Quote of the Day

Most mainline Protestant churches are, to one degree or another, post-Christian. If they no longer seem disposed to converting the unbelieving to Christ, they can at least convert them to the boggiest of soft-left political clichés, on the grounds that if Jesus were alive today he'd most likely be a gay Anglican bishop in a committed relationship driving around in an environmentally friendly car with an "Arms are for Hugging" sticker on the way to an interfaith dialogue with a Wiccan and a couple of Wahhabi imams.

[...]

Pre-modern Islam beats post-modern Christianity.

- MARK STEYN, America Alone (Canada, USA, Europe)

Rules for polite conversation state that three topics should always be avoided: family, politics, and religion. And yet, this quote goes against two precepts. But with the Easter break upon us, I felt that a good Mark Steyn quote was a nice way to start a Saturday morning.

As nominally Catholic, I'd say that what Steyn claims goes for the Catholic Church as well. . .

In light of the recent Moscow bombings, if you haven't already, I encourage you to read Mark Steyn's America Alone. . .

57 commentaires:

Anonymous said...

Wow another liberal bashing right wing fear mongering book. That will help unite America.

Zach said...

"Post-modern Christianity doesn't make any sense"... conservative figures during the Enlightenment also didn't believe that the contemporary philosophical and artistic ideas which completely shape our most basic morality and world view in the present were compatible with Christianity. Should we go back to a dark age of superstition, blind faith, and church rule just to ensure the survival of an outmoded belief system?

Anonymous said...

This guy is a moron. Is he talking about the majority of protestant churches in America being liberal with a straight face? Even though I suppose that quote does qualify as fantasy, why would you give this guy any publicity? Beside the obvious attempt to drum up comments of course...

Religion is for dummys who are afraid to die. Happy Easter.

-scorpiknox

Anonymous said...

Steyn refers more to the majority of protestant churches in Europe. The book is more about how only America, with its traditional values and not-so-liberal attitude is the only nation in the West not bowing down and sucking the cock of Islam.

Great books if you are into politics.

Johan

Anonymous said...

with its traditional values and not-so-liberal attitude is the only nation in the West not bowing down and sucking the cock of Islam.

That is hilarious , and a typical of an American who's world knowledge doesn't extend beyond the borders of his country.

Tip for free asshole, other countries in the west are not bowing down and sucking the cock of Islam, FOX news lies to you.

America is a Country of right wing bigoted fucktards

/end

Eric said...

"Religion is for dummys who are afraid to die. Happy Easter."

Scorpiknox: An intelligent and thoughtful response, as always.

Funny you should make that claim, as many political analysts consider that secularism, in addition to pussyfooting liberal social-democrat governments that allow them to spill their extremist venom without any repercussions whatsoever and a very high Muslim birth rate, is one of the main reasons for the rise of fundamentalist Islam in several European countries.

Anne-Marie said...

«Tip for free asshole, other countries in the west are not bowing down and sucking the cock of Islam, FOX news lies to you.

America is a Country of right wing bigoted fucktards»

Anonymous: For starters, just want to say that I'm Canadian, not an American.

When you say that other countries in the west are standing up to Islam, which countries are you referring to, if I may ask?

Not France or the UK, which are two of the worse of the lot. Not any country in Scandinavia. Not the Netherlands or Spain. Switzerland did a little something, but it remains to be seen if it will work. Belgium might be too far gone to save itself. Perhaps it's the same with Germany. Canada is quickly approaching the point of no return in that regard. Only the USA and to a lesser extent Australia have so far stood against the trend (and many would argue that Oz is not really in that great a shape).

So which Western countries are standing against the rise of extremist Islam or just Islam in general? I know Poutine said that they would wipe them out for what happened in Moscow, but other than Russia I see nothing in Europe that even hints that you could be right.

Please know that I'm not doing this to be confrontational. You got up on your soapbox and started pissing on America. As a deeply political person, I'm just interested in knowing what your argument is. Right now it doesn't look like your bucket can hold a lot of water...

Ted said...

Anyone wanna take a bet on how long it will take before Pat comes in and says "Gee guys, I meant for this to be civil discourse!" after posting something he knew would be inflammatory?

Patrick said...

Any valid argument can be made using civil discourse, Ted. If all one can do is rely on profanities and insults, then I figure that one's argument has little or no weight. Which appears to be the case with the anonymous posts thus far. . .

Of course, such a relious and political quote will rub some people the wrong way. But there is no reason why both sides cannot discuss this topic without turning it into a flame-war, you know.

Understandably, I'm not truly expecting this to turn into a civil and intelligent debate. Frankly, I'm not holding my breath or anything. But sometimes you underestimate people and they can surprise you. Will this be the case? We'll have to wait and see, won't we?

Regarding the quote, I do agree with Steyn that now is a period of history where there needs to be a strong voice from the heart of Christianity. And I agree when he claims that most mainline churches are as wedded to the platitude du jour as the laziest politicians. That's just my opinion. If to some it means that I'm any less a Christian or Catholic or whatever, so be it. The point Steyn is trying to make is that Islam doesn't have to deal with such an identity problem. . .

machinery said...

well, obama practically folded in two when he took a bow before the saudi king ...

Anonymous said...

Why exactly does Islam need to be "stood up to"

Or are we at the point where a small minority of extremist = Islam .

Last time I checked all the larger Western European countries had troops involved in all of Americas little pet wars, as for at home, well the UK doesn't need to do anything to "stand up to " Islam ther, because it simply isn't an issue.

You may be Canadian, that doesn't meant I was far off the mark with the bigoted fucktard remark.

Care to explain what exactly my country has done to suck the collective cock of Islam ?

Anonymous said...

Funny you should make that claim, as many political analysts consider that secularism, in addition to pussyfooting liberal social-democrat governments that allow them to spill their extremist venom without any repercussions whatsoever and a very high Muslim birth rate, is one of the main reasons for the rise of fundamentalist Islam in several European countries.

While America trains the next Bin Laden somewhere and throws dissidents into gitmo without trial AMIDOINGTHISRITE ?

Yes all us Europeans are left wing hippy fags letting extremists preach hate on EVERY street corner, Thank the lord we have good old god fearing Americans to ride to the worlds rescue - providing whoever your invading has oil of course.

PeterWilliam said...

Pat,

I would like to, briefly, interrupt the ongoing flame-war to credit you on a bold post and noble attempt. Unfortunately you know, better than anyone else on the web, what you're dealing with.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous, I'm French if you must know, not American...

Sarko was supposed to do something about the Muslim problem in France, but he hasn't done anything to help solve matters. So I have to agree with those who say that France is one of the worse countries because they let the problem exacerbate and have been doing so for more than three decades.

Bons baisers de France, cher ami!;)

Johan

Anonymous said...

Do you guys really think that the best response to the rise of radical Islam is to ramp up radical Christianity ?... Is it so we can all stop reading medieval fantasy and live in medieval reality instead?
Don't read me wrong, extremist Islam *is* a threat to our civilization... But so are the Bible-thumpers who want to ban Darwin. *All* religious fundamentalisms must be fought.

And I'd like to know how France banning headscarves and Switzerland banning minarets amounts to "sucking Islam's cock".

alabrava said...

Organized religions are nothing more than flags for people to die behind.

machinery said...

on a personal note, i want to congratulate all of you.
i see europeans and americans blaming each other over islam, while not blaming muslims themselves.
and of course not blaming israel, where i live.
usualy israel is blamed for everything.

good on you.

Anonymous said...

France feeble gestures to try to satisfy the right-leaning voters are laughable. Extremists are everywhere in the banlieues and now pollute the rest of the country. Brigitte Bardot is right when she speaks against the Muslims...

What I want to know is where are those so-called moderate Muslims when something happens involving their fundamentalist counterparts? You never see them condemn such cowardly acts that kill innocents.

Pierre from Lyons

Anonymous said...

I want to point out that what Islam is doing to Europe today is the same thing Christianity did to Europe in the declining days of the Roman Empire.. when it started to supplant all the native religions.

Don't get me wrong, I'm glad you posted this.. I'd likely never have found the book otherwise.. I'm going to get it to get with my copy of Imperium and Spengler's Decline of the West...


but I do wonder how is this post going to ride with all the post modern crybabies at Westeros.org where I know you post.

Eddie said...

Geez. Lets unpack that statement.

- Left wing christians aren't really christians.

- (Implicitly) Gays and environmentally friendly cars are bad

- Islam is "pre-modern"

- Christianity needs to be more brutal if we're to "beat" Islam.

My goodness. Its a bizarre fantasy of how hard it is to be a rich white person in north america these days!

What's wrong with gay people or efficient cars? Are left wing people instantly stupid? Why do non-muslims need to "beat" muslims? And do we really want to go back to the crusades?

Yes, obviously serious issues to be dealt with in relation to radical islam, but paranoid oppositionalism is, I doubt, the way to do it.

As for what you say, Pat - how is a catholic church that continues to insist things like female priests and condoms are evil possibly be seen as post-modern? Or even modern for that matter?

And as for the Moscow bombings, if the initial suspicions are right and the bombers are Chechen, the issue is not religion but that the chechens feel that the russians are occupying their country (don't know enough about the history to know if that's accurate, but it is what they feel).

Larry said...

Considering the holiday and all, all I have to say is this:

Pax vobiscum.

Dream Girlzzz said...

I'm always baffled when people miss the point on purpose... Then again, leftists, social-democrats and their ilk are quite good at that. They're also pretty good at calling anyone that's right-leaning a bigot or a redneck retard.

Back to the book: I read America Alone the year it came out in college. Whether your a leftist, a center-leaning undecided, an Islamophobe, an Islamo-leftist, or a right-leaning, bible-waving hillbilly, you should read America Alone. Steyn is a witty writer and he does a good job at trashing a lot of the cocksucking Islam-related soft-left rethoric.

Read it and then you can decide if Mark Steyn in a moron. As the most popular conservative political columnist in the English-speaking world, he's far from being an idiot. Give the book a shot...:)

Eddie said...

"I'm always baffled when people miss the point on purpose... Then again, leftists, social-democrats and their ilk are quite good at that. They're also pretty good at calling anyone that's right-leaning a bigot or a redneck retard."

...

"cocksucking Islam-related soft-left rethoric"

The irony overwhelms me.

Anonymous said...

It occurs to me that not a single one of the pious liberal minds who have left comments on this thread has answered Anne-Marie's question. Nor have they answered Pierre's...

Dieter

Eddie said...

Dieter - if someone tells me what "standing up to islam" means, I'd be glad to respond. Is it killing islamic people? Banning them from immigrating to your country? Invading their countries?

Angry rhetoric is easy, constructive solutions are hard.

And for the point re moderate islamic condemnation of attacks, the contention was simply factually incorrect. This is just 1 google search, I didn't have to look hard to find it. See: http://www.religioustolerance.org/islfatwa.htm

Kaimi said...

Pierre writes:

"What I want to know is where are those so-called moderate Muslims when something happens involving their fundamentalist counterparts? You never see them condemn such cowardly acts that kill innocents."

Look harder, Pierre. They really aren't very hard to find.

CAIR compiled a detailed, 70-page list of condemnations from Muslim groups of violent actions in 2001-2002. It's available at http://www.cair.com/Portals/0/pdf/September_11_statements.pdf

Another compilation of dozens of statements condemning the London bombing: http://www.cair.com/Portals/0/pdf/Condemnation_of_London_Bombings.pdf

Look harder, dude. These statements are not very hard to find.

Kaimi said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kaimi said...

Grr - I'm pasting in the correct link, but it's getting truncated.

The documents are HERE and HERE. The second is kind of a big PDF. These documents and more are discussed here at CAIR's page.

Kaimi said...

(Sorry for the multiple comments. The long link wasn't showing up on the blogger.com comment page, but shows up fine on the blog itself. Odd. That's all - carry on.)

rcsa said...

I'd like to point out the obvious irony of western right-wing extremists bashing muslim extremists. Both are part of the problem.

On a more serious note, Islam poses no threat to Christianity. Why? Because Christianity has already had the shit beaten out of it by the rise of secularism.

In answer to Anne-Marie's question about "what countries have done something about Islam?" I would say most of them have tried, albeit unsuccessfully. So you are correct on that score, but then the question becomes "why did they fail?"

This is the critical question. Obviously neither the liberal leaning left, nor the conservative right want to see the rise of Islam in the west. For two different, equally valid reasons. For liberals, it is because it threatens the underpinnings of a secular, peaceful, multicultural society (melting pot or multiculturalism model - either one) including human rights, women's rights, separation of church and state, etc. For conservatives, it is because Islamic extremism threatens the security of their values, their heritage, their nation and even their personal health through terrorism.

So, what do we do to stop Islam? Nuke them to shit? Holocaust? Are we really prepared to do this level of evil to prevent Islam from spreading? Let's make one thing clear: some kind of last ditch heroic Alamo-style standoff is not going to work. If this comes to war, holy or otherwise, we are talking World War 3 and nuclear holocaust. We aren't thought police, we can't stop them from believing in Allah without becoming more evil than I care to think about.

Perhaps we can take a page from Steven Erikson. For those who are not familiar with his works (though most of you probably are), do not read further as there are spoilers used to make my point.

[Spoilers Ahead] We know the Crippled God has come to the Malazan world. Think of the Crippled God as Allah. The Crippled God is incredibly powerful. In fact, he is so powerful, that all the other gods combined failed to defeat him in open battle, just as we are failing to defeat Islam, and just as open warfare with Islam will destroy the world. Instead, the gods of the Malazan world contained him in a poor, makeshift prison that slowed, but did not stop the advance of his poisons.

What was the first step in containing the threat? Ganoes Paran, the Master of the Deck, brought the Crippled God and all his followers into the Game. He made it so that the Crippled God had a stake in the game. It gave him power that he did not previously have when he was outside the game, but it did something else too: he was forced to play by the rules of the game, because his future now depended on success in the game. [END SPOILERS]

What does this tell us about how to deal with Islam? Well, tell me in which western nations we have truly brought Allah and his followers into the game. Where have any of them had a chance to truly participate meaningfully in civic life?

In France, the example you all have been throwing around as if Islamists are attacking it, Muslims are poor as shit, second class citizens. High unemployment, not accepted by society, not given a chance to participate, not treated with respect or dignity.

Muslims are human beings. Human beings treated with dignity and respect and given opportunities to gain power will tend towards centrism. Muslims are no different. Do you honestly think an average Muslim person cares more about a Niqab or Burqa than they do about the opportunity to secure a promising future for themselves? Of course they don't. If we incorporate them into the game, eventually Muslims will come to the same realizations as Christians have done - that extreme religious fervor does more harm than good.

Why do extremist Muslims want to bring down the system? Because they have no stake in it. Give them a stake and maybe we'll have to accomodate them on a few minor things like letting them wear a hijab, but at least they won't want to blow shit up anymore.

Anonymous said...

So your suggestion is.. we invest more power and more ability to gain power in the hands of the people who we don't want taking over...

My take on the reason they are second class citizens is because the other people don't want them there.. and didn't invite them there.. it's only natural they would then resent them.

Nate said...

rcsa: Look around, my friend. In France, Canada, the UK, Denmark and other Scandinavian nations, Belgium, the Netherlands, the Muslims understand how to work the system. That's the reason why they immigrate to such countries. Then they use the rights and liberties in place to piss on the values of those who "welcomed" them...:S

In most of those countries, most hardcore Muslims are social parasites living off welfare programs. They want the free benefits, free health care, free education, free everything. What do they give back to the community? A shitload of problems, like they are entitled to whatever they want. Imams in London shouting on TV to implement sharia in England and make the UK an islamic country. All in the name of multiculturalism.

Did you know these bastards tried to get Steyn's book banned in Canada?

Kaimi said...

In the United States alone, we've now suffered from multiple funeral protests from the Westboro Baptist church, plus the rise of the violent Hutaree militia.

Plus, violent terrorist movements worldwide like the Lord's Resistance Army kill thousands of innocents.

Will no one stand up to Christianity?

rcsa said...

Just because you don't agree with their values doesn't mean they don't have a right to them. Everyone is entitled to their opinion. You wanting to shove your opinion and values down their throat is just as egregious as the imams demanding Sharia law.

"We don't want their kind here" smacks to me of racism. Perhaps you would like them to wear Islamic Crescent armbands, like the Jews in Europe during WW2? Those evil corrupters? Tell me what evils you have suffered at the hands of a Jew. Jews have a stake in the system in America, they are typically rich and invested in America's future. Do Jews want to blow shit up? Have they destroyed American values? No, they haven't, because they need the system to work. If they went around proclaiming the Jewish cause everywhere in America, they would lose all the power, respect, and influence they have gained. Mainstream respect I mean, not the conspiracy theorist crypto-nazi jew-haters.

Islam now faces the same dilemma and are faced with the same fear and revulsion that Jews faced in medieval Europe. "They're different, oh noes, kill them all!"

So, they have no future, no stake in the system and everyone fears and hates them. Sounds like a recipe for disaster to me. Islamist extremists are a tiny minority, just like neo-nazis, or the KKK. Unlike neo-nazis and the KKK however, mainstream Islamic society is more in danger of heeding extremist dystopian views because they feel marginalized in their host societies.

Let me ask a question: why should Muslims change anything for us if we won't change a single meaningful thing for them. You want to know why they are "welfare parasites"? Because no one will hire them for decent jobs, based on their religion and not their abilities.

I'm not saying let them piss all over us, I'm talking more like a deal. You stop being such extreme religious nutcases, and we'll give you better economic opportunities.

rcsa said...

Let me clarify the deal: stop listening to crazy-ass imams who tell you to shit on westerners and western values and we'll ensure you have equal opportunity to get work.

Anonymous said...

Or, how about stop coming to our countries at all, and then you won't become disenfranchised when you realize no ones going to hire you because you don't speak the language and share none of the same social concepts as the natives.

They chose to move there. Why should the natives change one single thing about their culture to suit the newcomers?

At this point.. I just don't know why the Europeans bothered to defend Vienna and Malta.. all they did was put the inevitable off for a few hundred years..

rcsa said...

If you read carefully, the deal was: if you want to come here, you change your culture to be more moderate and we give you economic opportunities and keep our culture the way it is. So basically, we are agreeing on that part.

The difference is that you think that letting muslims in at all won't work, and I think it will over an extended period of time, just like it has with all previous waves of immigrants, provided they are given equal economic opportunities.

The problem with my point of view is that I can't prove it will work, even if history suggests it will. The problem with your point of view is that you do not offer any practical solutions. Turning people away based on their religion is distinctly unamerican and highly discriminatory. Give us your poor, give us your hungry, NOT give us your conservative Christian clones of the people already here.

Anonymous said...

I've never agreed with that concept of American Ideology.
I don't feel any compulsion to abide by it..

But then their are a lot of things about the American Experiment that I don't agree with, And I would never be so stupid as to try and claim that only a specific group or groups should be allowed to move to and live in and make the best of the opportunities present in a country built by Immigrants, For Immigrants..

but you are right, I don't offer any practical solutions.. people tend to find my solutions unpalatable so I tend not to offer them. But sometimes the right solution isn't practical or palatable.

Sometimes you just have to swallow the medicine no matter how bad it tastes in order to get better.

I don't want you to think I'm mad only as Muslims either, I know enough about them to see the merits in their culture. The problem is that it isn't MY culture. (Though I am biased, I always sucked at Algebra)

And I don't want to be thought a Hypocrite either, if I was offered the opportunity right now to pack up and move to the UK, where my Ancestors have lived for Thousands of years.. I'd do it in a heart beat.. I don't like the idea of squatting on some Native American chaps land.

Blake said...

Pat, Pat, Pat...:D

Quoting Mark Steyn, are we!?! That was sure to stir up some shit, man! But you're my hero for doing so!

I've read America Alone and I suggest everyone here does the same. And if you think this quote will ruffle any feathers, there are many more that are even more ass-kicking.

As Steyn and others have stated in the past, it's the fact that secularism characterize most European countries and Canada that allowed extremist elements of the Islamic faith to insinuate themselves very insiduously into various socialdemocrat countries and then abuse the system. Of course, moderate Muslims form the majority. But fundamentalist Muslims occupy basically every single position of power within the faith, whether you look at crazy fuckwit imams or leader of this or that Islamic council throughout the West. These are the people who whip Muslim immigrants about having no part in the integration immigration requires to work. But no. Muslims won't have anything to do with integration. Though they were welcomed in "civilized" countries and fled a cheap-ass life in Morocco, Algeria, or some such country, the hand that feeds should adapt to them, not the other way around.

And the problem is that weak-ass, cocksucking countries with soft Leftist liberal governments do just that for the sake of multiculturalism. Have you ever seen ethnic groups such as the Vietnamese, or the Cambodians, etc, demanding that their host country adapt to them? When that filmmaker was brutally murdered in the Netherlands, no one did shit for fear of offending Muslims. Same thing with the cartoons. Western nations must learn to say enough is enough. If you want to live here, you need to play by the same rules as anybody else. Otherwise, immigrate to Yemen or another Islamic country where you have no future, but where a married woman can get stoned because she was raped...

Oh an Happy Easter to everyone!:)

Patrick said...

Okay, so things have remained more or less civilized, give or take a few insults that were inevitable.

Machinery: You'll jinx it! Those in the know are aware that pitting Muslims against Christians is a Jewish ploy so that Israel can take over when both have duked it out! You know Israel will take the blame, one way or another. The leftist press seem to like doing that, especially in these parts...

Funny, but no one did answer Anne-Marie's questions...

Blake: You should know that trying to find an innocent quote from Mark Steyn is impossible! Though the resulting comment thread is kind of all over the place. I'm more than a little surprised by some replies that have little coherence... Others, however, are quite interesting.

Then again, mix religion and politics, and that's always an explosive recipe! Once again, I encourage you all to read this book. Whether you agree with Steyn's study or not, it will generate a good and lively debate, one that governments throughout the West wish to sweep under the carpet...

rcsa said...

Just like to point out that your ancestors are likely to be Normans, Saxons or Angles, not Celts, who themselves replaced Britons; so no, not thousands of years of your ancestors...

Thousands of years of tribal warfare predispose us to an "us" vs "them" mentality, but it is always better to turn your enemies into friends than to massacre them. It is precisely for this reason that heterogeneous western societies have progressed while other non-immigrant-based, homogeneous societies have not. There is more to be gained from the free exchange of culture and ideas than there is to closing your doors. Closing doors to outsiders just leads us in the end to being exactly like other closed societies: rampant xenophobia, the stifling of new ideas and a rapid decline into a state of anachronistic irrelevance.

Your arguments are ironic, because your ideas lead us to a pattern of thinking that would make us just like them. At least it would be "us" and not "them", though, right?

rcsa said...

By the way, if you would like a modern example of where your type of thinking leads a nation, look no further than the differences between North and South Korea.

Anonymous said...

No, You are partly correct. But I like to think that the large percentage of me that is Welsh counts for something, even if I do self identify with my English heritage more.

I'd settle for North west Germany or lower Denmark or maybe even north west France if I wasn't "British Enough", I'd simply have to learn a new language.

I realize that the problem faced by the west due to the immigrant populations already present has to be addressed. I simply think that the first step is to put a moratorium on all future Immigration until the current numbers are better integrated, speak the language and are as liberal, democratic and free thinking as everyone else in the country. I'm not expecting French Muslims to eat Cassoulet with a nice red wine.

Just as Christians are a hell of a lot different now than they were even 200 years ago, persistent reinforcement of enlightened ideals will cure the more pernicious aspects of Islam as it stands today.

Some indelible mark will be left, but it won't be anything like what it will be if they continue on the path they are on now.

If you were to look at the very first Report card I ever got at school.. in the section reading " Teachers Note to Parents " it will say " Does not play well with others due to unwillingness to Compromise ".

Not to leave the US Out though, I think that in addition to blocking the more pernicious aspects of Islam, Blocking the outright moronic aspects of American culture would be a boon to Europe as well.. Plate Glass retro fittings and McDonald's need to die entirely.

Anonymous said...

rcsa: I lean more towards the center on most issues but immigration. I have to ask. Do you always look at life through rose-tinted lens???

I'm not calling you stupid or anything, but you deliberately seem to refuse to look at certain aspects of this issue. The world needs idealists, yes, but you take it a bit far. No offense...

Adam

Tufmudda said...

Stick to sci-fi fantasy

machinery said...

patrick - "The leftist press seem to like doing that, especially in these parts..."

you know, i'm begining to like you more and more.

M. said...

Well, wouldn't have thought you bend to that vile political side.

Stick to SF, politics aren't your forte apparently.

I live in a country that fought with Islamic empires for over 500 years in very bloody wars and despite it - or because of it - Islam is a religion with the same rights and regulation as Christian, Buddhist, Hinduist and Jewish religions since 150 years, and surprise, surprise, it works pretty well.
Because if you know Muslims from more than just some rightwing books you realise that 90 % of them are just like 90 % of the Christians: They don't care for that fundamentalistic shit and take a simple "live and let live" approach to religion. But that doesn't fit into the need of a boogeyman the right seems to have.

Khaled said...

I will say that I'm overwhelmed by the tone of the comments here. As a devout Muslim living in Los Angeles, I guess I just haven't personally come across this level of ignorance regarding the tenets of my faith.

As someone already posted, you don't have to try very hard to find Muslims condemning acts of extremism; just step into any of the many mosques in Los Angeles, and you'll come across many Muslims who are active members of our American society who denounce acts of extremism and terrorism.

just some random thoughts:
-banning headscarves? I never understood the logic behind this decision. what's so threatening about a scarf?! like banning a headscarf is really going to change someone's personal ideologies... Are nuns also not allowed to wear scarves? is this law targeted only against Muslim women? is that fair? (I realize that some people may say: 'it's not fair, but it's our country -- not yours -- and we can make up any rules we damn well please' To which I respond 'consciously justifying inequality... That's just a sad and desperate mentality.'

-banning minarets? it's a religious symbol, like adorning a church with a cross or a temple with the star of David.

Khaled said...

As for the comments pertaining to the 'Muslim problem' (paraphrasing, sorry). As I see it, this problem is really due to:
1) poor Muslim immigrants. Frankly, it's not uncommon for poor immigrants to band together and bring their culture with them. Right here in California, there are pockets where every other store name is written in Vietnamese, Farsi, Spanish, Hebrew, Arabic. I mean, a lot of our resources are spent on measures accommodating immigrants. While I don't agree with some of these practices, I do think it's important to realize that this trait is common among MANY immigrant populations regardless of race/religion/culture/language. Western Europe just happens to border many poor Muslim countries -- just like the US borders many poor Latin American countries and how the oil-rich Arab Gulf states border many poorer surrounding countries.

2) the other theme seems to be radical or extremist Islam. I hate extremists who, in the name of Islam, perpetrate acts or even simply voice thoughts that contradict the spirit of Islam. I think one has to walk a very fine line with regards to extremism in any arena (be it the alcoholic, the religious fanatic, the gambler, the glutton, etc...) There is a very famous line in the Quran pertaining to how Muslims should approach integrating into non-Muslim cultures, which loosely translates as 'I have my tradition, and you have yours'. There are also several Islamic scholars and references instructing Muslims to adapt to their societies in ways that don't directly contradict their faith. So while a devout Muslim may not go out drinking or clubbing with you, there is no reason why he or she cannot be a valued or esteemed colleague at work, an honors student, a sports teammate, or even a politician.

-I do take issue -- personally -- with those religious scholars and leaders who preach bitterness towards the government of the welcoming countries. I think the mentality of these preachers is one that was imported from oppressive, so-called 'Muslim' countries, where there is no political discourse or recourse for discontent. So the preachers instead turn up the rhetoric and preach opposition. My experience has been that 'home-grown' imams, those born in the Western countries, preach in a manner that strives to utilize civic discourse, perhaps reflecting their own experiences of a functional democratic/republican system.

Simply put, I just want to raise my family in a safe environment where they can enjoy the same opportunities and privileges I have had. I happen to have been born in the US. This my country -- not Morocco or Algeria or Saudi Arabia -- and now it is my also my children's country as well.

To Anne-Marie: I don't think there needs to be any 'standing up to Islam'. To be sure, there is some antagonizing of Muslims in some Western countries, but I think it is mis-guided, let alone unjust. The real danger is extremism, and my solution to that is to make the extremists and their ideologies irrelevant.

Anonymous said...

Funny, but no one did answer Anne-Marie's questions...

That's because here questions warranted no reply, unless you of course feel that Islam needs to be dealt with Pat ?

Anonymous said...

They don't care for that fundamentalistic shit and take a simple "live and let live" approach to religion. But that doesn't fit into the need of a boogeyman the right seems to have.

Americans need to have their little undercurrent of hate , and unfortunately it's not cool to hate blacks ans ruskies now, so gays and Muslims are now the enemy.

IZ said...

Well, as a Muslim who has lived in several countries around the world, including the USA and the UK, I'm obviously less than impressed with the book and the hate and hypocrisy of the book, or of some of the posts here.

I'm also pretty saddened that Pat sees fit to promote and defend these ideas.

The funny thing is that politically liberal and religious Muslims like myself are drawn to the liberal ideals which are the foundation of western greatness - these are the very ideals which reactionaries like Steyn, and posters like Anne-Marie etc., are doing their best to destroy. The same tribalism that led to Hitler and anti-semetic fears of an 'adulterated' Europe etc. raises its head in a not-so-new guise.

Lets look at all the right-wing, proto-fascist racism right here on Pat's blog:

"only America, with its traditional values and not-so-liberal attitude is the only nation in the West not bowing down and sucking the cock of Islam.":

Wow - homophobia and Islamophobia tied up all in one. Go Team America, which has done more to promote Islamic fundamentalism in the world than any other nation past or present! Madressahs in the FATA tribal region of Pakistan still use the alphabet primers written up by American professors and printed and distributed by American taxpayer money which teach the use of klashnikovs, grenades etc.

"pussyfooting liberal social-democrat governments that allow them to spill their extremist venom without any repercussions whatsoever and a very high Muslim birth rate":

Yes, secularism, freedom of speech and a legal system based on liberal ideals of "innocent until proven guilty", habeus corpus, etc. are undermining modern western civilization! Of course, one could argue that these are the cornerstones of modern western civilization - one would have expected Pat, as a student of the law, to have picked up on this, but perhaps the kind of laws he studies are based on the Nuremberg laws?

"I know Poutine said that they would wipe them out for what happened in Moscow,"

As yes, "they" must be wiped out for Moscow, but you know, given the hundreds of thousands murdered by Putin et al in Chechnya, perhaps their motivations are similar in nature? Its somehow natural to respond to bombings with genocide, but not natural to respond to genocide with bombings? Or what about the millions of Chechans wiped out by Stalin? I notice the supposed right-wingers here seem to find a great deal of common ground with Stalin when it comes to genocide. Of course, the "weak-assed, liberal" way would be to condemn and try and break this cycle of violence, but damn, that would just be weak.

Now this magnum opus from our ever-thoughtful Pat:

"Regarding the quote, I do agree with Steyn that now is a period of history where there needs to be a strong voice from the heart of Christianity."

Of course, a 'strong voice from the heart" for Pat means hatred and ethnic cleansing - that's one way to unite and regenerate Christianity, eh, Pat? The good ole Catholic Church is just not as strong and vigorous as it used to be during the time of the Crusades and Spanish Inquisition? What's important for Christianity is not a keener understanding of the gospels and adherence to the message of Christ, but a show of strength, eh?

"The point Steyn is trying to make is that Islam doesn't have to deal with such an identity problem"

Because of course, Steyn is such an expert on Islam. This is probably the biggest bull***t statement made on the entire internet over the last few days. I can't even respond to the stupidity of it.

IZ said...

And then we have the poster who has obviously been schooled in the Nazi terminology for addressing groups of human beings:

"Extremists are everywhere in the banlieues and now pollute the rest of the country."

He adds:

"What I want to know is where are those so-called moderate Muslims when something happens involving their fundamentalist counterparts? You never see them condemn such cowardly acts that kill innocents.'

Which shows you that he is also a liar.

And then: "...the problem is that weak-ass, cocksucking countries.."
Where is all this free cocksucking going on? I'm a Muslim. Why am I missing out? Could all those people who keep saying this (giving vent to your homophobia at the same time) please direct me to where I can queue up for this treatment? Or being a muslim, can I just barge in on any comely maiden, or lad, and demand it?

Of course, saying this about Islam and Muslims, as an entire group (over a billion people), is what Pat considers "civilized" language. Wow Pat, if I said this about fans of GRRM, you would through a tizzy fit and shut this thread down.

Morons like Steyn are really not so different from the fundos in Muslim countries. They thrive on ignorance, fear and stupidity, their primitive tribalism seen as reassurance of strength and stability. I've seen and heard them in Muslim countries, and in western countries, and quite frankly, its only by standing up to their hate and fear-mongering, that we'll manage to make the world a better place.

Sorry Pat, not cool.

Anonymous said...

well I guess it was really only a matter of time before some one came in and godwin'd the thread...

Oh well...

Anonymous said...

Iz said: Morons like Steyn are really not so different from the fundos in Muslim countries. They thrive on ignorance, fear and stupidity, their primitive tribalism seen as reassurance of strength and stability. I've seen and heard them in Muslim countries, and in western countries, and quite frankly, its only by standing up to their hate and fear-mongering, that we'll manage to make the world a better place.

Fear-mongering is not a byproduct of the Western world, you know. Fundamentalist Muslims exploit it and grow fat on fear.

Who blew themselves up in the Moscow subway? Who flew planes into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon? Who planned to blow up the World Trade Center a few years earlier? Who blew up discos and places packed with tourists in peaceful Bali? Who burned protestant churches in African countries controlled by sharia law? Who killed little girls with machettes in Indonedia? Who beheaded journalists (who for fuck's sake were trying to portray Muslims as a peace-loving people) in front of cameras? Who uses gang-rape initiation practice in the French banlieues. Who blew up hotels and buildings in India and Pakistan? The list goes on and on...

I'm not saying that moderate Muslims don't exist. But everywhere you look they seem to be a majority in number but a vocal minority.

I can't put words in pat's mouth, but I think he doesn't mean that something must be done about Islam. Fundamentalist Islam must be dealt with though. And since moderate Muslims won't do anything about it (in their defense, I don't believe the Faith would tolerate it if they tried), someone else must act...

Nicholas

Isaac said...

This is a really sad post to see on this blog, and a really sad thread following it. I agree almost completely with everything IZ is saying. I don't think I'm going to read this blog anymore. As much as it occasionally posts good info on upcoming fantasy stuff, I can't really bring myself to support such blatant bigotry.

Patrick said...

All right, before this turns into something ugly, I'll close down the comment section...

There are more than enough popular political forums for such a discussion, in any case.

And I thought people would offer their two cents concerning the decline of Christian churches in Western countries other than the USA, what with this being the Easter weekend...