Saturday, September 21, 2013


Somebody at the UK Guardian thinks Islam is a race instead of a religion:
Of late, a new variation of the old chestnut "I'm not racist but …" has emerged. It goes: "I've got nothing against Muslims, it's Islam I hate". Otherwise known as the "Islam is not a race" argument.

After I wrote about Richard Dawkins's snide attack on the supposed dearth of Muslim scientific and cultural achievement, some critics hit back along these lines. It is acceptable to criticise and belittle Islam because it is a religion, not an ethnic grouping – and therefore fair game.
It is acceptable to condemn Islam because it's an ideology condoning violence and child slavemongering, as seen in the Koran/Hadith chapters involving Mohammed's marriage to the 9-year-old Ayesha. What a dummy the woman who wrote this is. She even tries to justify her position by saying:
Technically, they are right – Islam is not a race. But too often, those who deploy the argument, are borrowing from the Bill Clinton school of sophistry: "I did not have racist relations with that religion".
Oh, this doesn't make any sense. (And what Clinton said was "I did not have sex with that woman".) "Technically"? No, really, it's not, any more than Christianity and Buddhism are a race, or even Judaism is a race, rather than the founding religion of the Jews. Yes, I'm serious, there is a difference, and there ought to be. Yes, the name "Jews" sounds the same, but there's still a difference there. Funny that she actually views Clinton in a negative light though, his leftism notwithstanding.
Under British law, Jewish people are classified as belonging to a race (something that Dawkins, incidentally, disagrees with) since they are deemed to have a shared culture and history that goes beyond the religious sphere. Do I share history, culture and other reference points with Muslims around the world that go beyond the practice of Islam? Definitely. But it is a loose, secular feeling.
Assuming she's being truthful about what Dawkins thinks about calling us a race, that's one point she's made honestly, because it's true, Jews/Israelis are a race. So Dawkins would be stupid to suggest we're not.

And if she's a default Muslim, the impression is that she doesn't adhere strongly to religious practice. Otherwise, what she should be saying is that she's of Arabic/Pakistani/other descent, which she hasn't done.
Does this make me immune to discrimination that Muslims face? Certainly not, given the long hours I have spent in immigration queues, undergoing extended background checks and visa processing times. So clearly, in that sense, Islam is not a race, but Muslims are. It's entirely legitimate to question and interrogate Islam as a religion. It is not fair to do so against Muslims based on their religious or cultural identity.
Okay, I've seen it all now. I guess she thinks Christianity isn't a race but Christians are too. As for Jews and Judaism, I'll admit, that's where some better distinction is needed, and one day, we'll have to work on it, if it comes in handy (maybe Israelis and Judaism?).

This poor leftist probably won't admit it, but she's just insulted entire societies of Arabs and Pakistanis by saying they have no such nationality, let alone identity. Some way to dehumanize races by putting religion over race, and not being willing to admit that an ideology can promote itself as supremacist.

1 comment:

Steven Carr said...

Dawkins can't win, can he?

If he says a woman's evidence is worth half that of a man, then he is a sexist.

If he says a woman's evidence is worth the same as a man's, then he is a racist.