Wednesday, May 19, 2010

The ugliness continues...

I first talked about this situation earlier this month. It seems that Islamophobic enthusiasts couldn't let go of their hatred and decided to move their page somewhere else. The notorious event is still on for tomorrow. From my last count, they had cached nearly 3,000 cartoons. It's amazing how active their Facebook page is a new wall post every second!

Misguided Muslim youth have decided to fight fire with fire. They decided to express their freedom of speech by picking on a sensitive cultural issue. Again not the approach to be taken. Everyone knows that the best way to deal with a bully is simply to ignore them. To enrage and inflame is their objective by giving in you help them achieve their purpose. Now there are calls for a boycott (some call for a permanent ban). By some estimates, Facebook users that identify themselves as Muslim contribute 5 Million dollars to the site per year. So a three-day boycott should hurt them financially.

That seems like a measured response. Would I be taking part in boycott? Probably not. Frankly speaking I find this all to be childish. Death threats, name calling all of this is not going to achieve anything. I've found that it is very difficult to persuade people who have already formed strong opinions. Save your breath folks! Islamophobics are what they are let them be. They have been around since the advent of Islam, in fact, their stiff resistance has helped us strengthen our Iman. So in a way, we should be thanking them. By spewing their hatred they have raised awareness of our Prophet!

As others have mentioned the best we can do is learn more about our faith. Study the teachings and life of our beloved prophet. Spread his wisdom far and wide. I will be doing my part by watching these video. I haven't seen it but it comes highly recommended. Again love and peace for all and may we see a day when we can all get along and vile hatred has been stamped out of our hearts. AMEN.

UPDATE: I just got word from one of my friends from overseas. Seems like the authorities have banned Facebook, in Pakistan. LUUT! I will be eagerly watching how this all plays out.

UPDATE 2: And now Youtube too! Although the Pakistani government is acting in accordance with the will of the people a better approach would have been to block only the offending material and not the whole site. People conduct business and communicate via these sites so hopefully after the 3-day ban service can be restored.

For your information here's a good article on the issue. Let's hear it for the student leaders who gave a calm and reasoned response. Oh to be in the MSA again!

UPDATE 3: It seems that the powers to be have had a change of heart. They have apologized to Pakistan's Ministry of Information Technology. Subsequently, the ban was lifted and it seems things have gone back to business as usual. Hopefully, people will learn the difference between "freedom of speech" and "freedom of displaying your hatred for others". It's funny the founding fathers ensured our right to freely express ourselves as a means to keep government honest. A free press allowed to criticize unjust government policies is needed to form a more perfect union. It's a shame that these ignorant hatemongers abused their right in such a manner.
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