Tuesday, August 17, 2021

Zealots, Far More Deadly

No one can possibly get this question wrong. Is Michael Moore correct or invoking moral equivalence here?

Moore is correct. The Taliban are religious nuts and we have our own. And he is invoking moral equivalence.

Actually, not religious nuts. Far more seriously, they're religious fanatics. Sexist, murderous, religious fanatics. We in the USA have our own religious "nuts."  They, too, are fanatics- the most extreme of Christian evangelicals; Opus Dei among Roman Catholics; Lubavitcher Chasidim, arguably the most radical of Orthodox Jews.

They are different from the Taliban..  They don't require men to pray continuously and wear a beard or else submit to a beating. They don't prevent girls from being educated or some women from pursuing certain occupations. They don't torture women for leaving their home without a suitable male escort nor enforce a dress code with violations punishable by death. Collaborating with the enemy in any fashion may lead to execution.

They are radical Islamists. They are not normal Muslims and differ dramatically from other Muslims. But they are religious extremists in the East, and there are Christian (to a lesser extent, Jewish) religious extremists in the West.

That's where Moore, who recognizes that we have religious extremists in the developed world, is wrong.  Ours don't regularly walk around with rifles and shotguns intending not only to intimidate the majority who don't agree with them, but who also intend to use those firearms to exterminate their enemies.

They're religious nuts and we have our own,  MIchael Moore maintains.  But tomorrow I will still be alive after criticizing religious extremists and you will be alive even after reading about it. It's a claim many Muslims in Afghanistan cannot make about the radical Islamists who are will shed a lot of blood in an effort to remake their country into their own image.

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