Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Days of Extremism and Fanaticism

Days of Extremism and Fanaticism / Fernando Damaso
Fernando Damaso, Translator: Unstated

I've always deplored extremism and fanaticism, from wherever it comes
and whoever practices it, because I consider that its roots are found in
the primitivism and darkness, both totally alien to reason.

These days, especially in some of the world's Arab countries, and in
others where the same nationals are located the extremist followers of
Allah and the Prophet Mohammed, faced with the screening of a short film
of no more than fifteen minutes in which, according to them, the figure
of the prophet is denigrated, have committed murder, acts of vandalism
with fires, destruction of property and mass demonstrations completely
out of control, against the United States and the West. It appears that
the alleged offense has been well utilized by those who don't want to
lose an opportunity to declare holy wars, promote intolerance, practice
terrorism, accuse as infidels those who don't share their religious
beliefs, and ask for their extermination.

Muhammad, being a human being, regardless of mystical attributes
ascribed to him, shared the same physical needs of all human beings. In
addition, I am sure that he accepted or even practiced, for belonging to
the Muslim world, some of the customs belonging to it: discrimination
against women, polygamy, inhumane punishments such as physical
mutilation, stoning, beheading and others. All this is still practiced
in many of these countries.

Others, more advanced, educated, difficulties, misunderstandings and
tenacity, have managed to reduce and even eradicate the practice.
Shocking, because it shows the human side of the prophet, it should not
be cause for so much aggression. When, years ago, Jesus Christ was
treated as a human being in the film The Last Temptation of Christ,
although the Catholic Church protested, nobody thought to commit murder
and acts of vandalism against its creators or their home countries.

These primitive manifestations, rather than uplifting the human being,
denigrate and cannot be allowed in the name of any religion. Intolerance
of any kind, must be combated firmly. Yielding to it led us to Nazism in
the twentieth century and all its consequences. Do not make the same
mistake. Everyone can have religious beliefs of any kind they desire and
practice them, but there is no right to prevent freedom of expression of
every human being, let alone to want to impose respect for one's beliefs
by force, by international threats and blackmail. To firmly oppose these
irrational acts, in words and actions, as civilized beings, supports the
religion they profess.

September 20 2012


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