Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Chad Defends Moderate Islam

I just watched Chad's video in defense of "Moderate Muslims" and of Islam, in which he summarized all the recent videos people have been making against Islam as "retarded", "childish" and "fucking dumb". Now I haven't seen many of these videos (Chad didn't link any of them in the under bar of his video) but I will be refuting Chad's efforts here nonetheless, because I get the sense that he's lumping my video in whatever category all these other videos fall into. Chad's a good guy, but I'm not going to just look the other way after being called retarded and childish for making a rational argument, be it directly or indirectly.

Needless to say, maybe there really have been some recent videos on YT that warrant a taming down of the anti-Islamic rhetoric, but Chad certainly didn't bring any of that specific extreme rhetoric up, nor did he make any points aside from the ones which my video only served to refute in the first place. So be mindful of the context here folks.

Chad's video is titled "Muslims Did Not Invent Terrorism" and while I do realize that he is being playful with the title, I will point out that nobody on here has actually said that Terrorism was invented by Muslims, or that the religion of Islam has a copyright claim on all the negative things we routinely point out about its inherent teachings. Chad's video suggested otherwise, so he was arguing a strawman there. And while I didn't preface my commentary by saying that Islam is not exclusive to any of these commonly discussed negatives (aside from beheading people over a cartoon depiction of their prophet. You gotta admit, that's Islam 101), suggesting that negative commentary about "A" automatically implies that "B" is exempt from such commentary, unless the speaker makes it clear that it is not, is a presupposition which I've had to put up with in the comments over the last 2 weeks. So you can imagine my annoyance meter skyrocket as I witnessed this common presumption make its way to a video, in concurrence to where the discussion had shifted.

The only videos I've seen on this anti-Islam topic, aside from the one I made and the one Chad just did, have been the two thunderf00t ones from over 2 weeks ago, shortly after the South Park/Comedy Central censorship incident. Both videos were perfectly fine, as they were attacking an ideology and the specific actions resulting from a literate (and correct) interpretation of the holy book from which that ideology is directly derived. Ideology is subject to scrutiny, regardless of the humongous percentage of harmless Moderates labeling themselves as part of it. And I'm being kind here with the "harmless" part. Whether they realize it or not, their general pro-Islam rhetoric is an indirect aid and comfort to extremist Islamic action. The videos f00t made are not of a discriminatory nature, and although Chad never used the word discrimination, his video lends a vague impression that discrimination on some of the Atheists' parts is a motivating factor here. It isn't. In all my time on Youtube, I have never once heard or read a single comment from an atheist about Islam that aimed to dehumanize Moderate Muslims. I've seen it from Christian rednecks, but not from a single Atheist. Criticizing Moderates for wearing the label of Muslim on their sleeve is in no way equivalent to dehumanization. So why do I get the sense that Chad disagrees? Well, apparently he was in a Stickam room with this guy who advocated cutting off Muslims' finances so that they would no longer pose a threat. Idiotic and inhumane on its face. This was also after he vaguely implied that we need to bomb them to oblivion (eradicate them). If this is what was actually said in that room, then this individual Chad spoke with is an absolute hemroid of a human being who is in dire need of a basic lesson on why all suffering is bad, regardless of who experiences it. Chad and I also agree that it's incorrect to say "Islam is the root of all evil". Flat out wrongness. That title belongs to American Idol. Either that or the re-production of the first single cell organism which got this lovely ball rolling.

Back on track: My problem here, is that the video I made focused on the 109 Quran verses inciting violence against infidels, and how 99.9% of the Muslim Moderates with whom I have interacted, all go out of their way to pervert and distort the context of those 109 verses, instead of having enough integrity to admit what those verses are truly meant to convey. It seems that, according to Chad, criticizing Moderates for these disgusting rationalizations is "childish, retarded and fucking dumb". I'd say defending them for this would be the actual childish, retarded and fucking dumb thing to do. They aren't doing humanity any good by twisting the meanings of these corrosive verses. This can only lead to a Two-Faced Islam, recognized as one. The trick being, it is recognized as one only when it counts (See Sharia Law implementation). Let me repeat that: A Two-Faced Religion, containing at its disposal a book with at least 109 verses advocating violence against infidels, or women who get out of hand, where lying on the Muslim's part is permitted as long as the goal of the lie is to convert the infidel. I can go on. It's not the root of all evil. But to deny that it is the root of a degree of evil is to deny the suffering it has plagued the human race with ever since its inception.

How can anyone not be alarmed at the relentless attempts made by the Moderates to tame the wild beast that is this religion, without admitting that in order to do that, you are going to have to, first and foremost, concede to what it is that made the beast go wild in the first place. Instead of insisting that the religion stands for whatever anyone calling him or herself a Muslim interprets it to stand for. There is such a thing as a wrong interpretation of a holy text. It happens folks. And with a holy text this poisonous, it's crucial to call anyone who stands in defense of it, a threat. Regardless of how well intentioned they may think they are being. Then again, I'll point out that this good intention is still grounded in intellectual dishonesty. There's no way to read the Quran in its entirety and come away with the conclusion that it still represents a religion of Peace. I am sorry, but if the moderates are going to defend what essentially drives the extremists, then they are responsible to a degree. There is nothing wrong with drawing this conclusion. It's not wrong when we say it about any other religion, and it's certainly not wrong when we say it about Islam.

I'm watching Chad's video again now. He really is puzzled as to why this is being discussed so much. Two words: Current Events. Much like the Pope's well documented cover up shenanigans always earn him a nice verbal assault on Youtube, the same applies to Islam and its apologists. Chad goes on to say "You cannot blame an ideal behind the actions of a few". What ideal? Why say that without going on to define the ideal itself? And how are "the few" incorrect in their vision of the ideal? Simply because they're outnumbered? Or because their vision of it leads to stiffening of human progress, such as Sharia Law? I wish Muslim apologists would finally explain this. Chad then says "You cannot say Islam is the reason for terrorism". You see what he did there? A nice broad statement. In reality, the actual statement reads "You cannot say Islam is the reason for ALL terrorism". Some terrorism is directly driven by Islamic holy text, and if you're going to say it isn't, you really should at least try to demonstrate how the standard Moderates' defense of the 109 verses holds water. Chad didn't try doing this. He thinks the text is a non-issue, and all that matters is the intent. He then made this bold statement: "Everybody has participated, in one way or another, in acts of terrorism". Really? That's news to me, because I could've sworn my record was clean on that one. I'd like to know what kind of special powers of omnipresence Chad has, in order to know this about me, much less everybody else. He says Atheists participate in acts of terrorism too. I'll say to him what Dawkins said to O'Reilly: When you point me to an atheist whose act of terrorism was driven by his lack of belief in some form of a deity, I will point you to a pig that flies". Okay so Dawkins didn't actually say that. I just made that up now, but it does go hand in hand with what Dawkins actually said. His exact wording escapes me at the moment. Point being, such phenomenon has never taken place.

Chad then brought up human nature as the actual catalyst in all this. I think that this was the main part of his whole argument. The problem here is that almost all behavior the *human* race has taken part in can be argued to be a result of human nature. But we don't sum it up that way, practically speaking. No sense in injecting such an element of ambiguity into the conversation. It can also been argued that the KKK is a result of human nature. But I bet people will take their beef with the KKK further than that. So if someone as smart as Dawkins were to misinterpret what the KKK stands for, and as a result go out dressed like a Klansman, followed by a refusal to listen to reason when told by everyone that the KKK actually stands for irrational hatred of blacks, and despite this he still refuses to accept it, all because he thinks the white outfit makes his ass look cute, would anyone blame his refusal to give up his silly little dress up game on plain old oversimplified "human nature"? No they wouldn't. They would instead practically single him out and call him out for the asshole that he is. Hypothetically speaking, of course. I'm sure Dawkins' ass looks perfectly fine without a Klansman outfit.

More off topic fun stuff: Chad's now mentioning that it's cool how people are finally starting to talk back to thunderf00t. Guess he hasn't seen many Gary videos from 2009, or the comment sections in those vids, in which f00t was often "critiqued", to say the least. I'll never forget f00t's debate with the "This banana fits in the human hand quite well therefore God exists" guy. Well, at least the 4 minutes of it I managed to sit through.

Back on topic: Chad says that f00t is bullying the ideal behind the Muslim faith. Again, he seems to, by default, accept that the "ideal" is "Religion Of Peace". End of discussion, right? Wrong. But even if it was, it is preposterous to allow this supposed ideal to dictate how we're going to treat (ignore) the remainder of the Quran's agenda. And I'd rather be verbally "bullied" by f00t than death-threatened via PM by some Muslim claiming to live in my city and working on hunting me down. Which has actually happened today. Only I actually got a kick out of it, to be honest.

Chad's friend is at his place now, and they're reiterating the "You can't blame a religion for the idea behind terrorism" point. And I'll point out once again that you cannot at the same time completely disassociate the verses in said religion from all of the driving factors resulting in the terrorist act. These people believe they've got 72 virgins waiting for them in heaven, not because they've been lied to by the evil string pulling Osama Bin Laden types. No, they believe it because that is precisely what their religion teaches.

He points out the fact that the Bible also has some rotten quotes, and on the basis of that, he once again says "It's just human nature". This doesn't follow. Everybody already agrees that all of the monotheistic religions have downright despicable scriptures. But this doesn't justify an oversimplified "it's just human nature" summation of the problem, especially with the implication being that any further in depth analysis is excessive and uncalled for. It's an equivocation. In reality, the excessive analysis is exactly what is needed to limit the ongoing rationalizations of the Moderates. And no, I'm not defending human nature here. I possess no exaltation for it. I'm just saying, if we sat back and attributed everything to human nature, thereby rendering all levels of ignorance as being on some kind of an even playing field, what incentive are we giving the Moderates to let go of their archaic nonsense and join us in the 21st Century?

"It was just a man who wrote a book". Yes. Yes it was. Point being?

He then brings up the intelligent Christians who recognize the negative aspects of the Bible and who according to him should therefore not be categorized with all the other hillbilly Christians. So basically his point is: Christian =/= Christian. I say no dice. Come up with a new label for your belief if you're going to be a cherry picking coward as far as the particulars of the fable you say you're going to follow. Christian = Christian. If capable of recognizing that there exist negatives in the very foundation of the teachings in Christianity, only an asshole would insist on still calling himself a Christian. If it's God's word, why only follow parts of it? It doesn't add up.

Now Chad's telling us to grow up and that "There are so many other things to talk about". Yes there are, but this suggestion can be used in any discussion that someone finds useless. It's subjective.

Well that sure was fun. I'll admit that I was fuming at his video, which is a prime example of weak Atheism. We aren't going to get anywhere if we keep preserving taboos such as "Don't pick on the moderates" or "Don't categorize... ergo don't say anything bad about any religious person labelled a Moderate". And again, I didn't even categorize all Muslims as extremists. I specifically said that they aren't. And still, people fall into the same tired old trap of myopic critiques.

So yeah, another anticlimactic ending to my blog. Apologies for that.

Thanks for reading.

ABM

3 comments:

  1. Wonderfully written, dude. I'm glad to see someone else, who agrees with me that the religious moderates aren't helping as far as how we view their religious beliefs as a whole.

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  2. I had a rant on my facebook about how i want the burqa to be gone and mentioned that islam calls itself the religion of peace but explicitly says otherwise in the Koran. Then a Muslim came and started flaming me about that so i showed him some examples of crazy Muslims and his response was "Ugh. Shameful that they even call themselves Muslim"
    Well that settles it... Nothing about how their actions were permitted by scripture, nothing about how he choose to not carry out those acts. He a classic moderate who defends Islam when i'm criticizing the extremists, just as bad as being one if your defending the same belief which justifies their actions.

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  3. The death threat really sucks.

    Are you going to respond to Chad's response?

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