Oil and Water.
Oil and water don’t mix. No matter how you shake, stir, tumble, whatever….oil and water will not mix. Eventually they will separate. They will go their own ways.
Another thing about the oil and water saga, is that one is flammable, and if you have enough, it can be downright explosive.
What am I getting at?
I use the oil/water analogy, because it illustrates our topic of Islam and Democracy. Islam does not combine with Democracy. It will never blend with Democracy, and if you have enough islamics, it will get explosive. See the picture? We can shake, and stir and do everything in our power and Islam will never mate with Democracy.
For starters, lets take a quick look at Iraq. The United States is now charged by the world to "rebuild" Iraq. In its 5,000-year history, Iraqis have never played any role in the governance of their nation, and the past three decades of ruthless and barbaric rule by Saddam Hussein have not prepared them for this task. The United States may get the electricity going in Iraq and repair its water and sewage systems, but whether it can get Iraqis to adopt a constitutionally based democratic government will prove a difficult, if not impossible, task. Iraqis today, have never experienced Democracy. In this case, its not because of their imams telling their flock, “Democracy is Evil!!”, its because they have been under the decades rule of dictatorships.
"Give Me Liberty Or Give Me Death"
Patrick Henry, March 23, 1775.
Among Muslims, only the Turks have experienced any form of self-rule and that was due to a remarkable man, Ataturk, who literally forced them to accept westernization. In doing so, he imposed a strict divide between Islam and the governing of Turkey. This has been maintained only because the Turkish military has judiciously stepped in time and again to crush any Islamist party seeking to impose the Islam’s system of rule. But the Islamics are still trying, and getting closer .. Its only a matter of time, that even Turkey will fall to the Islamic rule.
Democracy…as we know it, and the “religion” of Islam are totally incompatible. (Oil and water, remember?) Only the separation of church and state, only the rule of civil law can grant Muslims--the vast majority of whom, I’m sure, are good, decent people--the freedom they want and many Muslims, such as those in Iran, do want it. If you doubt it, look at the media. They tell the tales of girls wishing to look like western women. The hajib falling slightly back to show long brown hair and eye make-up is becoming the norm.
The laws of Islam, considered sacred and inviolable, clash with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948), and those expressed in both the British (1688) and American Bill of Rights (1791). To cite just a few reasons why Islam and democracy are incompatible; under Islam, women and non-Muslims are declared to be inferior, slavery is acceptable, punishments for various crimes include amputations, floggings, and stoning to death, a non-Muslim cannot testify against a Muslim, and conversion from Islam carries with it the death penalty. I’m not kidding!! Elements of this religious severity can be seen in Saudi Arabia. Life means little to these rulers, and the lives of non-muslims mean even less.
“The greatest threat to America, the West, and to those Islamic nations struggling to achieve democracy and freedom is Islam.” - Alan Caruba
There is no separation of church and state under Islam, and there never can be for any Muslim who accepts the Koran and the Hadith as the sacred rule of law. To suggest otherwise imperils their belief in the Koran as the word of Allah as passed to them by Muhammad, his self-appointed "final" prophet. In Muslim nations where so-called secular, i.e. socialist governments such as the former Baath Party of Iraq and the current one in Syria exist, the reality is that these nations are run by despots and their governments are mere rubber stamps. In others, such as Saudi Arabia, a self-declared royal family rules. In nations such as Iran, where a secular government is allowed to function, a supreme council of ayatollahs can and does routinely overrule any legislative act, thus rendering democratic rule moot. Islam never allows the possibility of alternatives, so the concept of debating political issues is foreign to Islamic thought. (Once again…back to my oil and water analogy)
Are you getting the point?
Freedom is about individual rights granted a citizen that governments may not trespass, nor deprive, and individualism is not a recognizable feature of Islam; instead, the collective will of the Muslim people is constantly emphasized. There is certainly no notion of individual rights, which only developed in the West, especially during the eighteenth century. The notion of an individual--a moral person who is capable of making rational decisions and accepting moral responsibility for his free acts--is lacking in Islam. Ethics is reduced to obeying orders, If that statement reminds you of the Star Trek Borgs….you’re catching on.
The most important lesson we should learn is that democracy is a combination of two distinct political traditions: popular sovereignty, in which the people choose the government in free and fair elections; and liberty – that is, freedom – which comes in religious, economic, and political forms. My favorite is Freedom of Speech. The practice of popular sovereignty without the safeguards of liberty, history shows, can have disastrous results.
Michael Mandelbaum has stated in his outline that “The United States should therefore oppose groups that reject liberty, such as Hamas, and should give higher priority in the Middle East to establishing liberty in its different forms than simply to staging elections.”
Very wise comment and one that should be headed by the Obama administration.
Looking at it from another angle… lets take a pretend Islamic country on the verge of democracy. Democracy has driven out Islam from national life. Islamic sovereignty has been replaced by the people’s sovereignty. If the people hold sovereignty, then almost all of Islamic law is useless. Then people say, “Don’t bring Islamic law into national life,” and, “Why must the state handle religion, it’s a private matter?’.
Secondly, democracy states that truth lies with the majority. Whatever the majority says is correct. In Islam truth comes from Allah. There is no question in Islam, everything comes from Allah.
There are 56 (give or take a few, depending on what day it is) Islamic countries. How many of them are total Democracies? How many of those Islamic countries, let the everyday muslim live his or her life? How many have Freedom of Religion? Open media? Respect womens rights?
If you answered none…….you would be correct. There are a few that pass as democratic Islamic regimes, but don’t let them fool you. Try to set up a Catholic church there and see how far you get. Try to remove your wifes hajib and watch the religious police come up to chat with you.
Granted in some countries, they need dictatorships. Like most Islamic countries, they are revered. Venezuala is going down that same road. If the citizens vote in a dictator, they deserve it. If the citizens vote in a terrorist government, like Hamas, they deserve it.
As for me.....Give me the Liberty and the Freedoms that the United States of America have placed before us.
- BlackbootJack -