Now that German Chancellor Angela Merkel has pronounced multiculturalism a failure, it's time to look at why. I don't think it's any mystery that what she's really talking about is Muslim immigrants. When she speaks of integrating into the community and adopting German values, she's speaking of Muslims. It's about time she's recognized that Muslim immigrants, as a whole, don't really care about Germany or it's values -- other than its welfare programs, of course.

The Muslim mindset is simply different than what Westerners are used to. Our values don't match or mesh with theirs. That's not going to change any time soon.

Why does it have to be either/or? Accommodation or confrontation?

Christianity is the focus of religion in the U.S. But in the world at large, Islam is grabbing all the headlines. In Europe, people are waking up to the overwhelming failure of Muslims to integrate and join society. From burqas to mosque spires to agitation for Sharia law, Europeans are deciding that Muslims are infiltrating -- not joining -- their societies. This might not seem like so bad a thing, but there's more . . .

. . . Like the way Muslims turn tolerance on its head. It's the critic's and dissenter's own fault that they are killed or must hide or hire body guards . . . they, after all, are disrespecting Islam or the Quran or Muhammad.

Desperate acts come from desperate people. Death threats and executions reveal insecure people who feel threatened by criticism of their insecure religion. This insecurity is notably inculcated by the (unreformed) Quran and Islam in general. Societies, everywhere, include such quislings: but it's the dogma and doctrines of religions that empower them and turn them into radicals, militants and Jihadis. Adherents aren't the problem. Dogma is. And Islam is a rabid dogma compared to reformed Christian dogma. The Quran STILL gives license to those who would silence objectors . . . and most moderate Muslims are conspicuously acquiescent to the violence of their fundamentalist counterparts.

Islam has not enjoyed the reforms of Christianity. This is an observable fact. Just turn on the news and see for yourself. Bodyguards for atheists (don't forget Ayaan Hersi Ali and Salman Rushdie), dissenters in hiding and death sentences for apostasy are not justified by any tolerant religion. The fact that other religions don't practice such intimidation methods so routinely gives testimony to the unremitting intolerance of Islamic doctrine. Islam is a self-reinforcing fundamentalist dogma because it's based on the fabrications of one self-serving man: Muhammad. Islam could not survive if it allowed dissension. So it won't allow it.

Abortion-clinic bombers are certainly terrorists, to say the least. But they're rare, given the world-wide majority of Christianity as a religion. Christians in Northern Ireland kill each other but not so much any more. Christianity has a bloody history but continued blood-lust has become rare. This reflects Christian reforms. The real threat from religion comes from Islam. Until it enjoys the reforms Christianity has, we can look forward to further violence and terrorism.

How pushy should atheists be? When it comes to violence and intolerance we should be very pushy indeed. In the modern world, that means pushing back at Islam. Europe is waking up to this fact. It's unfortunate but true.



Views: 197

Comment by Doug Reardon on October 18, 2010 at 1:00pm
Most, here on TA, seem to think that rational debate with irrational people has some value.
Comment by Rufus on October 18, 2010 at 2:44pm
@Adriana
The reason why Mexicans streamed into the US was that elites pushed through NAFTA, which damaged their economy, especially hurting rural farmers. The reason why Muslims were allowed into Europe seems to be that elites made it happen against the wishes of indigenous Europeans. It's entirely possible that both situations were planned. Elites have an obvious self-interest in dividing the common people against one another. And it's not like elites don't form secret plans to suit their self-interests, after all that's what the Bilderberg meetings and concomitant oaths of secrecy are all about--planning that excludes the public, plans that may harm the public.
Comment by Doug Reardon on October 18, 2010 at 8:34pm
Fred:
All of the above?
Comment by Doug Reardon on October 18, 2010 at 8:37pm
Those who seek knowledge and understanding I consider rational, those who seek to justify their positions, I consider irrational. I have never seen an irrational person change because of debate.
Comment by Atheist Exile on October 18, 2010 at 8:57pm
Fred,

I don't care about political correctness. That's not what freethought is about.

The U.S. is a pluralistic society. We have not adopted multiculturalism like Europe has. However, a certain amount of multiculturalism will form naturally. LIttle Tokyo, Little Italy, China Town, etc. . . . these enclaves are natural examples of multiculturalism developing in our pluralistic society. And they're also examples of our differences separating us in many ways, including physical.

And that's the problem with multiculturalism as a national policy: instead of celebrating our differences, it tends to reinforce them. A pluralistic society needs to make sure that immigrants learn the national language and history before allowing citizenship. This helps them to fit into society better and fosters a greater sense of citizenship.

I did not address Merkel's statements on Christian values. My own thoughts on Christian values are that they're hypocritical. What I did point out was that Christianity has been reformed . . . not perfectly but certainly significantly -- and that this is a huge and important difference between Christianity and Islam. Based solely on their scripture, Judaism and Islam are both fundamentalist by nature with fundamentalism emphasized and reinforced at every turn. The New Testament, on the other hand, with its emphasis on love, sacrifice, long-suffering and forgiveness, is entirely different. Unfortunately, Christianity includes both the Old and New Testaments. Fundamentalists tend to emphasize the Old Testament point of view and liberals, moderates and progressives tend to emphasize the New Testament point of view.

While Christian values assumes some sort of uniformity, there isn't really. But let's say Christian values are those espoused by Jesus. If that's what you mean by Christian values, then I'd have to say they're superior to Muslim values. No question about it. Not as authentic as humanist values, but certainly better than Muslims ones.

When you also consider the reforms Christianity has undergone over the centuries, there's really no comparison between modern Christianity and Islam where threat levels are concerned.

My final point is that it is the dogmas these religions preach that influence adherents. With Islam's nonnegotiable doctrine of Quranic perfection and infallability, adherents are less free to cherry pick the verses they like and openly admit it . . . and even if they did, there's precious little there of a positive nature. You won't normally hear them denying anything in the Quran unless it falls under the doctrine of abrogation. Compared to the New Testament and the message of Jesus, the Quran and the message of Muhammad represents a rabid dogma. If you've read both scriptures, then you know it's true. The mindsets of modern Christian and Muslims are simply incompatible. That may not be politically correct, but it's the truth as far as I can see.
Comment by Atheist Exile on October 18, 2010 at 9:05pm
Well, Doug, then you must not be speaking of me. :-) In the last week or so, I've publicly changed my position on: the historicity of Jesus (from probably myth to probably a real person); the propriety of accommodationism between religion and science (from desirable to not desirable). But I must be persuaded by rational arguments first.

Isn't that the way it's supposed to go? An unpopular position isn't necessarily a wrong one. And I'm secure enough to put an unpopular opinion out there for dissection. I believe that's the basis of great discussions.
Comment by Atheist Exile on October 18, 2010 at 10:21pm
@doone,

Per your stats on Turkish immigration/naturalization, not all immigrants are in the country legally (much the same as happens in the U.S.). And even if they were, naturalization quotas limit how many can become citizens (much the same as happens in the U.S.). We can't expect prosperous countries to open the immigration floodgates to poor countries. That's just not going to happen. I think we all recognize that.

The stats you provide cover different periods. But spanning the period in common, I see that .0367 percent (367 out of a million) of Turks in Germany became citizens in 1982 . . . while 4.146 percent (41,460 out of a million) of Turks in Germany became citizens in 2008. Assuming their quota was filled every year, that means the quota increased by 143 times while the number of Turks increased by 113 times. The quota increased faster than the Turkish population. I don't see a problem with that.
Comment by Atheist Exile on October 18, 2010 at 10:46pm
@Adriana,

If Merkel, as a politician, is "using this type of rhetoric to get elected again" doesn't that mean the rhetoric is targeted for popular support? And doesn't that popular support come from people who agree? If the reality of multiculturalism in Germany has turned sour . . . and Germans agree . . . then isn't it time to address the problem?

The fulcrum of politics attempts to balance conservative and liberal viewpoints. In this case, the liberal ideal of inclusion has collided with the brick wall of Islamic values. I'm sorry to say it but sometimes people just don't want to be included -- they want to rule. Islamic values will not admit subordination. It's time people recognize the facts. People need to read the Quran and understand the focus of Muslim life and culture.
Comment by Atheist Exile on October 19, 2010 at 12:26am
@doone,

I never said all Muslims are fundamentalists. I said that Islam is unrelentingly fundamentalist: reinforcing fundamentalism at every turn. This is a common misinterpretation of the real problem. The distinction is doctrine versus adherents. People are the same everywhere. They're just regular people who want to lead regular lives. If they're moderates, it's despite Islamic dogma. The real problem is religion: specifically, religious dogma.

The full gamut of personalities exist everywhere. Mostly, people tend to be private and don't want to rock the boat. But there are also activists and extremists. These reactionaries constitute the squeaky wheels. They're the ones who take dogma too seriously and commandeer agendas.

Ex-President Bush was wrong when he said that "Extremists have hijacked Islam". It's not the adherents . . . it's the dogma that's at the source of the problem. Dogma does not form around adherents. Adherents form around dogma. So it's the other way around: "Islam has hijacked extremists."

The enemy here is not Muslims . . . it's Islam. Americans might feel complacent about this but that's a luxury afforded by the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. Without proximity to the Muslim world, the Americas (and Australia) are the last to be affected. Look at the rest of the globe -- it DOES have proximity to the Islamic world. It's a whole different story.

While statistics are well and good, especially if accompanied by (expert) analysis to lend context, ANYBODY can Google stats to support their point of view. Your latest stats show only what we already know . . . Egypt and Turkey are (currently), ostensibly, secular governments. This has nothing to do with the discussion except to argue against something I didn't say -- "that ALL Moslesm are fundamentalists or have a different mindset than most Europeans or Americans". That is your interpretation put into my mouth. What I actually said is that, "The mindsets of modern Christian and Muslims are simply incompatible." As a whole, I should think this is self-evident.
Comment by Atheist Exile on October 19, 2010 at 1:28am
Terrorist threats foiled in North America, Europe, Asia and Africa . . . even Australia (basically, just about anywhere). Terrorist threats NOT foiled in the same places. What do they have in common? They target infrastructure or innocent women and children. They are cowardly clandestine attacks or suicidal missions. They are perpetrated by Muslims.

These are the reactionary minority of Muslims. I don't doubt that the majority of Muslims would never do such things. But I also don't doubt that many, if not most, Muslims are sympathetic to extremists -- if for no other reason than they actually follow Muhammad's example. What I DO know is that most Muslims see Muhammad as the perfect example of manhood.

Forget about the extremists. How can any atheist, liberal or not, defend a religion that enforces male dominance to the point of the abject subjugation of females? How can any atheist approve of such a culture within their own? Is human rights negotiable? Is equality only for those strong enough to claim it? Liberals have lofty ideals. It's time they stand up for them.

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