Re: Don't ever forget this.. the real enemy is VIOLENT extremists of ALL stripes!
posted at 4/21/2013 11:12 AM EDT
In response to jri37's comment:
In response to prolate0spheroid's comment:
In response to shenanigan's comment:
In response to prolate0spheroid's comment:
Oh dear. All I can say to that is read some reliable history of the Islamic world someday.
Read a history of Christian Europe in the middle ages too while you're at it.
I would suggest the same to you sir.
I was specific enough in my response that you could disprove my facts If you have references.
Sharia law is not progressive compared to today's standards in the West. It does, however, have many components that were highly progressive compared to anything that existed in Europe until quite recently. One simple example is that Sharia law gives women the right to divorce their husbands. This was pretty much unheard of in Europe until recently.
You can look through the laws of any nation and find things that by today's Western standards are outrageously unjust. Slavery was legal in the United States just 150 years ago. Women couldn't vote in the US until the 1920s. Homosexuals were subject to the death penalty in Europe and America until well into the 1800s. Europe has not always been the friendliest place for non-Christians--certainly they have been discriminated against by law as much as non-Muslims have been discriminated against in the Middle East. Christianity is famous for its pogroms against Jews, the worst being the attempt by Hitler to completely exterminate them. And as far as violent conflict, Christian Europe has been wracked by war for centuries. If you want to claim that the world of Islam is inherently more violent that that of Christendom, you have a tough burden of proof, because the World Wars alone were more destructive than anything that has occured elsewhere in history ever.
As far as the golden age of Islamic Civilization being a "myth" and your claim that most scholars and inventors during that time weren't Muslim, that's absurd and honestly sounds like nothing more than bigotry. I'm not going to write a history of Islam here . . . there are plenty published books for that which you can read if you care to learn (I recommend this one, by the way: http://www.amazon.com/History-Islamic-Societies-Ira-Lapidus/dp/0521779332/ref=sr_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1366546133&sr=1-3&keywords=history+of+the+islamic+world). I'll just add that during the Golden Age of Islamic Civilization, the Muslims were remarkably tolerant compared to anything but the modern Western world. While non-Muslims were not equals with Muslims, a significant number of Jews and Christians held positions of power, prominence, and respect. Yes, there was an ebb and flow of tolerance and intolerance through the Muslim world, but this is the same in Christendom and elsewhere. Generally, when cultures are prosperous and successful, they become more tolerant; when they fall under economic or political stress they become less tolerant. The desire to find the Islamic world inherently "inferior" because of it's religion is really completely unsupported by a careful examination of the history of all the world's civilizations, Islamic and other. It really suggests ignorance, bigotry, or (most likely) propoganda:
Propaganda is a form of communication that is aimed towards influencing the attitude of a community toward some cause or position by presenting only one side of an argument. Propaganda is usually repeated and dispersed over a wide variety of media in order to create the chosen result in audience attitudes.
As opposed to impartially providing information, propaganda, in its most basic sense, presents information primarily to influence an audience. Propaganda often presents facts selectively (thus possibly lying by omission) to encourage a particular synthesis, or uses loaded messages to produce an emotional rather than rational response to the information presented. The desired result is a change of the attitude toward the subject in the target audience to further a political, religious or commercial agenda. Propaganda can be used as a form of ideological or commercial warfare.
Pro, you have made some good points throughout this thread but you are way off base on Sharia Law. I could post 100's if not 1000's of examples but this 1 should suffice.
Like any "law," Sharia law is many things and interpreted many different ways. It has been both a progressive force and a regressive one, depending on who is interpreting it and enforcing it. The problem I have is the way so many people make broad generalizations about Islam and the Middle East based on what makes the news here, which is mostly the negative side. Remember more than one in five people in the world is Muslim. That's about 1.6 billion people. There's a lot more to the story than terrorism. In some ways, judging the Muslim world based on terrorism is like judging the US or the West based on Timothy McVeigh or Adolf Hitler or the IRA. All those things are part of the West, but they are a small part of a very big story.
My main point, though, isn't about Islam or the Middle East. It's about America--a land that stands (I hope still) for basic principles of justice that our Founders' enshrined in our Constitution. Those principles of justice should apply to all people, no matter how evil they or their deeds may be. That's what America at its best has always stood for.
Sadly, a lot of Americans clearly don't see that anymore.
The terrorists will win not by killing us, but by destroying our commitment to the things that make us different from them and that have made us great through our history.
Also, I should point out, since you linked to it, that rape is indeed forbidden and punished harshly under Sharia law, at least as it has traditionally been interpreted and enforced. You can find many examples of societies with all sorts of different legal codes that have ignored rape and blamed and even abused the victims of rape. Sadly, that's part of human history in general and not unique to Muslim societies. But you can't define all of Sharia law based on these kinds of events anymore than you can define US law by lynchings in the South.