Tuesday, October 16, 2012
The Ugly Face Of Religious Hate
The murderous hate of the Taliban seems to be backfiring on them. Instead of advancing their beliefs, this crime seems to be galvanizing opposition to them -- all over the world, and even in the areas where their support has been strong like Pakistan. I would like to think that they have done nothing but sow the seeds of their own destruction.
There are some in this country that would like to paint all of the muslim religion with this horrible crime. That is simply ridiculous. This was a crime from a small group of fundamentalist extremists, and is not indicative of the religion as a whole. Most muslims across the globe abhor this kind of crime, and have no problem with women getting an education and trying to better themselves.
And before christians get too caught up in blaming muslims for wanting to hurt children, they might want to examine a few fundamentalist extremists in their own religion. Take for instance Charlie Fuqua, a Republican christian candidate for the Arkansas state legislature. He would like to institute the death penalty for children who disobey their parents, and even quotes the Bible to back up his argument.
Is this really any different from what the Taliban did in Pakistan? Isn't the murder of children wrong no matter who does it (or even whether it is done "biblically" as Fuqua wants)? And isn't it just as wrong to direct that hate toward other groups -- like adult women, gays/lesbians, people of other (or no) religion, or people with a different skin color or ethnic background?
Even though I am an atheist, I don't for a minute believe that most christians or muslims accept this kind of religious thinking. But there is an extremist fringe in both religions that see nothing wrong with trying to force their religious views on others, even if they have to kill children (and other innocent people) to do that. And regardless of which religion it springs from, this kind of religious bigotry and hatred is ugly, stupid, criminal, and totally unacceptable in any society.
Isn't it time for decent people of all religions (and no religion) to make that perfectly clear to the religious bigots and haters?