Islam’s Real Problem

December 4, 2010

Since the attacks on the Pentagon and World Trade Center in 2001, various groups have put in effort showing the terrorist followed an invalid and flawed version of Islam.  It is an easy argument to make.  Islam is a huge religion and all the Islamic terrorists in the world, put together, make up an extremely small portion of its followers.  Defining Islam by terroristic acts is much the same as defining Christianity by the sermons of Appalachian snake handlers.  In the end, the argument misses Islam’s real problem – intolerance.

Recent news coverage highlights cases demonstrating the extent Islamic society institutionalizes intolerance.  In Pakistan, for instance, a non-Muslim (she is a Christian) mother of five faced death for insulting Muhammad.  She stood accused of violating Pakistan’s laws against blasphemy[1].  The penalty for defaming Muhammad is death.  In general terms, the Pakistani blasphemy laws protect all religious figures from irreverence, but it specifically defines the protections of the Muslim prophet Mohammad[2].  In other words, they discourage talking down Jesus Christ or Buddha, they may even put you in jail for a time, but they will cut your head off for defaming Muhammad.  In fairness to Pakistan, in the woman’s case, they planned to hang her rather than cutting her head off.

Ultimately, the woman was found innocent of the charges but she is still in jail (over eighteen months now) awaiting either a presidential pardon or the legal appeals process to run its course[3].  While the government of Pakistan understands the international nightmare they avoided, they seem to lack the will to overcome the national demand for this woman’s punishment and let her return to her family.  For the government, it is a political issue with a razor’s edge.

Pakistan is not a handful of rogue Muslims with a perverse agenda.  It is a country that is home to approximately 11% of the world’s 1.5 billion Muslims[4].  It is a country that established a national religion and demands its citizens promote that religion.  While it does not prohibit other religions outright, it has established Islam as the basis for many of its laws, essentially suppressing religious freedom for millions of non-Muslim Pakistanis.  In the end, it is an Islamic country willing to put a person to death simply for making a derogatory statement.  I cannot speak for anyone else, but for me, that makes the Islamic Republic of Pakistan the definition of intolerance.

The case involving the mother of five is one of many in Pakistan.  While it appears the court and government does follow the basic principles of jurist prudence, the Muslim population is not so incline.  Individuals acquitted or simply accused of blasphemy were later murdered or simply vanished[5], so much for the Pakistani flavor of Islam being peaceful.

Of course, even with over 10% of the worlds Muslims, Pakistan is only one country.  It is wrong to judge Muslims, worldwide, by Pakistan’s actions alone.  While the vast majority of Islamic people are peaceful, we, non-Muslims, know them by the actions of the few that follow a path of horrific violence.  After all, it is the rarest of individuals that makes news by following the way of piety.  The silent majority allows the specter of terrorism to usurp true Islamic good will.

We, non-Muslims, only hear the negative fatãwã making the news.  Things like the Iranian cleric’s fatwa calling for author Salman Rushdie’s death,[6] the two Iranian clerics calling for the death of anyone that burns a Quran[7], or the Indian Muslim scholars’ fatwã calling for the death (specifically the beheading) of Bangladeshi writer Taslima Nasreen and offered a 500,000 Rupee (about $11,000) bounty[8].

While it is true that a majority of fatãwã are positive or deal with localized issues, it is the ones with a call to violence, being an act of reverence to God, which shocks the sensibilities of non-Muslims.  It truly is a case of guilt by association.  If individuals do not renounce a fatwã calling for violence, silence grants it their tacit approval.  Such fatwã issuing people use violence like pigs use mud.  They bathe in it.  Even the smallest of association with them will taint you with that same mud, that same violence.  Silence makes their acts of depravity Islam’s acts of depravity.  Effectively, they insult both Islam and Muhammad beyond anything we mere infidels are capable.  Such insults go way beyond a cartoon depicting a profit.  Where is the outrage and where are the riots in the streets over that?

My days of indifference toward Islam are over.  I have waited long enough for peace-loving Muslims to stand up to the hate mongers perverting their religion.  If Muslims are unwilling to reign in the idiots that pervert their religion, I will at least point them out.

This latest case in Pakistan proves to me that the moral high ground is lost to radical elements, elements that will never take a “live and let live” attitude with the world.  The voice of Islam is its radical elements who wish to restrict freedom of religion and freedom of expression for their own designs.  In an effort to appease these radicals, the government of Pakistan has even gone as far as proposing to the United Nations making blasphemy a crime worldwide,[9] all the while failing to recognize there is no greater form of blasphemy than killing in the name of God.

[1] “Pakistan Penal Code (Act XLV of 1860).” Welcome to Pakistani.org. Web. 04 Dec. 2010.
Chapter XV, § 295  <http://www.pakistani.org/pakistan/legislation/1860/actXLVof1860.html>.

[2] Ibid, Chapter XV, § 295-C

[3] Johnson, By Kay. “Official: Pakistan Christian Innocent of Blasphemy.” Washington Post – Politics, National, World & D.C. Area News and Headlines – Washingtonpost.com. 22 Nov. 2010. Web. 04 Dec. 2010.

[4] “List of Countries by Muslim Population.” Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Web. 04 Dec. 2010. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_Muslim_population&gt;.

[5] “Pakistan | Amnesty International.” Amnesty International | Working to Protect Human Rights. Web. 04 Dec. 2010. <http://www.amnesty.org/en/region/pakistan>.

[6] Mackey, Robert. “Fatwa on Rushdie Turns 20, Still in Force – NYTimes.com.” NYTimes.com. 14 Feb. 2009. Web. 04 Dec. 2010.

[7] Sheikholeslami, Ali. “Iran Ayatollahs Issue Fatwas Against Koran-Burners – BusinessWeek.” BusinessWeek – Business News, Stock Market & Financial Advice. 13 Sept. 2010. Web. 04 Dec. 2010. <http://www.businessweek.com/news/2010-09-13/iran-ayatollahs-issue-fatwas-against-koran-burners.html>.

[8] Women’s Freedom Front. “Islam Watch – “Save Taslima Nasrin From Islamic Death Fatwa in India”” Islam-Watch. 27 Mar. 2007. Web. 04 Dec. 2010.

[9] “Defamation of Religions and the United Nations.” Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Web. 04 Dec. 2010. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blasphemy_and_the_United_Nations>.


  1. one night, a dumb asshole saw a woman was working as whore

    next this dumb asshole will telling people all over the world to believe that all women on earth are dirty whores so that he can treat all women like whores included to his own family

    • I’m really not sure what your point is. I think it correct to evauate the situation in the macro rather than the micro. In other words, not by isolated events but by the overall weight of things.

      If you do not like the fact that Pakistan kills people, say so. If you think people who insult Muhammad should be killed, say that. I mean, if that is your belief, stand by it. I sure stand by mine and do not have a problem sharing them, of course, mine do not include violence toward anyone.

  2. your accusations to ISLAM involved in terrorist attact just like telling people all over the world == kill all people with ties in their necks cos there was a man wore tie in his neck comitted suicide bomb

    my my my

    for ISLAM BELIEVER must obey ALLAH LAWS which forbids any criminal acts as written in AL’QURAN briefly since 14 centuries ago before you were born here on earth.

    and your lies accusations upon ISLAM were unacceptable

    • Perhaps you did not understand my comment about terrorism, my point is exactly that it is wrong to judge all of Islam by the actions of a few. As for my other points, please be specific as to what you feel is a lie, I will address it.

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