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Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review March 15, 2005 / 4 Adar II, 5765

Which privileges for Islam?

By Daniel Pipes


http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Throughout the West, Muslims are making new and assertive demands, and in some cases challenging the very premises of European and North American life. How to respond?



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Here is a general rule: Offer full rights — but turn down demands for special privileges.

By way of example, note two current Canadian controversies. The first concerns the establishment of voluntary Shar'i (Islamic law) courts in Ontario. This idea is promoted by the usual Islamist groups, such as the Council on American-Islamic Relations-Canada and the Canadian Islamic Congress. It is most prominently opposed by Muslim women's groups, led by Homa Arjomand, who fear that the Islamic courts, despite their voluntary nature, will be used to repress women's rights.

I oppose any role for the Shari'a, a medieval law, in public life today, but so long as women are truly not coerced (create an ombudsman to ensure this?) and Islamic rulings remain subordinate to Canada's Charter of Rights and Freedoms, I see no grounds on which to deny Muslims the right, like other Canadians, to revert to private arbitration.

On the other hand, Muslim demands for an exclusive prayer room at McGill University in Montreal are outrageous and unacceptable. As a secular institution, the university on principle does not provide any religious group with a permanent place of worship on campus. Despite this universal policy, the Muslim Student Association, a part of the Wahhabi lobby, insists on just such a place, even threatening a human rights abuse filing if it is defied. McGill must stand firm.

The key distinction is whether Muslim aspirations fit into an existing framework or not. Where they do, they can be accommodated, such as in the case of:

  • Schools and universities closing for the Eid al-Adha holidays.

  • Male employees permitted to wear beards in New Jersey.

  • The founding of an Islamic cemetery in Tennessee.

    Adherents of other minority religions may get a holiday off, wear beards, or dispose of their dead in private burial grounds — so why not Muslims?

    In contrast, special privileges for Islam and Muslims are unacceptable, such as:

  • Setting up a government advisory board uniquely for Muslims in the United States.

  • Permitting Muslim-only living quarters or events in the United States and Great Britain.

  • Setting aside women-only bathing at a municipal swimming pool in France.

  • Banning Hindus and Jews from a jury hearing a case about an Islamist in Great Britain.

  • Changing noise laws to broadcast the adhan (call to prayer) in Hamtramck, Michigan.

  • Allowing a prisoner the unheard-of right to avoid strip-searches in New York State.

  • Exploiting taxpayer-funded schools and airwavesto convert non-Muslims in the United States.

  • Allowing students in taxpayer-funded schools to use empty classrooms for prayers in New Jersey.

  • Deeming the "religious vilification" of Islam to be illegal in Australia.

  • Punishing anti-Islamic views with court-mandated indoctrination by an Islamist in Canada.

  • Prohibiting families from sending pork or pork by-products to U.S. soldiers serving in Iraq.

  • Requiring that female American soldiers in Saudi Arabia wear U.S. government-issued abayas.

  • Applying the "Rushdie rules" — or letting Muslims shut down criticism of Islam and Muslims.

The dividing line in each instance is whether Muslims accept to fit the existing order or aspire to remake it. Working within the system is fine, taking it over is not. In U.S. terms, Muslims must accept the framework of the Constitution, not overturn it.

This approach implies that Muslim demands must be judged against prior actions and current practice, and not in the abstract. Context is all-important.

It is thus fine for the Alsace regional council in France to help fund the Grand Mosque of Strasbourg, because the same body also helped pay for renovations to the Strasbourg Cathedral and the city's Grand Synagogue. It is quite another when the City of Boston, Massachusetts sells land for an Islamic complex at well below the market price, a benefit unheard of for other religious groups in that city.

Western governments and other institutions urgently need to signal Muslims that they must accept being just one religious group of many, and that aspirations to dominate will fail. Toward this end, governments need to enact principled and consistent policies indicating precisely which Muslim privileges are acceptable, and why.

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JWR contributor Daniel Pipes is director of the Middle East Forum.

© 2005, Daniel Pipes