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I Get Mail – Islamophobe

You know nothing about Islam. It is people like you who support racism in the UK against Muslims. I bet you vote UKIP or the BNP.

You are an Islamophobe

Dear person calling me an Islamophobe.

Your opinion has been noted and to that I have a response…

“PHLLLLLLRRRRBTTTT”

Okay a more measured response.

See? When I first wrote about Islamic topics such accusations kept coming in. And in fact it generally kept me away. I felt rather timid to push against Islam the same way that I throw rocks at Christianity.

And it puzzled me because I may “not” be an Ex-Muslim, but I had a lot of education on the topic. And so I decided that I should demonstrate it.

I understand Islamophobia exists as an amalgam of racism and xenophobia. However? I am no Pat Condell. I actually understand the topic being discussed.

For instance? I have written about the Wahabbi rejection of forensic medicine. The Islamic fundie destruction of monuments and their own cultural history. And the recent article demonstrating a knowledge of Hudud and Shariah.

The difference between me and Condell, is that I am not ranting about Syrian refugees in Sweden or being outnumbered by Muslims breeding like rabbits. I understand that there are many moderate Muslims such as the ones who made the “Happy video”. I know how fundamentalism works and how it grows and have seen the changes due to a cultural war within Islam where some Muslims are liberal but are increasingly side lined as being “fake” Muslims. The dialogue of Islam has changed from the  temperance of Saladin to the ideal Muslim being a fundamentalist.

And in trying to be holier than thou, many Muslim countries pick up a culture of increasing fundamentalism as people egg each other on to greater acts.

You may not see these issues and critiques as genuine and see them on the same scale or scope as Pat Condell.

But here is the thing. I am sure there are responses to Pat Condell. I have corrected “stuff” he has said that is wrong.

The thing is? No one’s really said that what I have said is wrong. The articles may get downvoted and I may get hate mail but no one’s stood up and said this is why you are wrong. In fact as complaints about Islam go? This is one of the more deadlier ones since it is couched in an actual understanding of the religion rather than just blind dislike for it.

In addition? Because I am often critical of false criticisms and xenophobic ones against Islam, I am routinely called a Muslim in disguise as an atheist due to a principle called Taqqiyah which a lot of people in the atheist movement seem to know the name off but very little about.

Here is the thing? Such arguments would not be made had I chosen a Muslim classical scientist’s name as my pseudonym and if I was white. The joke is I couldn’t join the BNP and hate UKIP. Anyone who spent a basic amount of time reading my work would know so.

The fact is that real criticism of Islam is necessary because it is the real criticism that changes the dialogue and holds a mirror up to flaws in Islam. Blindly ignoring Islam ignores the fact that the biggest victims of Islam at this point are Muslims. We may lose a few people each year to terrorism, but they lose more and they lose futures robbed by the poisonous dialogue that has taken over Islam.

If that makes me an Islamophobe, then that puts me in a rather strange position alongside people like Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Taslima Nasrin and various other people who left Islam and are critical of it as someone who understands a little bit about Islam and who can see changes and issues within it.

Blindly staying the course is as dangerous and pointless as screaming about Muslamic Ray Guns

Comments

  1. Pen says

    Hmmm, you got mail from someone who knows nothing about you? Again??

    Incidentally, I am curious about something. When we criticise Christianity, we tend to focus on the ‘God does not exist argument.’ You pretty much do that in your next post, except there it’s various demons, ghosts, witches and magic spells which don’t exist. Why is it that we don’t seem to use this so much as a criticism of Islam? After all, Allah doesn’t exist just as much as God and that tends to invalidate the whole charade, doesn’t it? But with especial reference to any part of it which does harm or interferes with the freedom of non-believers and dissenters. I find I can co-exist with the rest, just as I can with other religions.

  2. Holms says

    My guess on that is simply that Islam is more visibly agressive toward the rights of various groups – mostly women – that the topic of the existence of the deity ends up feeling a bit abstract, a a topic fit for discussion in an ivory tower compared to the real world transgressions.

  3. says

    You gotta admit, he had some pretty sophistimacated argument, there. It’s not like he just tried to slap a label on you or anything like that.

  4. says

    After all, Allah doesn’t exist just as much as God

    Well, technically, it’s the same god.

    Have you debated theology with a devout muslim? I have and it’s … um… different. Many christians are actually willing to engage in discussion around epistemology — a symptom of the tremendous erosion of church authority after the reformation and the enlightenment. Islam managed to avoid making its schisms constitute an attack on the truth of islam; a strategically good move. The sunni and shi’a can kill eachother over the succession of holiness(*) but neither side ever adopted the strategy of questioning the core truths of the thing. Arguing about islam becomes quickly circular in the same way that it does with christians – they know the bible is true because it says its true, basically. The prophet’s words are true because they say they are, etc. It’s certainly subject to epistemological attack but when I’ve tried it’s been frustrating; there’s a great deal of enthusiastic presuppositionalism, it’s built into it all over the place. The q’ran is perfect because it’s the word of god, and such a thing is always perfect – and we know it’s perfect because it says so right on the cover. The sheer butt-headed enthusiasm of presupposition is mind-boggling; trying to question the basis of knowledge becomes an exercise in frustration. “I know, because I know.” pretty much. I suspect that arguing with a 4th century christian theologian was a similar experience.

    I think it’s that islam does not lend itself to producing philosophically sophisticated thinkers. Like all revealed faiths, it’s ultimately authoritarian and its adherents aren’t used to having to adopt and argue a position. I think christianity has been beaten down a bit – that’s why some of them seem to pine for the days when they could short-cut debate with violence and torture.

    (* which, if you think about it, is pretty darned goofy: why would a god-inspired prophet’s progeny be special? aren’t they just humans? is prophecy genetic – a heritable trait?)

  5. Codi Johnson says

    I have never liked the whole “islamophobe” concept. I categorically and vehemently deny the argument that one is racist in any way for picking at Islam. Islam is not a race. Yes, you can run into that with Judaism, because being Jewish is potentially both a race and a religion. There are non-Jewish Jews and well, non-Jewish Jews, but Islam does NOT have that. There are black, brown, white, etc, Muslims in all parts of the world and they are not tied to any one race any more than Christians are. Yes, Christians are predominantly white and Muslims are predominantly brown, but that’s as far as it goes. Islamophobe is simply a way to derail valid criticism of the religion. Period. Pat Condell may be over the top and paranoid, but to simply write him off as an “Islamophobe” is bullshit.

  6. says

    No… Pat Condell is a genuine dyed in the wool xenophobe and racist.

    1. UKIP support which as we have seen is rather anti-thetical to atheism’s “major” issues such as GLBT rights. In addition is “anti-immigrant and anti-EU” and is basically pushing anti-Muslim and anti-Europe sentiments for no valid reason.

    2. Pat has also stood behind such lofty ideals as “deporting gypsies”.

    3. Pat pushes idiotic fearmongering. If you look at what I have written, ex-Muslims and current Muslims have gone… that’s kind of right. There are no complaints from them. In fact the biggest complaints I have are from Muslims defending the actions of the Wahabbis or of Hudud as things necessary to Islam and intrinsic to it.

    4. Seriously? Pat’s big issue is that he supported the EDL and claimed they weren’t racist when they were off in Rusholme smashing up shops owned by Hindus as well as Muslims. How do they detect Muslims? Beards Mate.

    5. Also spoke out against 8000 refugees already in Sweden getting full leave to remain and citizenship by claiming there were 2 million of them.

    6. In short? Pat’s repeatedly used right wing talking points to criticise Islam.

    My issue is that we gave him such a signal boost that he has hundreds of thousands of fans who say idiotic and xenophobic things like “they should go back to where they are from” and “They are all terrorists” so much so that the dialogue of xenophobia has become mainstream in Atheism as is the radical opposition.

    So real criticism drops beneath the radar.

    I ask a simple question? You tell me which is more devastating as a statement? My critique of Hudud in Saudi Arabia? My critique of Hudud in Malaysia? My critique of the cultural desolation at the heart of the Wahabbi movement and its effect on Islam?

    Or Pat’s fears about ground zero mosques, muslamification and creeping shariah law?

    Bear in mind last year Pat was so smug about the Woolwich terror attack that he ignored the dozen or so attacks by white nationalist extremists that left one Muslim dead that triggered the Woolwich retaliation.

    Or that last year there were more attacks by Catholic Terrorists in the UK than Muslim ones and our dialogue is still worried about brown people.

    Our willingness to adhere to simplicity and a lack of actual knowledge about Islam has atheists calling me a “fake” atheist because I understand Islam the same way I understand Christianity. I have read enough of it to actually understand the basics rather than simply echo talking points I learnt from Fox News.

    Islamophobia is racist because it is aimed at Muslims and Muslims are identified by the colour of skin. It is why the EDL were telling me to “go home” a year ago when I was back home for a holiday.

  7. StevoR : Free West Papua, free Tibet, let the Chagossians return! says

    Very well said Avicenna. Great post.

  8. StevoR : Free West Papua, free Tibet, let the Chagossians return! says

    @5. Codi Johnson :

    There are non-Jewish Jews and well, non-Jewish Jews, but Islam does NOT have that.

    Just curious but have you ever heard of the Falasha* Ethiopian Jews Jews from Ethiopia who were airlifted to israel in operation Solomon?

    See :

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Solomon

    * And apparently they’re not supposed to be called “Falasha” anymore because that’s now no longer acceptable? Beta Israel instead apparently but grown up with the other older term which sounds much more right for me even though its now not so ..Aaarrgh! Well something new learnt tonight I spose.

  9. StevoR : Free West Papua, free Tibet, let the Chagossians return! says

    Islamophobia is racist because it is aimed at Muslims and Muslims are identified by the colour of skin. It is why the EDL were telling me to “go home” a year ago when I was back home for a holiday.

    I’m torn on this, Avicenna because its both true and false.

    Obviously it is the truth for you because you’ve experienced it directly and I believe you. Your experience trumps mine and , yes, in some ways I’m sheltered or priviledged or whatever. I am not Muslim or brown-skinned.

    However, its also wrong because factually Muslims are NOT identifiable by skin colour or “race” (a term which I think is scientific nonsense and a dangerous, harmful meme – an idea we should scrap) Muslims come from all genotypes / phenotypes (?terms?) and can have any skin colour or stereotypical biological features so..

    Why don’t people, everyone, recognise and know this? I wouldn’t have thought it was a particularly obscure fact.

    Seems. So. Obvious.

    I know racists are stupid – racism is almost by definition a stupid belief – but seriously? People think they can tell a Muslim just by skin colour when most brown skinned people, are actually non-Muslim? (Specifically Catholic variety Xn – assuming we take South and Latin Americans as “brown”which, yeah, correct, nah?)

    Not a big fan of the whole “Islamophobia” notion / silencing tactic either. Is it really a phobia when we have Islamic Jihadists out there in the world trying to kill us??

  10. Holms says

    But it is about race when we see fearmongering over islamic terrorists result in harassment of people that are generally brownish / arabic looking. It is the direct cause of such things as ‘random’ stop and frisk targetting arabic looking (along with black) people, or getting ‘randomly’ chosen for bag searches at airports, plain old naked harassment and abuse due to appearance.

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