Archive for category Culture
When a supposedly moderate Islamic government like Pakistan’s has a law on their books making blasphemy a crime, well, they don’t make it any easier for those of us who are friends of Islam. And when a person is sentenced to death for speaking their mind then it is time for Muslims around the world to speak out against Pakistan and sharia law. There is no way that any reasonable person, of any religious persuasion, can justify persecution.
I don’t care if the women is Christian. That is irrelevant. It certainly is a big deal to a lot Christians, but this would be just as insanely horrible if the accused was Hindu or Wiccan or Muslim. Yet, this incident is providing Christian Islamophic factions (as well as some impassioned atheists) some heavy ammo in their battle against Islam. And frankly, this particular Muslim fundamentalist position is pretty well indefensible.
I used to think of Pakistan as a civilized place. The country has produced some extraordinary people who achieved extraordinary things in science and the arts. Cosmopolitan cities. Ranked in the top 15% of the world’s economies, according to GDP. Heck, they even have the atom bomb.
A theocratic country with a medieval mindset that has the atom bomb. Actually, dozens or maybe hundreds of them. Gives one pause, doesn’t it?
Now, in Pakistan, there are some loud and courageous dissenting voices, in the media and in government as well. One politician has introduced an amendment to the anti-blasphemy laws that would eliminate capital punishment for the offense. Now that’s a good thing but it is not good enough. No country should have any laws on their books having anything to do with blasphemy or any law protecting any religion from spoken or written criticism. No country should ever have an overt alliance with any religion, Muslim, Christian or Jewish (sorry Israel and Texas).
I’d like to ask what a lot of people have asked before: where is the American Muslim outcry against Islamist tyranny? I just spent a lot of time searching for something like this on the web and, well, I can’t find anything of the sort. Why doesn’t CAIR have anything to say about this? I mean, how can they see a major threat to American Muslims with Juan Williams’ relatively harmless off-the-cuff remarks and not see the danger in keeping silent on the tyranny of Pakistani sharia? This is like upbraiding a smoker for polluting the air while sitting behind the wheel of an idling SUV.
I have friends and neighbors who are Muslim. We tend to keep the conversation outside of religion and away from international politics. But tonight I might risk propriety and ask for their take on this. Do they think my question is a valid one? I’ve also met some interesting Muslims on this blog and would like to ask for their thoughts as well.
Working under the belief that no sacrifice is too great for my country, I have taken to watching Glenn Beck as often as I can. Which is not easy, since I am not yet a member of his demographic and, not yet retired, I don’t get home from work until after his 5:00 pm EST show airs. But thank God for DVR.
I seriously doubt that too many of his fans use a DVR to watch his program as I don’t think too m any of his fans would understand how to work it. Just at they are cell phone challenged (helping to keep Cricket afloat by purchasing those big numbered retro-phones). And internet challenged.
Apparently Beck is not very savvy when it comes to the internet, either. On yesterday’s show he had this to say about the upcoming FCC guideline concerning internet neutrality:
The next thing I want you to consider is net neutrality — the FCC over Congress. We told you that Congress was making itself irrelevant. They couldn’t get net neutrality through Congress. Well, the FCC is announcing plans next week for regulations that would ban ISPs like Comcast from blocking or favoring content online. This is basically a Fairness Doctrine for the Internet.
America, you lose the Internet, you lose the war, I think. Cass Sunstein said it was bad for people that they could seek out information that only fits their point of view. They want to make sure that you can get the Huffington Post on Fox News. No, thank you. They’re about to control what you see on the Internet. And Congress doesn’t even have a say anymore. They’re being completely circumvented. Comcast, I believe, will most likely go for it, because they’re takeover of NBC? I’ll bet you that’s being held hostage.
Which couldn’t be farther from the truth. What internet neutrality is actually designed to do is inhibit censorship, by preventing big ISPs like Comcast, Verizon, ATT and AOL, from blackballing certain websites because they are unwilling to make financial agreements designed to benefit the ISPs (which is already happening). This would be like a television news network refusing to cover stories about the recent GM IPO because Chevrolet decided not sponsor their programming. And whether it offends your free-market libertarian sensitivities or not, the Federal government has had a mandate since the early days of radio to ensure that the content on public airwaves is freely accessible to all Americans, no matter what the economics of broadcasting may happen to be. (Somehow Fox News has been able to get around this.)
Now, I would expect that most of Beck’s fans rarely use the internet (like my parents, who won’t be reading my blog for this very same reason) so they really don’t have any good way to check out Beck’s facts, here or anywhere else. But when will his other younger (or more astute) listeners figure out that this lie is just another peg pulled out out from Beck’s Jengo-like bona fides? Eventually the tower will have to fall. But when? He has gotten away with so many lies in the past, what can possibly threaten his credibility among his fan base? It seems that his followers have an amazingly high tolerance for bull-shit.
If you doubt this then just look at who was the highest rated new television celebrity this month. It wasn’t Beck (never has been, actually) but his own little Eliza Doolittle.
…but it could be worse. Enough with the Judeo-Christian stuff. How about some Islamo-Mormon values? There are similarities, out on the extremes.