September 26, 2022

Can’t call it ‘Islamophobia’ anymore

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I should thank this speaker, Fahah Ullah Queresh for explaining that we needn’t worry about offending moderate Muslims – because there aren’t any; they all self-identify as unreasonable homophobic misogynists endorsing excessively morbidly violent reactions to what they say are ‘offenses’, but which don’t even count as crimes in civilized society.

It’s also important to remember that since this kind of atrocious medieval barbarism is a chosen position, rather than an ethnicity, and can be adopted or discarded regardless of one’s cultural background, then such generalization cannot be considered racism either.

I reserve that there might be Shiites or other Muslims who disagree with this sort of backward evil malevolence, and I invite them to step forward. But until otherwise indicated, I can thank this speaker for this demonstration showing that Sunni Muslims at least really can be generalized in a way that can no longer be called ‘Islamophobia’. Because we’re not actually generalizing them; they’re all that bad, by their own admission – as if embracing such inhuman injustice were something to be proud of.

If you’re Muslim, and you think you can counter the damage done by Queresh here, talk to me; show me how you could do that. Otherwise you’ll have to live with this image.

Likewise if this is yet another twisted parody that I foolishly took seriously, someone please show me the joke. Because this isn’t funny.

26 thoughts on “Can’t call it ‘Islamophobia’ anymore

  1. Islamophobia is not racist because Islam is not a race. Islamophobia is a reaction to the determination of those Muslims who wish to impose Sharia on everyone.

    Until ‘moderate’ Muslims identify themselves as holding a belief which does not include the imposition of Sharia, , I declare it my right to throw them all in together.

    I fully appreciate that there are many Muslims – probably a majority – who do not want to impose Sharia on us all. I have worked with many and meet them day to day. But when there is a real and present danger to the society which we have evolved then it behooves everyone to stand up and be counted.

    This is a clear case of Us and Them. Either you are for Sharia or against it – and it is you who has to make that clear.

    I would add, at the same time, that Western political, economic and diplomatic hypocrisy when dealing with Sharia states will, unless it is ended, only fuel the fire of tension between the [flawed] Western democratic ideology and Sharia ideology.

  2. I would be curious to know the target audience for the event because it’s entirely possible that what were seeing isn’t a random cross section of US Muslims but a self selected group that would attend the event in question. It’s possible that the event doesn’t appeal to more liberal Muslims so they are under/not represented.

    Having said that, based on the speaker’s words I would surmise the talk is happening in the US, and it is genuinely frightening and disheartening that so many people would raise a hand in support of the viciousness found in their holy texts especially in countries like the US which it’s own problems aside is one of the better places to live in the world. I’m certainly not surprised, because that’s the nature of religion. You just have to think your way is right and everyone else’s is wrong and eventually someone (or many someones) will be willing to kill for that.

    I’m reminded of a concept that the advice columnist Dan Savage came up with when discussion the religious right’s intolerance towards marriage equality. Dan would (still does) go on polemics towards Christianity (in general) and their intolerance, their hatred, of homosexuals. He would then receive emails from more liberal Christians saying “We’re not all like that” to which Dan would reply “stop whispering in my ear that you’re not all like that, and shout that in their (the religious right’s) faces” by staying silent the liberal Christians were/are letting the fundamentalist Christians control the message and to those outside the fundamentalists are the face of the religion.

    So do liberal Muslims exist? I’m sure of it. But it does seem like they need much better PR, signal boosting, and to get into the faces of their religion and tell them “We’re not all like that” I know some have, and we should support them with attention. I hate seeing the effect that violent Muslims are having in Islamic countries, and in countries.

    It baffles me that people living in relatively free countries are turning towards violence and oppression.

  3. Sam Harris, following the kerfuffle on the Bill Maher show, commented that one of his opponents trying to support moderate Islam pointed to all the reformers of Islam that were doing so in spite of fearing for their lives. Harris pointed out that the fact these reformers were in fear of their lives made Harris’s case.

  4. Except for the guy at the lower right in the audience shots, this is definitely a case of preaching to the choir. I find that can feel openly hostile toward 99% of this nut’s audience.

  5. I have quite a few Muslim friends on Facebook, since I play in a Middle Eastern music group. I posted the video there. We’ll see what happens. 🙂

  6. I think we need to be more forward about the fact that, even setting aside the “willing to use violence” and “fundamentally misogynistic” types of Muslims & Christians, both faiths still peddle a tremendous amount of dangerous nonsense. “Moderate” Christians all over America and the world tell their children they’ll be tortured for eternity if they ask certain questions, or love someone of the same gender, or any of a variety of other harmless acts; countless “moderate” Muslims tell their daughters that women must hide their bodies and faces, or their sons that they don’t have the self control to see women’s faces in public — these unbelievably widespread “moderate” beliefs interfere with the freedom of expression and openness that fuel all progress.

    The great bulk of followers of the god of Abraham have adopted the belief that the concept of love is compatible with a threat of eternal torture — it is a perpetual poisoning of perhaps the most important experience one can have in life. It’s an abusive relationship on the grandest of scales, with some of the most severe psychological torture imaginable.

    I’ve been thinking for the last few months that we ought to answer the “if there’s no afterlife, what’s the point of living?” crowd with an analogy to economic scarcity, and gold. Gold’s value is in it’s rarity, if gold were simply laying around all over the place on the side of the road, no one would pay hundreds of thousands of dollars for a brick of the stuff. Likewise, an eternal life after this one really devalues this life. Most of us have been given somewhere between a few and several decades of ‘gold’ to live, and the theists cheapen it into dirt. Which is why their so often willing to squander their gold flying a plane into a building, or bombing an abortion clinic.

    1. “Its” (possessive; not “it’s” (= “it is”).

      This has been a public service announcement.

  7. As the quest on dogma debate said….

    you are thinking of religion in the wrong way.

    what you call radical (insert religion) like West Borough or ISIS are NOT radical.

    They are the normal position of the religion.

    The radicals are the so called mild (insert religion) as the radicalize (change) the beliefs to make them seem to be nice and loving. Its these moderates that are the radicals.

    The acid throwing, gay basing, hate filled, let’s kill them all then we will have peace

    is the normal religious stance. And as most atheists know from reading the various Books of BS this is most likely true.

  8. I don’t understand why we have to put so much emphasis into what one modern day Muslim says about Islam, when there are over a billion and a half Muslims in the world. How about interacting with some more of their scholars or philosophers?

    Especially when you look at some of Muslim countries that don’t have extremism. Don’t get me wrong as I think Islam has problems, however I think one can make a defense for Islam depending on the country, as it seems like there are good Islamic countries that are not bigoted and there are bad Islamic countries that are.

    Aron Ra says ” should thank this speaker, Fahah Ullah Queresh for explaining that we needn’t worry about offending moderate Muslims – because there aren’t any; they all self-identify as unreasonable homophobic misogynists endorsing excessively morbidly violent reactions to what they say are ‘offenses’, but which don’t even count as crimes in civilized society.”

    Ok it’s true that Muslim women are heavily mistreated in Suadi Arabia and Iran, (women can’t vote and can’t drive) but you have at least admit that there are geographical factors that come into play here.

    Misogynists? Well we should at least look at all those women who are, or at least were heads of states in Turkey (Tansu Çiller), Indonesia (Megawati Sukarnoputri), Bangladesh (Khaleda Zia and Sheikh Hasina). You have 4

    Bangladesh, and India have a much much higher Muslim Population than I

    How many do female presidents have we had in the U.S?

    Indonesia is a good example of Islam making women equal to men, or at least close enough

    Saudi Arabia is a good example of Islam making women equal to cattle, or at least close enough

    Keep in mind Indonesia has a population of 250 million with 88% of people identifying as Muslim

    Saudi Arabia has a population of about 29 million with the state religion being recognized as Islam

    Iran has a population of 77 million with the state religion being recognized as Islam (bad)

    Turkey has 75 million, with about 98% of people identifying as Muslim (good Muslims)

    Guess what just recently happened in Turkey, well LGBT rights aren’t where one would want them to be, BUT there is improvement taking place

    On 17 July 2014, Turkey’s Supreme Court ruled that referring to gays as “perverted” constitutes as hate speech

    cf: ‘ LGBTI News Turkey. 17 July 2014. ‘ from LGBT rights in Turkey wiki pedia

    Another note about Turkey “Turkey became the first Muslim-majority country in which a gay pride march was held”

    So all I’m saying is that you should dig a bit deeper here, as there so much stuff to cover, and yet why are we looking at one speech from Fahah Ullah Queresh ??? If there are Islamic countries that show improvement in the areas that need improving, then this should at least be noted.

    I’m a moderate conservative Christian by the way….

    1. Ignore this above, I thought I deleted it, because I ended up making a similar point

      “Bangladesh, and India have a much much higher Muslim Population than I”

  9. Given the rhetoric comming out ot the speaker who has just tacitly endorsed the death penalty for a host of insults and “crimes”, acts that do not reach the level of crime in any western nation, I am not surprised at the almost universal agreement to his questions. In that crowd, with that pre-oration, it would take a very brave or foolhardy attendee to disagree too enthusiastically.

  10. @Cornell

    How about interacting with some more of their scholars or philosophers?

    The overwhelming consensus of Muslim scholars and experts say the exact same thing. The overwhelming consensus is that Islam requires the death of apostates. There is no sect of Islam or scholars who disagree. This is the consensus position of Islam.

    For individual Muslims, at least 40-50% of all Muslims worldwide also want this legally enforced by government.

    Even in Turkey, the number is in the ballpark of 15% IIRC of the population who want apostates to be put to death.

    1. But from the one’s I’ve seen like Shabir Ally (there is even a Youtube video on it in which Shabir abby answers this question with a NO, the YT user is “Quran Speaks”) he puts forth a well thought out argument against killing apostates, . I know that you say most Muslim scholars think this, but I’d really like to get more data on this. I guess I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt though for this thread, however I still think that Turkey is progressing, and possibly will get that number lowered in the future

      What about Muslims in the states? I live next door to one, and work with 4, (3 of them are women) one of them is in the nation of Islam, not one of them have ever told me that think apostates should be put to death

      I’d really like to see what female Muslims think of this question, compared to Male Muslims

  11. Aronra, come on. You should use a little more tact and recognize that there are moderate Muslims. Really. There are. Going by Pew polls, there are many Muslims, about half of Muslims worldwide, probably much higher percentages in western countries, who do not favor death for apostates.

    These moderates just have zero backing of any sort of establishment as far as I can tell. As far as I can tell, there is no sect or group of Muslim religious scholars or religious leaders who qualify as moderate. Note: To qualify as moderate IMHO, you have to be explicitly for the legality of apostacy and blasphemy.

  12. EnlightenmentLiberal @ # 11: These moderates just have zero backing of any sort of establishment as far as I can tell.

    Kinda reminds me of feminist atheists.

    1. @Pierce R. Butler

      The analogy is hard to make, because atheism has no official leaders or scholars. There is no dogma which requires interpretation. When I identify as an atheist, it does not automatically mean I identify with Thunderfoot. Whereas, when you identify as a Muslim, it kind of does mean that you identify with at least some of the scholars of Islam, who near universally say that apostates should be killed.

      But even if we ignore that analogy problem, we still have plenty of popular feminist atheist “leaders”, such as Aronra, Matt Dillahunty and the rest of The Atheist Experience, PZ Myers, Richard Carrier, the rest of Free Thought Blogs, and a shitton of others.

      Just for example. Here is a letter being touted by the wester media last month or so as being from the liberal, moderate wing of Islam.

      http://freethoughtblogs.com/dispatches/2014/09/29/muslim-scholars-denounce-isis/#comment-359008

      I can only assume that the media didn’t actually read the letter, because I wouldn’t touch it with a 10 ft pole. That purported shining example of moderate Islam from moderate Islamic scholars is further to the right than most US Christian dominionists. Ex: the letter still clearly asserts that apostates should be put to death in Islam.

  13. EnlightenmentLiberal: … atheism has no official leaders or scholars.

    Neither does feminism, whereas Islam has so many that only those within any given faction agree on who’s “official”.

    … popular feminist atheist “leaders”, such as …

    The dreaded FtBully Horde as such scurries yapping at the heels of such as N.O.W. and AHA, who in turn hustle for scraps from the tables of foundations and legislatures, themselves answerable to the actual Powers What Is. Please don’t worry your pretty little head about “Atheist Leadership” so much…

    As for the “death to apostates” thing, that sucks. So does the whole neocon “clash of civilizations” schtick – unless of course you for some reason want another global war, as many do.

    Treating Islam as a monolith makes it one; treating it as a multifaceted social phenomenon facilitates sorting out the more toxic elements and strengthening the constructive trends (such as they are).

  14. Treating Islam as a monolith makes it one; treating it as a multifaceted social phenomenon facilitates sorting out the more toxic elements and strengthening the constructive trends (such as they are).

    As far as I can tell – there aren’t any constructive elements. That’s the problem. There are a bunch of loners who are moderate, but there are no scholars or clergy to represent them, bring them together, and grant legitimacy. Islam is multifaceted, and every facet is “death to apostates”.

    And you have to go and say this:

    >FtBully Horde

    I’m sorry for taking you seriously. I’ll try to not do that again.

    Your concern is noted.

    1. You can find various outspoken examples of “constructive elements” in Islam via several of the blogs here.

      Also please read up on the traditions called “Sufi” – most of which seem to have gone underground in the last few decades, but with a history of doing so before to resurface generations later.

      Why the fixation on “apostates” when other groups take many more casualties from the muhajideen (e.g., women, competing sects/nations, gays, political opponents)?

      Pls get your sarcasm meter checked.

      And to reiterate my poor neglected starting point: where would you hear of feminist atheism if you didn’t read specialized blogs? It does exist, even has some scholars, and (sigh) a few clergy wannabes, regardless of de facto invisibility to outsiders.

  15. And to reiterate my poor neglected starting point: where would you hear of feminist atheism if you didn’t read specialized blogs? It does exist, even has some scholars, and (sigh) a few clergy wannabes, regardless of de facto invisibility to outsiders.

    Invalid example. I’m talking about relative popularity. If I didn’t read specialized blogs, I wouldn’t know about popular atheists in general. However, when versed in the culture, I can point to many atheist names – and more importantly large atheist organizations, with “street cred”, who also clearly promote feminism.

    Most Americans wouldn’t know Sunni from Shia. They barely know anything about Islamic culture. However… I wanted to write that most American couldn’t name a single extremist Islamic organization, and then I remembered Hamas, Hezbollah, the Muslim Brotherhood, … which just makes my point for me.

    About Sufism. I’m spending a fair amount of time educating myself further on Sufism. Unfortunately, it’s hard to categorize Sufism, which is by design by those who identify with Sufism.

    For starters, I’m not the biggest fan in that it seems like a grab-bag, diverse Islamic mysticism, which is almost the last thing I want. I don’t want more people getting deeper into superstitious nonsense.

    There appear to be no large schools or congregations of Sufists, unlike Sunni, Shia, Catholicism, Protestantism, etc. So, against most Sufists, I have my same complaint that because they seem to lack any church or independent movement, by identifying as Muslim, they empower Sunni and Shia extremists. From what I can tell, depending on how you define the term Sufi, a large portion of Muslims worldwide are Sufi – alternatively about 99% (?) of Muslims worldwide are Sunni and Shia.

    It’s almost like I’m reading about the unorganized movement of Catholic reformers. Sorry to all you Catholic reformers out there. There is nothing to reform. Unless you are calling for all of the leadership of your religion to go to jail (after a fair trial), then you’re not going far enough for me. Unless you are organizing to make this happen, then you’re not going far enough for me. I don’t care if your heart is in the right place if you still support the barbarism of your religion with your words by identifying as Catholic.

    Why do I care about the killing of apostates in particular? Because ideally I want Muslims to be able to leave their religion, but I’ll take them reforming their religion, and both require the assurance that others won’t kill you for trying.

    1. I’m talking about relative popularity.

      Please also consider relative velocity of goalposts.

      Most Americans wouldn’t know Sunni from Shia. … most American[s] could… name … Hamas, Hezbollah, the Muslim Brotherhood, … which just makes my point for me.

      The only point you’ve made is that corporate media gives USAians a selective perspective. Nice to know you’ve read your Chomsky.

      Sufism … seems like a grab-bag, diverse Islamic mysticism…

      Which, directly or by influence, gave us brilliant humanists such as Rumi and Omar Khayyam, not to mention Mullah Nasrudin.

      There appear to be no large schools or congregations of Sufists…

      They used to be all over Afghanistan, or at least so I gathered traveling there in ’77 (shortly before the Russian invasion). Some subsects, aka the Dervishes, were active in Turkey a few decades ago. Iran also had Sufic spokespersons, at least.

      … you’re not going far enough for me …

      Doncha worry, cupcake, as soon as they read this they’ll kick it into high gear!

      … ideally I want Muslims to be able to leave their religion, but I’ll take them reforming their religion…

      Just like their wise Christian older brothers did? How many theses need be nailed to which door, and how many decades of sophisticated theological debate across how many battlefields must they wage? Or would you accept a nice Nicaean Council with all the major players gathered under the wise eyes of the Emperor to resolve their issues with learned polemics and poisonings?

      Don’t get so focused on “any sort of establishment” that you lose sight of the “Happy” dance videos, Saudi women getting behind the wheel, Malala Yousafzai and the movement she represents, Muslim US troops serving Uncle Sam. Muslim cultures are changing socially in ways that do not favor sustained jihad, and would do so exponentially faster if not for all the stimulation the US showers upon their warlords.

      The monster that Carter and Reagan created has only grown under the attacks of all subsequent presidents, and our new war with the Islamic State et al may expand same by orders of magnitude. Much of the solution to the Middle East’s problems can be found in the same place where those problems start, and Americans have a lot more to contribute to that solution than scolding “Islam” for everything. “Islam” did not sell the tear gasses used to quash the Bahrain Spring, f’rinstance, nor did it dispossess the Palestinians.

  16. Just like their wise Christian older brothers did?

    Exactly. Just like they did; they no longer do. Glad to see you agreeing with me on this point.

    Don’t get so focused on “any sort of establishment” that you lose sight of the “Happy” dance videos, Saudi women getting behind the wheel, Malala Yousafzai and the movement she represents, Muslim US troops serving Uncle Sam.

    Analogy: I’m glad the Catholic pope is making some moves towards making the Catholic church less evil. I’m glad that one big organization of Catholic nuns is standing up for social justice. But Catholicism is false, and the Catholic organization provides material support to child rapists, and as long as that is the only game in town with the name “Catholic”, then I view anyone who identifies as Catholic as a miserable human being (or highly ignorant of the situation).

    I recognize the catch-22 inherent here. How can you change the Catholic organization from within – without identifying yourself as a Catholic? It would be a great turn of events if the Catholic church became less evil, and I would be happy. I still cannot bring myself to stop identifying all Catholics as providing support to child rapists, even if it perhaps tars those trying to reform the Catholic church. Rather, I feel that a morally upstanding person who recognize the evils of the church, and stop identifying as Catholic. That is the only morally good option.

    Identifying as Catholic and trying to change it from within is less evil than taking more active action to support child rapists, but the lesser of two evils is still evil, and the enemy of my enemy is not necessarily my friend.

    I don’t want people to reform Catholicism from within. I want Catholicism to die.

    I’m a dreamer.

    1. … they did; they no longer do.

      Don’t speak too hastily: they have done so in living memory in Northern Ireland and The Former Yugoslavia™, and I have no doubt certain resentments and grievances remain. And even more recently

      You acknowledge some of the various elements attempting to reform Catholicism, though they lack a centralized organization or leader, and admit they have some effect. It puzzles me that you simultaneously deny the (rough) equivalents within Islam.

  17. I acknowledge both. I also condemn both. I thought I was rather clear with my analogy that I hold every single person who identifies as Catholic as personally responsible for promoting child rape. It is preferable for such Catholics to try and reform their organization, but the ideal course of action is to just leave the organization. The lesser of two evils (attempting reform from within) is still evil, and the enemy of my enemy is not necessarily my friend.

  18. Coming rather late, I know.

    But, we’re sort of talking about a couple of different things.

    First, Radical Islam is a serious problem, for Muslim’s as well as non-Muslims. That’s a fact that should be evident by now. Too many are not only unapologetic about it, they’re downright enthusiastic. And too few in the Islamic community are willing stand up to this.

    Second, a phobia is an irrational, exaggerated fear of something. We all have a built-in fear of falling that helps keep us safe, but if your fear keeps you from using the stairs or looking out a 2nd Floor window. We have a sort of instinctive fear of creatures with too many legs (also probably a hold-over from when our ancestors lived in trees), but if a person is unable to empty a clothes dryer because he’s afraid it’s full of spiders, that’s a phobia.

    Those two facts are not mutually exclusive. The fact that there a many species of deadly snakes does not justify someone who has Ophidiophobia. The fact that some people have an irrational fear of snakes doesn’t mean there are no dangerous snakes, or that you should ignore evidence that there’s a nest of water moccasins living in the crawlspace under your house.

    By the same token, Radical Islam is a real threat but that doesn’t mean some people don’t get carried away a drift into irrationality and bigotry. And the fact that there are Anti-Muslim Bigots can’t be allowed to distract us from the threat presented by Radical Islam.

    1. By the same token, Radical Islam is a real threat but that doesn’t mean some people don’t get carried away a drift into irrationality and bigotry. And the fact that there are Anti-Muslim Bigots can’t be allowed to distract us from the threat presented by Radical Islam.

      Absolutely agreed.

      Although, I think a bigger problem is that many bigots use radical Islam as an excuse justification of their xenophobia, racism, and pro-Christian bigotry – for many, I bet it barely matters what the tenants of Islam are, as long as it’s not Christianity.

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