A response to Comments re: This Danish Affair
First of all, thank you for your comments, and please accept my response with an open mind. I do value your contribution and appreciate you sharing your thoughts with me.
Alison; I think your opinion is very much coloured by your experience in life…as are the majority of people’s opinions and views. That’s natural. I admit my opinion is deeply affected by my experience as a Coptic woman in Egypt, constantly aware of how I am judged in my own society, aware of the fact I am a 3rd grade citizen at best in my own home country.
You seem to blur the lines between the “sorry” campaign we had here in Australia to the Aboriginal community for the stolen generation (which my family and I signed because we believed in it), and this issue in Denmark.
The Danish newspaper didn’t kill or torture or oppress anyone by publishing those cartoons. They merely exercised their right to freedom of press, freedom of expression. I acknowledged the fact it was offensive to Muslims…I just find their reaction ridiculous.
Your comments on my post and in your own blog don’t cast Christianity in a very positive light. As a Christian, I find them hurtful. Yet I acknowledge that you have the freedom to your opinion and you should be able to express it. I have the freedom to be offended and to stop reading your words…or to contemplate them…but I don’t have the right to demand you apologise to me. That would be absurd.
"I don't blame all Christians for the stupidity of a man in Rome so why blame all Muslims on the sad fundamentalists?"
Who's the man in Rome? The pope?
I don't blame all Muslims for the actions of a fundamentalist. This issue has nothing to do with punishing Muslim people. It's about a group of people who for some reason believe it is their right to do something (insult and defame other people's faith as is the common practice in all predominantly Muslim countries) but nobody can do the same to them. In fact, when books were published, TV programs aired and articles written to insult the Christian faith in Egypt, we didn't even have the right to say we were offended, let alone have the chance to response, let alone demand an apology.
As for the war mongering in the old Testament, there are two things I have to say about that:
1 The wars in the Old Testament were for the purpose of acquiring the promise land or defence against communities around the Israelites who would have threatened their existence. There is no Jihad in Judaism or Christianity. And the wars were never intended to spread Judaism. In fact Judaism is an exclusive club if you will. There’s them and there’s the gentiles. Islam however condones war for the purpose of spreading Islamic ideology (among other things), and it condones it in Quran and Hadith and Sunna.
2 The Christian faith is based on both Old and New Testaments. The purpose of the Old Testament for us is to explain why salvation was needed and provide an account of the prophecies that concerned this salvation. I challenge anyone to find me evidence that Jesus called for or condoned war, killing or humiliating another person in the Bible for any purpose at all.
Finally the “sins” for the church. These were sins committed by misguided men hundreds of years ago. And incidentally, Pope John Paul the 3rd DID apologise for them on behalf of the Catholic Church. Where are the apologies for the 100’s of thousands that were killed in the name of Islam? Where are their apologies for oppressing people in predominantly Muslim countries? Where’s our apology for our culture that they wiped out, our tongues that they cut off, and our children they killed…..etc???
Muslims live in Western countries including Denmark, enjoying all the rights and freedoms of those countries, protected by their laws and are able to not only practice their faith but to preach it to non Muslims. Did you know that even mentioning anything pertaining to the Christian faith to a Muslim in a Muslim country could land you in jail???
Again; please keep in mind that the Danish newspaper didn’t kill or torture anyone. And that the Danish government has to protect the freedoms and rights in their country…saying sorry because someone exercised their right is unacceptable.