In recent comments to two articles I wrote previously on Breaking Spells, the28 wrote that Islam-Watch.org is a site that cannot be used as a reference since the authors at that site (there are many) do not “really know Islam trully is (sic).” My response was, of course, to point out that the authors at Islam-Watch.org are former Muslims who are very well informed about Islam and are in the best position to actually criticize the cults of Islam because of their insights. Indeed, it would be fallacious to argue that the site should be disregarded since the commenter hasn’t demonstrated their lack of knowledge -in fact, it is very easy to see that the authors are very knowledgeable about the topic simply by reading their works, which stand on their own merits.
But the28 also implied that the media (assuming he means news outlets, newspapers, blogs, etc.) are biased to believe that all Muslims are like Iran in their beliefs. I don’t think this is the case. Indeed, I don’t get that feeling from the media either. If anything, Muslim superstitions are down-played in media reports (except, perhaps, ultra-conservative and Christian sources -particularly blogs) and the focus is on alleged extremists and hard-liners. I think the media has intentionally ignored the irrational and dangerous nature of a large number of Muslims living in western nations.
To support this contention, I cite the following report: Living Apart Together: British Muslims and the Paradox of Multiculturalism (Mirza, Senthilkumaran, and Ja’far 2007). The report was written based on survey data compiled by the authors and separated into various age-groups. Their intent was to explore the attitudes and beliefs of Muslims living in Britain. In general, they found that the majority of British-Muslims desire integration and acceptance and do not seek to dominate British culture -just maintain their own.
This is consistent with the criticisms that the28 gave me in another comment on the same day, which was to refute the claim that I asserted that the Muslim religion seeks to dominate the world. Yet I still stand by that claim. And you’ll see why.
While many of the Muslims polled were moderate and answered questions rationally, there were some surprising figures among 16-24 year olds. For instance, the question was posed, “would you prefer to live under Sharia law or British law?” Most British-Muslims chose the latter (59%), but when you segregate the age groups, 16-24 year olds were more in-favor of Sharia law than any other single group at whopping 37%! And this trend is consistent with nearly every question asked, making younger Muslims in Britain more hard-line than older Muslims.
The number of Muslims living in Britain is thought to be at least 1.5 million and possibly as high as 2 million. What that implies, assuming that the survey is a representative sample of British Muslims, is that 500,000 or more Muslims in Britain prefer Sharia law to British.
But what does Sharia Law entail? Among the most commonly identified “laws” in this theocratic form of governance are the wearing of veils for women and the prohibition of apostasy. So how do Muslims in the 16-24 year old age group to these issues in Britain?
A full 53% of all Muslims in all age-groups surveyed believe women should wear the veil. That’s more than half. But this is a cultural issue, right? Fair enough. What about apostasy (leaving your religious faith for another, or no other, religion)?
36% of Muslims between the ages of 16-24 believe that conversion to another faith, abandoning your faith, or the act of converting a Muslim from Islam is wrong and punishable by death! That could be a figure as high as 450,000 Muslims living in Britain -assuming there aren’t actually 2 million rather than 1.5 million. Admittedly, I don’t have the precise number of the total population of Muslims in the 16-24 age group, so I’m relying on the total responses in the survey that were in agreement, which was 31%. The point of the hard-line younger generation isn’t lost in this concession.
Across the board, only about 7% of the Muslims surveyed agreed with the statement, “I admire organizations like Al-Qaeda that are prepared to fight against the west.” But look at the difference among the 16-24 year olds:
Clearly, resentment of western culture and hard-line mentality is on the rise among the younger generation of Muslims in Britain and probably the West in general. This generation is likely having a noticeable influence on their elders, encouraging a revival of Islamic fundamentalism.
Islam is an evangelical religion, whether those that pretend to call themselves “moderate Muslims” care to admit it or not. Otherwise, Islamic cults would not have spread so efficiently from the Near East to the other continents and regions of the world, particularly Africa and Indonesia and, now, Europe and North America. The Muslim populations that are there wish to remain segregated and under their own laws, independent of local governments. They want to allow conversion into their own religion but not out of. They want Muslims to marry only Muslims and, in extreme cases, use terrorism and violence to prevent otherwise.
I’ll agree that not all or even most Muslims in western communities act or believe in such a way. However, there are, apparently, enough Muslims, deluded by their superstitions, who live in Western communities that rational thinkers need be aware and cognizant of the danger that lurks within.
Mirza, Munira; Senthilkumaran, A.; Ja’far, Z. (2007) Living Apart Together: British Muslims and the Paradox of Multiculturalism. London: The Policy Exchange.
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