Islam and Free Speech: Principle vs. Privilege

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posted on Mar, 10 2013 @ 01:05 AM
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Harris Zafar, National Spokesperson for Ahmadiyya Muslim Community USA, claims in the Huffington Post that Islam doesn't deny freedom of speech or attempt to censor those who insult Islam.


The ultimate goal of Islam is to unite mankind under a single banner of peace... ...In order to unite mankind, Islam instructs us to only use speech to be truthful, do good to others, and be fair and respectful.

The most vocal proponents of freedom of speech, however, call us toward a different path, where people can say anything and everything on their mind. With no restraint on speech at all, every form of provocation would exist, thereby cultivating confrontation and antagonism. They insist this freedom entitles them the legal privilege to insult others. This is neither democracy nor freedom of speech. It fosters animosity, resentment and disorder.

Rather than focusing on privileges, Islam focuses on the principle to avoid speech that causes separation and conflict... ...No matter how important the cause of free speech, it still pales in comparison to the cause of world peace and unity.

Huffington Post


I don't find this argument that Islam is consistant with free speech very convincing.

Harris Zafar is arguing on the one hand that people under Islam are allowed to say anything they want, yet also arguing on the other hand that people should be restrained from saying anything that Muslims find insulting.

That isn't consistent with free speech.

I also don't like the way he states that the ultimate goal is to achieve peace by uniting mankind under a single banner of peace. Isn't such a statement a euphemism for wanting Islam to dominate the World?

He further argues that no matter how important free speech, it pales in comparison to the cause of world peace and unity. Whose unity? I don't want to live under the unity of Islam.

It should be noted that the typical penalty for criticizing Islam (blasphemy) in Islamic nations ranges from imprisonment and a fine up to the death penalty. Those penalties are applied.


• Afghanistan
penalties up to execution by hanging
• Algeria
years of imprisonment and a fine
• Egypt
may be punished by the death penalty
• Indonesia
maximum of five years imprisonment
• Iran
Prison sentence or Fatwa seeking death
• Jordan
imprisonment (up to three years) and a fine
• Kuwait
punishable by death
• Pakistan
Punishable by death
• Saudi Arabia
penalties up to the death penalty for blasphemy
• Sudan
imprisonment and a fine
• United Arab Emirates
Imprisonment up to 10 years. Since 1993 that Sharia punishments may not be imposed on non-Muslims.
• Yemen
accused in Yemen is subject to Islamic law (Sharia). Sharia, according to some interpretations, prescribes death as the proper punishment for blasphemy

Link


I'm all for freedom of speech. The National Spokesperson for the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community in the USA is only for free speech as long as Islam doesn't find it insulting and as long as it doesn't prevent us all from unifying under a single banner of peace.

I don't want to be unified under the single banner of Islam.

edit on 10-3-2013 by ollncasino because: (no reason given)




posted on Mar, 10 2013 @ 01:19 AM
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Islamic and Sharia law have actions that go against our constitution, which is why they should never be implemented here, even under the guise of religious freedom.

Slippery slope.



posted on Mar, 10 2013 @ 01:26 AM
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Originally posted by timetothink
Islamic and Sharia law have actions that go against our constitution, which is why they should never be implemented here, even under the guise of religious freedom.

Slippery slope.


Muslims who live in the West often wish to recreate the Sharia legal system found in Islamic countries.


• Nearly Half of U.S. Muslims polled believe that critics of Muhammad should be criminally prosecuted

• 1 in 8 American Muslims polled believe that Muhammad's critics should face the death penalty.

• 58% said criticism of their religion or of Muhammad should not be allowed under the Constitution.

Link
Link


Harris Zafar isn't speaking for a minority of American Muslims when he argues that free speech that criticizes Islam should be restricted. He is speaking for the majority. The 1 in 8 who want people executed for criticizing Muhammad are particularly worrying.

edit on 10-3-2013 by ollncasino because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 10 2013 @ 01:33 AM
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reply to post by ollncasino
 


It is frightening, especially with our political system today. They seem to be leaning towards defending Islam at every turn. It happened in some European countries and now they are suffering for it.

Once they get a foothold, it's over for us.



posted on Mar, 10 2013 @ 03:01 AM
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What is your problem exactly ?

You want to insult ?

Or

You want to get insulted ?

Or

You support the people who insult ?



posted on Mar, 10 2013 @ 03:07 AM
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Originally posted by timetothink
reply to post by ollncasino
 


It is frightening, especially with our political system today. They seem to be leaning towards defending Islam at every turn. It happened in some European countries and now they are suffering for it.

Once they get a foothold, it's over for us.


I see that many European and western countries don't suffer as much as their government invades other countries and kills other nations , but they suffer when they see a minority people get some rules installed on themselves.

And

There is no wonder that they stand against their straw slogans like freedom when it comes to Islam.

For example in France , there is fining bill for the women who cover their hair and their bodies.
You are the most hypocrites.

France : a country with nuclear bomes , Gays live freely , Muslims are fined and deprived from education.
edit on 10-3-2013 by mideast because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 10 2013 @ 03:08 AM
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Originally posted by mideast
What is your problem exactly ?

You want to insult ?

Or

You want to get insulted ?

Or

You support the people who insult ?


My problem is that Islam and free speech are inconstant.

While a majority of American Muslims feel that free speech should be prevented if they feel it criticizes Islam, in the UK Muslims feel even more strongly against free speech.


Poll of UK Muslims

• 78% believe the publishers of the Danish cartoons (the pictures of Muhammad with a bomb on his head) should be prosecuted.
• 68% believe that people who insult Islam should be arrested and prosecuted.
• 62% believe that freedom of speech should not be allowed if it insults Islam.

CBS News


While you clearly feel that an omnipotent deity choose an illiterate goat herder living in a cultural and geographical backwater to spread his truth, please respect my right to disagree.



edit on 10-3-2013 by ollncasino because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 10 2013 @ 03:11 AM
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Originally posted by mideast
What is your problem exactly ?

You want to insult ?


If insult need be, yes. I'd like to see real concerns with Islam and Human rights in general brought up in front of the Saudi Royal family just to see what happens. If the answer is immediate death I believe yes, there is a problem.



posted on Mar, 10 2013 @ 03:14 AM
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Originally posted by mideast

I see that many European and western countries don't suffer as much as their government invades other countries and kills other nations , but they suffer when they see a minority people get some rules installed on themselves.


Yet Muhammad himself spread Islamic domination by the sword, conquering the Arabian Peninsula with armies of up to 12,000 warriors (HistoryNet: Muhammad the Warrior Prophet), and few Muslims appear to have any problem with that.


Originally posted by mideast
For example in France , there is fining bill for the women who cover their hair and their bodies.
You are the most hypocrites.


Saudi Arabia, the spiritual home of Islam forces women to wear the burqa while France forces them not to do so. Is Islam therefore also hypocritical?

edit on 10-3-2013 by ollncasino because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 10 2013 @ 03:21 AM
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Originally posted by ollncasino

Originally posted by mideast
What is your problem exactly ?

You want to insult ?

Or

You want to get insulted ?

Or

You support the people who insult ?


My problem is that Islam and free speech are inconstant.

While a majority of American Muslims feel that free speech should be prevented if they feel it cricises Islam, in the UK Muslims feel even more strongly against free speech.


Poll of UK Muslims

• 78% believe the publishers of the Danish cartoons should be punished.
• 68% believe that people who insult Islam should be arrested and prosecuted.
• 62% believe that freedom of speech should not be allowed if it insults Islam.

CBS News


While you clearly feel that an omnipotent deity choose an illiterate goat herder living in a cultural and geographical backwater to spread his truth, please respect my right to disagree.




And there is where the old argument between west and Islam begins,

You define new words that cover both good and evil.

Muslims don't say that they should stop some one who is telling the truth , they want themselves to stay out of being insulted.

But you say , "insulting is a part of how we used to define freedom of speech , and we don't wanna give up even if we don't want to insult. We don't listen to you even if we agree"

Insulting is different than arguing and criticizing and questioning

Islam allows the people who are oppressed to raise their voice , but it forbids insulting because it is nothing but irrational and unreasonable way of communication.

What is wrong with that ?



posted on Mar, 10 2013 @ 03:27 AM
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Originally posted by mideast

Islam allows the people who are oppressed to raise their voice , but it forbids insulting because it is nothing but irrational and unreasonable way of communication.

What is wrong with that ?


You think people should not be allowed to say something if you find it insulting?

That isn't freedom of speech. I find your suggestion irrational, unreasonable and insulting. It shouldn't be allowed.


See how that works?

10,000 Muslims Protest Against Free Speech at Google in UK




edit on 10-3-2013 by ollncasino because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 10 2013 @ 03:34 AM
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reply to post by ollncasino
 





Saudi Arabia, the spiritual home of Islam




please , SA is anything but the spiritual home of Islam. And they are run under the Saudi Family not under Islam.

Saudi Family

And if we suppose SA to be run by Islam , we can call SA and France even.

According to the source you provided ,


The idea of Muhammad as a military man will be new to many


He was a trader man before he was a prophet and after he got messenger , he was attacked on when greedy leaders saw that his religion is spreading and they can not be as rich as before by those idol worshipers.

In fact , he was uneducated trader descendent of Ismail , son of Ibrahim.



posted on Mar, 10 2013 @ 03:34 AM
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reply to post by ollncasino
 





Saudi Arabia, the spiritual home of Islam




please , SA is anything but the spiritual home of Islam. And they are run under the Saudi Family not under Islam.

Saudi Family

And if we suppose SA to be run by Islam , we can call SA and France even.

According to the source you provided ,


The idea of Muhammad as a military man will be new to many


He was a trader man before he was a prophet and after he got messenger , he was attacked on when greedy leaders saw that his religion is spreading and they can not be as rich as before by those idol worshipers.

In fact , he was uneducated trader descendent of Ismail , son of Ibrahim.



posted on Mar, 10 2013 @ 03:38 AM
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reply to post by ollncasino
 





You think people should not be allowed to say something if you find it insulting?


I agree that misunderstanding cAN ALWAYS HAPPEN , but insulting is different and you know it.



posted on Mar, 10 2013 @ 03:48 AM
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Originally posted by mideast
He was a trader man before he was a prophet and after he got messenger , he was attacked on when greedy leaders saw that his religion is spreading and they can not be as rich as before by those idol worshipers.


Muhammad was seen as an eccentric but largely harmless fanatic until he decided that there could be only one god, his. They asked him to leave Mecca and he did (622 AD).Muslims like to make a song and dance out of Muhammad 'fleeing' from Medina but the fact remains that he and his followers were allowed to leave unmolested.

He promptly started raiding caravans from his new home, Medina, (a strange thing for a man of peace to do), evicted the Qaynuqa Jews from Medina in 624 and the Nadir Jews in 625 and massacred the Qurayza Jews in 627, enslaving their women and children.

It would be fair to say that Muhammad didn't like Jews.

Muhammad didn't support freedom of speech either. In 624 he ordered the assassination of Abu Afak, the assasination of Asma bint Marwan and the assassination of Ka'b al-Ashraf.

Muhammad didn't like to be criticized. To this day many Muslims around the world have maintained this tradition of reacting angrily and often aggressively to any perceived criticism.


• Muhammad authorised the murder of a number of poets (male & female) who had mocked him. One poet was a mother sleeping with her young children. The Muslim assassin had to move the child aside before thrusting his dagger into her chest. Another victim was a male poet who was, according to Muslim sources, over 100 years old. Mohammed then absolved the Islamic murderers of any wrong doing.

• One man had fallen foul of Muhammad when Muhammad was in his early days due to being a better story teller than Muhammad,. "Who will look after my young daughter?" cried the man, moments before he was executed. Muhammad then cursed him.

The Life of Muhammad (768 AD) by Ibn Ishaq


Muhammad wasn't a supporter of free speech.

Clearly, neither are you.





edit on 10-3-2013 by ollncasino because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 10 2013 @ 03:50 AM
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Originally posted by mideast

I agree that misunderstanding cAN ALWAYS HAPPEN , but insulting is different and you know it.


I find it insulting that you think you have the right to tell me what I can and can't say.

Does that mean, by your own logic that insults should be prohibited, that I should be able to send the religious police around to your house and get you arrested?

That is, after all, what Islamic freedom of speech amounts to.



posted on Mar, 10 2013 @ 03:53 AM
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reply to post by ollncasino
 





I find it insulting that you think you have the right to tell me what I can and can't say


Then find some common sense and stand to it before all the storms begin.



posted on Mar, 10 2013 @ 03:56 AM
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reply to post by ollncasino
 


Is free speech a law in Islamic countries? How can you compare a political term to a religious teaching? You do understand that most of the countries you reference are Western allies?



posted on Mar, 10 2013 @ 03:56 AM
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reply to post by ollncasino
 


You define Muhammad (PBUH) as opportunist.

Being an opportunist is greater evil than enemy of FOS.

So , stick to your definitions and stick to your words.

So , next time explain that state that you think Muhammad (PBUH) was opportunist and Jesus was .....

Then no one would waste his time on some one who is that ignorant and arrogant.

Peace and goodbye.
edit on 10-3-2013 by mideast because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 10 2013 @ 04:00 AM
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Originally posted by DarknStormy

Is free speech a law in Islamic countries?


Criticism of Islam (blasphemy) is a criminal offense in the vast majority of Islamic countries as detailed in the OP.


Originally posted by DarknStormy

How can you compare a political term to a religious teaching?


I didn't.


Originally posted by DarknStormy

You do understand that most of the countries you reference are Western allies?


If they were militarily allied against the West, would you anticipate then to no longer make criticism of Islam a criminal offense?






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