by Lorna Salzman
Who will rid us of the social scientists? And those self-styled social scientists who have gone over to the dark side to defend Islam such as Daniel Tutt, a PhD student in philosophy and Michael Wolfe (a poet), both of of Unity Productions Foundation, makers of the film Inside Islam and purveyor of what they call the “truth”about the religion of Islam? Tutt, the Outreach Director for the Foundation, wrote recently in the Huffington Post deploring the “negative media image of Muslims.”
“Negative media image of Muslims”? What media is this guy referring to? Photos of the Ft. Hood killer? Of Osama bin Laden? Of Anwar Awlaki? Of the Times Square and Xmas Eve bombers? If there are few positive media images of Muslims, could it be that there aren’t any Muslims doing positive things? Well, the liberal apologists for adherents of the theocratic totalitarian faith called Islam are welcome to find some positive images but they will have to look long and hard.
When was the last (or first) time anyone heard a Muslim imam entreat his congregation to abandon anti-Semitism? When have we heard a Muslim speak out for women‘s rights and equality? When have we heard a Muslim say that women don’t have to be veiled? When have we heard a Muslim deplore honor killings, forced child marriages and genital mutilation? When have we heard a Muslim attack Muslim suicide bombings? When have we heard a Muslim criticize Hamas atrocities such as initiating missile attacks from civilian communities, homes and schools? When have we heard a Muslim defend complete freedom of speech?
You have never heard these and probably never will. The only charitable behavior of Muslims is that towards other Muslims as mandated in the qu-ran. And even that has restrictions: those who leave the faith are murdered as apostates. Any questioning or criticism of traditional Muslim practices as specified in the qu-ran or in sharia law immediately indicts the questioner as an apostate. Those Muslims who have done so have been slaughtered mercilessly or forced into exile where they live anonymously with bodyguards, subject to repeated death threats. Even non-Muslims who criticize Islam or purportedly "offend" Islam, such as the Danish cartoonist and the South Park producers, are given death threats.
Political Correctness still rules, even with non-Muslims. When have we seen blacks portrayed in film, theater or books as criminals? (Asians are the film stand-ins today). Samuel Jackson’s depiction of a crack addict in Spike Lee's “Jungle Fever” was memorable but a rarity. More recently the portrayal of Caliban in Julie Taymor’s film, The Tempest as a primitive black monster with evil intentions was probably what caused the whole liberal critical world to pan her film. She deserves credit for her gutsy dedication to authenticity. And portrayals of the Jew Shylock in Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice are never presented without apology, whitewashing, softening of the hard edges or profound scholarly analysis of what Shakespeare intended.
No, we are far from a world of equality, which must be measured not only in material and economic terms but in whether we are ready to let the chips fall where they may and recognize that force called Evil that dwells in all human beings. “Positive and multidimensional content to effectively reduce prejudice,” as the writer below urges, is another absurdity forced on us by the social sciences which continue to be derelict in their duty to be impartial observers of human behavior.
In that same spirit of defiance that characterizes the social sciences’ ignorance of evolution, they naively believe that superficial preaching in popular entertainment media will suffice to cleanse the human heart of hatred. It is the absurdity of this juvenile liberal credo that has actually prevented society from attaining a more just tolerant society, by pretending that the erasing of evil images from public consciousness and substituting Pollyanna-ish cliches will cure human imperfection. Of all the failures in our educational system, that of the social sciences is arguably the largest.
I am not suggesting that Tutt, a propgandist who calls himself a Phd. candidate in philosophy, is typical of all social scientists, especially since his connection to the Unity Productions Foundation clearly disqualifies him. But it is not uncommon for social scientists, many of whom are leftists, to make apologies for aberrant behavior of minorities (cultural relativism) and “oppressed” peoples “victimized” by colonialism.
It is only a short step from there to insisting that portrayals of minorities must be deferential, up-beat, positive and morally glowing, even as acts committed by and in the name of that minority may be repugnant and unacceptable. Islam comes to mind; while globally it has a large membership, Muslims in this country are a minority and have therefore been adopted by the mass media and liberals as their latest hobby and protectorate, and granted the privilege not extended to other religions of being exempt from criticism.
The Unity Productions Foundation is a Muslim public-relations organization founded by poet and Muslim convert Michael Wolfe and dedicated to presenting the “real” Islam and what it “really believes.” Inside Islam is a film it made towards this end. But let's look at what the qu-ran really says and what it tells Muslims to do, keeping in mind that the qu-ran authorizes and encourages any and all lying and deception in order to further the aims of Islam. This is called taqquiya, and the Unity Productions Foundation is exemplary in this respect.
Koran 8:12: I will terrorize the unbelievers. Therefore smite them on their necks and every joint and incapacitate them. Strike off their heads and cut off each of their fingers and toes.
Koran verse 008.060: YUSUFALI: Against them make ready your strength to the utmost of your power, including steeds of war, to strike terror into (the hearts of) the enemies, of Allah and your enemies, and others besides, whom ye may not know, but whom Allah doth know. Whatever ye shall spend in the cause of Allah, shall be repaid unto you, and ye shall not be treated unjustly.
Koran 008.055: YUSUFALI: For the worst of beasts in the sight of Allah are those who reject Him: They will not believe.
Koran 9:5: Fight and kill the disbelievers wherever you find them, take them captive, harass them, lie in wait and ambush them using every stratagem of war.
Koran 9:29: Fight those who do not believe until they all surrender, paying the protective tax in submission.If you would like to see the film in its entirety click here.
The author, a graduate of Cornell University, has been an environmental writer, lecturer and activist since the 1970s. Her articles on environment, energy, biodiversity and natural history have appeared in leading journals here and abroad, including The Ecologist, Index on Censorship, Resurgence, New Politics, and Business & Society Review. Her professional career began when David Brower, the leading conservationist of the 20th century in the USA, hired her as mid-Atlantic representative for Friends of the Earth, where she worked on wetlands, coastal zone and nuclear power issues for over a decade. In this period she was instrumental in the preservation of two key wildlife habitats (Swan Pond and Maple Swamp) in Suffolk County, NY.
Later she became an editor at the National Audubon Society's journal, American Birds, followed by directorship of the anti-food irradiation group, Food and Water. In the mid 1980s she co-founded the New York Greens, later the New York Green Party, on whose state committee she served for several years, and became active in the national green movement.
She worked for three years as a natural resource specialist in the NYC Dept. of Environmental Protection, focusing on wetlands and coastal zone protection. In 2002 she was the Suffolk County Green Party candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives in the 1st CD on eastern Long Island, and in 2004 she was a candidate for the U.S. Green Party's presidential nomination. Her hobbies are mushroom hunting, classical music and birding around the world with her composer-husband Eric. They have twin daughters, one a pop composer and lyricist in NYC and the other a poet and writer based in England. They live in Brooklyn Heights, NY, and East Quogue, NY, and have lived for extended periods in Italy and France.
Copyright ©2013. Lorna Salzman. All Rights Reserved. It is published here with the author's permission. More of her writing can be found at www.lornasalzman.com.