Mark Humphrys (politics)


Islam in the West - Islamophobia

  Criticism of the concept of "Islamophobia"

The absurd idea that we should "respect" religions

"Muslims are the new Jews"

"Fear of Islam is like fear of Catholics"

Dinesh D'Souza

Dennis Prager


How to end Islamophobia

Failed attempts to combat Islamophobia

The anti-counterjihad

The killing of Shaima Alawadi


Many people in the west (see Sharia law in the West) are trying to make it illegal to criticise Islam or Islamism.

Briefly, criticising people's genes is wrong. You can't change your genes. You can't help being born white, black, Arab, or whatever.

But criticising people's memes is ok - indeed it is what free speech is all about. You can change your memes. Being born an Arab Muslim doesn't mean you can't adopt western values, be tolerant of gays, Jews and atheists, even abandon Islam altogether.

Criticism of people's religion can be difficult. How does one tell the difference between logical criticism and simple hatred and bigotry? For example, how does one tell the difference between criticism of the supernatural meme of Judaism and simple anti-semitism? The trick, I think, is that criticism should be optimistic and positive. It should be done with respect for the well-being of the people involved, and hope that they change to better memes. Instead of saying: "Followers of meme X are evil and we should fear them" it is far better to say that: "Followers of meme X should abandon it and adopt better memes". It should always be done with an open respect for freedom of religion - namely, the right of the person to ignore your criticism and carry on believing in their memes freely.

Meme X itself cannot demand respect. It should always be legal to say: "Meme X is evil". But then to follow it with: "Believers in meme X should abandon it and adopt better memes" to make it clear you are in the world of logic and debate rather than in the world of extermination.

The optimistic, positive message to Arabs and Muslims is that they should abandon the culture of their ancestors, and adopt something better. I have abandoned the culture of my ancestors, and adopted something better. So have millions of other people, such as the Indian Ibn Warraq and the Iranians Ali Sina and Amir Taheri.

People imagine that their religions have been around forever, when in fact they were only invented at a certain point in history, and before that, not one person on earth believed in them. So all Muslims have already abandoned the culture of their ancestors. They imagine that Islam is the "natural" religion of the Middle East, when in fact it is a 7th century betrayal of the beliefs of the ancestors of the Middle East population. All Muslims have several billion pre-Muslim and non-Muslim ancestors who would be baffled and horrified by their descendants' beliefs. We have all betrayed our ancestors. It is simply a matter of choosing which ancestors to betray.

A Canadian trade union leftist, Dave Coles, calls criticism of Saudi Arabia "racist", Sept 2011.
He is criticising the "Ethical Oil" ad of Aug 2011.
He then has to face the ad author Alykhan Velshi - who is an Indian-Canadian Muslim!
A middle-aged white guy tells an Indian Muslim that criticising oppression in the Islamic world is racist!
That's the left's world of "Islamophobia" for you!
Clip of Ezra Levant show.


Great question. From here.

Hate speech against non-Muslims in the Quran.
So you want criticism of Islam to be illegal speech, but the above to be legal speech?
From here.

Criticism of the concept of "Islamophobia"

I think leftists actually believe this.

The absurd idea that we should "respect" other religions and cultures

There is an extraordinary modern idea that we should "respect" other people's beliefs. Often it is suggested that we should "respect" Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism or other religions, simply because they are old, or have lots of followers.

This shows a basic lack of understanding of what a free society is. A free society is one in which you have the right to believe nonsense, and I have the right to call it nonsense. You don't have to "respect" my stupid beliefs. And I don't have to "respect" yours. But we both must agree to leave the other alone to believe what they want in peace. So many so-called "liberals" fail to understand this basic building block of a western liberal society.

The dictionary definition of Islamophobia includes dislike of an idea (Islam) rather than just dislike of people.
But then shouldn't every idea have its own "phobia"? There should be a "communism-ophobia" and a "capitalism-ophobia" and a "Christianity-ophobia".


"Muslims are the new Jews"

Some anti-counterjihad people like the above say that hostility to Islam and Islamism is like the old anti-semitism, that "Muslims are the new Jews" who now need to fear persecution and extermination.

There are however some differences with pre-1939 anti-semitism:

  1. Jews in the early 20th century were not carrying out terrorist attacks on the western democracies.
    If they were, then hostility to Judaism would have been quite justified.

  2. Jews in the early 20th century were not threatening to end human rights in the western democracies and impose an oppressive Jewish religious law.
    If they were, then hostility to Judaism would have been quite justified.

  3. Jews in the early 20th century were not running countries where religious minorities were persecuted and oppressed under Jewish religious law.
    If they were, then hostility to Judaism would have been quite justified.

  4. Jews in the early 20th century were not engaged in constant warfare and terror attacks throughout the world.
    If they were, then hostility to Judaism would have been quite justified.

  5. Jews in the early 20th century were not threatening to conquer the world under their religion.
    If they were, then hostility to Judaism would have been quite justified.

So not much of an analogy there, then.

Hostility to Judaism looks creepy not because Judaism makes sense (it makes no sense at all) but because it is so harmless. If Judaism was violent and oppressed people, I would certainly be a lot more hostile to it.

"Fear of Islam is like fear of Catholics"

Anarchists bomb Wall Street in 1920.

Dinesh D'Souza

The Christian conservative Dinesh D'Souza says we shouldn't criticise Islam.

Dinesh D'Souza promotes Ali Gomaa

The Mufti of Egypt, Ali Gomaa, who Dinesh D'Souza praises as the kind of traditional Muslim western conservatives should be allying with, supports wife-beating.
"Women in some cultures are not averse to beatings. They consider it as an expression of masculinity, and as a kind of control, which she herself desires."
And search.

Dennis Prager

The Dennis Prager controversy of 2006 shows some clear water between me and some other people on the right. For me, the right to practice your religion (including Christianity and Islam) is fundamental to a free society. You cannot demand that I "respect" your mad supernatural beliefs, but you have the right to practice them unmolested, and especially without having other people's mad beliefs forced on you.

The "Islam is Peace" campaign

The "Islam is Peace" ad campaign.

A Photoshop commentary on the "Islam is Peace" campaign, using the No.30 bus.

The "Inspired by Muhammad" campaign

An even more ludicrous ad campaign for Islam:
"Inspired by Muhammad", claiming that Muhammad believed in women's rights (or any human rights).
As Edmund Standing says: "It's hard to tell if this campaign is run by sadly deluded people who actually believe the slogans are accurate or if this is an example of dissimulation for a kufr audience."
He also unearths the dodgy associations of the woman above.
In response to the (rather pathetic) argument that maybe Muhammad was "advanced for his time", Standing points out that pagan Roman philosophers like, say, the 1st century AD Gaius Musonius Rufus had ideas on women that were far more advanced than Muhammad, despite living centuries earlier.

Lots more images in a Photoshop competition response to the above.

The "MyJihad" campaign

The "MyJihad" campaign aims to change the word "jihad" from its normal meaning of holy war and terrorist slaughter of innocents.
Real bus ad from here.

Photoshop parody from here.

A real poster by Pamela Geller in response to the absurd "My Jihad" campaign.
Poster is in DC Metro.

How to end Islamophobia

Robert Spencer's 5 point plan to end Islamophobia

See here and here and here.

If Muslims want to reduce fear and dislike of Islam in the West, they should, Spencer says:

  1. Focus their indignation on Muslims committing violent acts in the name of Islam, not on non-Muslims reporting on those acts.
  2. Renounce definitively not just "terrorism," but any intention to replace the U.S. Constitution (or the constitutions of any non-Muslim state) with Sharia even by peaceful means. In line with this, clarify what is meant by their condemnations of the killing of innocent people by stating unequivocally that American and Israeli civilians are innocent people.
  3. Teach Muslims the imperative of coexisting peacefully as equals with non-Muslims on an indefinite basis.
  4. Begin comprehensive international programs in mosques all over the world to teach against the ideas of violent jihad and Islamic supremacism.
  5. Actively work with Western law enforcement officials to identify and apprehend jihadists within Western Muslim communities.
If Muslims do those five things, voila! "Misperceptions" of Islam will no longer hold sway among Americans. And "outright bigotry"? Forget it! It will be about as common as outright anti-Buddhist bigotry!

"Rusty Shackleford" on what liberal Muslims must do

"Rusty Shackleford", 13 Aug 2010, has an eloquent description of what liberal Muslims must do for us to admire them.

People scratch their heads about the cause of "Islamophobia".
Are westerners just hostile to "difference"?
I suggest the main cause of "Islamophobia" is the never-ending series of Islamic terror attacks.
If somehow Islam could stop these, Islam would be ignored like Hinduism and Buddhism are.

Rev. Alberto Cutie (dhimmi cleric): "how are we going to end this stigma of Muslim equals terrorist?"
Robert Spencer replies: "Hmm. That's a tough one, Cutie. Maybe it would help if Muslims stopped committing acts of terrorism and justifying them by reference to the texts and teachings of Islam?"

"It is interesting to ponder why Chinese or Indians or Muslims or Arabs can enter Freiburg University or the Sorbonne or Oxford or Harvard or Chicago University or Toronto University and specialize and earn a universally respected academic degree in their own Chinese or Indian or Muslim or Arab culture, but no German or Frenchman or Englishman or American or Canadian can enter any Chinese or Indian or Muslim or Persian or Arab university and specialize and earn a universally respected academic degree in his own German or French or British or American or Canadian culture. The reason is that these non-Western universities (and therefore their own native cultures which they themselves reflect) have not yet sufficiently caught the insatiable original Greek curiosity about all being; they are interested in others only to a degree; for the most part only utilitarian, only to use them, only to learn from them. They are not interested in knowing their essence, their being; they are for the most part wrapped up in themselves; the others are perhaps too strange, too forbidding for them; their original, natural, wholesome curiosity is somehow inhibited."
- Lebanese Christian Charles Malik understands the West a lot better than Muslims who scream about "Islamophobia".
Westerners are absurdly stereotyped as racists by leftists and Islamists. But in fact Westerners tend to be endlessly curious about the rest of the world. If Muslims get outraged when Islam or Islamic countries are criticised by westerners, that is not because westerners are racists. It is because Islam does not have a tradition of self-criticism like the West does.

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