Monday, April 30, 2012

Islam is So Weak, It Must Be Protected by Law

You can tell a religion can't stand up to criticism when its adherents have to resort to blasphemy laws to protect it.

That's the case with Islam. The film actor and comedian Adel Imam was recently sentenced to jail in Egypt for movies where he parodied conservative Muslim beliefs.

I won't be visiting Egypt anytime soon.


Aritolu said...

Mind if I ask a devil's advocate kind of question? I want to make it clear that I complete agree with your feeling about Islam. I just wanted to see if you wanted to solidify your argument.

In several countries, it is illegal to deny the Holocaust. Antisemites could word their opposition much as you did: "The Historicity of the Holocaust is So Weak, it Must be Protected by Law."
Now, just as you would say, "no, it must be protected by law (at least in the eyes of those who favor the law) for other reasons", a Muslim could retort: "and Islam must be protected by Law for other reasons."

Note: I also want to make it clear that I don't deny the Holocaust whatsoever.

Jeffrey Shallit said...

I'm not in favor of laws making it illegal to deny the Holocaust, for exactly the reason you state. I understand the motivation behind a law like that, but I don't think it is wise to make these kinds of exceptions to free speech.

Aritolu said...

Your response, valid as it is, doesn't address the core of my question. Maybe because my question didn't really come with a question mark, but the question is implied.

Jeffrey Shallit said...


I don't think the situations are really parallel as you imply. In one case, it's the Muslim majority who are concerned with protecting their own beliefs by law. In the other, it's a country ravaged by war passing a law that it thinks protects a persecuted minority.

I can only try to be relatively consistent in my own beliefs; I cannot be responsible for the well-meaning but wrongheaded impulses of others.