Wednesday, July 2, 2008

29 Siwan 5768: I Forgot Day

Greetings.

Worthy cause of the day: “Oppose the Destructive Practice of Mountaintop Removal Mining”.

Relevant to Divine Misconceptions: “Jordan charges Dutch politician with blasphemy”. Barry brought this to my attention yesterday. If I may quote the first paragraph of the article, which pretty much sums up what’s going on:
A Jordanian prosecutor on Tuesday charged Dutch politician Geert Wilders with blasphemy and contempt of Muslims for making an anti-Koran film and ordered him to stand trial in the kingdom, judicial sources said.
Now, there are two things wrong here:
  1. The legal problem:  Jordan has no jurisdiction in the Netherlands.  There does not even seem to be a claim that the film, Fitna, was made in Jordan to make it vaguely plausible that a crime was committed on Jordanian soil.  Even if someone committed the most heinous crimes imaginable, if said crimes were performed outside of Jordanian territory, standard operating procedure would be to try that person in the country in which the crimes were committed, not Jordan.
  2. This is an instance of Muslims trying to dictate the rules that non-Muslims have to live by.  Now, many religions do have beliefs about how non-believers and outsiders should behave.  In the case of Islam, the attitude is that Muslims are inherently superior to non-Muslims and thus non-Muslims may do nothing to offend Muslims even if offense is deserved, e.g., Muslims complaining about the use of dogs to sniff out terrorists as noted in “Sniffer dogs offend Muslims”, despite the well-known links between Islam and terrorism.  However, what makes Islam truly unusual in that Muslims will often try to enforce their rules on non-Muslims.  And while this is feasible in Islamic states, such as Jordan, it is irrational to expect that the Netherlands, a society which is not Islamic and in which free speech is protected, will bow to Jordan’s wishes and extradite Wilders.  Given that there is an anti-Islamic backlash in Europe at the moment, this is doubly correct.
Today’s news and commentary:Today’s weird thing is the Bic pen bow & arrow. Enjoy and share the weirdness.

Aaron
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