right to religious liberty by setting fire to old mosques and opposing new ones. But Christians in the U.S. are rank amateurs compared to the Muslim persecution of Christians in the Middle East.