We Need to Talk About Islamís Jihadism Problem
Its time to confront Islamism head onwithout cries of Islamophobia. Holding Islam up to scrutiny, rationally and ethically, must not be confused with anti-Muslim bigotry.
Talking about Islam today is a dangerous business. Disagreements about the role this religion plays in the world have become a wellspring of intolerance and violence. Cartoonists have been massacred in Paris to shouts of We have avenged the Prophet! Secular bloggers have been hacked to death in Bangladesh. (..)
For years, Western politicians and commentators have struggled to understand this phenomenon. And many have struggled not to understand it, denying any link between Muslim extremism and the religion of Islam.(..)
What most discussions of Muslim extremism miss, and what is obfuscated at every turn by commentators like Glenn Greenwald, Reza Aslan, Karen Armstrongand even Nicholas Kristof and Ben Affleckis the power of specific religious ideas such as martyrdom, apostasy, blasphemy, prophecy, and honor. These ideas do not represent the totality of Islam, but neither are they foreign to it. Nor do they exist in precisely the same way in other faiths. (..)
The underlying ideologywe call it Islamismhas metastasized and must be confronted directly. After more than a decade of conventional, physical wars, we must finally wage an effective war of ideas. Islamism, often referred to as political Islam, is the desire to impose a version of Islam on the rest of society. (..) After more than a decade of conventional, physical wars, we must finally wage an effective war of ideas.
Political Islam is an offshoot of religious Islam and draws much of its inspiration from the Quran and the hadith (the sayings of the Prophet Muhammad). To be sure, it does not represent the faith in all its forms, but unless challenged, the underlying problems of religious literalism, dogmatism, and pious intolerance are left untreated and continue to spread. A poll in 2014, published in the Saudi-owned newspaper al-Hayat, found that 92 percent of Saudis believe that ISIS conforms to the values of Islam and Islamic law. Clearly, ISIS has something to do with Islam. (..)
Of course, the Bible contains barbaric passages, as well. But there are historical and theological reasons why Christians and Jews can now easily ignore them. Unfortunately, out of excessive concern not to appear biased, many liberals consider any discussion of the special problem posed by Islamism to be a sign of bigotry. This attitude helps bar the door to reform.
To call ISIS un-Islamic, as President Obama has repeatedly done, and as Prime Minister Cameron recently stopped doing, is to play a dangerous game with words. Calling out and combating the ideology of Islamism is the only way that non-Muslims can help those liberal Muslims who wish to reform their faith from within. And failing to do so means abandoning the most vulnerable in Muslim communitieswomen, gays, apostates, freethinkers, (..)
We need to discuss the horrors of all deity based religions. Most importantly, we need to demand proof of God before anyone is required to kneel or show respect for religion.
Just say it: Sam Harris is a racist warmonger
Posted by Kevin on August 23, 2012
or something not easily or meaningfully distinguishable from a racist. As are several other major figures in the atheist movement. And the movement largely refuses to grapple with it.
Recently, Ian Murphy published a controversial article titled The 5 Most Awful Atheists, arguing:
The people he singles out Sam Harris, Bill Maher, Penn Jillette, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, and S.E. Cupp make the list primarily as a result of their economic libertarianism, neoconservative foreign policy views, and/or Islamophobia.* The atheist movement of course encompasses people with a wide variety of views and backgrounds and no one could or should dictate which viewpoints should disqualify one from membership in the Atheist Club, but I share Murphys concern that racist warmongers like Harris have come to represent atheism in the public eye (which is something Ive written about previously). Its incredibly disconcerting that, as Jeff Sparrow noted at Counterpunch, leading representatives of the movement express ideas that otherwise wed associate with the hard Right and are celebrated for doing so.
And in my experience, atheists havent done a good job of confronting that fact. Its not clear how many atheists share such views (in fact, theres plenty of evidence to suggest such views are far from universal), but it is clear that many atheists are loath to criticize people like Harris or Hirsi Ali (or even the late Christopher Hitchens, whose much more blatant and disgusting war cheerleading atheists and his other supporters were happy to excuse).
This thread is about an article written by Sam Harris and Maajid Nawaz:
09.15.151:00 AM ET
We Need to Talk About Islams Jihadism Problem
If you made a mistake, that's Ok, I sometimes hit the wrong reply button myself.
I don't see any relationship to what you posted and my remark. I am not Sam Harris.
He's a Muslim too, though he has many disagreements with extremist Muslims.
Next time someone says something I disagree with, I'll call them a racist.
Should work (in a Leslie Hazeltonesque kind of logic)
Call 'em a racist, that means you can dismiss everything they say. The charge doesn't have to make any sense at all - BONUS!
and an employee of the neoconservative pro-war think tank: American Enterprise Institute.
So it's no surprise that she is a fan of Henry Kissinger, the same Henry Kissinger who has been involved with more death and destruction than any other living person in the world:
and someone that also has a history of lying. She may have had some bad experiences. It's hard to know where the truth begins with her.
The war-mongers love her because they were able to find one person, out of the over 1.5 billion, that tells them what they want to hear: Muslims are an inferior people and war is the answer.
The stupid runs strong in the comment section.
..."Mexican is not a race", from racist xenophobes, while they bash immigrants from, say, Guatemala.
But I'm sure that you think you are being clever, as do they.
...in the language of your fundamentalist religion in conversations with nonbelievers may seem inoffensive to you, but to those of us atheists who don't believe on your Gods of Metal and who don't support your Gun Rites being shoved in our faces again and again, it comes off merely as an exercise in religious privilege.
Nor does your continued offensive use of the fundamentalist language of Gun Rites against unbelievers add much credibility to your false statements.
...this line does at least contain the beginnings of a productive idea...
That's an idea worth exploring, cleanhippie.
Ii is reminiscent of this idea, another good one:
"When you hold one of these weapons, you know it has been an instrument of death. The challenge it to rid it of it's negative energy."
Your love of the grey metal gives fundamentalists a bad name.
Learn anything on your latest involuntary vacation?
I think the racists are the people who assume all Muslims are darker-skinned.
Oh, and neither is Christianity. Or Catholic. Or ignorance.
Who are killing teens due to their beliefs, killing Christians. After that then we can discuss the other religions that are just annoying.
This OP was just prompted by the new book by Harris and Nawaz.
Published on Jul 31, 2015
A listener IMs into the show to discuss Sam Harris' appearance on Dan Carlin's podcast...
Filling in for Sam Seder: Majority Report contributors Matt Binder and Michael Brooks
"if you want to know about Islam, ask a Muslim"
By the same token:
"if you want to know about Nazism, ask a Nazi"
"if you want to know about Maoism, ask a Mao"
"if you want to know about Christianity, ask a Crusader"
Islam, as it is understood today thanks to billions of petrodollars invested in a literalist reading, is currently imperialistic. Most muslims today will give a far more narrow minded than -say- the mutazilas would have in the 8th to 10th century.
But I doubt the presenter of this video even knows who the mutazilas were.
After the shitshow with Chomsky where he defended Bush's intentions in Iraq, I decided to ignore him entirely. His arguments were crap and Chomsky really tore him a new one without even trying. Good thing, too--Chomsky's time is far too valuable to the rest of the world to spend it refuting utter BS.
Just goes to show that being an atheist means only one thing: you don't believe in gods. Period.
You can still be a warmongering, war-crime excusing, Islamophobic sack of crap while being an atheist.
I do not see an Israel-worshipping neocon writing what Harris wrote:
9/11 kinda broke them.
Smart people, stupid ideas, particularly when it comes to Islam, its like they lost their reason.
The biggest problem is this, and this is true of everyone who is so concerned about everything from Islamic terrorism to the so called Islamic invasion of Europe. Islam is not an existential threat to modern nation states. There is not going to be a huge, USSR threat coming from ISIS or any other radical and terroristic group. Nor do Muslims, in general, pose a threat to anyone.
However, this isn't to say Islam is harmless, it is obviously not, but the ones most victimized by radical Muslims are other Muslims, sometimes even ones who share the same radical beliefs, but are of a different gender. In the areas of the world where radical, fundamentalist and strict Sharia Law Muslims propagate, they are a localized threat.
Islam is a religion full of harmful, outdated and primitive ideas about a lot of issues, a problem it shares with Christianity and Judaism, unfortunately, radicalism simply occurs more often in Islamic majority societies than it does in the other two. Though there should be increasing concern over Jewish settler and Ultra-Orthodox terrorism and discrimination along with radical Christian violence discrimination as well. Particularly in Israel and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Obviously, due to the great moderating effect of secularism in most nations that are majority Christian, the radicals of such countries are very isolated, almost powerless, and generally not active. It seems the problem is the lack of secularism, pluralism, and institutions to strengthen these that is causing problems the world over with religious violence and oppression.
I'm probably going to part ways with more than a few of my peers here, but I really, really, cannot stand the man.
It's bad enough that he says some of the most downright awful things, but that he, a proponent of rationalism, seemingly lacks the capacity for critical self-reflection is doubly infuriating. It's like it never occurs to him that he could be, ya know... wrong.
And, as an aside, 9/11 doesn't explain his obtuse statements on women in atheism.