Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Building A Mosque On Shifting Sands

First we were told that building a Mosque at Ground Zero is a grand idea because of the symbolism it would entail and the message it would send.

Then we were told that, you know, it's, uh, not really a Mosque, and it's, uh, not really at Ground Zero. Really.

First we were told that the Mosque is being built by people who are opposed to extremism and terrorism.

Then we were told that anyone who tries to determine whether or not extremists and supporters of terrorism are involved in building the Mosque is a racist and un-American.

First we were told that no one anticipated that there would be any opposition to building a Mosque at Ground Zero.

Then we learned that those who are building the Mosque and those who support them kept their plans secret for months (years?) because they were afraid of the response.

First we were told that a thousand years ago Cordoba was a city of brotherly love and diversity, and a shining oasis of religious tolerance.

Then we learned that a thousand years ago Cordoba was the capital of an Islamic theocracy.

First we were told that only far-right extremist Sarah Palin loving wingnut neanderthals oppose the Ground Zero Mosque.

Then we learned that the majority of New York City residents, the majority of New York State residents, and the majority of Americans oppose the Ground Zero Mosque.

First we were told that, well, OK, sure, people may have differing opinions, and it's only to be expected that some people don't like the idea. But this is America, and that's what makes us great and free, you know?

Then we were told that anyone who doesn't like the idea is a bigot who doesn't believe in the most basic constitutional guarantees of rights and freedoms.

Please, try to keep up.

Lars Hedegaard & Lifting the Veil on Sexual Assault

"Once the Leftists stood on the barricades for women’s rights. But where are they today? Where are they in 2010? They are looking the other way. Because they are addicted to cultural relativism and dependent on the Muslim vote."
[Geert Wilders, London, March 5, 2010]
One of Kristina Aamand's parents is Arab, the other is Danish. One of Asif Uddin's parents is Pakistani, the other is Indian. They are both Muslims, and they are both Danish citizens.

In 2007 Aamand and Uddin (who also happen to married to each other) published the book Mødom på Mode ("Virginity in Fashion"). That book presents six reports on the status and treatment of young women and girls in Denmark's immigrant communities, focusing on "custom, culture and norms, gender perception and morality in a collective family structure." In particular, the reports focused on the issue of female virginity.

Aamand is a trained nurse and social worker. She has worked as a research assistant and social counsellor at the rape crisis centre at Copenhagen University Hospital, where she developed and executed an information campaign Løft sløret for seksuelle overgreb ("Lifting the Veil on Sexual Assault"), targeted to minorities and professionals.

Aamand and Uddin's book, Mødom på Mode, includes first hand accounts of sexual abuse in Denmark's Muslim immigrant communities, especially the rape of minor girls by male family members.

Aamand has also created the NewHymen.dk website, to educate the public about beliefs and practices concerning virginity, and especially the issues of "virginity tests" performed by medical personnel, and so-called "reconstructive hymen surgery". (She also has a blog in Danish.)

In December, 2009 Lars Hedegaard, a Danish historian who is the co-founder of the Free Press Society (Trykkefrihedsselskabet), was interviewed by Asger Trier Engberg for the blog snaphanen.dk. The audio of the original interview (in English) is available at Engberg's website: rubicon.dk.

In that interview, Hedegaard made reference to incidents of sexual assault such as those documented in Aamand and Uddin's book. Because of this, Lars Hedegaard has been accused of being a racist!

Soon after the interview both Hedegaard and Engberg issued public statements responding to attempts to systematically misrepresent what Hedegaard had said. Hedegaard is accused of racism primarily because he refuses to accept the false distinction between Islam and so-called "Islamism." (Even though neither Islam nor Islamism, whatever they might be, and however they might be the same or different, are races!) Hedegaard does, however, emphatically insist that he scrupulously distinguishes between individual Muslims, most of whom are decent human beings to whom the crime of raping a child is unimaginable, and, on the other hand, the Muslim religion as a totalitarian ideology which encourages systematic abuse, including physical and sexual abuse, of women and girls.

I strongly encourage anyone reading this to look at Lars Hedegaard's own words in defense of his position "that family rapes of Muslim girls is a serious and widespread phenomenon." In addition to the research already mentioned he cites writings by prominent Muslim women, a study commissioned by the North American Council for Muslim Women, documented cases of "honor killings" among Muslim immigrants in Europe, and many other sources.

Today, August 3rd, the Copenhagen Public Prosecutor's office announced that Lars Hedegaard is being formally charged with violating Paragraph 266b of the Danish Penal Code. This section of Danish law prohibits "expressing and spreading racial hatred." More specifically the law "covers any threatening, vilifying or insulting statement intended for the general public or a wide circle of persons." More information on Paragraph 266b and be found at the website of the European Commission Against Racism and Intolerance.