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Of Muslims and Nazis, etc.

Reader comment on item: Ban the Burqa, Allow the Burkini
in response to reader comment: So let's ban black Nazi uniforms but not the grey ones!

Submitted by Michael S (United States), Aug 24, 2016 at 11:12

Uncle Vladdi,

What you seem to be saying, is that the burkini should be banned because it is a Muslim practice, period. You also compared Islam to Naziism. I understand both points. Taken together, they say,

"Islam is a threat to [Western countries? The Jews?] that is akin to Naziism; and the way to protect [the West? Jews?] from it, is to ban obvious Islamic practices."

This is a rasonable doctrine, and a reasonable practice: It is what the Saudis and certain other Islamic countries practice toward Christians and Jews; it is what the American Christians practiced against the Mormons; it is what Israel practices against proselytizing Christians; what China practices against non-state-controlled churches, what the Jewish leaders practiced against Jesus and... ironically, what the Nazis practiced against the Jews.

The important distinction in all of the above, should be whether concern over these groups is justified.

The Saudis and others: Are they justified, in fearing that Christians and Jews might get a toehold in their country? Or that allowing them in would cause a violent reaction from their Wahabbi mullahs? Perhaps they are.

The American Christians: Were they justified, in attacking the Mormons at Nauvoo and Beaver Island, and killing their leaders? The mobs thought so; and the government officials stood by and let it happen. Those officials were certainly justified in fearing that the Mormon presence would lead to anarchy and violence; because that's exactly what happened.

What is happening in Israel, with Yad l'Achim thugs following Messianic Christians around and trying to keep them from practicing their religion (which commands that one proselytize): Are the Israelis justified, in thinking the Christian presence will corrupt the Jewish nature of the Jews? I don't know. Ask a bikini-clad Jewess in Tel Aviv about "corruption". That said, perhaps they are justified.

The Chinese government: Are they justified, in arresting Christian leaders, and removing crosses from churches? Recall that some 170 years ago, some 50 million people died in a syncretist Confucian-Christian uprising. Perhaps they are justified.

The Jewish leaders. Were they justified in turning Jesus over to the Romans, to have him killed? Ostensibly, they did this because they were afraid his followers would foment an uprising against Caesar. Were they justified and genuine? Those same leaders ultimately did foment an uprising against Caesar, so I doubt that they were genuine; but many Jews today think they were justified.

Finally, the Nazis: Were they justified in standing by, while thugs destroyed synagogues and attacked Jews? That situation was the same as the attacks on the Mormons, over 100 years earlier. Were they justified in trying to eradicate the Jews, so repeat disturbances wouldn't happen? Perhaps they were. Who am I, to judge?

You must see, there are some questions involved here; it isn't a black-white situation (or black-grey, as in the Nazi uniform example you gave). I won't presume to know the answer. Daniel has his opinion, and you have yours; and I think the two are different.

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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