Sunday, 07 July 2013

THE DIVERSITY OF ISLAM

Ken Berwitz

I have spent years reminding people that Islam is not a monolithic religion; that, like all religions, it is subject to many different interpretations, and that its practitioners are not all in lockstep with each other.

Jeff Jacoby - whom I think very highly of and probably should quote more often than I do - talks about this subject in his latest column for the Boston Globe.

Here are several of the more salient excerpts:

FOR YEARS, terrible and violent crimes have been committed in the name of Islam. Does that mean Islam is inherently a religion of terrible violence?

 Like every great faith, Islam is what its adherents make of it. Today, many of those adherents are influenced by Islamism, the militant totalitarian version of Islam that emerged in the 20th century. The Islamist ascendancy is reflected in the savageries of al-Qaeda, the brutal misogyny of the Taliban, the apocalyptic hostility of the regime in Iran.

 But just as the nightmare of the Third Reich was far from the totality of German culture and character, so Islam's 1,400-year history is not encapsulated by the violent ugliness of the present moment. In other eras, Muslim society was known for its learning, tolerance, and moderation.

The credo of the Muslim Brotherhood, which until last week's coup was Egypt's ruling party, declares categorically that "Allah is our objective. The Prophet is our leader. The Koran is our law. Jihad is our way." That authoritarian, supremacist line - the Islamists' line - is only one understanding of Islam. As millions of Egyptian citizens have made clear in recent days, it is by no means unanimous. 

Exactly right. 

Yes, there are Muslims - a great many of them - who subscribe to shari'a law, out of either religious fanatacism, and/or lack of exposure to any other way of life, and/or fear that not doing so will leave them and their families dead in the street.

But there are Muslims - a great many of them - who would like nothing better than to live their lives peaefully, practice their religion, and leave others to their different beliefs.

Look at the United States as a great example.  Here, where there is freedom of thought and exposure to more than one way of life, millions of Muslims live peacefully.  Yes, there is no doubt a radical contingent within the United States and, yes, there have been a tiny number of horrific "honor killings".   But I would no more project that to all Muslims than I would project eric rudolph as representative of all Christians, or ted kaczynski, the "Unabomber" as representative of all environmentalists.

As Jeff Jacoby points out in his last paragraph:

Radical Islam - not Islam itself - is the menace that must be defeated. In that struggle we have no more invaluable allies than moderate Muslims. Pretending they don't exist helps no one but the Islamists.

Amen to that.

free' From the article 'the militant totalitarian version of Islam that emerged in the 20th century. ' ------------/-- Is he kidding? Ken, I know you know better than this, violent Islam has been around since way before the 20th century. (07/07/13)


WHITE HOUSE DOWN. WAY, WAY, DOWN

Ken Berwitz

In a summer of bad news, we do have this one thin ray of sunshine.

The movie "White House Down" -- which informs the public that our real enemies are not al qaeda and other fundamentalist terrorists who actually kill us and celebrate over their successes, it is those damn right wing nutjobs Democrats keep telling us about -- has turned into a money-losing box office bomb. 

After 8 days of release (to over 3,000 theaters), it has managed a meager $41 million in domestic gross so far.  If, as is typical, the distributor gets 70% of the first two weeks' gross, that means the return so far has been less than $29 million.  Since the first week almost always generates a very large percentage of total, and predicts a movie's success or failure, this indicates a flopperoo of epic proportions.

(Illustratively, the G-rated "Despicable Me 2", in just three days of release, currently has a domestic gross of $89 million.  I assume you detect a bit of a difference.)

Why is "White House Down" going down in flames? 

-Maybe it is because the country has about had it up to here with media, both news and entertainment divisions, continually telling us our problem is not Islamic terrorists like the ones who killed 3,000 of us on 9/11, it is those violent savages in the Tea Party who marched on Washington, made speeches, and cleaned up after themselves.

-Maybe it is because Jamie Foxx, who, over the past year, has shown himself to be a stone cold racist, is cast as the wonderful, couldn't-be-more-wonderful, Barack Obama-esque President (there is no truth to the rumor that Mr. Obama said "If I had a brother he would look like Jamie Foxx").

-Maybe it is because of how preposterous the premise is:  not so much the idea of domestic terrorists managing to take the White House and hold the President hostage, but because this nefarious plot is discovered by a secret service agent while taking his daughter on a White House tour.  Haven't White House tours have been cancelled indefinitely, so President Obama can scrape a few pennies together and take Michelle, Sasha and Malia on a $100 million taxpayor-funded trip to Africa?

No one knows for sure why "White House Down" is swirling toward that large opening at the bottom of the bowl, but I have a feeling all three of the above are contributing factors.

You might at this point get the idea that I'm glad this obnoxious perversion of reality is bombing. 

You got that right.


TERESA HEINZ KERRY

Ken Berwitz

Teresa Heinz Kerry, wife of Secretary of State John Kerry, was rushed to the hospital in critical but stable condition today.  The cause of her illness has not yet been reported.

I hope you join me in wishing Ms. Kerry a fast, complete recovery.


PRESIDENT OBAMA'S NEW POLICY ON EGYPT

Ken Berwitz

Two years ago, when Hosni Mubarak, a sometimes-friend of the United States who managed to keep peace with Israel for almost 30 years, was being challenged by protesters in Tahrir Square, President Obama actively, avidly, helped to facilitate his demise.

But how about now, when Mubarak's successor, Muslim brotherhood member mohamed morsi, has met with even more extensive protests than anything we saw against Mubarak?

Excerpted from Neil Munro's article at dailycaller.com:

President Barack Obama took a break from his weekend stay at Camp David on Saturday to deny that he backed the July 3 Egyptian coup or the deposed Islamic president, Mohammed Morsi.

Obama "reiterated that the United States is not aligned with, and does not support, any particular Egyptian political party or group," said the statement, which was released after he convened a conference-call with his national security team.

The statement included a call for the country's new leadership to work with the Muslim Brotherhood, whose president was ousted July 3.

When it was Mubarak, we worked to get rid of a relatively friendly head of state who, however tenuously, held to Egypt's peace agreement with Israel - a country which (reminder to Mr. Obama) is one of our staunchest allies in the world.

But now that it is morsi, we say we won't get involved - and then call for the military to work with the terrorist group morsi is a member of. 

Let's remember that Egypt, in reality, is two countries:  there are the cities, most conspicuously Cairo, which are relatively modern and secular.  And there is the rest of the country, which is largely desolate land with a destitute, impoverished, often illiterate, often exrremely religious Muslim population.

Although morsi was democratically elected to the Presidency last year - largely due to support from the latter of those two population segments -  he spent that year ignoring Egypt's constitution and rapidly moving the country toward becoming a shari'a law state, while doing nothing to improve Egypt's desperately poor economy.  Based on the extent of protests, both in and out of Cairo's Tahrir Square, this turned most Egyptians against him, regardless of their religious and political outlook.

Two years ago, Barack Obama stuck his nose in Egypt's affairs, resulting in Egypt being saddled with morsi's now-despised Muslim brotherhood government.  But when the people uprise against morsi, he has nothing to say except that the Muslim brotherhood should be included in any new government.

Tell you what:  if I didn't know better I just might think that President Obama has a soft spot in his heart for the Muslim brotherhood......

free' Ken, A part of your commentary hit me like a cold splash of water. I have figured out why Obama was so supportive of morsi when elected. You said it here "he has spent that year ignoring Egypt's constitution" They both have something in common. (07/07/13)


THE DIVERSITY OF ISLAM

Ken Berwitz

I have spent years reminding people that Islam is not a monolithic religion; that, like all religions, it is subject to many different interpretations, and that its practitioners are not all in lockstep with each other.

Jeff Jacoby - whom I think very highly of and probably should quote more often than I do - talks about this subject in his latest column for the Boston Globe.

Here are several of the more salient excerpts:

FOR YEARS, terrible and violent crimes have been committed in the name of Islam. Does that mean Islam is inherently a religion of terrible violence?

 Like every great faith, Islam is what its adherents make of it. Today, many of those adherents are influenced by Islamism, the militant totalitarian version of Islam that emerged in the 20th century. The Islamist ascendancy is reflected in the savageries of al-Qaeda, the brutal misogyny of the Taliban, the apocalyptic hostility of the regime in Iran.

 But just as the nightmare of the Third Reich was far from the totality of German culture and character, so Islam's 1,400-year history is not encapsulated by the violent ugliness of the present moment. In other eras, Muslim society was known for its learning, tolerance, and moderation.

The credo of the Muslim Brotherhood, which until last week's coup was Egypt's ruling party, declares categorically that "Allah is our objective. The Prophet is our leader. The Koran is our law. Jihad is our way." That authoritarian, supremacist line - the Islamists' line - is only one understanding of Islam. As millions of Egyptian citizens have made clear in recent days, it is by no means unanimous. 

Exactly right. 

Yes, there are Muslims - a great many of them - who subscribe to shari'a law, out of either religious fanatacism, and/or lack of exposure to any other way of life, and/or fear that not doing so will leave them and their families dead in the street.

But there are Muslims - a great many of them - who would like nothing better than to live their lives peaefully, practice their religion, and leave others to their different beliefs.

Look at the United States as a great example.  Here, where there is freedom of thought and exposure to more than one way of life, millions of Muslims live peacefully.  Yes, there is no doubt a radical contingent within the United States and, yes, there have been a tiny number of horrific "honor killings".   But I would no more project that to all Muslims than I would project eric rudolph as representative of all Christians, or ted kaczynski, the "Unabomber" as representative of all environmentalists.

As Jeff Jacoby points out in his last paragraph:

Radical Islam - not Islam itself - is the menace that must be defeated. In that struggle we have no more invaluable allies than moderate Muslims. Pretending they don't exist helps no one but the Islamists.

Amen to that.

free' From the article 'the militant totalitarian version of Islam that emerged in the 20th century. ' ------------/-- Is he kidding? Ken, I know you know better than this, violent Islam has been around since way before the 20th century. (07/07/13)


THE AD THAT WILL NOT BE PUBLISHED

Ken Berwitz

Do you find this ad more offensive or more informational?

Apparently the Chicago Tribune, USA Today and the Los Angeles Times find it more offensive.  Because every one of them has refused to publish it.

Have they refused to publish articles, complete with countless quotes, telling the public that abortion is nothing more than a woman's choice, that there is no baby?

Have they refused to publish articles critical of Texas' legislative ban on abortions after the 20th week, or have they published article after article attacking the legislation and celebrating Wendy Davis, the Texas State Senator who filibustered it as a champion of women's health care? 

Some might answer that there is a difference between an article and an advertisement. 

I agree.  So let me ask another question:  have any of these three "newspapers" published even one article showing the development of a 20 week old in the womb, so that readers can understand what is being "aborted"?  Have any of the networks run even one feature on this side of the abortion issue? 

Do these people seriously think of themselves journalists - i.e. professionals who present all sides of a story to the public?

Whatever they think they are, this blog should make clear what so many of our media actually have become.  Not journalists, but propagandists for the one side of the story most of them advocate.

Thank your lucky stars there is an internet, where we can escape their hegemony.


NOBODY ASKED ME, BUT....

Ken Berwitz

It's that time again.

With a tip of my hat (if I ever start wearing hats, that is), to the late, great, Jimmy Cannon, here is the my latest edition of:

Nobody asked me, but...

-Was John Kerry really out sailing on his yacht as Egypt descended into chaos?  I guess he needed the rest, after intensely begging Netanyahu and abbas to restart negotiations that have gone nowhere for 46 years and have not even taken place for the last four.  At least, in sailing that yacht, we have found something he seems to be proficient at --other than marrying fabulously rich women.

-And speaking of that gender, it occurs to me that one of the greatest benefits of legalized gay marriage is that women will finally learn what it is like to be married to women.

-And speaking of gay people, there is no one more proudly gay than Seth Rudetsky, who, when he is not brilliantly playing piano and composing music, hosts a show featuring Broadway songs on Serius XM Radio.  How enthusiastic is he about this show?  I'm betting that if they told him it was expanding to 6 hours, and his salary was being cut in half, he would probably thank them and do it anyway.  Put another way, Seth Rudetsky is an absolute joy to listen to.  I would give a lot just to spend some time with him, singing to his accompaniment.  Given the quality of my singing it would probably clear any room in Manhattan, but I would be in heaven.

-And speaking of Broadway, if there was a better show, that bombed, than "Ragtime", I don't know which one it would be.  The story was great (E. L. Doctorow's book, need I say more?), the music was gorgeous, and the original cast - most especially the great Brian Stokes Mitchell and every-bit-as-great Audra McDonald, were transcendental.  "Ragtime" opened in 1998, the same year as "The Lion King" - which, with Disney behind it, won every award in sight.  Then there was some kind of scandal with Livent, the production company.  Result?  It closed way too early.  The show was resurrected in 2009, but production costs were so high that even a relatively decent advance sale was not enough, and it closed again, after 65 performances.  I doubt there will ever be a third try.  Too bad.

-A friend, and colleague of mine, who declines to named in this blog, tells me that he watched the Macy's Fireworks show on July 4th, expecting so see and hear a patriotic theme.  But, instead, the show - put together by Usher - was primarily a hip-hop spectacular with almost no patriotic content in it.  In disgust, he tuned in to the Philadelphia show....and found the same thing to be true.  I have to admit I did not watch either.  But if I did, and that's what I saw, I would have been as upset about it as he is.

-I'm still waiting for Barack Obama - who enjoyed the strong support of Paula Deen through two presidential campaigns - to say one effing word on her behalf as she loses everything she worked for all her life over racial comments she admitted to from many years ago.   If anyone wonders just how classless Mr. Obama can be, and what a friend in need he is not, this will give them the answer.  Loud and clear.

-Have you noticed that our wonderful "neutral" media have buried the demand of IRS's disgraceful fraud, lois lerner, for immunity?  lerner, you may recall, was the sack of manure who headed the IRS's tax exempt division while it ignored and buried every request for 501(c)3 status from groups likely to be critical of Barack Obama - then sat in front of a house investigative committee, told its members she did nothing wrong....and pled the fifth, like a mafia goon.  Then again, why should we expect the same media which buried the fact that lerner's predecessor, the equally despicable sarah ingram hall, has been promoted to an even more authoritative position as the IRS overseer of ObamaCare, to display any more professionalism or integrity when it comes to lerner? 

-Derek Jeter started his minor league rehabbing stint with the Yankees' Scranton minor league team.  Can it be that he will soon join his long-time teammates Andy Pettitte (the winning pitcher in yesterday's game against the Orioles) and Mariano Rivera (who got the save - his 29th in 30 tries)?  I hope so.  If you can't root for people like these, who can you root for?

-Our three year old granddaughter has an astonishing knowledge of the words to virtually every song our son and daughter in law play on the radio.  She sings along to them all and makes grandma and grandpa smile from ear to ear.

-I used to love Sarah Lee pound cake.  But we had some this weekend and either my taste buds are reading things differently these days or it came across as less flavorful and dryer than I remember.

-Now that the sequester has been used to shut down White House tours, is Harry Reid still complaining that the tourists who come to Washington DC in the summer smell bad?  He actually said that - on two different occasions - and I doubt his opinion has changed.  Of course if those tourists were able to afford living in the Ritz-Carlton hotel, as Reid does, they probably could freshen up pretty easily.  When do you suppose our media will ever ask him how he is able to live that way on a US Senator's salary - or how he amassed all his other money on one shady land deal after another?  I hope you're not hanging by your thumbs waiting.

-The more I read about the George Zimmerman trial, the more I am convinced that, based on the law, and the prosecution's "case" (if you want to call it that), there is no way he can possibly be convicted.  That said, however, given the highly successful effort by the Trayvon Martin family's legal team, and the even more successful manipulation/creation of "facts" by mainstream media, this trial has been so completely contorted into a racial referendum that the jury may be scared into convicting Zimmerman anyway.

Remember the months and months they showed the picture of Trayvon Martin as a cherubic little pre-teen in a red shirt, instead of the tattooed, angry-looking gangsta thug wannabe, with the "grille" on his teeth he had become?  Remember the claim that Zimmerman was not hurt at all - especially by ABC News - which was debunked by the photos of Zimmerman's broken nose and bloody lacerations on the back of his head?  Remember how NBC News doctored the audio tape to make it sound like Zimmerman was singling out Martin based on his being Black...when the full, unedited tape showed that all Zimmerman was doing was anwering the dispatcher's question of what he looked like?  Remember the media referring to Zimmernan as White, until it turned out that he is half Peruvian...at which point they called him "White Hispanic", thus preserving their fraudulent racial reference anyway? 

This has been a racial railroad job from the git-go, and the train is still rolling along at breakneck speed.

===========================================

UPDATE:  My apologies.  In listing how the Trayvon Martin/George Zimmerman incident has been contorted into a racial referendum, I left out the single most egregious example of all:  Barack Obama, President of the United States, telling us "If I had a son he'd look like Trayvon".  What is that supposed to mean, other than "This is more important to me because he's Black"? 

Suppose George Bush were President and he had chimed in with "If I had a son he'd look like George"?  Do you think our wonderful "neutral" media just might have had something to say about it? 

But we're not talking about President Bush.  We're talking about President Obama.  In the eyes of his Accomplice Media, there is no problem at all.  He can be as racially incendiary as he cares to.

And then they wonder why people call them biased.....


Buy Our Book Here!


Return to Current Blog
We're Hopelessly Partisan

hopelesslypartisan.com, is a web site which is dedicated to honest, blunt, debate on the issues of our time.


About Us



Privacy Notice: In conjunction with the ads on this site, third parties may be placing and reading cookies on your browser, or using web beacons to collect information.


At “Hopelessly Partisan” we discuss all issues, big and small. In here, nothing is sacred and nothing is out of bounds.

So settle back, preferably after laughing your way through a copy of “The Hopelessly Partisan Guide To American Politics”, and let the battle begin. In this blog, your opinion counts every bit as much as anyone else's, maybe even more.

And to show that my willingness to provide all sides of the issues is sincere, here are links to a variety of web sites, from the left, the middle (more or less) and the right. Read them and either smile in agreement or gnash your teeth in anger!!