Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Enough is enough

To those Muslims who are throwing tantrums about the Mohamed cartoons, grow up! You want the rest of us to respect you. Earn that respect.!

Respect is something that you pay for in kind. You are not footing that bill.

Is your complaint that the cartoons depict Mohamed when most of your co-religionists believe that to do so is forbidden? Are you complaining that depictions of pigs are around in public spaces and at work? If you wish to abide by your religion's prohibitions do so. That is your business. Do not try to impose your religion's prohibitions on the rest of us. Representational art is part of our culture. Pigs are part of our culture. We are not giving them up.

Most of us will never convert to Islam. We have good reasons for not doing so, usually better than your reasons for being a Muslim. Most of you are only Muslims because you were brought up as one. (To be fair the same applies to most members of other religions.) Be honest with yourselves and admit that you would probably follow another religion if you had been brought up in it.

If you wish to impose Sharia law on me and the rest of my country then you are my enemy. If you condone the acts of terrorists then you are my enemy. There are enough of us who will fight your attempts to impose your ways on us to stop you from succeeding. Believe that!

Is your complaint a claim that your prophet was insulted by the cartoons? Violence is not an appropriate response to a verbal or visual insult. Find another way to respond. If you want our respect then either ignore the insult, treat it with disdain or turn it back on the originator. Treating an insult as something not worth responding to and hence treating the insulter as a person of no consequence will gain you respect. Using wit and turning the insult back on the originator will also gain respect. Frothing at the mouth with rage and avenging the insult will not gain respect. You think that you might create fear. Fear is not respect. Don't deceive yourselves into thinking that it is. You will be sneered at behind your backs. We can see the insecurity behind the rage.

Being so easily offended is seen by us as a type of immaturity. You say that an insult hurts terribly. That hurt is in part self imposed. Grow a thicker skin! We believe in robust debate. Feelings get hurt in this. But it is necessary. The means of finding out the truth and correcting error must be protected. If we don't do so then tyranny and error will be the result. We are all fallible and it is more important that we seek the truth than that we be right. Learn to live without the certainty of being right or at least accept that others will not and should not treat you as if you were right. They cannot do so without giving up their own integrity. (This does not apply just to you.)

To those Muslims who just want to live at peace with others in a state of mutual respect, you aren't my targets. You do have a responsibility to oppose evil promoted in the name of your religion if you can do so without running unreasonable risks. This may not always be possible. Still the ratbags are dragging the name of your religion through the mud.

To the people who are oh so sympathetic to the rioter's sense of grievance and so concerned about not hurting the feelings of Muslims, you are wankers and cowards! The rest of us know narcissism when we see it. We know that you are trying to feel oh so virtuous. You need to see Muslims as underdogs that you can support even when they are attacking our culture's basic principles. This society despite its flaws is worth defending. Your sensitivity does not make you better than the rest of us. Your conceit and self-righteousness makes you worse.

You belive that your sensitivity and consideration for others feelings and willingness to see the other's side and to reason with them will lead to them behaving towards you in a decent manner. These things should certainly be tried. It is willfull blindness to think that they will always work. Some people are not reasonable and decent. Violence is not always avoidable and it is irresoponsible conceit to think that you can always deal with others by reasoning with them.

1 comment:

rcs said...

damn Lloyd the more i read of your thoughts the more i respect your reasoning (if not your spelling). you are right "enough is enough".