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Ban on burqas receives strong public support in France

Ahlevah

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I disagree with every statement from all three extremist, fundamentalist purveyors of sectarian hatred.
That's the nice thing about living in a Western country: If you disagree, you can voice your opinion. If you don't agree with Ann Coulter or Pat Robertson, you can tell us why. Try making derogatory comments about Islam in Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Yemen, Iran, or almost any other Muslim country. They haven't had a Western-style "Enlightenment" or "Age of Reason" recently.

At least in the West, we have open debate, and people can seek truth and come to their own conclusions. As a Christian and an American, Pat Robertson and Ann Coulter don't speak for me. The quote you attributed to Robertson doesn't even make sense; Islam is not a political system, let alone a violent one. It's one of the three great Abrahamic, monotheistic religions of the world. One problem I see in the Muslim world is silence or equivocation by a majority in the face of Islamist fanatics and extremists who form much of the face of Islam to the West. This majority needs to figure out which side of the fence it's on: the side of reason, modernity, and accommodation with the West, or that of the rigid, unyielding adherence to a perverted version of Islam that claims killing innocents in the name of God is the path to Paradise.
 
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Andalublue

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That's the nice thing about living in a Western country: If you disagree, you can voice your opinion. If you don't agree with Ann Coulter or Pat Robertson, you can tell us why. Try making derogatory comments about Islam in Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Yemen, Iran, or almost any other Muslim country. They haven't had a Western-style "Enlightenment" or "Age of Reason" recently.

At least in the West, we have open debate, and people can seek truth and come to their own conclusions. As a Christian and an American, Pat Robertson and Ann Coulter don't speak for me. The quote you attributed to Robertson doesn't even make sense; Islam is not a political system, let alone a violent one. It's one of the three great Abrahamic, monotheistic religions of the world. One problem I see in the Muslim world is silence or equivocation by a majority in the face of Islamist fanatics and extremists who form much of the face of Islam to the West. This majority needs to figure out which side of the fence it's on: reason, modernity, and accommodation with the West, or a rigid, unyielding adherence to a perverted version of Islam that claims killing innocents in the name of God is the path to Paradise.
I think you must never have travelled to a Muslim country. Debate is rife, people express themselves and disagree with one another all the time. They debate politics and religion openly, sometimes under threat from the extremists. There those who debate do so with a great deal more courage and integity than many on this board who take their right of free speech for granted and abuse it with facetious and fatuous arguments or easy insults.

I spend alot of time in Turkey and have spent months in Malaysia, Indonesia and some time in Pakistan (those four comprise more than half the World's Moslems BTW). You tell a Turk he doesn't have the right to speak his mind! Tell a Javanese she can't say what she thinks!

Lose your prejudices and stop dividing the World into ogres and victims, demonic Moslems and freedom-loving Christians. Talk to a few people beyond your blinkers and you might not see everything in your comfy black-and-white simplicity.
 

Red_Dave

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That's the nice thing about living in a Western country: If you disagree, you can voice your opinion. If you don't agree with Ann Coulter or Pat Robertson, you can tell us why. Try making derogatory comments about Islam in Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Yemen, Iran, or almost any other Muslim country. They haven't had a Western-style "Enlightenment" or "Age of Reason" recently.

At least in the West, we have open debate, and people can seek truth and come to their own conclusions. As a Christian and an American, Pat Robertson and Ann Coulter don't speak for me. The quote you attributed to Robertson doesn't even make sense; Islam is not a political system, let alone a violent one. It's one of the three great Abrahamic, monotheistic religions of the world. One problem I see in the Muslim world is silence or equivocation by a majority in the face of Islamist fanatics and extremists who form much of the face of Islam to the West. This majority needs to figure out which side of the fence it's on: the side of reason, modernity, and accommodation with the West, or that of the rigid, unyielding adherence to a perverted version of Islam that claims killing innocents in the name of God is the path to Paradise.
Of course we also need to think about who is giving military aid to these regimes and who is guarding of one them with their own troops.
 

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To answer your glib question. I disagree with every statement from all three extremist, fundamentalist purveyors of sectarian hatred.
Wonderful!

But they are risking their lives saying such things, just as was Salman Rushdie, Hirsi Ali, Geert Wilders, Kurt Westergaard, Wafa Sultan, and so on. They actually got to Theo van Gogh, among others.

Many in the west will continue to attack those who exercise their democratic right to free speech and condemn those who dare criticize Islam.

That, among other things, is why radical Islam will ultimately win and you, my cowering little friend, will lose.
 

Ahlevah

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I think you must never have travelled to a Muslim country. Debate is rife, people express themselves and disagree with one another all the time. They debate politics and religion openly, sometimes under threat from the extremists. There those who debate do so with a great deal more courage and integity than many on this board who take their right of free speech for granted and abuse it with facetious and fatuous arguments or easy insults.
A conversation on the street or in a bistro among friends or acquaintances is one thing, but I'm just wondering if you've ever seen a newspaper or magazine in Pakistan publish any of Kurt Westergarard's Muhammad cartoons, or possibly seen a copy of The Satanic Verses in a bookstore? Did you encounter any pro-Israel or India rallies by chance, or witness any Jesus revivals?

:confused::confused::confused::confused:

Lose your prejudices and stop dividing the World into ogres and victims, demonic Moslems and freedom-loving Christians. Talk to a few people beyond your blinkers and you might not see everything in your comfy black-and-white simplicity.
You speak of my prejudices, and yet you seek to impose sentiments upon me that are more a product of your perspective of the world than mine. While it's not a strictly Christian thing, as someone who studied Western political philosophy, if I have any bias it's in favor of many of those great thinkers--Locke, Montesquieu, Rousseau, Voltaire, Hutcheson, Jefferson, et al--who were products of The Enlightenment and/or The Age of Reason. Thanks to them, I view the yearning for freedom as something that is inherent in man's being. That's probably why I think those who would seek to enslave others, whether it be in mind, body, or spirit, will ultimately fail. It's not so much that the truth will set you free, but that freedom will set truth free, and once the genie's out of the bottle, it's hard to put it back in. I think it's that realization that most terrifies extremists of all stripes, whether they be Christian, Muslim, atheist, or simply "evil" people who seek to maintain the status quo or even shift human civilization into reverse.
 
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Andalublue

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A conversation on the street or in a bistro among friends or acquaintances is one thing, but I'm just wondering if you've ever seen a newspaper or magazine in Pakistan publish any of Kurt Westergarard's Muhammad cartoons, or possibly seen a copy of The Satanic Verses in a bookstore? Did you encounter any pro-Israel or India rallies by chance, or witness any Jesus revivals?
Well, I certainly attended an Anglican church twice in Islamabad and the worshippers (about 56/40 foreigner/Pakistani) did not seem too traumatised by their daily life. I suspect things are a little more difficult now than they were 8 years ago. I certainly wouldn't expect to see the Westergaard cartoons, indeed they weren't published in the UK or Spain either.

I have a very good friend who is a columnist for a centre-left daily newspaper in Istanbul and writes weekly on issues relating to lesbian and gay politics and events within the Muslim world. He has never been threatened although many Moslem scholars have insulted him in print. There are also plans for Istanbul to host the first ever LGBT arts festival in the Moslem world next year.

Pluralism of worship within the Moslem world is the norm, not the exception that many in the West might mistakenly assume. The Jesus revivals you mention I'm sure wouldn't go down so well as the few I have come across have a fairly aggressive evangelical motive and come from a branch of Christian tradition that is quite alien to many cultures Moslem, Christian, Buddhist and Hindu alike. In fact I read of some violent incidents at such recruiting events in Catholic Philippines and in India.

You speak of my prejudices, and yet you seek to
impose sentiments upon me that are more a product of your perspective of the world than mine. While it's not a strictly Christian thing, as someone who studied Western political philosophy, if I have any bias it's in favor of many of those great thinkers--Locke, Montesquieu, Rousseau, Voltaire, Hutcheson, Jefferson, et al--who were products of The Enlightenment and/or The Age of Reason. Thanks to them, I view the yearning for freedom as something that is inherent in man's being. That's probably why I think those who would seek to enslave others, whether it be in mind, body, or spirit, will ultimately fail. It's not so much that the truth will set you free, but that freedom will set truth free, and once the genie's out of the bottle, it's hard to put it back in. I think it's that realization that most terrifies extremists of all stripes, whether they be Christian, Muslim, atheist, or simply "evil" people who seek to maintain the status quo or even shift human civilization into reverse.
Of course there are extremist tendencies within the Moslem world, more than anyone would hope to witness but extremism and fundamentalism within any culture or religion tends to be a conservative back-lash against those very enlightenment values you express. My point is that to dismiss an entire religion as repressive and backward is not only ludicrously reductionist, it also plays into the hands of that conservative fundamentalist extremism itself.

That Islam per se is irredeemable naturally sets you squarely against all Moslems whether of the most virulent Wahhabist bent, or the moderate, peaceful and spiritually open sects such as the Sufis or Ismailis. It pushes the moderates into the arms of the extremists. How could it do otherwise? It what way could it possibly give any grounds for co-existence with the West?
 
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Ahlevah

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That Islam per se is irredeemable naturally sets you squarely against all Moslems whether of the most virulent Wahhabist bent, or the moderate, peaceful and spiritually open sects such as the Sufis or Ismailis.
Timeout there, Hoss. Where did I say that Islam was irredeemable? :confused:
 

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Burqa may or may not be in Islamic writings but it can be consider part the religious traditions of some.
 

Andalublue

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Timeout there, Hoss. Where did I say that Islam was irredeemable? :confused:
I didn't say you did. I was using the you in general terms. Although I was responding to your post I was not just addressing you, but the forum in general. I think that's how it works.

Now, how about addressing some of the issues in my post?
 

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Alevah could this sharia revival be due to Most Muslims there wanting it, or it being forced on thme by a minority?
 

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Alevah could this sharia revival be due to Most Muslims there wanting it, or it being forced on thme by a minority?
What I think you are referring to as a sharia revival is more the upsurge of influence exercised by fundamentalists of the Wahabbist sect. This wiki page is useful.
[ame=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wahabbism]Wahhabi - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia[/ame]
I'd question the word revival because sharia has been used as the basis of justice in many, many areas, especially more rural areas, of Islamic countries for centuries. It needed no revival.
 

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What I think you are referring to as a sharia revival is more the upsurge of influence exercised by fundamentalists of the Wahabbist sect. This wiki page is useful.
Wahhabi - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
I'd question the word revival because sharia has been used as the basis of justice in many, many areas, especially more rural areas, of Islamic countries for centuries. It needed no revival.
I know; couldn't think of the word. Thanks though
 

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I didn't say you did.
Well, you did say "you," but I guess you meant EVERYBODY, eh? ;)

Now, how about addressing some of the issues in my post?
I think it's important to not paint all Muslim societies and cultures with the same brush. The UAE is not Pakistan. But to say that Muslim societies in general have a history of tolerance and pluralism comparable to Western societies is a bit much for most Western folks, notwithstanding the blinker aspect. How many Christian churches are there in Saudi Arabia? (Answer, sportsfans: None.) And you still haven't told me where in Pakistan I can find those Westergaard cartoons or that Rushdie book. :popcorn2: I guess it's a no-brainer that you won't find them in Saudi Arabia, Iran, Yemen, or Syria, among others, either. Muslim societies tend to be autocratic or authoritarian in nature, so, even if one is free to express a personal opinion, he treads on thin ice if he dares to publicly criticize the government or the state religion (Islam). This is a weakness, in my opinion, because:

Reason and free enquiry are the only effectual agents against error. Give a loose to them, they will support the true religion, by bringing every false one to their tribunal, to the test of their investigation. They are the natural enemies of error, and of error only. Had not the Roman government permitted free enquiry, Christianity could never have been introduced. Had not free enquiry been indulged, at the aera of the reformation, the corruptions of Christianity could not have been purged away. If it be restrained now, the present corruptions will be protected, and new ones encouraged. Was the government to prescribe to us our medicine and diet, our bodies would be in such keeping as our souls are now.

Notes on the State of Virginia: Query 17 "Religion" The different religions received into that state?, by Thomas Jefferson
 
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Ahlevah

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Alevah could this sharia revival be due to Most Muslims there wanting it, or it being forced on thme by a minority?
I honestly don't know, but my gut tells me that most Muslims want what everyone else wants: freedom. History shows us that men are willing to use religion for their own nefarious or misguided ends. Look at the way Iranians are chafing under the Ayatollahs at the moment. This is why many people in the West think that mixing politics and religion is not a good idea, besides the fact that, in Jefferson's words, it causes "error." If Muslims generally believe that government, law, and religion are one, then anything that goes against the status quo, even if the status quo is suspect, can be called into question by the supreme political authority.
 
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Andalublue

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Well, you did say "you," but I guess you meant EVERYBODY, eh? ;)
I did, as in "you see evidence of pluralism in many places".

I think it's important to not paint all Muslim societies and cultures with the same brush. The UAE is not Pakistan. But to say that Muslim societies in general have a history of tolerance and pluralism comparable to Western societies is a bit much for most Western folks, notwithstanding the blinker aspect. How many Christian churches are there in Saudi Arabia? (Answer, sportsfans: None.) And you still haven't told me where in Pakistan I can find those Westergaard cartoons or that Rushdie book. :popcorn2: I guess it's a no-brainer that you won't find them in Saudi Arabia, Iran, Yemen, or Syria, among others, either. Muslim societies tend to be autocratic or authoritarian in nature, so, even if one is free to express a personal opinion, he treads on thin ice if he dares to publicly criticize the government or the state religion (Islam). This is a weakness, in my opinion, because:
You say it's important not to paint all Moslem societies with the same brush but then say, "Muslim societies tend to be autocratic". That's a pretty enormous broad brush, don't you think? The list of countries you use as an example have a total population of c. 130m people, i.e. fewer than the population of Indonesia. I'm saying the strict authoritarian Moslem states are the minority.

I did answer your point about the cartoons. You won't find them in many Moslem countries, I'm sure. And you won't find them in many other countries who have general blasphemy laws and anti-hate legislation. I pointed out they weren't published in Britain or Spain.

Of course many Moslem countries are less devoted to free speech than the US. Almost every country in the World is less devoted to free speech than the US... look at draconian British libel laws, look at free speech in China, Venezuela, Cuba, Colombia, Uganda, Russia - see how they treat nosey journalists there! None of these are Moslem states. You are using valid criticism of some nasty, dictatorial states and linking it to the majority faith of the population. Why not use Chinese human rights failings to attack Confucianism and Buddhism? Philippine rights abuse to attack Catholicism? The Vatican can virtually write legislation there.

Islam is not the issue. It's certainly not the issue in Saudi, the monarchy is the least observant bunch of Moslems in the World - ask any Marbella or Kensington hotelier about how much chastity and sobriety they observe when they come to stay.

Terrorism is not exclusive to Islam, nor is religious intolerance, the subjugation of women, repression of free speech and persecution of political dissent. Fight it wherever it occurs, not just where it serves Western foreign policy ends to do so.
 

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Alevah could this sharia revival be due to Most Muslims there wanting it, or it being forced on thme by a minority?
I think (I know you didn't ask me) it is touted by a minority, and *in theory* many Muslims may say they want it, but *in reality* they do not. *In theory* I see nothing wrong with having a Shariah court in the States (like we have Jewish courts), but *in reality* I find it disturbing because where are they going to get the judges from?

Regarding the OP, I'm uncomfortable when there are laws dictating what women can or cannot wear. I fear that women who wear niqabs and/or burqas would either isolate themselves or be forceably isolated by their families; so rather than "liberating" these women it may be more "oppressing". I have known several Turkish women, for example, who either choose themselves or are not permitted by family to attend schools in Turkey where the headscarf is banned. In my experience, the more women (especially young women) are engaged in society the more liberal/moderate they naturally become. Trying to force it may backfire.

jmo

Kate
 

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I think (I know you didn't ask me) it is touted by a minority, and *in theory* many Muslims may say they want it, but *in reality* they do not. *In theory* I see nothing wrong with having a Shariah court in the States (like we have Jewish courts), but *in reality* I find it disturbing because where are they going to get the judges from?
Judges are the Imans mostly, which they already have. And the US does use Sharia law already.. there is nothing to prevent it. If two muslims agree to use the judgement from a Sharia court on their dispute and that judgement is fully legal according to US law, then there is nothing that prevents them from using the court. It is the same principle for Jews and native Americans.
 

filfilksq

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Judges are the Imans mostly, which they already have.
An imam would not have the religious training/authority to be a judge. Some may be acting in this capacity on an unofficial basis, but it isn't the same thing. So far as I know, the only places where one could find "qualified" judges would be the traditional centers of learning -- Saudi Arabia, India/Pakistan, Syria, Egypt, etc. My comment "where are they going to get the judges from" was somewhat rhetorical, as I have a pretty good idea where they'd come from, at least in the beginning (until we start having qualified Islamic "seminaries"?). I'm just not sure the general American Muslim population would be interested in being led by judges from these places.
 
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