Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Brandeis University Rescinds Honorary Degree Offer to Former Muslim and Victim of Islam Ayaan Hirsi Alis

I’m genuinely not trying to be an anti-Islamic jerk here. I’m not some sheltered innocent who has never met a Muslim before, and I understand that non-Muslims can be just as reprehensible as the most extreme of Islamists.

Case in point: the Detroit mob that beat a driver into a coma after he accidentally hit a child and stopped to attend the boy. Or how about the little cretin who went into his high school in Pennsylvania this morning and started slashing people with the knife he’d brought with him.

So yes, humans of any religion, race or nationality can all too easily behave like savages. I recognize that. It’s practically impossible not to these days.

But it’s also practically impossible to believe that Islam is overall harmless. Muslim brutality has been too well documented around the world, from America’s 9/11, the London tube bombings, the torture and executions conducted during the 2013 mall hostage crisis in Kenya, and the machete rampage in a crowded Chinese train station last month…  to the disgusting levels of sexism practiced throughout the Muslim world, and the persecution of Christians across Muslim nations, including Mary Sameh George, a young Egyptian who was dragged from her car, beaten and stabbed to death by an angry Muslim mob only a week or two ago.

Yet even after all of that, we’re not allowed to say there’s something wrong with Islam, or wonder whether it might sow seeds that more easily cultivate evil than other modes of thinking.

Ayaan Hirsi Ali knows that evil firsthand. She grew up Muslim in Somalia, where she experienced female genital mutilation at age five and has since been the subject of a fatwa or two thanks to her stance for women’s rights and against the abuse of women in Muslim communities.

Because of her AHA Foundation, which “works to protect and defend the rights of women and girls in the West from oppression justified by religion and culture,” Brandeis University in Massachusetts decided to grant her an honorary degree, which was promptly protested by 86 faculty members. Here’s what one of them, Bernadette Brooten, had to say on the matter:

“As one of your professors at Brandeis… I am deeply saddened by all that this selection has meant for Muslim students, faculty and staff at Brandeis and for your non-Muslim allies. A group of 86 faculty members has signed a letter to President Lawrence, asking him to rescind the invitation. We stressed that we recognize the harm of female genital cutting, forced marriages, and honor killings, but that this selection obscures the violence against women that happens among non-Muslims, including on our campus. I recognize the harm of engendered violence wherever it occurs, and I applaud the hard, effective work of the many Muslims who are working to oppose it within their communities.”

So because other people are jerks to women, we can’t call out Muslims for being jerks to women? What a worthless, arrogant, destructive little coward. Her and her colleagues.

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