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Religious freedom

Reader comment on item: Is Turkey's Government Starting a Muslim Reformation?
in response to reader comment: Indonesian clerics call for the banning of Ahamdiyas

Submitted by Claire (United States), May 25, 2008 at 04:17

s.p.attri, There are always a handful of extremists, but usually their power is not so great. It does seem that Muslim nations are still strongly at the effect of the fundamentalist hard-liners. Banning what people believe will never work. It will only fragment the people more.

Unfortunately, the attack of 9/11 seems to have brought the Christian fundamentalists out of the woodwork. President Bush of the U.S. is one of them. Our separation of powers and separation of church and state has helped keep a particular religious group from seizing control, but Bush and even Clinton before him weakened the separation through programs like faith-based funding and school vouchers. They are too dogmatic to understand that any group also can exploit such programs.

Only rigid maintenance of a secular government that does not involve itself in controlling religion is really going to support religious tolerance. On the other hand, Islam has to resolve its own barbarism, and will have to evolve out of its current tendency to empower fanatical local religious leaders and warlords in its own time.

Europe is going through its own religious tolerance issues, as Muslims immigrate and attempt to implement shariah in opposition to the law that exists where they settle. And European Christians attack newer faiths, such as Scientology, banning them just as the hard-liners seek to do in Indonesia. The Chinese Communists banned Falun Gong. No place is immune to religious intolerance, even secular countries.

Submitting....

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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