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LexusInfernus

Feminism and religion

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So in an effort to stop derailing the Donald Trump topic, I've made this topic. 

There's choice and illusion of choice. I'm not criticizing a Muslim woman choosing to wear a hijab, you're twisting my words. I'm saying the choice is very much one-sided because not wearing the hijab, the veil, can lead to ostracization and from accounts in the news it is a horrible process for Muslims who have been forced out of their communities. Now, a Muslim woman not choosing to wear the hijab in an orthodox community is a big deal and these communities are very male-orientated; like it is in Arabic culture. It's a form of oppression and its bigoted, so as a feminist why support that? Which begs another question: is it alright for one group to oppress another group if for that first group it is acceptable?

First, you are in no position to judge any of that, seeing how you are neither a Muslim or a woman. 

Undoubtedly there is significantly more pressure in the more orthodox communities for women to wear a hijab. However, a lot of Muslims are not actually part of any orthodox community, they are moderates who believe people should be allowed to make their own choices in life, including whether you want to wear a hijab or not. And even in Orthodox communities, it can still be a choice. Just one that has more negative consequences to someone who chooses not to conform. However, those negative consequences apply to every member that refuses to conform, not just women. The standards of conformity are different for men and women though, which is why yes, those orthodox communities do have  a problem with sexism. It only becomes actual oppression when choosing not to conform results in violence directed at the person who doesn't want to conform. So, losing friends as a result of your choices, not oppression, getting physically hurt or killed because of your choices, oppression. 

Finally, I find this hijab talk a little ironic. I mean really, the people that make this type of argument are usually also the ones that complain about Feminazis and how Feminism is ruining everything. But when they can use it to rag on Muslims, they are suddenly oh so concerned with the well being of Muslim women. If you actually gave a damn, you would have realized that telling women not to wear a hijab because it supposedly oppresses them is still you, a guy, telling women how they should dress. 

But in Western countries Muslim communities can't be left alone to do their own thing because the issues of honour killing, FGM, arranged marriages and women being stuck in marriages they don't want to be in, those issues crop up. So in the UK at least social services get called in and sometimes the police, so cultural practices which are incompatible with UK values are being dealt with. Don't tell me there are no issues and there isn't a compatibility problem, they are two very different cultures: UK and Islamic.

Honor killings, arranged marriages and FGM's are not widely accepted or practiced Islamic cultural tennets. Yes, in some Islamic countries these things happen, but that doesn't mean its somehow the entire Muslim community that does all of these things. Also, we are a bit biased in these things. For example, we find it perfectly okay that boys have their foreskins removed for religious or even no reason at all. And while we don't call them honor killings, how often don't you read a story about some jealous ex boyfriend who murders his ex because they broke up? And being stuck in a marriage you don't want happens everywhere for all kinds of reasons.  

That said, yes the state does have every right to consider these practices undesirable and take steps to ensure that they don't happen within the state's territory. No one is arguing that this should not be the case. 

So I'm just saying that Feminists supporting Islam is a real grey area considering Islam's atrocious track record for women's liberties, rights and freedoms. It's a contradiction! There's no way around it. It's all about image and the hijab is a symbol of cultural oppression- by Western standards. In fact donning the hijab to "try it out" is a gross insult of Islamic practice because to wear the hijab is to ALWAYS wear it in public, so the feminists were even disrespecting Islamic culture. Or perhaps "culturally appropriating"! So the whole thing is just dumb and disrespectful all around, it's not symbolic and it most certainly isn't a symbol of progress. It is pure ideological stupidity on the part of feminists. Or maybe feminism has gone so far off the rails that it is now welcoming actual oppressive cultures in small doses. Put it this way- I could never see a second-wave feminist donning the hijab in solidarity of Islam.

*Sigh* They aren't supporting Islam, they are supporting religious freedom. You know, the ability of people to chose to live by a set of religious standards if they so desire. And that includes their right to wear a hijab. But yeah, do keep mansplaining feminism to feminists. 

And you can't see a second wave feminists teaming up with unlikely allies? Well, how about that time they teamed up with hardcore conservatives to ban porn? Because that was totally a thing. 

Western women would be outraged if they had to live by Islamic custom and culture, then they would quickly shut up when the police and gangs of men start beating all those that don't wear the hijab, and when some women are made examples of by stoning and imprisonment. This is a standard means of enforcement in Iran and most Arabic countries. In Iran a lot of women are fighting right now not to make the headscarf obligatory, they don't want this cultural obligation anymore. So those women and feminists on that Woman's March in Washington wearing the hijab... Dear me God, do they know the struggles women face in the Middle East for their rights and liberties? I mean what's next? BLM becoming buddies with the KKK? That's how different Feminism is from Islam when considering woman's rights!

I don't care if I get called bigoted or narrow-minded because that's the way I see it. Anyway to continue this conversation let's create a new thread or drop it.

And you have completely missed the point of both protests. Are women in Iran demanding that the hijab be banned completely? No, they are not. And are Feminists in the west arguing every woman should wear a hijab? No they are not. Both are protesting for the ability to choose. They want a choice. Either the choice to not wear a hijab and not get punished for it, or the choice to wear a hijab and also not get punished for it. There is absolutely nothing wrong with wanting to be able to choose. Because thats what freedom is supposed to be about, having the ability to choose for yourself how you live your life. 

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Sharia Law is incompatible with Modern Western Feminism. This is an undebatable fact. However, "Moderate" Islam and modified feminism can be made to work together.

 

I once had a flatmate from Saudi Arabia who seemed to hold no respect for women. He was extremely sexist and talked about wanting to commit sex crimes, thinking American college girls promiscuous. I told him how such topics made me uncomfortable and shouldn't be brought up around progressives.

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Finally, I find this hijab talk a little ironic. I mean really, the people that make this type of argument are usually also the ones that complain about Feminazis and how Feminism is ruining everything. But when they can use it to rag on Muslims, they are suddenly oh so concerned with the well being of Muslim women.

Just wanted to chime in with a parellel discussion we're currently experiencing in my country: Following a New Year celebration that went out of control, ending in a mass robbery and sexual assault on women - with a large proportion of these crimes being committed by immigrants/foreigners - it was the far right that hastily presented itself as "protectors of our women". Normally their idea of women is "get babies (we need to multiply!), stay in the kitchen and shut up". But of course, they'll defend their possession against foreigners. *;)

However, IMO it's best to be careful with "those who do X are the same who say Y" comments because, although such persons probably exist out there, you often don't know it about the persons you're conversing with. And when someone reads it who - to stick to my example - does X, but actually never said Y, this someone is almost inevitably going to feel offended because they were categorised based on a prejudice.

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Honor killings, arranged marriages and FGM's are not widely accepted or practiced Islamic cultural tennets. Yes, in some Islamic countries these things happen, but that doesn't mean its somehow the entire Muslim community that does all of these things. Also, we are a bit biased in these things. [...] And while we don't call them honor killings, how often don't you read a story about some jealous ex boyfriend who murders his ex because they broke up? And being stuck in a marriage you don't want happens everywhere for all kinds of reasons.  

That's something I have thought of as well - I often read stories about what we call "extended suicide", where a person such as a formerly successful businessman who lost it all will kill not only himself, but also his wife and children. I have never read such a story about women, only about men. It is as if they wanted to make sure that their prized possession doesn't "change ownership" - much like soldiers sinking their own ship so it cannot fall into the hands of the enemy. So yes, the way of thinking that is the foundation of such deeds also exists in our societes. And yes, jealousy murders murders also happen.

I still have the impression that most islamic countries have a more conservative and patriarchic culture, which results in such deeds being viewed as justified and normal to a higher degree than in a modern Western society.

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For example, we find it perfectly okay that boys have their foreskins removed for religious or even no reason at all.

Another hot topic (and touchy subject) in my country a few years ago. You see, our constitution grants us the right not to be bodily harmed (other than for strictly medical reasons, of course!). This is in obvious contrast with genital mutilation, be it on women or men, girls or boys. However, it also causes a conflict with ritual circumcision as practised not only by Muslims, but also by Jews. Of course, Germany raising a topic that would affect the religious freedom of Muslims is already touchy, but Germany raising a topic that would affect the religious freedom of Jews? Ouch.

[My personal stance on this issue is that everybody best keep their hands off children and let 'em decide when they're old enough, but that's not the topic here]

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 Because thats what freedom is supposed to be about, having the ability to choose for yourself how you live your life. 

Yes , and I can understand that this is difficult sometimes. People are just so different. Give them freedom to pursue all their goals and all the space in the world to unfold their personality, and some will do what looks to you like building a nice fat bunker, locking themselves in and letting the key stick on the outside of the door lock. You may be tempted to open the door and urge them to step outside, but maybe they simply don't want to.

I have the impression that there are just fundamentally different mentalities at work here. Some need the space to unfold their wings, others need some walls around them to feel secure. It's hard to accommodate both. More progressive persons sometimes have problems understanding their conservative counterparts and may fall into the trap of "forcing others to their freedom", conservative people sometimes have problems accepting that not everybody needs to live by their rules. This causes some discomfort on either end of the spectrum.

At the end of the day, I personally think that equal rights (not just feminism) should be a thing for all, and religion should best be a personal affair between you and whatever deity you may believe in, which means that all religious rights and obligations should be limited to yourself and never be forced on others.

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2 hours ago, T Wrecks said:

But of course, they'll defend their possession against foreigners.

And this is so true. Most of this feminism is protectionism - it's the same old desire to have command over the female body: "don't touch this, this is german guys property."

Remembers me of drunken guy on the street  we met once. One of us said: "stop beating that woman!" And he responded: "That's my wife!" The logic of drunken husbands.

 

When @LexusInfernus points out that freedom begins where you have the right to choose and I like to add - and not other people doing the choice for you - so you can be responsible for yourself ...

... then it will always be problematic when a couple of guys gather together and spy out what would be best for woman. No matter of ideology or religion.

As most woman I know, they perfer to be asked instead of being discussed. No matter if it's the pope or a couple of citybuilders players.

Or you teach them what's best for them or you let them find out what is best for them.

My impression is - now they try both at the same time. And feminists try this quadrature of the circle by teaching muslim women what is the right choice when you have the freedom to choose.

And the trick is so simple. You offer a red apple and a green apple and say: now you can choose. And the children are happy and they feel free.

And the strawberries you keep all yourself. (So children think they did the choice but instead I did the choice for them - the choice was only an illusion born from a lack of knowledge - that there would have been strawberries too to chose).

So mostly - when people start this way: muslim or christian, hijab or jeans - you already were trapped.

And we should educate our children to overcome this 'this-or-that-trap' by always immediatly asking:

What? That's all?

Did you know - the first 50 yeas only jews could become christians. It was Saul (Paul) who argued: if you want christianity to become a world wide religion you must allow people of different believes to become christians. 

But it's exactly the same with cell phones.

It's not this or that feature. The cell phone that can integrate the most features into its small body will be the most popular.

So the whole discussion is wrong. The question shouldn't be this or that but how to integrate the features.

 

How people are loooking on the hijab is rediculous.

I remember, late 60ies it was the Bikini. Newspapers were full of reports how the bikini threatens our culture. On clothes it seems - the less material the bigger the danger. My mother made me to leave the living room when they talked (talked!) about Bikinis in TV.

Now what is this clothes this guy wears around his neck:

b2a71bfa9f22f1f6e154d454cf81de4b.jpg

What it is good for? What is it needed for?

Or this t-shirt:

OS214_MENS.jpg

Why don't we discuss t-shirts?

This is so arbitrary. It's just most western people wear their hijab a) around their brain or b) on their chest. So the only difference is how you decorate yourself with your ideology but not the fact that you decorate yourself (or your woman) with ideology. As we do exactly the same.

[EDIT]

I forgot to mention tattoos - another way to decorate yourself with an ideology.

 

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On 18/05/2017 at 4:48 PM, LexusInfernus said:

So in an effort to stop derailing the Donald Trump topic, I've made this topic. 

First, you are in no position to judge any of that, seeing how you are neither a Muslim or a woman. 

Undoubtedly there is significantly more pressure in the more orthodox communities for women to wear a hijab. However, a lot of Muslims are not actually part of any orthodox community, they are moderates who believe people should be allowed to make their own choices in life, including whether you want to wear a hijab or not. And even in Orthodox communities, it can still be a choice. Just one that has more negative consequences to someone who chooses not to conform. However, those negative consequences apply to every member that refuses to conform, not just women. The standards of conformity are different for men and women though, which is why yes, those orthodox communities do have  a problem with sexism. It only becomes actual oppression when choosing not to conform results in violence directed at the person who doesn't want to conform. So, losing friends as a result of your choices, not oppression, getting physically hurt or killed because of your choices, oppression. 

Finally, I find this hijab talk a little ironic. I mean really, the people that make this type of argument are usually also the ones that complain about Feminazis and how Feminism is ruining everything. But when they can use it to rag on Muslims, they are suddenly oh so concerned with the well being of Muslim women. If you actually gave a damn, you would have realized that telling women not to wear a hijab because it supposedly oppresses them is still you, a guy, telling women how they should dress.

For the point highlighted in bold- true that. But conversely since you are neither a Muslim nor a woman can you judge too- in a positive or negative light? Why protect something you don't fully understand or have experienced? It's a silly point because people are going to talk regardless and they're going to judge regardless because of a feeling. My shtick is not about "ragging" Muslims nor being a sudden "protector" of Muslim women. My shtick and misgivings are Feminists getting cosy with Islam, because Feminism and Islam are a dichotomy when it comes to women's rights and freedoms.

 

Now let's get down to brass tax. Feminism has been a very powerful and great balance to political and religious institutions that have curtailed women's freedoms and/or placed them in social situations with no easy way out. Case in point would be divorce and the former stigma attached; divorce was very difficult thing to do a century ago. Another case in point would be abortion, abortion was illegal based on religious and Christian grounds- at least in the West and in the UK. So Feminism has curtailed religious practices and thus religious freedoms in the past- in particular with Christianity.

Oppression is not just limited to violence: it can be slander, ostracization, expectations made under duress, keeping people ignorant about stuff, family pressures linked to cultural practices, etc. etc... Here's another funny thing: it's the Muslim men* who have the final say on what a Muslim women should wear in public- not the women. And why is that?

Well let's get the other obvious thing out of the way first: Islam and Muslim communities are male-dominated through and through. Where are the female mullas and imams? There aren't any, or there are a few but it would be rare. So males thus have the authority to interpret the Quran and apply its teachings. This ain't rocket science- if the men dictate the practice of the religion then do you really think they are going to consider the best interests of the woman? No they won't; the men will determine what they think are the best interests of the women. So this is an entity (Islam) where women have no representation which would be acceptable to Western standards. This is feminism 101 man! If there's only men in an organisation/government then how can it represent the women and their interests? 

Now if this were government or some other religion the Feminists would be all over it screaming patriarchy and lack of women's representation- and so they should. Islam is like an open-goal for the Feminist movement; there are serious systemic sexist and patriarchal issues in Islam. And please don't try to say otherwise because it does stem in the Quran and Islamic teachings and Hadiths (accounts and stories) from the Prophet Muhammed, his companions, family and chosen ones. For instance a woman has only half the rights of a man according to the Quran, a woman must veil herself and dress "modestly", a woman must have two male witnesses to prove she did not commit adultery. Now if a non-Muslim said that to a woman or to any feminist in the UK they would be rightly outraged.

But right now Feminism has a blind spot to Islam. It surprises me because 3rd wave Feminism is about flushing out every last pocket of sexism and patriarchy- as I understand it, but guess what? There's a whole bunch of sexism and patriarchy in Islam that's just begging to be sorted out. If Feminism put Christianity in its place in the West then why is it so afraid of putting Islam in its place in the West?

And as for the Feminists and woman donning the hijab in the Woman's March on the 20th of January, one does not just "try out" a hijab. It's supposed to be ALWAYS worn in public, so just "trying it out" is an insult to Islamic practice. Or a genius tactic of proselytization on those Muslim women who want to bring in new followers to Islam. Just think about it- they got women who support feminism to get cosy with parts of Islamic practice which are patriarchal. That's why I'm so amazed at what I saw in those videos. Seriously think about it.

And that's the other thing about religions Lexus- they are cunning in luring people in and covertly proselytizing! I have seen it through and through. So they (religious people) will agree with different opinions and views from people if they (religious people) feel there's a chance of those people coming into the flock so to speak.

Which brings me back to the why? Why are parts of Feminism getting cosy with Islam in the West and/or overlooking sexist practices in Islam? I have theories but I'm only interested in highlighting the contradiction- not the reason for this contradiction arising.

 

*I'm talking about orthodox communities in the West and of course Middle East nations, many orthodox Muslim countries and any Muslim community where a more secular and modern approach is eschewed.

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32 minutes ago, Ln X said:

 Why are parts of Feminism getting cosy with Islam in the West and/or overlooking sexist practices in Islam? I have theories but I'm only interested in highlighting the contradiction- not the reason for this contradiction arising.

Bad luck for you because I'm going to venture a guess as to what the reason may be, even if you're not interested. *:kitty:

My impression is that some feminists fear applause from a side they don't want to be associated with, a side they have fought in the past and are still fighting today to some degree - the conservative/right-wing "old" population. They might think that siding with them and attacking another minority would be wrong, especially considering the way they have had to go. So, rather than siding with their former enemy, they are eager to show solidarity with another minority and highlight the experience of discrimination that unites them rather than the differences among them. Whether that is true or not, who knows? Certainly not me. I'm merely thinking aloud here and picking up bits and pieces.

And yes, it would certainly be easier to accept any form of veil, hijab or whatever it may be called if only it didn't come with the thoughts about some nasty background attached to it - a background and mentality which the person in question may not even have any more, but that others might still see as connected.

As a consequence, if I noticed that more and more other central European people appear at my local swimming pool who prefer to swim with a raincoat on, I might be more likely to dismiss it as their personal choice and trust in my freedom to keep swimming the way I prefer than if the same happened with more and more Muslim women in Burkinis... those strange white guys in raincoats simply don't remind me of areas in the world where religious fanatics rule over worldly matters and take away other peoples's freedom, but when I see a woman in a Burkini, I inevitably have to think about such regimes and wonder what will happen should I ever find myself in the position of being a minority - all the while, the woman swimming there may just enjoy some exercise and not care at all about what I do.

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26 minutes ago, T Wrecks said:

Bad luck for you because I'm going to venture a guess as to what the reason may be, even if you're not interested. *:kitty:

My impression is that some feminists fear applause from a side they don't want to be associated with, a side they have fought in the past and are still fighting today to some degree - the conservative/right-wing "old" population. They might think that siding with them and attacking another minority would be wrong, especially considering the way they have had to go. So, rather than siding with their former enemy, they are eager to show solidarity with another minority and highlight the experience of discrimination that unites them rather than the differences among them. Whether that is true or not, who knows? Certainly not me. I'm merely thinking aloud here and picking up bits and pieces.

And yes, it would certainly be easier to accept any form of veil, hijab or whatever it may be called if only it didn't come with the thoughts about some nasty background attached to it - a background and mentality which the person in question may not even have any more, but that others might still see as connected.

As a consequence, if I noticed that more and more other central European people appear at my local swimming pool who prefer to swim with a raincoat on, I might be more likely to dismiss it as their personal choice and trust in my freedom to keep swimming the way I prefer than if the same happened with more and more Muslim women in Burkinis... those strange white guys in raincoats simply don't remind me of areas in the world where religious fanatics rule over worldly matters and take away other peoples's freedom, but when I see a woman in a Burkini, I inevitably have to think about such regimes and wonder what will happen should I ever find myself in the position of being a minority - all the while, the woman swimming there may just enjoy some exercise and not care at all about what I do.

Maybe it's a case of strange bedfellows, kind of like how Saudi Arabia and Israel are close allies. Or perhaps both sides -- Feminism and Islam (in the West) -- are using the other? I dunno.

I mean consider the reverse... Would Islam in a Muslim country show solidarity with say feminist groups that are in the minority?

Or maybe third-wave Feminism has so gone off the rails with identity politics, liberalism and multiculturalism that it secretly craves regression? A return of the bad times for women to justify its continued existence?

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  • Original Poster
  • 18 hours ago, Ln X said:

    For the point highlighted in bold- true that. But conversely since you are neither a Muslim nor a woman can you judge too- in a positive or negative light? Why protect something you don't fully understand or have experienced? It's a silly point because people are going to talk regardless and they're going to judge regardless because of a feeling. My shtick is not about "ragging" Muslims nor being a sudden "protector" of Muslim women. My shtick and misgivings are Feminists getting cosy with Islam, because Feminism and Islam are a dichotomy when it comes to women's rights and freedoms.

    I'm not the one saying that every woman who wears a Hijab is automatically being 'oppressed'. I'm saying that for Muslim women, it can be something they choose for themselves. How do I know that? Because they told me that it was their choice and that for them it was a way to connect with their religion. While I know of plenty of others who choose not to wear a Hijab or only wear it at specific moments and they did not get into any particular trouble because of it. Evidence enough that it can be a personal choice for women. 

    Is it a choice for everyone? No, obviously not. But for those that have a choice, its worth something to stand with them against those who would take the choice from them. Be it racist xenophobes that claim Europe or America has no room for Muslims, or religious extremists that want everyone to conform to their narrow and nihilistic definition of Islam. 

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    Now let's get down to brass tax. Feminism has been a very powerful and great balance to political and religious institutions that have curtailed women's freedoms and/or placed them in social situations with no easy way out. Case in point would be divorce and the former stigma attached; divorce was very difficult thing to do a century ago. Another case in point would be abortion, abortion was illegal based on religious and Christian grounds- at least in the West and in the UK. So Feminism has curtailed religious practices and thus religious freedoms in the past- in particular with Christianity.

    Feminism has not curtailed anyones religious freedom. If you don't want to get a divorce or an abortion on religious grounds, you can. No one is forced to get an abortion, no one is forced to get a divorce. If anything, it has enhanced religious freedom by giving people more options to choose from and more options on how one can experience their religion. 

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    Oppression is not just limited to violence: it can be slander, ostracization, expectations made under duress, keeping people ignorant about stuff, family pressures linked to cultural practices, etc. etc... Here's another funny thing: it's the Muslim men* who have the final say on what a Muslim women should wear in public- not the women. And why is that?

    If thats true, literally everyone on the planet is oppressed by someone or something. Do your parents have expectations for you? Oppression. If you behave like an idiots and someone tells you they no longer want to be associated to you? Oppression. Disagreeing with someone that respects you? Oppressing. Trying to convince people you're right in an argument? Oppressing. 

    And really? Muslim men all dictate how their women should dress? Sure...

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    Well let's get the other obvious thing out of the way first: Islam and Muslim communities are male-dominated through and through. Where are the female mullas and imams? There aren't any, or there are a few but it would be rare. So males thus have the authority to interpret the Quran and apply its teachings. This ain't rocket science- if the men dictate the practice of the religion then do you really think they are going to consider the best interests of the woman? No they won't; the men will determine what they think are the best interests of the women. So this is an entity (Islam) where women have no representation which would be acceptable to Western standards. This is feminism 101 man! If there's only men in an organisation/government then how can it represent the women and their interests? 

    No one is arguing that Islam isn't a sexist religion. But I fail to see how that makes it any worse than all the other religions which are equally dominated by men? 

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    Now if this were government or some other religion the Feminists would be all over it screaming patriarchy and lack of women's representation- and so they should. Islam is like an open-goal for the Feminist movement; there are serious systemic sexist and patriarchal issues in Islam. And please don't try to say otherwise because it does stem in the Quran and Islamic teachings and Hadiths (accounts and stories) from the Prophet Muhammed, his companions, family and chosen ones. For instance a woman has only half the rights of a man according to the Quran, a woman must veil herself and dress "modestly", a woman must have two male witnesses to prove she did not commit adultery. Now if a non-Muslim said that to a woman or to any feminist in the UK they would be rightly outraged.

    Yet when they do that, you're one of the first to come in claim that radical feminists are going to ruin everything. You have done so on several occasions in previous discussions broaching the topic of feminism. Why are you suddenly so concerned about feminism not doing enough to combat sexism in Islam. 

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    But right now Feminism has a blind spot to Islam. It surprises me because 3rd wave Feminism is about flushing out every last pocket of sexism and patriarchy- as I understand it, but guess what? There's a whole bunch of sexism and patriarchy in Islam that's just begging to be sorted out. If Feminism put Christianity in its place in the West then why is it so afraid of putting Islam in its place in the West?

    And what place would that be? Is Islam the dominant religion in the West? No, its not. Are women not allowed in the UK? No, they are allowed to drive. Are UK doctors performing FGM surgeries on those that ask for one? No, they don't. Are Muslims judged by Islamic courts? No, they are not (well, I think in some countries its optional to go to a Sharia court for a divorce). So what exactly should Western feminist do to put Islam in its place? Force women not to wear a Hijab? Deny women the choice of what they wear because they should dress according to 'liberated western standards'? Yeah, thats just telling people how to dress, denying them a crucial freedom. 

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    And as for the Feminists and woman donning the hijab in the Woman's March on the 20th of January, one does not just "try out" a hijab. It's supposed to be ALWAYS worn in public, so just "trying it out" is an insult to Islamic practice. Or a genius tactic of proselytization on those Muslim women who want to bring in new followers to Islam. Just think about it- they got women who support feminism to get cosy with parts of Islamic practice which are patriarchal. That's why I'm so amazed at what I saw in those videos. Seriously think about it.

    Yeah, I got a coworker that only wears a Hijab on specific occasions (around Ramadan). But sure, go tell her  that according to you shes not a real Muslim because she doesn't follow the rules closely enough. 

    Seriously, this is like telling a Christian its impossible to be a Christian unless you believe in creationism. 

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    And that's the other thing about religions Lexus- they are cunning in luring people in and covertly proselytizing! I have seen it through and through. So they (religious people) will agree with different opinions and views from people if they (religious people) feel there's a chance of those people coming into the flock so to speak.

    What a bleak and dreadful world you must live in. Well, at least I now do understand where you are coming from. 

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    14 minutes ago, LexusInfernus said:

    What a bleak and dreadful world you must live in. Well, at least I now do understand where you are coming from. 

    Nah, I enjoy my life and I'm very privileged to live in the UK and to be with the family I have. Now I do have a passing interest in these topics that's about it, I do enjoy debating with you though! But I'm not political, merely curious. Part of that curiosity stems from story-writing. I guess if I had to label myself I would be a centrist and quite possibly an egalitarian.

    But I still feel in general that Feminism and other Civil Rights movements have kept a rightful check on religious practices which have curtailed people's freedoms, it is has clamped down on religious orthodoxy by and large and that is a good thing.

    One interesting thing that occurred to me last night the application of hate speech laws and the Equality Act in the UK. How it squares with discriminatory religious practice is a mystery to me. Case in point the non-existant numbers of female mullas and imams. From a feminist point of view this is a situation ripe for affirmative action and gender quotas. It does not appear to be evenly applied, for instance in Christianity this is steadily happening as there are more and more female vicars and I think there may be a female bishop in several years time. So this is an example of the church becoming more progressive and changing its views. Why can't Islam do the same in the West?

    Or is it an "have a cake and eat it" situation? Equality laws, anti-discriminatory laws and hate speech laws protect Islam in the UK but overlook numerous breaches of these laws within Islam? I mean what it is? Islam is just another religion like Christianity, or it is a case that some religions are more equal than others? In fact if equality, anti-discriminatory and hate speech laws were enforced with Islam in the UK and other pro-liberal European countries it would totally destroy the right-wing, populist platform, and of course vindicate the left-wing and liberal-inspired equality laws, anti-discriminatory laws and hate speech laws.

    The point is the application of these laws is going to be more important as Muslim communities become larger and larger, there's probably going to be more waves of immigration over the next ten, twenty years as the Middle East continues to be engulfed by several warzones and numerous political and religious tensions. Before 9/11 no gave a damn about Muslim populations living in European countries, they were just there. If anything Europe should look to Russia- for hundreds of years there was harmony between Christians and Muslims (before the Soviet Union and some time later after the collapse of the Soviet Union).

    I only know this much Islamic society and Western society are very different. So my only prediction is that this difference is going to become more and more obvious in the next ten and twenty years in Europe- unless of course there is a widespread Feminist and/or Renaissance movement in the Middle-East.

    Now I recognize Islam, Quran and Muhammed as being genuinely coming from God, it is Divine. I'm not a Muslim but I believe it. Muhammed came from God like Jesus and Moses did. But just like Christianity had to adapt and evolve to reflect changing times, so to does Islam. The horrors that are happening in the Middle East is because large parts of Islam are stuck in the past.

    Guess where the biggest source of Islamophobia comes from? Other Muslims: ISIS, extremist groups, orthodox versus secular, Sunni vs Shia. The biggest enemies of Muslim are Muslims, they don't need SJWs or Feminists or left-wing groups to protect them. Muslims know how to protect themselves as they have very strong, tight-knit communities- which is of course arising from laws in the Quran.

    The hate that far-right groups have towards Muslims pales in comparison to the hate some Muslims have shown to their brothers and sisters in the Islamic faith.

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    6 hours ago, Ln X said:

    It does not appear to be evenly applied, for instance in Christianity this is steadily happening as there are more and more female vicars and I think there may be a female bishop in several years time. So this is an example of the church becoming more progressive and changing its views. Why can't Islam do the same in the West?

    If you believe that things like the Bible and the Koran are "from God," then why would these things need to happen. I don't know about the Koran, but the Bible is rather explicit about this. People can make their own decisions about whether the Bible's claims to female leadership are valid or not, but they are unambiguous.

    Furthermore, the idea that these things need to happen undermines the actual contributions that women may have in these communities. Were they promoted to such positions for their scholarship and spirituality, or because the church leaders thought it would be good publicity? Why is "progress" measured by how well modern religion conforms to modern social standards? Isn't the point of religion to provide a reference point for society, not the other way around? Society need not follow the guidelines of religion, but why is that the metric?

    If that is the case, then what if, in 150 years, we are all back to being misogynistic patriarchs, and the religions of the day are arguing that women demand respect, and should be allowed to serve and have other basic freedoms? Will we criticize them then for failing to be enlightened in the patriarchy?

    The judgment of these things in terms of integration, or on matters of how well these religions accommodate modern thinking about these topics is absurd. The very notion that it is "better" because they conform more to our modern sensibilities in fact denies these religions their most basic claim of philosophical truth. While I agree that you can find fault with them however you want, suggesting that they are real, and then judging them by whatever modern metric you decide is valid is ridiculous. Either you acknowledge the religion for its claims and its trappings, or you deny it, what it stands for, and what it tries to say about the human condition and the world.

    Oh, here's a link: http://www.skeptic.com/reading_room/conceptual-penis-social-contruct-sokal-style-hoax-on-gender-studies/

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    1 hour ago, APSMS said:

    If you believe that things like the Bible and the Koran are "from God," then why would these things need to happen. I don't know about the Koran, but the Bible is rather explicit about this. People can make their own decisions about whether the Bible's claims to female leadership are valid or not, but they are unambiguous.

    Furthermore, the idea that these things need to happen undermines the actual contributions that women may have in these communities. Were they promoted to such positions for their scholarship and spirituality, or because the church leaders thought it would be good publicity? Why is "progress" measured by how well modern religion conforms to modern social standards? Isn't the point of religion to provide a reference point for society, not the other way around? Society need not follow the guidelines of religion, but why is that the metric?

    If that is the case, then what if, in 150 years, we are all back to being misogynistic patriarchs, and the religions of the day are arguing that women demand respect, and should be allowed to serve and have other basic freedoms? Will we criticize them then for failing to be enlightened in the patriarchy?

    The judgment of these things in terms of integration, or on matters of how well these religions accommodate modern thinking about these topics is absurd. The very notion that it is "better" because they conform more to our modern sensibilities in fact denies these religions their most basic claim of philosophical truth. While I agree that you can find fault with them however you want, suggesting that they are real, and then judging them by whatever modern metric you decide is valid is ridiculous. Either you acknowledge the religion for its claims and its trappings, or you deny it, what it stands for, and what it tries to say about the human condition and the world.

    Oh, here's a link: http://www.skeptic.com/reading_room/conceptual-penis-social-contruct-sokal-style-hoax-on-gender-studies/

    For the very first sentence you wrote it's simple God tests us: if a Great Being from the Sky really came down and told us what to do would there be any evil or suffering or despair in the world? In this mortal world there is no evidence to prove that God exists, that heaven exists, that souls exist, that the words of the Prophets had a Divine origin, that there were miracles and the like- not one shred of evidence. And there never will be. Which is why there is faith

    Believe me there is progress and I'm glad religion is conforming to modern social standards. Do you want the dark days of superstition, of heresy, of rampant homophobia, of sexism, of a patriarchal society to come back? Which brings me to your third paragraph- it is NEVER going back to a patriarchy. Far from it as the reverse is happening and in many parts of the third-world and developing world lots of women are fighting for better conditions, equality, justice and cultural standards, women in India, Iran, the Middle-East and elsewhere. The obstacles for these women are numerous ones which are cultural and religious.

    Religion is not a static thing, it evolves with the sensibilities of the time. While I believe all monotheistic religions have in general good moral guidelines, it is inherently false to say that religion brought morality to humanity. Morality has always existed but there are always new situations, events, technologies and beliefs which add complexity to the application of morality. Furthermore one must consider the period of origin for these religions- this period of origin has shaped the laws and views on morality which each religion espouses.

    For the fourth paragraph one can do both: acknowledge its (religion's) good parts and bad parts. But one can cherry pick the good bits of religion and ignore the bad bits in relation to modern moral values, like Christianity has done today. Christianity has by and large adapted to the modern world and those moral teachings of the Bible (in particular the New Testament) are those that have been timeless: tolerance, love of ones neighbour, forgiveness, justice, etc...

    In the times of heresy, witch-burnings, punishment of adulterers and the like, all of it was justified because the Bible said so- because it was at the time the morally right thing to do. It was morally right because it had been interpreted as God's Will. Which brings the shocking thing about religion: anything can be justified, no matter how wicked or wrong, if enough people believe that definition and are willing to live their lives by that interpretation. Case in point: ISIS. They believe they are following the most purest form of Islam, they believe it so much that they will kill anybody who disagrees- Muslim or not. This is manifest delusion on the point of ISIS.

     

    Thanks for the link! I could do with a laugh!

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    7 hours ago, Ln X said:

    But one can cherry pick the good bits of religion and ignore the bad bits in relation to modern moral values, like Christianity has done today. Christianity has by and large adapted to the modern world and those moral teachings of the Bible (in particular the New Testament) are those that have been timeless: tolerance, love of ones neighbour, forgiveness, justice, etc...

    This cherry picking is inherently a falsehood. It's like saying I can cherry pick the bits of science that I want to consider valid, because some parts agree with my worldview more than others. If the Bible, or Koran, or Tanakh (Jewish Bible) are what they say they are, then they deliver philosophical truth about the human condition. If this is truth, and you accept it as such, then you cannot cherry pick it any more than you can be the arbiter of valid scientific knowledge.

    Of course, people can and will do as they want, but I think it is a falsehood to both suggest their validity at the same time that one denies their authority. One cannot be without the other, nor can you decide at a whim which parts are true or not, because then that religions' claims are no longer valid; a falacy if, and only if, you have already stated them to be true.

    8 hours ago, Ln X said:

    In the times of heresy, witch-burnings, punishment of adulterers and the like, all of it was justified because the Bible said so- because it was at the time the morally right thing to do. It was morally right because it had been interpreted as God's Will. Which brings the shocking thing about religion: anything can be justified, no matter how wicked or wrong, if enough people believe that definition and are willing to live their lives by that interpretation.

    This can be said of any ideology. More people were murdered in the name of Communism and Social Darwinism than were ever murdered in the name of religion. Over 100 million, by my count, if you consider Mao in China and Stalin in Russia. Justification is a thin veil with which people convince themselves that they are doing the right thing. Anyone who ever paid close attention to the New Testament would have found out very quickly that it does not allow Christians to kill evildoers, but they used it to justify their actions regardless of what it actually said. Even in the Old Testament, not only did one need to seek out a number of witnesses to secure a conviction, but in the case of a death penalty, the accuser/testifier/lead witness was required to throw the first stone; that is, they needed to have the conviction to have that person's blood on their hands should they have testified falsely. I didn't see this followed in medieval practices either; hangings and witch burnings and the like remove a lot of the physical action that make taking someone's life much more difficult, and require true conviction about the process and the guilt.

    8 hours ago, Ln X said:

    For the very first sentence you wrote it's simple God tests us: if a Great Being from the Sky really came down and told us what to do would there be any evil or suffering or despair in the world? In this mortal world there is no evidence to prove that God exists, that heaven exists, that souls exist, that the words of the Prophets had a Divine origin, that there were miracles and the like- not one shred of evidence. And there never will be. Which is why there is faith

    Er...sure, I can't actually prove to you in physically a verifiable manner that God exists, but that's not the point. My point was that the Bible is really unambiguous about the validity of things like female pastors. People in Christian religions that allow female preachers and vicars don't use the Bible to support their position, and for good reason. If you were to crack it open and have a look, it says no. Now, again, you can argue that such a position is untenable and invalid, but not if you suggest that the Bible is truth from God. Inherently, if such a position is untenable, then it cannot be truth, and is therefore not from God.

    I suspect the next point about evil is an interesting one, laden with the trappings that follow the misguided teachings about the devil. I would suggest that most of the evil that exists in the world is because God gave man free will, and in an effort to provide humans with a source of redemption, God allows suffering and evil because the alternative is total annihilation, since man (who is evil) cannot be compatible with God (as the monotheistic religions portray him). Whether you believe that there is a literal devil or not (satan literally means 'adversary' in Hebrew), mankind has shown itself to be very capable of evil, and removal of evil would therefore necessitate removal of people from the world, which would be counter to the purpose of religion, which is to provide humans with a path to redemption and enlightenment (there's a whole lot of stuff I'm glossing over; it's not that simple, but for the sake of argument and generalization it's not inaccurate).

    I feel like the question of evil and despair is like the advice given to one of my favorite cartoon characters when he was getting his fortune told. Your future is full of struggle and anguish, most of it self-inflicted. If God gives us free-will, then evil in the world (at least that which is perpetuated by other human beings) is our own doing.

    If you have faith, then why is there a need to reconcile religious principles or teachings with modern social constructs or trends? That is not faith. That is justification of current ideology in context of faith (so the same thing as justification you previously mentioned, whereby religion was used to justify evils like the Inquisition, only with less "offensive" concepts). God says love everyone so he can't possibly mean that we should hate people who do wrong. Well, that's true, but that same section of the Bible tells you to abominate evil, which is still an order of magnitude less strong than the original Greek intonation. Either all is true, or none is true, but you won't hear most people talk about the second part. You can, of course, debate on what evil is, but the second part about evil comes up rarely enough that that discussion almost never happens.

    I'm really saying that cherry picking isn't a valid option iff. you are suggesting that the religions as delivered along with their texts are, in fact, true. If that is not the case, then of course this line of reasoning doesn't matter.

    8 hours ago, Ln X said:

    While I believe all monotheistic religions have in general good moral guidelines, it is inherently false to say that religion brought morality to humanity. Morality has always existed but there are always new situations, events, technologies and beliefs which add complexity to the application of morality.

    Hopefully I never implied that religion was the basis for human moral inclinations. I would suggest, however, that religion provides a solid basis for interpreting human morality as it relates to application. Other bases can be made which serve as substitutes for those who deny religion's authority in the matter. Getting a solid agreement on an alternative basis for human moral agreement has been difficult, however; the law (of any given country; the UN is not an arbiter of justice, as the exclusion of Taiwan and the lack of membership of the Vatican should clearly show) cannot provide such a basis, and those who have suggested that it should have always been sorely disappointed, in particular because laws can be changed to either more or less agreeable moral terms for any particular group, whereas religious texts remain largely unchanged over time (interpretations will always exist but even in the Islamic and Jewish traditions the codified interpretations were never part of the original texts, but always distinctly separate entities which did not claim divine inspiration, but whose earthly authority was accepted).

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  • Original Poster
  • On 2017-5-20 at 4:55 PM, Ln X said:

    Nah, I enjoy my life and I'm very privileged to live in the UK and to be with the family I have. Now I do have a passing interest in these topics that's about it, I do enjoy debating with you though! But I'm not political, merely curious. Part of that curiosity stems from story-writing. I guess if I had to label myself I would be a centrist and quite possibly an egalitarian.

    Good, I have certainly enjoyed it so far as well :)

    On 2017-5-20 at 4:55 PM, Ln X said:

    One interesting thing that occurred to me last night the application of hate speech laws and the Equality Act in the UK. How it squares with discriminatory religious practice is a mystery to me. Case in point the non-existant numbers of female mullas and imams. From a feminist point of view this is a situation ripe for affirmative action and gender quotas. It does not appear to be evenly applied, for instance in Christianity this is steadily happening as there are more and more female vicars and I think there may be a female bishop in several years time. So this is an example of the church becoming more progressive and changing its views. Why can't Islam do the same in the West?

    First, religion has always had a special status in a lot of places. Second, the church of England is more open to women, but the church of England is not a very representative church for Christianity, certainly not in the West. In that sense, Islam isn't very different from the average churches in Europe or the United States. 

    On 2017-5-20 at 4:55 PM, Ln X said:

    Or is it an "have a cake and eat it" situation? Equality laws, anti-discriminatory laws and hate speech laws protect Islam in the UK but overlook numerous breaches of these laws within Islam? I mean what it is? Islam is just another religion like Christianity, or it is a case that some religions are more equal than others? In fact if equality, anti-discriminatory and hate speech laws were enforced with Islam in the UK and other pro-liberal European countries it would totally destroy the right-wing, populist platform, and of course vindicate the left-wing and liberal-inspired equality laws, anti-discriminatory laws and hate speech laws.

    Its not like those equality laws are the reason for the Church of England to be more open to women. Its a decision they made for themselves, not something that was forced in order to comply to some type of law. 

    On 2017-5-20 at 4:55 PM, Ln X said:

    If anything Europe should look to Russia- for hundreds of years there was harmony between Christians and Muslims (before the Soviet Union and some time later after the collapse of the Soviet Union).

    If by 'harmony' you mean brutally suppress dissent then yeah, Russia is a great example. 

    On 2017-5-20 at 4:55 PM, Ln X said:

    Now I recognize Islam, Quran and Muhammed as being genuinely coming from God, it is Divine. I'm not a Muslim but I believe it. Muhammed came from God like Jesus and Moses did. But just like Christianity had to adapt and evolve to reflect changing times, so to does Islam. The horrors that are happening in the Middle East is because large parts of Islam are stuck in the past.

    Religion is never the reason for a war. Its windowdressing that some people use to justify a war, but its not the reason. If people in the Middle East were all Buddhists or Atheists or Christians or whatever you like, we would still see the same types of conflicts as we see right now. Nothing would have been different. The problem therefor is not that Islam is stuck in the past and the solution to these conflicts is not that Islam needs to change.  

    Ignore religion, its a non issue, a distraction used by certain people to divert your attention from the real issues. A way to emphasize differences that keep people from seeing the overwhelming amount of similarities. 

    On 2017-5-20 at 4:55 PM, Ln X said:

    Guess where the biggest source of Islamophobia comes from? Other Muslims: ISIS, extremist groups, orthodox versus secular, Sunni vs Shia. The biggest enemies of Muslim are Muslims, they don't need SJWs or Feminists or left-wing groups to protect them. Muslims know how to protect themselves as they have very strong, tight-knit communities- which is of course arising from laws in the Quran.

    The hate that far-right groups have towards Muslims pales in comparison to the hate some Muslims have shown to their brothers and sisters in the Islamic faith.

    Thats a logical fallacy. Just because you have one enemy that hates you to your very core doesn't mean you can't have more enemies that also hate you, albeit slightly less than the first enemy. And I very much doubt it that people don't like it when other people want to stand by their side and support them. Even if they supposedly don't need it. 

    But thats of course false. Yeah, ISIS and other extremists groups are responsible for a lot of dead Muslims. In the Middle East. But they don't really operate in Europe all that much and when they do they don't target Muslims. Muslims in Europe don't have to fear ISIS, or else they wouldn't be fleeing to Europe. But right wing xenophobic groups? Europe has plenty of those. 

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    18 hours ago, LexusInfernus said:

    Good, I have certainly enjoyed it so far as well :)

    Religion is never the reason for a war. Its windowdressing that some people use to justify a war, but its not the reason. If people in the Middle East were all Buddhists or Atheists or Christians or whatever you like, we would still see the same types of conflicts as we see right now. Nothing would have been different. The problem therefor is not that Islam is stuck in the past and the solution to these conflicts is not that Islam needs to change.  

    Ignore religion, its a non issue, a distraction used by certain people to divert your attention from the real issues. A way to emphasize differences that keep people from seeing the overwhelming amount of similarities. 

     

    Thanks!

     

    Yes, at its true core religion is a front to justify war and oppression when it has happened throughout history. But I fundamentally disagree with what you said next about how the types of conflict in the Middle East would have been different if there were all Buddhists, Atheists or Christians or whatever... The Shia vs Sunni conflicts, Saudi Arabia vs Iran, Salafism/Wahhabism vs the rest of Islam, the Byzantium Empire versus the Persian Empire and Arabian Empire, the Crusades, the wars the Ottoman Empire waged against Europe, the Armenian Genocide, the Iraq vs Iran war...

    It's not that Islam has never been liberal or tolerant- see its hey day with the Arabian Empire. The issue is Wahabbism, and how it takes a very fundamentalist approach to Islam and tries to emulate as much as possible Muhammed and his most earliest pious followers. There is the cultural component of Bid'ah which helps to place changing practices, new technologies and systems into the vast Islamic culture. Bid'ah is religious innovation and a key tenet of Wahabbism is rejection of Bid'ah. So that's a big problem when you want to emulate the ways of someone who is living not only in the 7th century AD but at a time when slavery, tribal violence, polygamy and patriarchy were standard practice. Islam is a very practical religion and one of the first to exhort the values of the state and of country, the Prophet Muhammed himself was an incredibly practical man who became a tribal warlord to help create a proper country/empire/state in Arabia at the time. So putting aside all questions of morality, does it make any sense to emulate the practical ways of a man who lived in the late 6th and early 7th centuries?

    This rejection of Bid'ah probably explains why, after the Iranian Revolution, countries like Iran, Afghanistan, Egypt and others in the Middle East became far more stricter about Islamic tradition. Western clothing, the lax application of veils and headscarfs all changed overnight. Even for women university students who went to Western countries to study their style of dress changed too. It was conform or face the mutaween (religious police and generally a Wahabbi practice).

    So the problem is not religious attire but the systems which enforce it through violence and oppression, systems which are found in large parts of the Middle East. Which is why so many Middle Eastern countries have human rights problems and violations. The most peaceful and prosperous of countries which reconciled Islamic practice with Modern values were: Libya, Turkey, Syria, Jordan and Israel. Libya is now a failed state and has fallen to the scourge of Wahabbism and Islamic extremism, Turkey is moving steadily closer to Salafism/Wahabbism, Syria has been devastated and could have fallen to Wahabbism had the Islamic militant scum prevailed, Jordan has thankfully dodged a war but is burdened with refugees and Israel has a large Muslim population (17.5%) and where Jews and Muslims live side-by-side VERY peacefully- as it should be and as it was for most of Islam's existence.

    But these Wahabbis... What the right wing don't seem to see is that many of the problems reported in Germany and Sweden from the influx of refugees: no-go zones, rapes, low-level violence, gangs of men, etc. has by and large been caused by a small number of individuals who are extremely committed to Wahabbi practice.

    It is also Islamic militants and Wahabbi extremists that have, since 2014, caused a Christian exodus in the Middle East and North Africa (including parts of South Asia). It's bordering on a low-level, slow and fragmented genocide of Christians. Which is another insult to Islam because its Quranic law to protect peoples of previous revelations (Moses and Jesus).

     

     

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  • On 2017-5-22 at 5:22 PM, Ln X said:

    Yes, at its true core religion is a front to justify war and oppression when it has happened throughout history. But I fundamentally disagree with what you said next about how the types of conflict in the Middle East would have been different if there were all Buddhists, Atheists or Christians or whatever... The Shia vs Sunni conflicts, Saudi Arabia vs Iran, Salafism/Wahhabism vs the rest of Islam, the Byzantium Empire versus the Persian Empire and Arabian Empire, the Crusades, the wars the Ottoman Empire waged against Europe, the Armenian Genocide, the Iraq vs Iran war...

    I said those types of conflicts would still have happened if there wasn't any Islam in the Middle East. How is the Shia vs Sunni conflict any different than the other thousands of tribal conflicts humanity has seen over the ages? They all fundamentally boil down to access to wealth, power and resources. Its jealousy and the inability of humans to share their wealth with people that belong to a different group. Whether that group is based on skin color, blood ties, political conviction or religious affiliation is just a minor detail. If there hadn't been a schism in Islam, Muslims still would have butchered each other over resources, they would have just found another justification for it. 

    Also, any type of conflict that involves 'empires' is per definition fought over non religious reasons. Thats states clashing with each other, meaning the decision to go to war is an inherently political decision. And religion doesn't come into play with politics, even if politicians dress it up as such. Its without exception always about access to wealth, territory/resources or simply power. 

    Quote

    It's not that Islam has never been liberal or tolerant- see its hey day with the Arabian Empire. The issue is Wahabbism, and how it takes a very fundamentalist approach to Islam and tries to emulate as much as possible Muhammed and his most earliest pious followers. There is the cultural component of Bid'ah which helps to place changing practices, new technologies and systems into the vast Islamic culture. Bid'ah is religious innovation and a key tenet of Wahabbism is rejection of Bid'ah. So that's a big problem when you want to emulate the ways of someone who is living not only in the 7th century AD but at a time when slavery, tribal violence, polygamy and patriarchy were standard practice. Islam is a very practical religion and one of the first to exhort the values of the state and of country, the Prophet Muhammed himself was an incredibly practical man who became a tribal warlord to help create a proper country/empire/state in Arabia at the time. So putting aside all questions of morality, does it make any sense to emulate the practical ways of a man who lived in the late 6th and early 7th centuries?

    Alright, but the issue here is not religion, its conservatism which in this case takes the form of religious conservatism. But really, how does Wahhabism differ from say American political conservatism as found in groups like the tea party? Both groups advocate a return to a supposedly 'pure' form of society. Wahhabism wants to achieve this through a 'pure' form of Islam, American conservatives by 'returning' to the constitution. 

    Really, Wahhabism is no different than any other form of Conservative ideology ever thought up by man. The only difference is the social construct it hitches its sales pitch on. For Wahhabism its religion, for the Tea Party its the founding document of the United States, for German Romanticists it were the Middle Ages, etc. 

    Quote

    This rejection of Bid'ah probably explains why, after the Iranian Revolution, countries like Iran, Afghanistan, Egypt and others in the Middle East became far more stricter about Islamic tradition. Western clothing, the lax application of veils and headscarfs all changed overnight. Even for women university students who went to Western countries to study their style of dress changed too. It was conform or face the mutaween (religious police and generally a Wahabbi practice).

    Unlikely given that Wahhabism is a Sunni sect and Iran is a Shia country. The Iranian revolution had nothing to do with Wahhabists taking over the country. 

    The reason why Saudi Arabia became more orthodox was because the Iranian revolution did show that extremists within Islam could be a powerful political force. Placate them and they would be less likely to stage their own little revolution. In countries like Egypt and Tunisia making overtures to religious political groups was a way for those dictators to legitimize their own rule. After all, they only do all that dictating to protect the Islamic community from harmful outside influence. In Afghanistan, it were the Soviets that demolished the much more modern government with their little invasion stunt. Then the Americans funded and armed what would become the religious extremists who took over after they kicked the Soviets out. And in Syria, Assad literally gave shelter to the precursor of ISIS so he could claim there were extremists operating in his country and he needed Western aid to destroy them. Also it allowed him to clamp down on dissent under the guise of stopping terrorists. He never actually went after the real terrorists except once in a while if he needed to show the West some little form of progress.

    Quote

    So the problem is not religious attire but the systems which enforce it through violence and oppression, systems which are found in large parts of the Middle East. Which is why so many Middle Eastern countries have human rights problems and violations. The most peaceful and prosperous of countries which reconciled Islamic practice with Modern values were: Libya, Turkey, Syria, Jordan and Israel. Libya is now a failed state and has fallen to the scourge of Wahabbism and Islamic extremism, Turkey is moving steadily closer to Salafism/Wahabbism, Syria has been devastated and could have fallen to Wahabbism had the Islamic militant scum prevailed, Jordan has thankfully dodged a war but is burdened with refugees and Israel has a large Muslim population (17.5%) and where Jews and Muslims live side-by-side VERY peacefully- as it should be and as it was for most of Islam's existence.

    Then the problem is again not religion, but rather the totalitarian/autocratic governments that enforce certain policies and use religion to justify those policies. Do you really think that if tomorrow all of a sudden everyone in the Middle East, including the governments, convert to Buddhism, women are suddenly allowed to drive in Saudi Arabia? And people won't be lashed anymore for adultery? Or hanged because they are gay? Of course not, those things will continue for as long as the governments in power are totalitarian or autocratic in nature. 

    Oh, and a side note, Turkey follows its own particular sect within Islam. If it were up to Wahhabists/Salafists, Turks would be forcibly converted or killed as heretics. So I doubt that what you see there is Wahhabism, all the more strengthening my point that religion isn't the cause of whats happening over there. 

    Quote

    But these Wahabbis... What the right wing don't seem to see is that many of the problems reported in Germany and Sweden from the influx of refugees: no-go zones, rapes, low-level violence, gangs of men, etc. has by and large been caused by a small number of individuals who are extremely committed to Wahabbi practice.

    Oh please. The supposed influx of crime in Sweden is right wing talking heads not understanding statistics or downright making up statistics. And when they do happen and are committed by actual refugees, there is no evidence whatsoever that they are Wahhabis (mostly because no one asks what sect within Islam you belong to) or that they commit their crimes because thats what Wahhabism wants them to do. Those 'crimes' are more the result of failing integration policies than anything else. Yeah, crime does happen a lot more if you pack a bunch of people in a low income neighborhood and don't ensure they have good access to education, jobs and a social support structure. Same thing would have happened if all those people were Swedes. How do I know that? Because violent crime happened before the first Muslim immigrant ever set foot on Swedish soil as well. Probably more often than it does today. 

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    14 hours ago, LexusInfernus said:

    Really, Wahhabism is no different than any other form of Conservative ideology ever thought up by man. The only difference is the social construct it hitches its sales pitch on. For Wahhabism its religion, for the Tea Party its the founding document of the United States, for German Romanticists it were the Middle Ages, etc. 

    Er...The Constitution is actual law, and is actually stated as being the basis of governance for the country. The Supreme Court's stated job is to rule on whether legislation passed by Congress is Constitutional, so I would argue that although certain factions like the Tea Party have used the Constitution as a prop to support their social agenda, the constitution is not, fundamentally, a social construct.

    The constitution is what provides the federal government the authority to rule over the states. If it has been reduced to merely a social construct, then we have a serious problem with how our country is being run, and how it's functioning. The constitution is what defines what constitutes the valid and lawful federal government of the US. I would suggest that there is far less social commentary than a lot of people ascribe to it, but if it is truly outdated, then the solution is to make a new one or amend it properly, as ignoring it comes at the peril of basic rights like the right to privacy, freedom of expression, and protection from self-incrimination, among others. I notice most of these rights have already been abridged by acts of Congress, which I would posit shows the peril of treating the Constitution as a dead social experiment between a bunch of state governments and their combined federal protector.

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  • 9 hours ago, APSMS said:

    Er...The Constitution is actual law, and is actually stated as being the basis of governance for the country. The Supreme Court's stated job is to rule on whether legislation passed by Congress is Constitutional, so I would argue that although certain factions like the Tea Party have used the Constitution as a prop to support their social agenda, the constitution is not, fundamentally, a social construct.

    The constitution is what provides the federal government the authority to rule over the states. If it has been reduced to merely a social construct, then we have a serious problem with how our country is being run, and how it's functioning. The constitution is what defines what constitutes the valid and lawful federal government of the US. I would suggest that there is far less social commentary than a lot of people ascribe to it, but if it is truly outdated, then the solution is to make a new one or amend it properly, as ignoring it comes at the peril of basic rights like the right to privacy, freedom of expression, and protection from self-incrimination, among others. I notice most of these rights have already been abridged by acts of Congress, which I would posit shows the peril of treating the Constitution as a dead social experiment between a bunch of state governments and their combined federal protector.

    I'm not trying to argue that people should just ignore the Constitution or that the Constitution has no value or something. Certainly its the foundation on which all other laws are build on. Legally its one of the most important set of laws in the United States. But like any set of laws, it should not be something immutable. Times change and laws need to be updated to account for technological advances, changing social attitudes and the challenges that come with modernity. And sure, some of the rights that stem from the constitution are as close to timeless as one can get, but certain amendements need to be added or scrapped now and then. 

    But this almost mythical power the Tea Party and other 'lets go back to the Constitution' conservatives assing to it does show that it has also become a sort of social construct. One that has nothing to do with the actual document or its legal implication, but rather with the idea that 'back when' the constitution was basically the only law in America, things where at their best. To these people, 'the Constitution' does not so much refer to a legal document but rather a whole set of ideas and assorted identities of what a 'great' America looks like. In a lot of ways, this form of constitutionalism looks a whole lot like a religion, with the founding fathers as its prophets, the constitution its holy text, Tea Party politicians its priests and Conservative media outlets its church. 

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    As I believe this thread is mainly about mixing up cultural habits with religion (something like 'christians are more democrat') I think I am free to mention here that

    The Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) this week announced a stricter dress code for their members.

    Quote:

    Skirts, skorts, and shorts must now be "long enough to not see your bottom area (even if covered by under shorts) at any time, standing or bent over.

    This should be taken as an argument, that christians are affected by very different parts of the female body which - obviously - makes it a much more intelligent and less surpressing culture compared to those who want to cover the womans face. About freedom - it's a little bit where to set emphasis, isn't it?

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    Muslim Women are not allowed to show off their butts or boobs either. Muslim women are supposed to wear clothing at least almost as conservative as a nun's habit but lay Christian women (and even lectors, pretty much everyone beneath a nun) are expected to dress modestly but far less modestly than a habit. Conservative lay women in as late as the rennaissance era wore habits or veils but haven't since then.

     

    Western Feminism has its roots in the Christian church because for a long time, women had more rights in the chuch than they did in secular society. A medieval nun had far more rights, privileges and power than maid, cook, or other peasant/serf woman. Even Judaism respected women more than most contemporary cultures before Christ. There were oppressive rules but also protective/liberating rules that helped faithful housewives and virtuous women. Islam was a step backwards when it came to equality and progress.

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    I know, instead of digging deeper into culture it's much easier to make religion the culprit. You save much work. And most probably I'm the stupid to make so many thoughts while I could be lucky instead naming always a culprit that's not me.

    But still whether the Bible nor the Koran holds an explict dress code the same way as many regional, school or company resolutions do, mostly different for males and females like at Disney f.e.

    Instead, if you go back in times – where this all started you may discover that in the arid climates of the middle east clothes first were used to distinguish lower and upper class people. If you weren't dressed well and covered your hair you soon had the desert dust everywhere – you were dirty. Slaves and farmers were dirty, they had dirty fingernails and scruffy hair and they were uneducated. So half clothed people were dirty people and they were the uneducated people.

    egypt-slaves.jpg

    But there were also the fine people, the clean ones who had the money for fine fabric and to cover their whole body with it and under their clothes the stayed clean. And they used sharp stones to cut facial and genital hair. This is where the idear of 'purity' was born and from there leads a trace to the meaning of the word 'virginity' in a religious sense. It's a clean, taintless body and to keep it taintless you'll cover it. All this was done by social distinction - no religion anywhere.

    205588744_6a2a6357b5.jpg

    This is long before the monotheist religions got strong and even the burqa wasn't invented by Islam' but instead has its origins in Hinduism.

    These are Hindu woman:

    220px-Veil_Ghoonghat.jpg

    And this is an ancient greek statue from ~300 BC, far away from Islam, and it's showing an upper class woman:

    Kostuem-griech-33.jpg

    The facial cover is a sign of purity and sublimity – as you still have it as symbolism on wedding dresses – and wedding dresses are the same on this, no matter on which culture or religion we are. The hidden - that's the idear of the sancturay, the holy. You can't touch it, even not with your eyes.

    So this should be a first clear sign – those things about the female body appearing in variations in almost every religion and culture – that it's totally crap to say this is a product of a certain religion. It isn't – even christian brides wear veils to show purity and virginity. The idear of purity is universal.

     

    Now the first religion to apply this cultural feature of social difference and education as a question of ethics ( a sign you keep your body clean for God to show good manners for God and don't walk around like a godless slave) was Judaism. As you may know Christianity is a split-off from Judaism and for the first 60 years only jews could become christians – you had to be a jew before and respect jewish laws to be baptized. Therefore christian religion hadn't the need to develop a separated dress code until the christian church became institutionalized – and those dress codes are exclusive for uniforms – the dressing of a nun is the same as a dressing of a cardinal or a priest – they indicate a rank in the institutional hierarchy and aren't linked to common christian ethics but have their own symbolism – again, like in Islam there is no special dress code in Christianity so it can strongly vary from country to country.

    But there is nothing in Islam regarding clothes you can regard as an invention. The burqa has its origin in eastern culture not in Islam.

    To cover the body to show you are of good eductation is a sign social prestige in almost all cultures. Religion just took this 'good education' to make it a principle of 'serving God'.

     

    To my knowledge first time that changed in France at the royal court – when the rich woman wanted to show all their richness and wanted also to show the richness of their body - to show they are in good shape and not suffering like those drought poor. And therefore they needed a deep décolleté.

    1bf624abf1408660749ea0acdd35b2d8.jpg

    This is absolutely not aligned to freedom of choice or feminism but only to decadence. It's aligned to the royals. Woman didn't gain any rights with the change of fashion. You have the same today at the oscars or on pop music. They show much of their body not for being feminist or being liberated but to play a game called 'upper society'.

     

    Now basically – what you do is to abuse femnism to defend high society games against religion. But against a specific religion - the religion of the poor.

     

    And to me, that's sad on both ends. You just throw both into the dirt – religion and feminism. Just to verify - the best educated, they also do best. They are most feminist.

    As in ancient times – the uncovered woman was object to man, his slave, not the covered woman. And in the deserts sands, the woman that could cover her face was the privileged. And now we play the game just vice versa.

     

    And now people use tradition by saying – your Jehova offends my Kant. Your God offends my atheism, my believe in high society . Can't get more absurd. Using feminism just to verify the line between lower class and upper class. Those people believing in God - they are poor in mind. And we are rich.

    Now to be upper class you have to be a feminist. It shows education and superiority against those half barbarian still covering their women. As if they still living in the dessert sands. Those desert people, the primitive class - the backward part of globalization.

     

    I wish I could make you see how decadent it is to make dress code a case of feminism, when you use it to distingush yourself from the dessert people. To say – I'm better than those dusteaters. The uneducated slaves hiding their woman, the sun kings showing their wifes breasts on facebook.

    Well, if we had less domestic violence doing so - maybe I could agree.

    As long - there is absolutely no feminism in this. The pressure on woman – how they have to be to please society – it's still the same like 2000 years ago. Only fashion changed. Nothing else. And if you take Jesus or Kant to argue why you do better on your women than those others, it's an upper class mind game to establish the superiority of a certain dress code.

    So next time I'll post here – I'll show you that my believe in Isaac Newton to be the true messiah is the best feminism of all.

    All the speed limits on the streets - they are suppression. All those rules are suppression. Except the rules I agree with. And so all culture is suppression except the culture I like.

    Now - isn't this the way an islamist terrorist would see the world? So we, using feminism the same way as he uses religion - where's exactly the difference?

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    15 hours ago, Fantozzi said:

    As you may know Christianity is a split-off from Judaism and for the first 60 years only jews could become christians – you had to be a jew before and respect jewish laws to be baptized.

    Actually there's a whole section of the New Testament that explains why this isn't true. Assuming that the Bible has at least some historical value, then the assumption that you had to be Jewish to be Christian stopped pretty early on, say around 40 AD. The NT books/letters themselves didn't start to be properly compiled until later (~100 AD, which I assume is what you're going by), but the texts still existed long before then, assuming authorship claims mean anything at all in a modern context, and unlike OT authorship claims (like Isaiah or Daniel) I see no reason for them to be seriously contested.

    It is true that perhaps the Christian dress code (which is more of a guideline than anything else) was influenced both by Jewish tradition and Roman/Hellenistic cultural realities, but the real formalities that we associate with the Catholic church didn't really formulate until well after the fall of the Roman Empire. Polygamy continued well into the middle ages, and Popes and clergy were still allowed to marry until around 1000 or so, IIRC, and even then the main reason it was instituted was, I believe, because clergy were leaving church property that was not theirs to their descendants in their will, and the church was losing significant assets because somehow these wills that gave away unowned possessions were being honored. I imagine the statute dress for nuns and priests was also not properly formalized until well after the church became a national institution, though undoubtedly the trend for it started very early on.

    16 hours ago, Fantozzi said:

    All the speed limits on the streets - they are suppression. All those rules are suppression. Except the rules I agree with. And so all culture is suppression except the culture I like.

    Now - isn't this the way an islamist terrorist would see the world? So we, using feminism the same way as he uses religion - where's exactly the difference?

    Sounds pretty accurate to me. Clearly the way in which we present feminist ideas needs to change.

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  • On 21-7-2017 at 5:16 PM, Fantozzi said:

    All the speed limits on the streets - they are suppression. All those rules are suppression. Except the rules I agree with. And so all culture is suppression except the culture I like.

    Now - isn't this the way an islamist terrorist would see the world? So we, using feminism the same way as he uses religion - where's exactly the difference?

    Well there is the problem. People who simply use feminism. The politicians that ban burkini's or headscarfs, supposedly to liberate the women beneath them. All the while failing to realize they are white guys with the power of the state telling women how they should dress. 

    These people use feminist arguments but they are the exact opposite of feminists. This is the patriarchy co-opting feminist arguments to protect itself and its interests. 

    Therefor, the problem isn't that feminists and feminism present their ideas or goals in the wrong way because these aren't feminists or feminist ideas or goals. The problem is and remains the patriarchy. 

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    My impression is: equal rights in the western world are more and more discussed as female rights of individual fulfilment, of self-activation. To extend the right of self-determination - originally laws regarding sexuallity (no one should be forced to have sex) - on political topics of all kind. Many people discover it as their special hobby to discover things or opinions that surpress all kinds of self-determination and self-activation. Laws against drugs surpress my self-determination, dress-codes surpress my self-determination, your opinion surpress my rights of individual fulfilment. 

     

    I personally think feminism was always something very academic, born in the sixties of last century within left wing theory, strongly influenced by some french books..  Somewhere on the way this academic theory of the Biopower began to eat everything around - gender studies, womans rights movements (womans rights movements has its origin on the streets, not in university and is very different) - and so it became several things at the same time: a political movement, and ideology, a method in social science. But to separate powers prevents of being totalitarian. There's good reason to be scientific or to be a movement - a scientist observes the world a movement tries to change it - but if you try to change what you observe, what you gain is a circle within your observations always verifies your actions. You never can be wrong doing so. But feminism itself got into this misery of beeing theory and politics at the same time, it isn't you have feminists there, at the university, and white men doing politics on the other side, in the parliaments.

    I personally always felt sad about womans right movement becoming academic, a question of definitions and studies - as in the times before feminism the message was clear and adoptable by all people, not only by experts. Self-determination wasn't a question of language and concepts. And they pointed directly toward the human dignity and the human rights and made mankind reflect human rights - instead with feminism we talk about gender concepts in literature and how defining the self, about pop music and fashion and all this western stuff and strongly believe the burga is a matter of human rights.

    To me feminism is a dead horse - as long as it tries to make the world matching academic theories. This is no fight for human rights anymore. It's a form of technocracy - the academics telling what is the political correct fashion to wear. And the problem is within feminism not that politicians abusing feminism. It's a problem of academics doing politics. A left wing theory that tries to get in front of the womans right movement and try to guide and lead woman what they should want and go for. Its like academics saing woman in the world needs a GPS to march - so we provide the software for this GPS. You know it's in the nature of academics - to teach others. The error isn't politics, the error is making womans rights an academic task and call it feminism. They bring in education and they make theory a question of self-activation: only if you know about Foucault you can be free. If you don't read philosophical books, you never will be free. Instead of discussing that woman still get payed less for the same work. It's like feminism brought womans right movement on the wrong track - so woman doing the fight of intellectuals against the uncivilized (and that's what they see when they see a burga) instead of fighting for their rights. Feminism itself became a manipulation of woman to teach them what they have to fight for. Going out of university and commanding on the streets feminism itself became an ideology.

    You know, every advanced country - except of Poland perhaps - tries to separate authorities. There are those who make the laws, the politicians, and those who observe and do the critics on the laws (the scientists and journalists). Feminism wants to be a little bit all of it - doing some politics, some court, some observer. You'd call this a totalitarian regime, don't you?

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  • 11 hours ago, Fantozzi said:

    My impression is: equal rights in the western world are more and more discussed as female rights of individual fulfilment, of self-activation. To extend the right of self-determination - originally laws regarding sexuallity (no one should be forced to have sex) - on political topics of all kind. Many people discover it as their special hobby to discover things or opinions that surpress all kinds of self-determination and self-activation. Laws against drugs surpress my self-determination, dress-codes surpress my self-determination, your opinion surpress my rights of individual fulfilment. 

    Yes, but sometimes there are good reasons to suppress someones right to self determination. Like with drugs, the problem is that drug abuse increases crime. From robberies by junks who need cash to pay for their next fix, to things like manslaughter because someone who is under the influence drives his car into another car or enters a psychotic rage and kills someone. Those crimes are much more severe breaches into the self determination of the victims of such crimes. Hence governments regulate these types of things. 

    Also, having an opinion is never a detriment to someones ability to self determine. 

    11 hours ago, Fantozzi said:

    But to separate powers prevents of being totalitarian. There's good reason to be scientific or to be a movement - a scientist observes the world a movement tries to change it - but if you try to change what you observe, what you gain is a circle within your observations always verifies your actions. You never can be wrong doing so. 

    Separation of power is for the government, not social movements. And why can't a social movement have an academic base as well? If you want to change the world for the better, you need to determine what exactly 'for the better' means. For that you need to do observations and analysis. That way one can determine what goes wrong where and what could possibly help with fixing it. Just yelling you want change and rely on your gut feeling and political instinct on what would be good change is stupid and usually results in the idiocy of populism. 

    Also no, if you try to change what you observe, why would it lead to a self fulfilling circle? If the changes you make don't work, your observations should show that it doesn't work. 

    11 hours ago, Fantozzi said:

    You know, every advanced country - except of Poland perhaps - tries to separate authorities. There are those who make the laws, the politicians, and those who observe and do the critics on the laws (the scientists and journalists). Feminism wants to be a little bit all of it - doing some politics, some court, some observer. You'd call this a totalitarian regime, don't you?

    Not a single advanced country on the planet makes it difficult for academics or journalists to enter into politics if they so desire. And why should they? Being a scientist is a career and you are free to switch careers when you want in a free country. 

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    1 hour ago, LexusInfernus said:

    Not a single advanced country on the planet makes it difficult for academics or journalists to enter into politics if they so desire. And why should they? Being a scientist is a career and you are free to switch careers when you want in a free country. 

    Red China now and the Soviet Union before. Both the PRC and USSR restricted journalists and academics and one is a superpower now and the other used to be.

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  • 3 hours ago, OcramsRzr said:

    Red China now and the Soviet Union before. Both the PRC and USSR restricted journalists and academics and one is a superpower now and the other used to be.

    No, they just make it difficult for you to be a journalist or an academic (in certain fields). But if you are an academic or journalist, you can still get a nice career in politics going.

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