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Aisha again!!!!

Reader comment on item: How the Cartoon Protests Harm Muslims [by Leading to a Separation of Civilizations]
in response to reader comment: Cartoons and Mohammed's Wedding to A'isha

Submitted by Bader S (Saudi Arabia), Feb 22, 2006 at 08:06

In Solidarity With The USA, wrote that the marriage of the Prophet to Aisha was "something not acceptable by Judaism nor Christianity, even hundreds of years ago"

Did you Mr. Solidarity With the USA decide that Judaism and Christianity would have not accepted such behaviour on your own, or did you have facts to support your statement?

The Jewish law regarding the minimum age for marriage is this:

Our Sages state (Talmud Kiddushin 41a) that "it is forbidden for one to marry off his daughter until she is an adult and says 'this is the one I want to marry.'"
In ancient (and not so ancient) times however, marriage was often-times celebrated at a rather young age. Although we do not follow this dictum, technically speaking, a girl can be betrothed the moment she is born, and married at the age of three (Shulchan Aruch, Even HaEzer 37:1). A boy can betroth and marry at the age of thirteen (Shulchan Aruch, Even HaEzer 43:1).
Rabbi N. Silberberg (http://www.askmoses.com/qa_detail.html?h=573&o=2485)

Richard II "married Isabel of France, daughter of King Phillip the VI, who was only 8 years old at the time" in 1396 (http://www.unc.edu/depts/chaucer/zatta/14thcent.html) see also MEDIEVAL CHILD MARRIAGE: ABUSE OF WARDSHIP? http://www.thedigitalfolklife.org/childmarriage.htm

Now for more recent history
"The common law, from which America gets much of its precedents in the legal field, set the age of consent at age ten." And "During the latter part of the last century and the early part of the present one, attitudes towards sexual activity began to change in America and so did attitudes toward the age of consent. California was one of the first states to raise the age of consent. It raised it from ten to fourteen in 1889 " (http://radicalacademy.com/ageofconsent.htm)

As to the UK around the turn of the 19th Century:
"Civil Rights — The age at which a girl can contract a valid marriage, in English law, is, following the Rothan law, twelve" (http://womenshistory.about.com/library/etext/bl1911_womeng.htm)

Sexual intercourse with minors is considered a criminal offence by the standards and laws of today. But the people of ancient Israel, the Romans, the Christians of the Middle ages, and the Americans and Europeans of more recent history lived according to their times with their own standards and laws.

Could the Americans during the 1800's condemned the marriage of the Prophet to Aisha when the laws that governed their society permitted marriage to 10 year old girls (in Delaware the age of consent was even 7years)? I doubt it.

While it is easy to subjectively judge the past, it takes a better person to judge the past objectively.
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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