Tuesday, September 22, 2009

"Our Time Has Come"

On Friday, Sept. 25, the organizers of "Islam on Capitol Hill" hope they will have thousands of Muslims attend their event in Washington, D.C.

I'm having a little trouble with the "Islamic Unity" part of that event poster. What does that mean, exactly? On their website, they say, "the objective of the gathering is to express the wonderful diversity of Islam."

I clicked on the link of their website to the "Program" section and found on the bottom of that page, in bold caps: OUR TIME HAS COME. So I'm wondering, does that slogan express their "unity" or their "wonderful diversity"--I'm just a little confused.

A website called FRONTPAGEMAG.COM says in an article written by Andrew Walden, "Taking Islamism to the Streets," that the main organizer of the event is a guy named Hassen Ibn Abdellah, described in 1993 in the New York Times as the "most aggressively combative of the lawyers" representing the terrorists who staged the 1993 World Trade Center attacks. His client was convicted of helping manufacture and transport the bomb and is now incarcerated in the Federal "Supermax" prison at Florence, Colorado.

Walden discusses the identity of a second event organizer, Abdul Malik. Walden evidently found this guy on facebook where he found a disturbing post there from Abdul, referring to himself as "Imam Abdul Malik" (not to be confused in internet searches with Imam Johari Abdul-Malik, a man who is quite obviously older than this Abdul Malik). So I looked up Abdul Malik on facebook for myself, and found this post on his site, dated 25 January 2009:
Democracy is not revelation, and democracy does not equal freedom, for in democracy you have apartheid, you have slavery, you have homosexuality, you have lesbianism, you have gambling, you have all of the vices that are against the spirit of truth; so no we don't want to democratize Islam, we want to Islamize democracy! That's what we want.

Abdul Malik, second from the left
(photo from Abdul Malik's facebook page)

My feeling about this kind of thing is that people in America need to wake up and be more aware of what's going on. We are a trusting people, probably too trusting for our own good, and we need a good dose of skepticism and common sense. The political correctness that has been taught in our schools for a generation, has had a lousy effect on our ability to make discriminating judgments. Where Islam is concerned, I think that we are woefully under-informed and naive--we just may also be arrogant and stupid. We need to educate ourselves, and we need to keep an eye on what's happening around us.

I have no interest--none--in ending my life wearing one of these. Before that happens, I will take my stand in the "compound," if you get my meaning.

A young woman described what wearing a burqa really feels like (she lives in London and put on the burqa in order to write the article): I feel like a blinkered horse, forced to look straight ahead, undistracted by what may be happening on either side of me. The first thing I realise, apart from the fact that it is incredibly hot and airless under the thick material is that I can no longer communicate with the people I pass. . . . No one even bothers to look in my direction. It makes me feel less than human. . . . We read people through their faces, and not only their faces: their clothes, their hands, their jewellery: all give us clues about who a person is, whether they're trustworthy, potentially likeable.

The young woman was walking down the street, and said that by coincidence she saw a woman whom she knew very well, but of course her friend doesn't recognize her, doesn't even look at her: I'm just a mobile shape. I'm nobody. Then I think that if she was also dressed as I am, I wouldn't recognise her either. Two friends could pass each other by a matter of a few feet and be none the wiser. It feels lonely, the black cotton surrounding me denying me the simple human interactions of everyday life: a smile, a nod, a look, the little acts of communication that tell us we're human beings occupying the same space. The veil is an explicit statement of separation and distance. It seems to me to be far more than a statement of religious identity.

"Our Time Has Come"--for whom?

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