“Reverend Patrick Gaffney of the University of Notre Dame blamed associations of Islam with violence on a history of anti-Islamic prejudice, insisting “there are parallel behaviours in every tradition.” Gaffney maintained there was little point looking for “distinct features” within Islamic theology that might have bearing on the wave of cartoon-related violence.” — from this article
How does the Reverend Patrick Gaffney know that there is “little point” looking for “distinct features” within “Islamic theology that might have bearing on the wave of cartoon-related violence”? Has he looked into that “Islamic theology” to see if in fact there are some “distinct features”? If he has not looked into “Islamic theology” at all, then he has no right to tell us that there is “little point” in doing so, because he has no basis for offering that assurance.
If he has looked into “Islamic theology” and wishes to claim that there is nothing in it that might have bearing on the wave of cartoon-related violence, then evidently he is asserting that there is nothing in it about the inculcated views of Infidels, nothing about the duty of Jihad, collective or at times individual, nothing about the loyalty owed the umma al-islamiyya, nothing about how Muhammad is the Model of Conduct, uswa hasana, and the Perfect Man, al-insan al-kamil, nothing about how Muhamamd dealt with those who mocked him, nothing about how Muslims, in following Muhammad’s clear example (assassination, either ordered or approved, by Muhammad himself), deal with what they regard as acts of “blasphemy.”
Jyllands-Posten, a Danish newspaper, dared to exercise, for its Danish readers in Denmark, Danish rights guaranteed by the Danish legal and political system. Those same rights are in fact guaranteed to individuals in all the most advanced Western countries. They are also enshrined in such documents as the American Bill of Rights (the first ten, or more exactly, the first eight amendments). For this act of daring to exercise those rights, the newspaper’s editors were threatened with death, Danes everywhere in the Muslim lands were threatened with death, economic boycotts were declared, ambassadors were recalled, and imams in Denmark (not “Danish imams,” which would be a different thing), went on tours to whip up easily whipped-up hysteria in the Middle East against all Danes everywhere.
Reverend Patrick Gaffney needs to study Islam. Not Islam as he would have it be. Islam as it is, and Islam as it has been acted upon by Muslims over the past 1350 years. He should study both the years of Jihad-conquest and then the centuries of subsequent subjugation of non-Muslims, leading in many cases to the almost complete disappearance of Christians and Jews and Zoroastrians in the lands where they were once not only the majority but made up the entire populations. The Jihad also helped to wipe Buddhism out in India and to destroy 60-70 million Hindus, and thousands of temple complexes, and to forcibly convert other tens of millions of Hindus to Islam. Their descendants are the Muslims of Pakistan, India, and Bangladesh whom we see today, and who are determinedly uninterested in the conditions that caused their Hindu ancestors to convert.
Reverend Patrick Gaffney is exploiting his clerical collar to be one more recruit in the army of apologists for Islam. Even though his evident motive is not cupidity, he is effective joining the ranks of many who have found this path enriching — so many former ambassadors, journalists, empire-building academics (Esposito with his “Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding”), businessmen eager for Saudi contracts, even ex-C.I.A. agents (see the last three decades in the life of Raymond Close, formerly C.I.A. station chief in Riyadh, from 1970-1977).
He shouldn’t be allowed to get away with it. Collar or no collar, he should not be allowed to be a front man or apologist for things that must be studied and their full, menacing nature understood.
Father Coughlin didn’t get away with it, not after Pearl Harbor. We had our Pearl Harbor, or rather the Infidels everywhere have had a rolling series of Pearl Harbors, but not enough Infidels have had the wit to properly identify them as such. But they are there. And Father Gaffney, like Father Coughlin, will ultimately have to stop his sweetly sinister apologetics.