Tuesday, April 14, 2009

A Brief Conversation With an Offended Muslim

A note from Radarsite: Today I received this email notifying me of a belated comment to Gary Fouse's informative Jan 2009 article on the hijab and its significance. I went back and read the comments to see if I could figure out which one upset her the most. I think it was the one about the women "not knowing any better", although I'm sure she took offense to that plea for aid for Geert Wilder. I didn't comment at that time to Gary's article but I will respond to this email, as it was addressed to me. Here, then, is the emailed comment and my response. - rg


"I realize this is an old post of yours, but I happened to stumble upon it in a google search and was sort of horrified by the responses that you got to this.

So here's an answer from a hijabi (one who wears hijab). Hijab is what we call fard- meaning it is obligatory. That doesn't mean that it is allowed to be forced on a woman, in fact the Qur'an forbids this (but most so-called "Muslim countries" wouldn't know real Islam if it did a dance in front of them while shouting at the top of its lungs- but that's another rant all together). It IS actually mentioned in the Qur'an, but somewhat vaguely so. Within the Qur'an, women are instructed to wear loose clothing that does not show their shape, it explains who a woman should cover in front of and who she doesn't have to and gives the instruction that a woman should use her scarf (which many Meccans already wore on their heads before Islam) to also cover her chest. It is more elaborated in hadiths (recorded sayings and teachings of Muhammad, peace be upon him). Muslim women are supposed to wear hijab, not just for the sake of modesty, but also so that they will be recognized as believing women as well as Muslim women. The covering of a woman's hair is a tradition that we inherited from the Jews and the Christians (although many of them no longer practise this). By wearing hijab we are identifying ourselves as continuing that tradition.

I would argue that most women choose to wear hijab or do not mind to (I've heard some Iranian women comparing it to wearing a tie to work- in certain situations certain dress codes are required). In "Muslim countries", most women are more concerned about their general rights and freedoms rather than a piece of fabric. People focus on the scarf but don't realize that the concept of covering the body is cultural (I mean this in general, not only in regards to hijab). For instance, in the west it has become culturally acceptable for a woman to walk around in shorts- 100 years ago there would be no chance in hell that a woman would do such a thing. On the other hand there are some areas of the world where it is perfectly acceptable for a woman to walk around without a top on, or even completely nude! To suggest that Muslim women simply "don't know any better" is ridiculous and suggestive of Western supperiority- which is utter bull. I'm a proud Canadian, but I still know that there's somethings that my country could do better on (just like I know that Saudi Arabia has A LOT of things that it could and SHOULD do better on).

Hope this was helpful to you. Feel free to continue asking questions and sorry for replying to such an old post, but those replies really bothered me. " (UniMuslimah)

A response from Radarsite: So, our presumably-western-educated, proud Canadian Muslim woman is "sort of horrified" and "really bothered" by the comments made to that Radarsite article? Well, here we go again, folks. Another offended Muslim condescends to enlighten the ignorant infidel. And I for one am getting pretty damn sick of it.

Wearing the hijab, she blithely informs us, isn't much different than men wearing a tie with their suit to work. Or..

women walking the streets in shorts. It's just a matter of culture and taste (something which we infidels seem to be sorely lacking).

Many Muslim women actually feel more comfortable in a hijab.

Of course we all know how Muslims treat their women with the greatest respect.

Remember these two lovely Muslim daughters, 17 year-old Sarah Yaser Said, and 18 year-old Amina Yaser Said

Take note of the expression on the face of this lucky child bride. What does that look say to you about women's rights under sharia law?

And we must not forget those beloved Muslim children who are being brought up to respect human life and other people's religions...

Nor are we to presume that this purposefully unassimilated, shrouded Medieval presence, hidden from our view in their inviolable clandestine mosques and in their rapidly expanding, all-Muslim, sharia governed enclaves pose any threat to us or to our way of life, or that the hijab could quite logically be considered a uniform. A uniform representing an alien foe, a deadly enemy whom we are presently fighting in at least two bloody wars, who has repeatedly vowed to either dominate us or destroy us. An enemy whose sacred Koranic goal is to establish a worldwide caliphate under sharia law, to do away with all Christians and Jews, and to bring the world back into the chilling darkness of the seventh century.

Well, it wouldn't be the first time we've naively let the serpent into the nest, would it?

The German-American Bund Rally at Madison Square Garden, February, 1939.
[see The Serpent in the Nest: Cair and the German-American Bund]

That all-too-familiar Hezbollah salute

No, I'm afraid there's another presence lurking under that deathly shroud and it's not here to enlighten us, but rather to destroy everything we hold sacred, our freedoms, our democracy, our religions, in short everything that makes us Americans.

And despite that reasonable cultured tone of our Muslim apologist, we cannot allow ourselves to forget for one moment that there's a long history here. A long bloody record of virulent antisemitism and conquest and murder and hate and revenge. A dark history of making common cause with some of humanity's worst oppressors.

And that long bloody history is still being written. Isn't it?

No more

No more debates. No more posting offended Muslim's disingenuous apologitics. No more submitting to condescending lectures on the glories of peaceful Islam. No more room in my comments section for multicultural liberal traitors. No more pros and cons. It's time now to get serious. Time to fight back. And to hell with those so-easily-offended Muslim sensibilities. As some other angry American put it: We learned all we need to know about Islam on 9/11.

PS: I don't remember where I stole that great "Cosmotaliban" pic, but I humbly thank whomever was clever enough to create it. If you get in touch with me I'll gladly give you full credit. - rg


  1. Amen and Amen. 'Nuff said, indeed.

  2. Sahih Bukhari Volume 7, Book 62, Number 164 Narrated 'Aisha:

    Once Sada bint Zam'a went out at night for some need, and 'Umar saw her, and recognizing her, he said (to her), "By Allah, O Sada! You cannot hide yourself from us." So she returned to the Prophet and mentioned that to him while he was sitting in my dwelling taking his supper and holding a bone covered with meat in his hand. Then the Divine Inspiration was revealed to him and when that state was over, he (the Prophet was saying: "O women! You have been allowed by Allah to go out for your needs."

    Volume 7, Book 62, Number 95Narrated Anas bin Malik:

    I was ten years old when Allah's Apostle arrived at Medina. My mother and aunts used to urge me to serve the Prophet regularly, and I served him for ten years. When the Prophet died I was twenty years old, and I knew about the order of Al-Hijab (veiling of ladies) more than any other person when it was revealed. It was revealed for the first time when Allah's Apostle had consummated his marriage with Zainab bint Jahsh. When the day dawned, the Prophet was a bridegroom and he invited the people to a banquet, so they came, ate, and then all left except a few who remained with the Prophet for a long time. The Prophet got up and went out, and I too went out with him so that those people might leave too. The Prophet proceeded and so did I, till he came to the threshold of 'Aisha's dwelling place. Then thinking that these people have left by then, he returned and so did I along with him till he entered upon Zainab and behold, they were still sitting and had not gone. So the Prophet again went away and I went away along with him. When we reached the threshold of 'Aisha's dwelling place, he thought that they had left, and so he returned and I too, returned along with him and found those people had left. Then the Prophet drew a curtain between me and him, and the Verses of Al-Hijab were revealed.

    Volume 1, Book 4, Number 148Narrated 'Aisha:

    The wives of the Prophet used to go to Al-Manasi, a vast open place (near Baqia at Medina) to answer the call of nature at night. 'Umar used to say to the Prophet "Let your wives be veiled," but Allah's Apostle did not do so. One night Sauda bint Zam'a the wife of the Prophet went out at 'Isha' time and she was a tall lady. 'Umar addressed her and said, "I have recognized you, O Sauda." He said so, as he desired eagerly that the verses of Al-Hijab (the observing of veils by the Muslim women) may be revealed. So Allah revealed the verses of "Al-Hijab" (A complete body cover excluding the eyes).

    Volume 6, Book 60, Number 10Narrated Anas:

    Umar said, "I agreed with Allah in three things," or said, "My Lord agreed with me in three things. I said, 'O Allah's Apostle! Would that you took the station of Abraham as a place of prayer.' I also said, 'O Allah's Apostle! Good and bad persons visit you! Would that you ordered the Mothers of the believers to cover themselves with veils.' So the Divine Verses of Al-Hijab (i.e. veiling of the women) were revealed. I came to know that the Prophet had blamed some of his wives so I entered upon them and said, 'You should either stop (troubling the Prophet ) or else Allah will give His Apostle better wives than you.' When I came to one of his wives, she said to me, 'O 'Umar! Does Allah's Apostle haven't what he could advise his wives with, that you try to advise them?' " Thereupon Allah revealed:--

    "It may be, if he divorced you (all) his Lord will give him instead of you, wives better than you Muslims (who submit to Allah).." (66.5)

    Volume 6, Book 60, Number 318Narrated Aisha:

    Sauda (the wife of the Prophet) went out to answer the call of nature after it was made obligatory (for all the Muslims ladies) to observe the veil. She was a fat huge lady, and everybody who knew her before could recognize her. So 'Umar bin Al-Khattab saw her and said, "O Sauda! By Allah, you cannot hide yourself from us, so think of a way by which you should not be recognized on going out. Sauda returned while Allah's Apostle was in my house taking his supper and a bone covered with meat was in his hand. She entered and said, "O Allah's Apostle! I went out to answer the call of nature and 'Umar said to me so-and-so." Then Allah inspired him (the Prophet) and when the state of inspiration was over and the bone was still in his hand as he had not put in down, he said (to Sauda), "You (women) have been allowed to go out for your needs."

  3. Hay babe, take a walk on the wild side!!!

    Lou Reed

  4. I guess I should add my comment since it was my original post that stirred this up.

    My main concern about the hijab is two-fold:

    1 Is there a political or ideological statement being made when a woman wears a hijab in a non-Muslim country?

    2 Are Muslim men putting force or pressure on her to "dress appropriately"? It is interesting that here at UC -Irvine, where many of our students are Saudis, some women wear the hijab, a couple even cover their faces, and some dress western style, but not provatively. (they are usually studying with their husbands).

    Back to the point; I am thinking about Saudi Arabia, where religious police on the street enforce the dress code as they also do in Iran. That is something we should never allow to happen in a western country.

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