As an American living in a glass country, I should hesitate before casting stones

In a recent post, I questioned where the American Muslim outcry was over Pakistan’s  pending execution of Asia Bibi for the crime of blasphemy.  I still think my question is valid, but in asking it I was critical, and perhaps even insulting, to Pakistanis and Muslims.  ” Anon”, a frequent contributor, brought this to my attention, and in doing so, he recited a litany of USAmerican abuses that, at the time, I felt were irrelevant:

“where is the American Muslim outcry “—-I can ask the same—where is the moderate American’s outcry when hundreds of innocent men, women, and children are routinely killed in Pakistan by U.S. drone attacks?—remote controlled planes that indiscriminately kill and decimate villages……attacks which U.S. President Obama wants to escalate into more densely populated towns…….. Yet, they/you are concerned with the life of ONE Christian woman?

(You can read the entire discussion (to date), including some important input from Hasan, who was in agreement with me, yet more qualified to express it than I was :   It ain’t always easy being a friend of Islam .)

Now I am starting to see things more from “anon’s” perspective.

Just the idea of executing someone for speaking their mind  is wrong and indefensible. Yet here in the USA, not that long ago, we have examples of people being imprisoned and even put to death, quite legally, by a jury of their ‘peers’, for similar offenses.  Sometimes they were railroaded,  prosecuted for no other reason than they were of the wrong skin color or  they dared to upset the status quo.

I questioned the sanity of Pakistan having numerous nuclear warheads, yet we have tens of thousands of them.  And, to date, we are the only country  ever to have  used them on innocent people. Twice.

SoI apologize for stepping out-of-bounds. I realize that it was not only insensitive, it was hypocritical and ultimately, counter productive. Though I still think my question is valid,  I doubt if I am qualified to ask it.  Perhaps it is best to let Muslims like Hasan do the asking, (and he is).  Let he who is without sin cast the fist stone,

I believe  “anon” said it best:

well–then, why don’t we all change for the better?–instead of saying—you Muslims should change. Why not make these universal HUMAN problems rather than Muslim or Christian problems? Because pointing fingers doesn’t do much—but extending a helping hand does make things easier.

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  1. #1 by Jack on December 2, 2010 - 2:00 pm

    Don’t back off. If people keep squawking other nations will catch up with the freedoms they allow their citizens. We just need to hold ourselves accountable as well.

    • #2 by Christian Beyer on December 2, 2010 - 2:07 pm

      /but we don’t. And until we do, why should anyone listen to us?

  2. #3 by anon on December 2, 2010 - 10:56 pm

    It wasn’t the question itself—only the manner it was asked—-In fact, I think it is vitally important that we as a global community of humanity, hold ourselves to high standards. This can’t be done unless we expect better from ourselves as human beings. None of us is immune from mistakes—maybe, the trick is to pick up your brother when he falls…..?

    • #4 by Christian Beyer on December 3, 2010 - 9:24 am

      Yes. Exactly. I hope we can continue with our conversations. I hope we can both learn from them. And I hope we can entice others to join in. Not here, on this blog, but in in the bigger conversation that needs to grow if we have any hope at all for peace.

  3. #5 by logiopsychopath on December 3, 2010 - 12:21 am

    Ya’ know, Chris, I read this book called “The Post-American World” by Fareed Zacharias–while I don’t really like him (uber-liberal elitist, really), I think he is Spot On by predicting the coming shift in world power.

    In other words, a new paradigm shift of power and wealth is coming, without question. The
    U. S. will no longer reign unchallenged, so to speak. The only question for me is whether the shift is analogous to leaping a small stream, or analogous to trying to leap over the Grand Canyon (and pardon my redundant use of analogous).

    (Show Jack this one)–Jesus had just rebuked the Pharisees, and told them, “He is who without sin among you, let him cast the first stone–suddenly, a rock flew in from the back of the crowd, and Jesus said, “Come on mom, knock it off . . .”

  4. #6 by logiopsychopath on December 3, 2010 - 12:24 am

    BTW, if you doubt the historical accuracy of John 7:53-8:12 (or whatever the last verse) , how can you use the non-extant stone analogy?

    • #7 by Christian Beyer on December 3, 2010 - 9:28 am

      Well, I never said I doubted the historical accuracy (though that was good guess, Bruce). We know that it was not originally in “John’s ” gospel, but inserted later, probably by it’s promoters who hoped this would help with its canonical selection. Do I believe that this incident took place? Why not? There is nothing ‘miraculous’ about it, and I think it sums up the life Jesus was prescribing for us.

      Even so, we can use all kinds of useful analogies based upon myth and fable. I don’t for a moment that ants and grasshoppers hold conversations.

  5. #8 by thoughtbasket on December 3, 2010 - 4:15 pm

    I’m not sure I agree with the blasphemy-drone strike parallel, but the broader point is totally true: we all have to be extraordinarily sensitive when discussing what other cultures “should” or “shouldn’t” do. Even if you believe in certain universal normative values, it can be pretty unclear how those values play out in a totally different culture.

  6. #9 by logiopsychopath on December 3, 2010 - 6:39 pm

    How can you possibly know what goes on between ants and grasshoppers, Grasshopper?

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