Found 1 comment on HN
616c · 2014-09-08 · Original thread
> Don't try to paint criticism of Islam as irrational, because that is what you seem to be attempting here. Claiming that criticism of Islam happens because it is "unfamiliar" or "foreign" avoids proper discussion. You have minced your words, sure, but you are still calling people ignorant. And calling people ignorant without backing up that claim is incredibly rude. It is the exact same argument that underlies people screaming "Islamophobia" at legitimate criticism.

No, I did not say there is no such thing as "rational criticism of Islam." I quote your words because it depends on what you mean. Are there reasonable criticisms of Islam, not based in fear-mongering or stupid biases that largely based on political agendas? Of course there are. But again, to be fair, I do not think there is some rational method, in a scientific sense, that proves one element of any religion right or wrong. In my view (meaning this is me, trying to be objective), religion is not rational. There is no proof of God. There never will be one. You either believe in it or not, and looking for pseudo-science to get there is a fool's errand.

As for your secondary comment, I am not claiming he (the OP) is ignorant. I pointed out I, and all others, are guilty of frame of reference problems. The entire point of my response was what incited me to reply: the premise of the OP saying Islam does not encourage any science that does not support the notions of Allah and the tenets of the faith. My immediate response was: can you give proof of that? I showed examples how in American culture, outside of what many conceive to be Muslim (there are plenty of Muslim Americans, even if not a majority) science is co-opted and subjugated for an agenda. I would love to see a part of the world that does not have this problem. Later on, you mention Asia and Europe. Do you honestly believe, regardless of scale, that human endeavor does not see a repeat of this problem for a reason? I would have loved to meet the fathers of the European Enlightenment, because I am sure they would have a lot to say about this. If you disagree, that is fine. But if he were alive, Galileo would have loved to talk to you about how the Church ruined his life. Or how Turing eventually committed suicide because his contributions to society were not enough? Should we say Europe only tolerated science when it followed God, or positivist secularism? I think you would laugh at me.

Islam has problems. So do other religions. But if Islam has special religion status and special problems that proclude it from issues other religions avoided, I would love to hear them. I am not asking sarcastically. Try to explain them rationally. You will see how bleak that looks. I belive we have a name for that discipline though, it is anthropology. Humans are fun.

> First up, let me identify a number of problems in your argument. It is a false equivalence. You are taking United States society as an example of western culture - but you'd have to be looking much harder to find problems of similar magnitude in certain European countries or even some east Asian countries.

That is my point. I was giving counter-examples. And I doubt I would have to look very hard to find people biasing science in the name of religious politics in Europe, Asia, or Africa. This is not a localized phenomenon, and I have read one book (ironically in its Arabic translation), that goes into the phenomenon of why increased religiosity at the expense of other socio-cultural dynamics and why people embrace it. [1] I am not the only one who notices this stuff.

> Secondly, you assume that people do not criticize the idiots in their own society. This is so incredibly false that it almost feels insulting.

Take however you want. But if you said that idiot is an idiot because he is a moronic Christian, a rabid Jew, or terrorist Muslim, can you not see why slighting the individual for the group or vice versa was the source of my comment?

> Lastly, you somehow equate the idiocy that happens within "Western" society to the idiocy that happens in "Islamic" society. The problem is that only very few idiots in Western society think that we should upturn society and live under early medieval law because their religion says so. This is much less of a minority opinion in the "Islamic world" and even among Muslims in the Western world.

Case in point: there is no Islamic society. I encounter this viewpoint often. There is no Wetsern society. They are all societies that people decide to group together, or self-identify as. As someone on both sides of th line, I get it from all sides, politely or rudely, on a daily basis. And yes, in American society (if we want to falsely scope out that large for the sake of argument) there are definitely people who argue for such things, and they are on the fringe. Now, if you want to pretend the whole of Muslim society (and that is a lot of people, even the parts of it in the US) want to "live under early medieval law because their religion says so", I would love for you to show me where it says so. Lest you look ignorant, by your own definition, because I have yet to see a Quran citation from you. You can search many translations and present them to me. Everything outside of the Quran is irrelevant, and many Hadith are controversial. If you cannot provide me a quote beyond "because US news says so", you are proving my point. I am sure you are educated, but your bias shows. Shows me some facts or accept you have a bias, just like me and everyone else.

> If a Westerner identifies problems within the "Islamic world" argue with him or her based on facts, and please do not be rude and attribute it to ignorance. If such criticism is truly ignorant, presenting facts should make enough of a difference. Imagine identifying problems in African societies and being called a racist for it.

Trust me, the "Islamic World" has problems, but again, no one has shown me any problem to be unique to said world. Societies and cultures just stack and reorganize the same garbage elements of humanity.

You are not a racist, just misguided. I am misguided in a lot of stuff to, but dictating to me how the Islamic world is, as someone who lives in what you might traditionally consider this Islamic world, is the kind of insulting pejorative bullshit. It is why very needed help from "the West" goes unheeded. It is not the offer of help, guy. It is the tone of people like yourself who "know better" and are "not rude and ignorant, just know better than you and demand facts ironically I cannot provide."

I will not respond after this, because we are going down into a flame/troll scenario. But I hope you can accept both of us are right and wrong at the same time. I am confident you will not, but oh well.

[1] It is called Holy Ignorance. Sorry I had to go around looking for it on a bookshelf, couldn't find it, and my translation of the book's title into English was not good enough to find it on Amazon.

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