Sunday, March 26, 2006

A Rant

When I went to Elmira College in the 1970's, there were a few Muslims. The Mideastern men clearly hated women. They treated us coldly, rudely or just plain badly. This was a common phenomenon, and it took us coeds by surprise. Why did they bother to come to our country, if they so totally disdain us? I can only remember one time (literally) that a Mideastern male student was not (at best) indifferent to me. I was so surprised, the memory is still surreal, as if it couldn't really have happened.

The ladies were lovely women who seemed able to embrace all. From various African kingdoms, they were princesses in their tribes. I also recall one Turkish lady. They were adaptable, fitting in perfectly. By the way, the African men were at least diplomatic and charming, even though (or because) their future would include multiple wives.

The worst were from Egypt. They were haughty, clearly convinced they were living among the trash of the Earth. That's how they viewed us Americans. Infidels. The ones at Elmira especially hated women. An Egyptian even spat on a friend of mine during an (otherwise intellectual) argument. The Middle Eastern men used women and dumped them, considering them now unfit for marriage. My husband also described similar activity and attitudes at his college in Pennsylvania.

At that time, the rise of Islam was just beginning to be recognized as a problem. I was not a student of international law or politics, but I could already forsee disaster, and I remembered all of this on September 11th. I was not surprised; it was simply our turn.

My apologies to any acquaintances, professional and personal, who may be hurt by this. But from what I have seen over three decades: Christianity is pretty much incompatible with Islam. We should not be surprised that they accept our money, our aid, even the lives of our soldiers, and then execute a Christian found in their midst. I submit that they simply do not make any sort of connection between that infidel and the infidels that help restore their country to them.

From what I can see Islam is not visibly oriented to peace and love: Allah is unknowable, aloof. They are outraged by our intensely personal God, and especially Jesus Christ. Conversely, Allah seems to dislike those who surrender to him: they bow to the floor in submission. They clearly pass this distaste for humanity along to others, the same way an abused worker would return home to beat spouse and children and pets. There is no equality in Islam; only surrender, emotional and physical violence conquering all. Where are the good works, brotherhood, and charity? Where are their Mother Theresas, Ghandis, living saints? Do they hold any good works up as examples?

I have little hope that anything can be done for Christians in those countries. If we help liberate them, well, virtue is its own reward. Let us move on. We should also consider the possibility that some people are not ready for freedom. At least not the sort of freedom we feel is worth dying for.

Little Pond


Sissy Willis said...

I knew only one Muslim personally, a wonderful young Indonesian woman I worked with in graduate school. As for the men, I am cyberclose to Mahmood of Mahmood's Den blog in Bahrain, who seems very western in a live-and-let-live, life-embracing way (He's a big Formula One fan who delights in family life and adores his dogs). As for the great unwashed ranting and raving and terrorizing their way through life that we read and hear so much about, I think you've got it exactly right when you compare their psychology to that of the "abused worker [who] would return home to beat spouse and children and pets."

Lisa said...

I think you hit the nail on the head. There's a lot to think about in your post.

Thanks for the insight. It's so nice to read something that discusses Christianity and Islam and remains intelligent in the process. I feel I learned something, so thank you.