Posted: May 21st, 2011 by Militant Libertarian
The religion I have in mind is unbelievably backwards and naive when viewed with objectivity. It demands rigid obedience, and failure to comply with the demands of the religious enforcers can result in immediate death. The religion forbids depiction of revered figures in certain forms of imagery in the mass media. Refusal to abide by these restrictions may result in violence or prison. Religious zealous claim unfavorable depiction of the revered figures is offensive and dangerous. When offenders are disproportionately punished with violence or prison for the peaceful act of broadcasting the revered figures in the mass media in an unfavorable light, members of the religion defend such punishments as being permitted by the law.
One fundamentalist member of this religion candidly and shamelessly asserted that if his daughter were to drink or wear inappropriate clothing, any form of violent punishment received from religious leaders is deserved. High-ranking members of this religion readily enforce dress codes with beatings, while low-level adherents condone such violence as necessary because the law must be enforced, and law-breakers knew they were acting illegally when they engaged in such behavior.
When more rational people inevitably disagree with the harsh and unreasonable dictates of this religion, the adherents turn to more violence. They not only cheer on the regular violence used by the higher-ranking members of the religion, they themselves threaten violence upon people who dare promote peace, or retaliate against wrongful authority. They have said things like, “I don’t see a lady, I see a stupid whore…I hope homless [sic] person robs and rapes you!!!” in referring to a woman who dared to stand up against oppressive authority by refusing to submit to tyrannical demands, and portraying the religious figures negatively in the media.
Writers who dare criticize the violent members of the religion, and refuse “salvation” regularly receive comments such as, “I hope [you] get raped and tortured one day then they will see what they think of [the revered figures] when they save their stupid faggot asses and it’s a shame…” Another zealot, furious at the disrespect against his religion has said, “Meet me in a dark alley and we will see who smells fear. Keep running your mouth…”
Members of this religion display an unflinching and blind devotion to the tenets of their religion, even in the face of factual evidence to the contrary, but will insist that people who disagree with them are ignorant and should be killed. For instance, one zealot stated, “The stubbornness, ignorance and retardation…is un-fucking-believable…Do the world a favor and go die in the corner.”
Certain hallowed members of the religion also engage in the killing of completely innocent people from time to time. The innocent people may include children, disabled people or others who were in the wrong place at the wrong time. Instead of condemning the killing of innocents, the adherents of this religion instead claim such killings are “justifiable,” sometimes because “under the circumstances” it was excusable or understandable. Other times, zealots claim such killings are an unfortunate but necessary part of law and society.
This religion is not Islam. The religion is the Church of the Police States of America. These commenters, wishing death and rape upon non-violent dissenters are not Muslim extremists, but freedom-loving Americans (allegedly) who frequent Cop Block with nasty messages.
Filming police, a peaceful act, is repeatedly met with violence and jail (here and here). Frustrated at being portrayed as the monsters they are, some police respond either with violence or arrest, and despite the needlessly harsh punishment meted out to peaceful videographers, many Americans continue to insist either police should have special protection because they are of a higher order of human beings, or that the law permits such punishment – end of discussion.
How is police violence and institutional support for unjust punishment in response to the innocent act of filming police any different from rioting because of an offensive Mohammad cartoon?
Despite the rhetoric about freedom and police protecting rights, the United States, due partly to the insane and horrific War on Drugs, has the highest incarceration rate in the world. The United States also has one of the worst police states in the world, ranking above only North Korea, China, Belarus, and Russia (and only 2/100ths of a point above Russia). Despite evidence police do not in fact have a very difficult job, and do not face a great deal of violence, Americans continue to insist police deserve special protections, and more needs to be done to punish those who dare challenge authority. Despite evidence that police commit a disproportionate number of sexual assaults (see here and here), people recklessly defend police on the grounds that it is only a matter of a “few bad apples” and that police bring safety to society (if a few bitches gotta be raped to maintain safety, so be it). Against all reason and good sense, Americans continue to insist police violence is civility and peace, while they threaten violence against those who actually call for true civility and peace.
The religious zealot mentioned above who defended beatings of women who drink and wear inappropriate clothing was a police officer, not a Muslim cleric. He had viewed a video of police brutality against a young woman and essentially stated she deserved a beating because she was drinking and wearing low pants. Indeed, American police are not unfamiliar with beating people who wear clothing deemed “inappropriate.” Another young man who had left school for the day, was accosted and beaten by police for wearing his pants too low. As this is reminiscent of what is perceived to be the case under Sharia law, it is instructive to compare these two accounts to two similar occurrences in Saudi Arabia, wherein religious police questioned women on the streets regarding the propriety of their behavior. One woman responded by shooting at the police vehicle until they drove off, while another woman attacked the religious police. Both women came out of the situation physically unharmed. In America, retaliation by either of the victims most likely would have been met with deadly force. Again, despite the completely inhumane brutality doled out to these American offenders of morality, some Americans mindlessly retort that if they had only obeyed orders, they would not have been beaten.
How is, “if you had only pulled your pants up, you wouldn’t have had the shit beat out of you” different from “If she had only covered her ankle, she wouldn’t have had the shit beat out of her”?
When police kill completely innocent people, such as Donald Sargent, who was standing in the privacy of his own home, behind the closed doors of his own bedroom, minding his own business, or John Williams, who was peacefully walking down the street, or Aiyana Jones, a sleeping 7-year-old child, police escape with impunity because people absurdly contend such killings are reasonable under the circumstances.
How is letting a murderer escape punishment after killing innocent people, and declaring through the courts that it was “justifiable” any better than saying that suicide bombings are sometimes “necessary” or “understandable”?
Even as American law regularly yields logically identical results as Sharia law, an embarrassing number of Americans believe the government garbage about freedom, order and safety. Evidence to the contrary flies in their faces daily, but they drone on like brain-dead zombies, incapable of the lowest level of self-reflection or critical thought. People adhere rigidly to the absurd tenets of blind obedience to authority, and “the law is the law” even while they rabidly criticize and demonize the exact same thing going on somewhere else in the world.
How does that work, exactly? So if the law is the law, and orders must be obeyed – and that’s why it’s perfectly fine to waste the lives of millions of non-violent drug offenders, and beat people wearing inappropriate clothing – then shouldn’t we really be applauding the stoning of women per Sharia law? It would seem like they are doing an excellent job of serving the law, if that is indeed what the law requires. Why are foreign police who stone or jail women for failing to abide by dress codes monsters and animals, while American police who kill or jail innocent people are heroes?
I am no expert on religion and have no particular opinion with regard to Islam, but based on what the media and American people perceive it to be, it is not appear much worse than what the American Police State does to its people. Even if America is relatively more free, in that such occurrences happen less, it’s pretty pathetic that this is what the great United States of America has come to. It’s all come down to this – the USA has become a rotting cesspool of corruption that supports incarcerating a huge portion of its population, killing innocent people, raping women and arbitrary arrest – but at least it’s not the worse, more oppressive rotting cesspool of corruption “over there” somewhere (which is inhabited by brown people).