Thomas Wictor

A serious question for Muslims

A serious question for Muslims

Here’s a serious question for Muslims. Before I ask it, I want to make clear that I don’t equate Islam with terrorism. However, I also don’t accept the notion that Islamic terrorists aren’t real Muslims. They are Muslims. There’s no mechanism for excommunication in Islam. A Muslim becomes an apostate for the following reasons.

1. Doubting, questioning, mocking, reviling, or rejecting the fundamental creeds of Islam, that there is no other God but Allah, and Mohammed is his prophet.

2. Doubting, questioning, mocking, reviling, or rejecting Islamic law (sharia).

3. Doubting, questioning, mocking, reviling, or rejecting the Koran or Hadiths.

4. Doubting, questioning, mocking, reviling, or rejecting Allah.

5. Doubting, questioning, mocking, reviling, or rejecting Mohammed.

6. Converting from Islam to another religion.

7. Taking part in any ritual of another religion.

Muslim terrorists have done nothing to render themselves apostates. Therefore they are Muslims. To commit apostasy in Islam is irtidād (to relapse or regress) or ridda. An apostate is murtadd, “one who turns back” from Islam.

The Grand Imam of al-Azhar is the highest authority of Sunni Islam. He supervises Al-Azhar Mosque in Cairo. On December 11, 2014, Grand Imam Ahmed el-Tayeb refused to declare the Islamic State apostate for one simple reason.

No believer can be declared an apostate, regardless of his sins.

Islamic terrorists are therefore real Muslims. End of discussion. Islam is about belief, not action.

A serious question for Muslims

Why must non-Muslims follow the tenets of Islam?

Those of us who aren’t Muslims are by definition nonbelievers. Why do you care what we say about Islam or about the prophet Mohammed? How do the words of nonbelievers harm you? How does mocking your religion or your prophet damage Islam?

I’ve read a lot of social-media posts that Muslims have written to each other and to non-Muslims. They say that mocking Mohammed humiliates Muslims.

How?

If someone says incredibly insulting things about your religion or your prophet, how does that diminish either of them? Explain it to me. Last night a Muslim on Twitter said that although he’s an American, respect for Islam must come before freedom of speech.

That man is not a good American. Freedom of speech must come before respecting any religion. The First Amendment of the United States Constitution says so in plain English.

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

In the United States, there can be no laws protecting specific religions from mockery or insult. If you want the government to ban speech that disrespects Islam or Mohammed, you’re out of luck. That would be unconstitutional. It’s never going to happen. Americans mock Christianity without letup.

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Now, what about you telling me that I shouldn’t mock Islam or Mohammed? Well, you need to explain to me WHY. How do the words of a nonbeliever hurt you?

I once saw an interview with a Shi’ite cleric in Iraq. He was asked if he wanted alcohol and nightclubs banned.

“No,” he said. “If you remove all temptations, then you can’t call yourself a moral person. Morality has to be a choice. A person must be free to choose to abstain.”

My view is that speech or art that mocks any religion should be allowed. Those of you who are religious ought to have the strength to withstand even the cruelest, most insulting, blasphemous attacks.

Though I’m not religious, I personally don’t approve of speech and art that attack religion. I find attacking religion a gigantic waste of time, childish, and divisive. Criticism of religious institutions is perfectly valid if the organizations are involved in crimes or destructive behavior. But I’ve never been a fan of attacking religious faith.

Still, it should be allowed. I vehemently oppose the hate-speech laws of Canada and Europe. As always happens, the laws are abused by power-mad bureaucrats. The Canadian Human Rights Act of 1977 created the Canadian Human Rights Commission, which hears complaints about discrimination, and the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal (CHRT), which adjudicates the cases. The Tribunal has a 100 percent conviction rate because:

No Standards of Evidence – CHRT judges may receive and accept evidence that they “see fit”, irrespective of whether such evidence is or would be admissible in a court of law.

No Right to Cross-examine – Defendants are not always permitted to confront their accusers.

Asymmetric Cost Burden – The government funds the plaintiff, while even a defendant who prevails cannot be awarded costs.

No Standing Requirements – 3rd parties not involved in the alleged offense may nonetheless file complaints, further encouraging predatory suits from plaintiffs with agendas.

Rules Lack Certainty – The CHRT may, on its own initiative or at a party’s behest, “dispense with compliance with any Rule” in the interest of time or efficiency.

This is a kangaroo court of the kind found in Third World dictatorships. If convicted, there’s no appeal. The Tribunal operates independently of the government. A conviction could lead to a fine and a “cease and desist order,” which was a lifetime ban from speaking publicly on the topic.

Section 13 of the Canadian Human Rights Act prohibited hate speech, defined as the communication of “any matter that is likely to expose a person or persons to hatred or contempt by reason of the fact that that person or those persons are identifiable on the basis of a prohibited ground of discrimination.”

Originally Section 13 was applied only to telephones, but after 9/11 it was broadened to include the Internet. Countless Websites were shut down before Section 13 was repealed on June 26, 2013.

After the repeal of Section 13, Canadian Senator Nancy Ruth said this.

It is not about freedom of expression. It’s about freedom to hate, in my opinion.

That’s pure idiocy. Did Senator Ruth actually think that Section 13 prevented people from hating? Of course it didn’t. The only ways you can prevent someone from hating is by removing the hate circuit of the brain—the medial frontal gyrus, right putamen, premotor cortex and medial insula—or by killing the person.

Humans will always hate. So what?

It’s only when they act on their hate that we should be concerned.

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