Readers: This is part of an ongoing Point / CounterPoint at BizarreStuff. Please let us know what YOU think...
My esteemed co-editor makes a number of assertions with which, in good conscience, I must take issue:
- "It is because the latter are identified with a religion, Islam, that is intolerant of other religions and anyone who is not Muslim." This is a fiction created by western media as part of their sensationalization of the mundane. The Koran speaks openly of toleration of other religions in Surah 2:257 "Let there be no compulsion in religion."
- "[Negative] practices are ... widely accepted and vigorously applauded by many of the faithful adherents to Islam." The practices mentioned also have their detractors in Islam. The Hadith, the core of Islamic Jurisprudence in more orthodox societies, is viewed as dispensable, or merely instructive, by more progressive Muslims.
- "As the Muslim population grows ... the presence of tens of thousands of Muslims ... is an open invitation to politicians to cater to [them]." This implies that Muslims, as a group, can never accept the separation of church and state. Turkey, Lebanon, Syria- each of these are examples where Muslims are attempting to maintain secular societies. Bumpy as hell - no doubt. But let's try to help them make this transition to co-existence.