Islamist bigots in Bangladesh
For Islamists, there is no such thing as freedom of speech, expression or thought.
The most recent example of this occurred in Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh, on 6 April where up to half a million Bangladeshis demonstrated to demand the hanging of atheist bloggers.
“I’ve come here to fight for Islam. We won’t allow any bloggers to blaspheme our religion and our beloved Prophet Muhammad,” said Shahidul Islam, an imam at a mosque outside Dhaka, according to France 24 news website.
There has been vociferous debate between staunch atheists and Islamists in Bangladesh’s social media for years, but it took a deadly turn in February when an anti-Islam blogger was murdered.
It’s not that Bangladesh is exactly a haven of free speech.
Last week four online writers were arrested for criticizing Islam on the internet.
Furthermore, the Bangladeshi government has blocked about a dozen websites and blogs deemed critical of Islam, in addition to setting up a panel, which includes intelligence chiefs, to monitor criticism of Islam on social media.
Under the country’s cyber laws, a blogger or internet writer can face up to 10 years in jail for criticizing Islam.
We’re no champions of any religion, but Muslims hardly ever hold back when it comes to attacking or belittling other faiths, monotheistic or otherwise, as we’ve seen from recent examples in Libya.
Try entering the Saudi city of Mecca if you’re a non-Muslim and see what happens. But imagine the reaction from Muslims if, say, a Muslim were prevented from, or arrested for, entering the Vatican simply because he or she was a Muslim? The hot air from Muslims worldwide would accelerate global warming by an order of magnitude of several billion.
So, what does the Bangladeshi lynch mob tell us about contemporary Muslims? Hypocritical bigots who demand unconditional tolerance from those they’re unwilling to tolerate?
And if all that Islamists can say in response to atheists and other critics is “hang them”, what does this tell us about their confidence in their own faith and religion?