Friday, May 20, 2005

Why Didn't Anybody Else Think of That?

Ali Al-Ahmed, a Saudi Muslim living in America, presents a novel idea in Opinion Journal: "If Muslims wish other religions to respect their beliefs and their Holy book, they should lead by example." Link.
As a Muslim, I am able to purchase copies of the Quran in any bookstore in any American city, and study its contents in countless American universities. American museums spend millions to exhibit and celebrate Muslim arts and heritage. On the other hand, my Christian and other non-Muslim brothers and sisters in Saudi Arabia--where I come from--are not even allowed to own a copy of their holy books. Indeed, the Saudi government desecrates and burns Bibles that its security forces confiscate at immigration points into the kingdom or during raids on Christian expatriates worshiping privately. [...]

Although considered as holy in Islam and mentioned in the Quran dozens of times, the Bible is banned in Saudi Arabia. This would seem curious to most people because of the fact that to most Muslims, the Bible is a holy book. But when it comes to Saudi Arabia we are not talking about most Muslims, but a tiny minority of hard-liners who constitute the Wahhabi Sect.

The Bible in Saudi Arabia may get a person killed, arrested, or deported. In September 1993, Sadeq Mallallah, 23, was beheaded in Qateef on a charge of apostasy for owning a Bible. The State Department's annual human rights reports detail the arrest and deportation of many Christian worshipers every year. Just days before Crown Prince Abdullah met President Bush last month, two Christian gatherings were stormed in Riyadh. Bibles and crosses were confiscated, and will be incinerated. [...]

The desecration of religious texts and symbols and intolerance of varying religious viewpoints and beliefs have been issues of some controversy inside Saudi Arabia. Ruled by a Wahhabi theocracy, the ruling elite of Saudi Arabia have made it difficult for Christians, Jews, Hindus and others, as well as dissenting sects of Islam, to visibly coexist inside the kingdom.

The MSM love to run headlines, unbacked by any facts, like "Hate Crimes against Muslims up in the US." At most, they might site one example in a country of nearly 300 million people. On the other hand, violence, even deadly violence, against non-Muslims or against members of a different Muslim sect, is nearly a daily occurrence in the Muslim world, but rarely appears in the American MSM. Maybe the editors think that it is too boring, since they see it all the time, but the result is a lack of important knowledge among their readers or viewers.

We talk a lot about the bias in the MSM running primarily negative stories about Republicans or conservatives and primarily positive stories about Democrats or liberals. Maybe we should talk more about the bias in the MSM of running primarily positive articles about Muslims, and primarily negative articles about Christians. (The negativity does not seem to extend as much to Jews, Hindus, Buddhists, Taoists, Jainists, Animalists or other non-Christian non-Muslims.)


Post a Comment

<< Home