Via Gary Farber, I see this spot of Islamic nastiness in my own hometown:
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. It was two days after she appeared on “Nightline” talking about her fight to change her mosque that the death threats began. The first call came on her cell phone. The caller left a message, in Urdu: “If you want to stay alive, keep your mouth shut.” Otherwise, he said, he would “slaughter” her, halal style, saying a prayer as he slid a knife across her throat. If she didn’t shut up, he’d slaughter her mother and her father, too. Think before you speak, he said. I know where you live. I know where your parents live.
Then he called her parents’ home 10 minutes later. Just to reinforce the message.
It’s not a message that Asra Nomani, Muslim, unwed mother, former Wall Street Journal reporter, author and left-leaning feminist, is planning to heed (although she did contact the FBI and her local police). Yes, she’s started locking her doors now, a rarity for her here in her hilly home town. But she won’t be shutting up, definitely not, never.
What is she fighting? This:
“She’s like a troublemaker,” says Gamal Fahmy, 31, a British-born, Egyptian-raised assistant professor at West Virginia University and a mosque member who once clashed with Nomani and her father in a study session. “I don’t think she’s that religious, she’s that zealous about Islam and being a Muslim,” he says. “Bottom line, I believe she’s doing this for profit reasons.”
Drama follows the Bombay-born and Morgantown-bred Nomani: Thirty-plus members of her 200-member mosque, the Islamic Center of Morgantown, the mosque her father, Zafar, helped found in 1981, are petitioning to have her banished for “disrupting worship and spreading misinformation about Islam.”
Then there are the threatening e-mails; the articles, published around the world, accusing her of being a spy in cahoots with the CIA and Israeli intelligence; Jihadist message boards demanding that a fatwa be issued against a woman who led the first mixed-gender prayers and those who participated. An editorial writer for the India-based Web site Greater Kashmir writes that because Nomani had a child out of wedlock, “in Islam, punishment for an act for [which] Asra is proud of, is stoning till death.”
Some of Nomani’s detractors at the mosque insist they don’t necessarily have a problem with her gender politics. Their problem is with her.
“Asra is a loner,” says Louay Safi, executive director of the Islamic Society of North America’s Leadership Development Center in Plainfield, Ind., an umbrella organization for Islamic groups. Safi came to Morgantown in December at Nomani’s request to mediate the dispute. Other women in the mosque he interviewed are also unhappy with the way the mosque is run, Safi says, but Nomani is far from finding a common front with them.
“She does not have the experience of engaging the community, negotiating and trying to change things gradually. . . . She came to the community after a long time of being away and then immediately wants to change things overnight. . . . It’s quite a conservative community.”
There is much more to this than what it seems to be- read the whole thing.
Religious fundamentalism is one of the world’s major problems. It breeds fanaticism.
For the most part, America has resisted the ugly influence of religious fundamentalism. But the Christian fundamentalist is chipping away at this. The muslim world has lost the battle with religious fanaticism. Look at the results, ie 9/11, Saudi Arabia, etc. That’s why so many of us fear the influence of the christian fundamentalist here at home.
It’s interesting how both Christian wingnuts and Islamic wingnuts both hate fiesty women and gay people. If only they’d talk about their similarities rather than their differences, they wouldn’t fight with each other so much…
yeah, those krazy Christians keep running around cutting heads off of non-believers and insist on taking over the world by any means necessary.
meanwhile, back in the real world (Brad R., far north….).
C’mon Lee. Not that I agree with Brad or Far North, but you’ve got to know that Christians have been just as bad. Just because Christians did all their head chopping, raping and pillaging during the Crusades and other times through history doesn’t mean we should ignore that they DID, in fact, do many of the same things that extremist Muslims are doing now.
Yes, there’s a difference in that the world is a more civilized place in general than it was back then (or maybe we’re just more technologically advanced), but if you’re going to say that Christian extremists are better than Muslim extremists…well – I gotta disagree. People on all sides of God do terrible things to “nonbelievers”.
insist on taking over the world by any means necessary.
The fact that someone who is from the United States of America, a nation which exists on a continent wide span of land which was wrested from animists by Christians, could write this makes me profoundly sad. Innocence can be beautiful, but ignorance is always hideous.
There is a Christian fundamentalist, Fred Phelps I believe his name is, that is an example of what I’m talking about. This is the guy that parades around the country with signs that say “God hates Fags”. Do a little research, Lee. Check out what Fred Phelps is up to this week.
And Lee, remember the Christian terrorist that killed several people by bombing planned parenthood clinics and then went in hiding in the Appalacian Mtns? Remember that Christian terrorist, Lee? Remember the loyal Christians that helped him hide out because they too were Christians. Christians hiding a murdering terrorist because they to were Christians. Sound familiar, Lee?
Tell me about the real world, Lee. Not your little fantasy world.
And Lee, how ’bout a little substance to your next post. No more of this “back in the real world….” crap.
Defend the Christian terrorist that bombed the planned parenthood buildings. Defend his fellow Christians that harbored him. Tell us why that isn’t Christian Fundamentalism run amok right here in America.
While your at it, defend some of these statements…
And yes, some of them are non-mainstream, but many aren’t, unless Reagan, Bush I, Bush II; hell some of them even I agree with, but taken as an accumulation, it worries me.