We need to resist the choice that seems to be offered to us at the moment. On the one hand we have the relativism of sections of the intelligentsia on the one hand, who cannot say the words “Western democracy” without a sneer. On the other there is the notion that we are in an unavoidable clash of cultures with almost everyone who calls themselves a Muslim. This is a self-fulfilling prophecy.
Dialogue and debate can both exist alongside a muscular defence of certain values: freedom of speech, democracy, human rights — including equal rights for women. We should allow — with modesty — that it is precisely because some of these rights have been won comparatively recently, and not in the days of the Athenian Republic, that we defend them so resolutely.
Tuesday, November 15, 2005
Islam not behind French riots
Good look at the lack of evidence for any "Muslim" cause of the current French riots by David Aaranovitch, and wider conclusion:
If you judged Christianity by the frothings of the US evangelical right, you might come to the same conclusions as some of the badly-informed criticisms of Islam in the US and UK media.