Don’t you just love it when delusional ideologues defend Sharia law as progressive and vilifying their critics? Over the last weekend Sally Kohn from CNN spent a lot of time defending Islam and sharia law from criticism. Much hay has been made over such claims as “All practicing Muslims believe in sharia. It doesn’t mean what you’ve been told.” and “there are gay feminist Muslims who believe in Sharia!”. She has also been accused of equating Sharia law (an aspect of Islam) with Islam as a whole, when talking about gay Muslims celebrating Pride Month. The irony that seems to be lost on her is that as someone who is both lesbian and Jewish she would be heavily victimized by the implementation of Sharia law. If she actually lived in many of those countries, she’d probably be either locked or killed for her homosexuality, or probably killed for being a non-believer. Apart from that, I’m a tad worried what just the average person in these Islamic countries might think to do to her simply upon the revelation that she is Jewish. Her ignorance on the subject of Islam and Sharia law has been so widely skewered on Twitter that there is actually a petition on Change calling for her to spend in a week country where Sharia is the law of the land, without bodyguards of course, in order to prove that Sharia really is as progressive, or compatible with progressivism, as she thinks.
Also making hay on Twitter was rapper Talib Kweli Greene who actually believes that the only way to criticize Islam without bigotry is to become a Muslim, which is essentially the same thing as saying that fascism can only be criticized objectively by Mussolini. He has gone so far as to call Sam Harris a white supremacist, and labels his supporters as bigots. He even refers to Maajid Nawaz as a white supremacist apologist, and he even implicitly refers to him as a “coon” – a racial slur that seems to have been adopted by African-Americans to refer to black people who they want to denounce as race traitors on the basis of political disagreement.
Both of them are public figures who got into arguments with a lot of people who took the piss out of their public displays of ignorance, and both are very vocal apologists. Meanwhile, in the Middle East, gays no doubt still get executed for being gay, women are still treated as worth less than a man to the point that rape victims are punished (as is the case in Qatar) and they can’t do anything without the approval of a man (as is the case in Saudi Arabia) and Iran this year graduating college students were flogged for dancing in jubilation. Sharia is the law of the land across the Middle East, and it produces brutally oppressive theocracies, and it is not hard for anyone to find this out. And in the UK, not only are there parallel legal courts that enforce sharia law, but there are even “sharia patrols”. These patrols consist of gangs of Muslim men who go out and enforce Islamic law on innocent bystanders. They harass people for things like drinking alcohol, wearing too little clothing (which, let’s be honest, means anything that doesn’t cover your entire body) and being gay. They go out of their way to cover up advertisements for clothes stores like H&M with black paint because they deem it sinful. All to enforce the will of Allah and Islamic morality. And the UK isn’t alone. There are reports of Sharia patrols and their activities in Germany, Austria, and Denmark.
And the icing on the cake? It is still taboo to criticize Islam or Sharia law! I’m not joking. Anything that is anti-Islamic – not anti-Muslim, not racism directed at Arabs, just anti-Islamic, the religion/ideology! – is deemed as abuse, as part of the wretched cult that is the myth of Islamophobia. Criticism of Islam and sharia law is considered abusive and venturing into racism and bigotry, and make no mistake, that “abuse” is being tracked. And I don’t have a doubt in my mind that the government is going to get increasingly authoritarian in order to combat what it, or the duped people, think is “a rise in Islamophobia”. And given the way the police have started treating people who criticize them over the Internet, it is going to get ugly.
This is the reality that delusional ideologues like Sally Kohn and Talib Kweli Greene, well, frankly have the luxury of denying. That the political class frankly has the luxury of denying.