There are crazy people who kill their families all the time. Christians, Hindus, Druids, whatever. Heck, most murders are committed by someone who knows the victims well.
Those things are indisputably true. It is also indisputably true that Islamic law is unique in giving divine sanction to certain kinds of abuse of women and children.
“Men are in charge of women, because Allah hath made the one of them to excel the other, and because they spend of their property (for the support of women). So good women are the obedient, guarding in secret that which Allah hath guarded. As for those from whom ye fear rebellion, admonish them and banish them to beds apart, and scourge them. Then if they obey you, seek not a way against them. Lo! Allah is ever High, Exalted, Great.” — Qur’an 4:34
A manual of Islamic law certified by Al-Azhar as a reliable guide to Sunni orthodoxy says that “retaliation is obligatory against anyone who kills a human being purely intentionally and without right.” However, “not subject to retaliation” is “a father or mother (or their fathers or mothers) for killing their offspring, or offspring’s offspring.” (‘Umdat al-Salik o1.1-2).
In other words, someone who kills his child incurs no legal penalty under Islamic law.
It is the job, or it should be the job, of Muslims in the U.S. who profess to embrace Western values and pluralism, and to reject Islamic supremacism, to teach against the attitudes that lead to this kind of thing. In any other context this would be axiomatic: womens’ rights advocates in the West have fought long and hard against certain Western cultural attitudes that they have linked to the abuse of women. But when it comes to Islamic cultural attitudes that may lead to such abuse, and particularly to Islamic cultural attitudes that are linked to Islamic teaching, those same womens’ rights advocates grow curiously silent.
Welcome to the New Multicultural Midwest: “Man throws wife, daughter out window in south St. Louis,” from KMOV.com, October 18 (thanks to Paul):
St. Louis (KMOV) — Police said late Saturday afternoon a 51-year-old man living with his family in a second floor apartment threw his wife and their 13-year-old daughter out the window.
The second floor apartment, located across the street from the Bevo Mill restaurant in south St. Louis, is nearly 17-feet above the sidewalk.
The woman and her daughter are in stable condition. A witness said the mother seemed almost in shock and the daughter was bleeding profusely.
The family is from Afghanistan and police said the father spoke little or no English. Other family members acted as interpreters….