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Dec 27 2008

Have we mentioned lately that Islamic culture is evil?

Well then, let’s take up the slack, shall we? From Saudi Arabia, that oasis of egalitarian, progressive civilization at its apex [/snark], comes word that a court has ruled that the 8-year-old child bride of a 47-year old man, married off to him by her father as a way of paying off the father’s debts to the man, will not be able to have the marriage annulled. But hey, at least the court is doing its best to let everyone know how fair they’re being about all this. After all, they’ve gotten the groom to agree not to consummate the marriage until the girl reaches puberty, which means, lucky thing, that she’s got until about age 11 or 12 before she gets raped. And once she hits puberty, she’ll be allowed to file for divorce with the court. I’m sure they’ll just as fair to her then as they’re being now!

There are human rights organizations, apparently, even within Saudi Arabia, who are vehemently opposed to these arranged child marriages. How these organizations manage to exist without being regularly raided and their members dragged into the street and shot (oh, I forgot, “beheaded” is more Saudi style) is a question for another time. All we need to remember now is how this is just another indicator of how sick a society can get when fundamentalist religion — especially one as barbaric and misogynist as Islam — runs the show, and how, even a full decade into the 21st century, there are still victims of pre-medieval injustices living and suffering around the world today.

It would be nice if the US were willing to take a principled stand on this sort of thing. But you see, a little bit of oil is enough to lubricate a conscience rusty with such built-up gunk as “integrity” and “principle”. And Saudi Arabia has much more than a little bit of oil to go around. Let’s see, they force pre-pubescent kids into marriage, their radicalized young men crash planes into our buildings…but they’ll always be our “allies”. As long as the pumps are going.

11 comments

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  1. 1
    Tom Foss

    The only reason you guys always go after Islam is because you know you wouldn’t be able to say those kind of things about Christianity. Stop picking on the Muslims and try saying that to a Christian!! /PoeIn all seriousness, good post. It’s always so disgusting hearing about this kind of thing, but it acts as a constant reminder of how far we as a people still have to go.

  2. 2
    HollyBerry

    islam is a little bit more unjust than christianity, hence the more apparent ridicule of the practice. islam is a larger influence on this earth than christianity could wish to be, therefore it is more dangerous and deserves more to “go after.” PLUS, have you read or heard anything else these people write or talk about on here? as far as i know, about 80% of it is christian bashing. so it’s not like jesus isn’t getting his fair share of attention. i’m sure they would be more than happy to say the same things to a christian, if terrible, immoral things like this took place under the eyes of their god. which i know they do. jeffrey dahmer was raised a fundamentalist christian and killed people because of it. and hitler was catholic. but anyway, i know you mean no harm, tom foss.and good post. i didn’t know about that and it is quite awful to know things like this still happen around the world. if only the abolition of all religion was possible… haha.

  3. 3
    -C

    Admittedly it’s not all Islam’s fault; Arabian culture melding with orthodox Islam creates interpretations which distort the original….not that the original is much to be drawn from in the first place, but.

  4. 4
    citizen stefish

    i don’t see why the US should “take a stand” on this. what are they going to do? drop bombs on them? punish an entire country for the actions of a minority of religious gangsters? maybe issue a strongly-worded statement against the guilty?i also fail to see how islamic culture is more evil than any other. we live in a culture that kidnaps people and locks them in rape rooms because they had some “illegal” vegetation in their pocket. we lock people in federal dungeons for the rest of their lives if they resist taxation (theft at gunpoint) that is used to benefit financial insiders, to pay off war debt from generations before many of us were born, and to pay the salaries of people who plunder and murder in foreign lands. our country routinely invades and bombs the living hell out of places, killing hundreds of thousands of innocents.should muslims in gaza, who are brutalized by the israeli military and routinely denied food and medical care at gunpoint via the the USA’s financial backing “take a stand” against us? after all, we live inside the same arbitrary lines drawn on a map as the folks who make this possible – the US congress. political action and voting are a complete waste of time because the government solution is to *use violence* against the targets. and violence always leads to more violence. just look at the history of the US. each war is the one that will supposedly end all future wars.right.right now we’re in the “long war”. spectacular name for something that can’t be won!

  5. 5
    Improbable Joe

    Did you need to mention it, or do we all take it as a given? Maybe we need to stop dealing with countries that… well, anything I would say would probably apply on some level to the United States, so maybe we DO need to focus on Christians. They are the threat that is closest to home. We can go after the Islamic theocracies the very minute that we get our own house in order.Oh, and boycott those countries in the meanwhile. I’m going to put up some solar and wind power just as soon as I am able to find a job.

  6. 6
    Martin

    i don’t see why the US should “take a stand” on this. what are they going to do? drop bombs on them?Of course not. Just plain open condemnation, even as a gesture, would be nice, considering that this kind of activity is unacceptable in civilized society. And it’s hardly “the actions of a minority of religious gangsters,” considering the post was about a legal decision handed down by a judge who’s also a sheikh, making the marriage between an 8-year-old and a 47-year-old a legally binding situation over there.But you’re not actually in that much disagreement with my point, which was that, of course the US will not object to any appalling bullshit the Saudis get up to, because we’d be hypocrites considering all the moral blots on our own copybook, and we also want all that yummu oil at good cheap prices.

  7. 7
    Tom Foss

    Sorry, Shortcake, I thought the “/Poe” was enough to mark my comment as a joke, a parody of Christian “fatwa envy” and the “how come you always pick on Christians?” callers.For more worthwhile commentary, I think as long as we, as a society, treat religious beliefs as sacrosanct and untouchable, we’re not going to see condemnations of this sort of thing from secular governments. Sure, the Pope and Pat Robertson might say something, naturally ignoring the planks in their own eyes, but to everyone else, these terrible practices are protected from criticism because they’re part of the religion. This is where the Dawkinsian consciousness-raising gets so important: people need to see that cruel acts deserve to be pointed out and condemned, whether or not they occur in the name of religion.

  8. 8
    Q

    The US speaking publicly against Islam as a religion and a theocracy is, at best, pure hypocrisy. Most likely, if the president were to say, in front of millions of people, “Islam is bullshit”, he would probably add “because we, as Christians…” It’s a coin to them. One side is good and one is evil. We, the Christians and they, the Muslims. It’s total bullshit. I’m in 100% agreement that, if we are going to even speak ill (and by “we”, I mean the government) of another theocracy, regardless of their methods or madness, we need to eliminate the CLEAR, theocratic, mind-loss tendencies of our own country. Regardless, adding nationalism to the religious debate fucks it all up anyway.

  9. 9
    Don Baker

    One of the sad things about the US invading other countries unprovoked, embracing torture, and throwing out habeas corpus is that we no longer have the moral high ground to brow beat other countries into NOT doing those things. When the strongest nation in the world throws out its principles, it hurts a lot more than Americans.Yes, religion screws up this situation, but the US could skirt the religion issue and embrace some UN (or other collective) tenets against child brides.I certainly hope Obama does some serious housecleaning of the old administration. Accountability for previous actions and restoring some of our bedrock principles are necessary changes now.

  10. 10
    Bag of Hamsters

    I’m not quite sure why we’re not allowed to speak out against an immoral action regardless of our own immoral actions. Yes, we need to clean up our own act, but does that mean we can’t condemn something like this until we’re perfect?Also, *we* don’t allow marriage between a 47-year-old and an 8-year-old, so why can’t we speak out about this particular thing? Let’s deal with other issues as we come to them, otherwise everyone will just stand around twiddling their thumbs. You can argue America’s evil character all you want, but it doesn’t make what they do any more right.

  11. 11
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