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Muslim Hypocrisy

Reader comment on item: Are the Palestinians the World's Most Radicalized Population?

Submitted by Olle (United Kingdom), Feb 8, 2006 at 22:07

Living in London with many friends being Muslim, I find it difficult to understand the current Muslim anger with regards to the cartoons. I actually get very upset, not only do I feel that my values of free speech, tolerance and multi-culturalism are under threat, but also that moderate Muslims are being tainted with the same brush - i.e. they are all extremists wishing to IMPOSE their will upon everyone else. If I wanted to live in a place ruled by religious figures, I would move to Iran; not impose my beliefs upon everyone else (the majority ... for now) in the host country that I live in.

What I cannot stomach is that they call the cartoons so objectionable when I see daily on the news Muslims burning national flags, effigies of Western politicians, attacking embassies, publishing far worse cartoons and images of non-Muslims (and in particular of Jews). So I presume that they deem it acceptable to call for the annihilation of the entire Jewish race, the state of Israel, "Death to America" and so on and so forth.

What astounds me is how many Muslims I know in London consider themselves true Muslims and thus do not sell Christmas cards, but it is alright to sell alcohol?! From the little I know of Islam, my understanding is that it is wholly unacceptable to drink and sell alcohol, and for example in Saudia Arabia, you would be flogged in public if you got caught selling alcohol. To me, it seems as if many Muslims want to have the cake and eat it at the same time. If they live in a Western democracy, I believe that they ought to respect our laws and values, like we would have to do if we visit a Muslim country like Iran or Saudi Arabia. If a woman travels to Saudi Arabia or Iran, they have to at least wear head scarves. At least we in the West respect other religions and faiths even if we have free speech that allows caricatures of more or less anything. If a Saudi woman comes to London and wish to wear the Hijab, she can do so without threat of imprisonment.

I can't stand hypocrisy. Sure our democracies in the West are not perfect, but at least we have free speech and can object and voice our disquiet without fear of being tortured. Wonder what would happen to me if I went to Iran and shouted "death to all Muslims". But it seems acceptable to some Muslims to shout "death to all infidels", etc.

I have always lived in a multi-cultural environment, but the reactions and attitudes that I see on the news and hear from my Muslim friends, is alienating me rather than bringing me closer. Rather than wishing to find out more about Islam, I am beginning to resent the faith which scares me. I have never been anti-anything before up till now. Is that what Muslims wish to do? Alienate the moderates away from their religion because that is what they are doing, at least with me.
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