Jihad Watch reader Bernie has kindly posted this petition and just sent it to me. I appreciate his putting it together. Indeed, this whole episode has turned into a major public relations disaster for the Leftists and Islamic supremacists; their authoritarian bullying is on full display. If I had given the talk in Worcester, Massachusetts in March as scheduled, it would have been little noted; now it has become the occasion for an extraordinary outpouring of support for me and my work, for which I am overwhelmed and grateful.
Many, many people have written, politely and courteously, to the Boston Globe over Lisa Wangsness's lack of journalistic ethics, and to Bishop Robert McManus of Worcester asking him to meet with me and allow my talk to go ahead as scheduled. One of the best of those letters is published below, with the author's permission -- but I was cc'd on so many excellent ones, and I want to express my heartfelt thanks to everyone who wrote them. I've also been inundated with supportive messages, both public in various fora and private, along with a spike in donations and a flurry of invitations to speak. There will no doubt be continued resistance and attempts to strongarm organizers of events featuring me into dropping my appearance, so your support on this Worcester event is much needed and appreciated. Our resources are extremely limited compared to those of the Leftist/Islamic machine, so we need your help.
To book me to speak, email me at director[at]jihadwatch.org.
So score one for the friends of freedom, and thank you all, very much, once again.
The petition is here.
One of the many letters that was sent to the bishop:
Dear Bishop McManus,
As your Excellency knows, a letter was sent to the office of your diocese, care of Fr. David Michael, on January 30 last, by Abdul Cader Asmal, a Michigan Muslim activist. In his letter Dr. Asmal, an endocrinologist of repute, requested that a lecture on Islam be taken out of a March 16 Catholic event.
Consequently the planned address by Robert Spencer, an American specialist of Muslim writings and doings, to your March 16 Men's Catholic Conference was cancelled by your Excellency's office staff.
As it turned out, the content of Dr. Asmal's letter was leaked by one of your Conference's organizers. On the basis ot Fr. Michael's response and of certain qualifications of Mr. Spencer by Dr. Asmal I would, most respectfully, suggest that your staff has failed to exercise enough charity or prudence in the seeming haste by which Fr. Michael acquiesced to Dr. Asmal's cancellation request.
That Dr. Asmal, in his letter to Fr. Michael (whom he interestingly addresses as Dear David) would propose himself as a judge to discern whether Mr. Spencer "masquerades as a Catholic" or not should, in itself, cause a prudent diocese Catholic diocese staff member to scrutinize more fully the intentions of the author of such a cancellation request.
The various other "ad hominem" labelling of Mr. Spencer in Dr. Asmal's letter ( "not an academician", "hatemonger", "does not understand Islam", practises "selective quoting" of sacred texts, etc.) should have, I respectfully contend, started alarm bell ringing at the diocese's office.
The Catechism of the Catholic Church, at article 2477, appears quite adamant in stressing the necessity for prudent and charitable people, no matter what faith they hold dear, to avoid the following sins: Rash Judgement, Detraction and Calumny. Failing to do so would go against, says the Catechism, the Respect for the Reputation of one's neighbour.
Not an academician myself, I cannot begin to guess what Robert Spencer intended to deliver at your Men's Conference. But I suspect that Dr. Asmal would indeed recoil at hearing there some of the "selected quotes" from the Qur'an that Jihadwatch, Mr. Spencer's web site, is in the habit of commenting, sometimes in an engaging form of harmless humour.
For example: Jews and Christians "have taken their rabbis and their monks as lords apart from God", chapter nine, verse 31.
"They are unbelievers who say God is the Messiah, Mary's son", chapter five, verse 72.
"(Muslims) are the best nation ever brought forth to men", chapter three, verse 110.
"Take not Jews and Christians as friends; they are friends of each other. Whoso of you makes them his friends is one of them" chapter five, verse 51.
"The unbelievers of the People of the Book (Gospel) ...are the worst of creatures", chapter 98, verse six.
Dr. Asmal, and other Muslim activists, are genuinely alarmed at the thought of seeing and hearing their religious teaching brought under the glare of public scrutiny, especially the kind of relentless examination to which self-taught Muslim scholar Spencer is day and day out submitting their ideology. And Spencer is not alone.
May I be permitted, your Excellency, to suggest a look at the Muslim Loonwatch website for some of the names of critics of Islam (some of whom are academicians!) who are there mercilessly demonized in the most crude manner, and by the same token a look at the Jihadwatch web site the form and content of which are so much more civilized, factual and, yes, humorous?
Please, your Excellency, annul the annulment.
In the goodness of the Lord and fervent hopes for your strong leadership.
Mr. C. Lutz, Haliburton, Ontario