. . . better have a good look under the hood
I remember back in the '70's seeing a New Zealand TV interviewer talk to an American lawyer for the group about why the parents of a young woman had been cut off from their child by the group.
It was quite a spectacle: the interviewer was trying to get some answers about why this was taking place. How dare they control & manipulate someone in this way? The lawyer, on the other hand was pleading religious persecution of an innocent minority faith - the Moonies were the real victims, not the virtually kidnapped and brainwashed girl and not the grieving family. The Mooonies were just exercising their religious freedom - why was everyone so against this, the lawyer asked?
I remember the utter disbelief of that journalist and of my family as we watched the exchange. No matter what, there was no recourse to reason and certainly no admission of guilt. It was obvious & blatant outright lying and everyone knew it.
I've often thought of that interaction when I see contemporary interactions with many Muslims when it comes to the damage inflicted on women by Islam. Are all Muslims abusive? Well of course not, that is not the suggestion. The obvious implication though from all the rape crimes, no-go zones and Sharia courts throughout Europe however, is that there is something at least as worrying about Islam as there is about the Moonies.
Oscar Kightley is a nice bloke, very warm and good-natured, so when he wrote a piece for Stuff about Lauren Southern & Stefan Molyneux not coming to New Zealand I took the time to read it. Like a lot of others, he'd never heard of the pair. Yet he seems to have made up his mind about them from a couple of hours exploring their Youtube channels. He didn't find it a worthwhile experience.
But perhaps he went in expecting to find yucky stuff and so found what he expected eh? This seems to happen a lot in my experience.
I say this as he seems a generous & level-headed fella, yet for him to view a video of say, Lauren Southern asking some women on a "women's march" whether they preferred Islam or Feminism and only come away with the impression that she was being deliberately provocative while remaining impervious to the women's measured responses is to miss the whole point (I took a stab that this is one of the videos that he watched, it's one of her most popular and it's short - pretty likely he saw it).
The point here is that she presented women with questions about Islam's mandated treatment of women. She also offered scriptural explanations from Islamic sacred texts backing up the subservient status of women, Muhammad's child bride Aisha and the right of a Muslim man to beat his wife.
BTW here are the two scriptures she referred to:~
Sahih Bukhari 7:62:64 Narrated Aisha: that the prophet married her when she was SIX YEARS OLD AND CONSUMMATED HIS MARRIAGE WHEN SHE WAS NINE YEARS OLD and then she remained with him for nine years (i.e. till his death).
Sahih Muslim 4:2127 MUHAMMAD STRUCK HIS FAVOURITE WIFE, AISHA, IN THE CHEST one evening when she left the house without his permission. Aisha narrates, "He struck me on the chest which caused me pain."
Once again, this is not merely uninformed accusation. These are Sahih ahadith and as such are considered totally reliable and second only to the Qur'an in authority. I may as well add in a verse from the Qur'an itself, Q 4:34:
"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".
Mr Kightley doesn't seem to take the Islamic Faith seriously however. Neither did the young Muslim woman Ms Southern spoke with - in fact she was indignant at being told such abhorrent things were in Islam. Yet there they are, so the question "feminism or Islam" seems entirely appropriate. How could someone like Mr Kightley so easily dismiss it? The scriptures were written on screen for study. It's quite easy to google them.
So, back to the need for ladies to have a really good look under the hood before they make a permanent arrangement with a Muslim man. The video below is of a mother who had her daughter murdered by her Muslim husband in Melbourne. She hadn't seen her daughter for 5 years before she was killed (sounds like the old Moonies story eh?). In the end though, she was killed slowly, over a period of days while her two small kids looked on.
The Moonies didn't have a Book that advocated this kind of dreadful abusive attitude 40 years ago. Yet 40 years ago every single person watching that interview knew exactly who was right, who was wrong and who was lying. Nobody was the least bit confused. If that young woman had been murdered nobody would have swallowed any "cultural differences" argument to ameliorate the man's actions. Today however, Islam has Books directing the treatment of wives but people seem too embarrassed simply to pay attention to how these cases align with those Books. And even if they do pay attention, there are prominent voices that turn around and tell them that this has nothing whatsoever to do with the Islamic Faith and that there are abusers in every religion. So we take their word for it & stop looking into the matter.
But as our scriptural references show, this has everything to do with Islam. Once again I ask - and I chose Christianity because it's the religion most of us know best - can somebody point me to a passage in the teachings of Christ or in the teachings of the Apostles or of the Church Fathers, such as the Didache, that provide a favourable example of paedophilia and wife beating?
Friends, there aren't any.
Some men abuse their wives despite their religious background and others do so because of it. Those Islamic scriptures formed their culture just as Christianity formed ours.
And what about the girls and the women? We're all feminists until it comes to Islam it seems.
By the way: Lauren Southern and Stefan Molyneux look to be going ahead now with their Auckland visit. If I was in the vicinity I would make a point of going to hear them - properly I mean.
The issues are serious enough to warrant that, I would have thought.