Why Muslim sensitivities are so easily bruised.
In the ongoing debate (or debacle) concerning free speech/expression and Muslim grievance—most recently on exhibition in Garland, where two “jihadis” opened fire on a “Prophet Muhammad” art contest organized by Pamela Geller—one thing has become clear: the things non-Muslims can do to provoke Islamic violence is limitless—and far exceeds cartoons.
Writes Victor Davis Hanson for example:
[Pamela] Geller, and not the jihadists who sought to kill those with whom they disagreed, was supposedly at fault. Her critics could not figure out that radical Muslims object not just to caricatures and cartoons, but to any iconographic representation of Mohammed. Had Geller offered invitations to artists to compete for the most majestic statue of the Prophet, jihadists might still have tried to use violence to stop it. Had she held a beauty pageant for gay Muslims or a public wedding for gay Muslim couples, jihadists would certainly have shown up. Had she offered a contest for the bravest Islamic apostates, jihadists would have galvanized to kill the non-believers. Had she organized a support rally for Israel, jihadists might well have tried to kill the innocent, as they did in Paris when they murderously attacked a kosher market.
But it’s even worse than that. The list of things that non-Muslims can do to provoke Islamic violence grows by the day and accords with the list of things subjugated “infidels” must never do, lest they provoke their Islamic overlords as laid out by Islamic law, or Sharia.
As such, the West needs finally to come to terms with the root source of these ubiquitous, easily sparked “Muslim grievances.”
Enter Muslim supremacism.
Islamic doctrine—which teaches that Muslims are superior to non-Muslims, who are further compared to dogs and cattle—imbues Muslims with this sense of supremacism over the rest of mankind. And a good portion of Islamic history—when Muslims were for centuries on the warpath, subjugating large swathes of the Old Word—further enforced it.
This sense of Islamic supremacism was dramatically humbled after European powers defeated and colonized much of the Muslim world. Bred on the notion that “might makes right,” Muslims, for a time, even began emulating the unapologetic and triumphant West. Turkey, for example, went from being the epitome of Islamic supremacy and jihad against Christian Europe for five centuries to desperately emulating Europe in all ways. By the mid-1900s, Turkey became perhaps the most Westernized/secularized “Muslim” nation.
Today, however, as Western peoples willingly capitulate to Islamic mores—in the name of tolerance, multiculturalism, political correctness, or just plain cowardice—Muslims are becoming more emboldened, making more demands and threats, as they realize they need not militarily defeat the West in order to resuscitate their supremacist birthright. (More appeasement from the bullied always brings about more demands from the bully.)
To understand all this, one need only look to Muslim behavior where it is dominant and not in need of pretense, that is, in the Muslim world. There, non-Muslim minorities are habitually treated as inferiors. But unlike the many Western appeasers who willingly accept a subservient role to Islam, these religious minorities have no choice in the matter.
Thus in Pakistan, as Christian children were singing carols inside their church, Muslim men from a nearby mosque barged in with an axe, destroyed the furniture and altar, and beat the children. Their justification for such violence? “You are disturbing our prayers…. How dare you use the mike and speakers?”
And when a Muslim slapped a Christian and the latter reciprocated, the Muslim exclaimed “How dare a Christian slap me?!” Anti-Christian violence immediately ensued.
All of this revolves around what I call the “How Dare You?!” phenomenon. Remember it next time “progressive” media, politicians, and other talking heads tell you that Muslim mayhem and outbursts are products of grievances against the West. Missing from their rationale is the supremacist base of these grievances.
The Conditions of Omar, a foundational medieval Muslim text dealing with how subjugated “infidels” must behave, spells out their inferiority vis-à-vis Muslims. Among other stipulations, it commands conquered Christians not to raise their “voices during prayer or readings in churches anywhere near Muslims” (hence the axe-attack in Pakistan). It also commands them not to display any signs of Christianity—specifically Bibles and crosses—not to build churches, and not to criticize the prophet. (See Crucified Again: Exposing Islam’s New War on Christians for my translation of “The Conditions of Omar.”)
If the supremacist nature of Islamic law is still not clear enough, the Conditions literally commands Christians to give up their seats to Muslims as a show of respect.
By way of analogy, consider when Rosa Parks, a black woman, refused to give up her bus seat to white passengers. Any white supremacist at the time had sincere grievances: how dare she think herself equal?
But were such grievances legitimate? Should they have been accommodated? Are the endless “grievances” of Muslims legitimate and should they be accommodated? These are the questions missing from the debate about easily bruised Muslim sensitivities.
One can go on and on with examples from all around the Islamic world:
In Turkey, a Bible publishing house was once stormed and three of its Christian employees tortured, disemboweled, and finally murdered. One suspect later said: “We didn’t do this for ourselves, but for our religion [Islam]…. Our religion is being destroyed.”
In Egypt, after a 17-year-old Christian student refused to obey his Muslim teacher’s orders to cover up his cross, the teacher and some Muslim students attacked, beat, and ultimately murdered the teenager.
These Turkish and Egyptian Muslims were truly aggrieved: Islamic law makes clear that Christians must not “produce a cross or Bible” around Muslims. How dare the Egyptian student and Turkish Bible publishers refuse to comply—thus grieving their Muslim murderers?
In Indonesia, where it is becoming next to impossible for Christians to build churches, Christians often congregate outside to celebrate Christmas—only to be attacked by Muslims hurling cow dung and bags of urine at the Christians as they pray.
These Muslims are also sincerely aggrieved: how dare these Christians think they can be a church when the Conditions forbid it?
In short, anytime non-Muslims dare to overstep their Sharia-designated “inferior” status—which far exceeds drawing cartoons—supremacist Muslims will become violently aggrieved.
From here, one can begin to understand the ultimate Muslim grievance: Israel.
For if “infidel” Christian minorities are deemed inferior and attacked by aggrieved Muslims for exercising their basic human rights, like freedom of worship, how must Muslims feel about Jews—the descendants of pigs and apes, according to the Koran—exercising power and authority over fellow Muslims in what is perceived to be Muslim land?
How dare they?!
Of course, if grievances against Israel were really about justice and displaced Palestinians, Muslims—and their Western appeasers—would be aggrieved by the fact that millions of Christians are currently being displaced by Muslim invaders.
Needless to say, they are not.
So the next time you hear that Muslim rage and terrorism are products of grievance—from cartoons to territorial disputes and everything in between—remember that this is absolutely true. But these “grievances” are not predicated on any human standards of equality or justice, only a supremacist worldview.
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