A Modest Proposal

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Hat tip to LGF for this item. The Pittsburgh Review-Tribune carried this story about a lecture by Ayaan Hirsi Ali in which a local Pittsburgh imam cheerfully announced that Hirsi Ali should be put to death for her comments.

A community debate over religious freedom surfaced in Western Pennsylvania last week when Dutch feminist author Ayaan Hirsi Ali, a Somali refugee who has lived under the threat of death for denouncing her Muslim upbringing, made an appearance at the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown.

Islamic leaders tried to block the lecture, which was sponsored through an endowment from the Frank J. and Sylvia T. Pasquerilla Lecture Series. They argued that Hirsi Ali's attacks against the Muslim faith in her book, "Infidel," and movie, "Submission," are "poisonous and unjustified" and create dissension in their community.

Although university officials listened to Islamic leaders' concerns, the lecture planned last year took place Tuesday evening under tight security, with no incidents.

Imam Fouad ElBayly, president of the Johnstown Islamic Center, was among those who objected to Hirsi Ali's appearance.

"She has been identified as one who has defamed the faith. If you come into the faith, you must abide by the laws, and when you decide to defame it deliberately, the sentence is death," said ElBayly, who came to the U.S. from Egypt in 1976.

This is not a religious debate. This is a threat. This man, who has come to this country and taken advantage of the religious freedom it mandates, wants to deny it to another. He also wants the person he disagrees with dead. I have a modest proposal. Eject this man from this country – at once. This is not freedom of speech – this is incitement to violence. And this is someone we do not need in this country. I happen to have been raised in the Lutheran faith. And I would be saying exactly the same thing about a Lutheran minister who called for the death of someone who decided to change faiths – or abandon the Lutheran faith altogether. Freedom of religion means just that.

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4 Responses to A Modest Proposal

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  3. Joshua says:

    Very good point!

    People often forget about the whole ‘freedom of speech’ thing when other ‘horrible’ things happen. Sometimes they are horrible (re: VT massacre, 9/11), sometimes not so bad (re: religion).

    In either case, we need to remember our core values, not succumb to whatever ‘fear’ that’s making you nervous at the moment.

  4. Inclusion vs. exclusion.

    Funny, just today Pastor was speaking about John Carlson and his “reject prom” in terms of Isaiah 25, which our faith teaches means that God has room for everyone.

    7 On this mountain he will destroy
    the shroud that enfolds all peoples,
    the sheet that covers all nations;

    8 he will swallow up death forever.
    The Sovereign LORD will wipe away the tears
    from all faces;
    Pastor Carlson started the “reject prom” because he thought that they were too exclusive to be Christian. That God is inclusive, not exclusive.

    Sadly the Jihadis seem to be just as exclusive as the meanest clique in High School. The difference is that the Jihadis don’t mock those who don’t toe the line…they _kill_ them.

    Besides, everyone knows that it’s the Presbyterians that have to be watched for Crusader tendencies. I mean, have you ever been to one of _their_ potluck diners? Nary a casserole made with Cream of Mushroom Soup to be found at a Presbyterian potluck. Nothing to compare to a good Lutheran Potluck with plenty of Hotdish.

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