Written Submissions to the Heritage Committee
Ron Gray - Parsing E-411 and M-103
Text of E-411
Islam is a religion of over 1.5 billion people worldwide. Since its founding more than 1400 years ago, Muslims have contributed, and continue to contribute, to the positive development of human civilization. This encompasses all areas of human endeavors including the arts, culture, science, medicine, literature, and much more;
Recently an infinitesimally small number of extremist individuals have conducted terrorist activities while claiming to speak for the religion of Islam. Their actions have been used as a pretext for a notable rise of anti-Muslim sentiments in Canada; and
These violent individuals do not reflect in any way the values or the teachings of the religion of Islam. In fact, they misrepresent the religion. We categorically reject all their activities. They in no way represent the religion, the beliefs and the desire of Muslims to co-exist in peace with all peoples of the world.
We, the undersigned, Citizens and residents of Canada, call upon the House of Commons to join us in recognizing that extremist individuals do not represent the religion of Islam, and in condemning all forms of Islamophobia.
These claims made for Islam are somewhat extravagant. The petition fails to enumerate any of the alleged contributions “to the positive development of human civilization.”
Given the appalling and on-going human rights abuses in Muslim states like Saudi Arabia, Iran, Pakistan, Turkey and Egypt; and the failed-state condition of Muslim nations like Somalia, Yemen, Iraq, and Afghanistan; such claims must be taken with a grain of salt. The last of the Caliphates—the defunct Ottoman Empire—was, like all its predecessors, a totalitarian and anti-democratic regime. There are no truly democratic states in Islam.
Perhaps the best contributions of Islam were to preserve some aspects, like Greek medicine and Indian mathematics, of classical ancient eastern and Mediterranean civilizations.
Similarly, the assertion that “an infinitesimally small number of extremists have conducted terrorist activities” sounds more like wishful thinking than an accurate assessment of the world’s most serious present-day threat.
There are, as petition E-411 states, more than 1.5 billion Muslims in the world today; terrorism experts tell us that no more than 10 or 15 percent of these are active in or supporters of terrorism—although we can certainly recall the Muslim ‘street’ around the world, and especially in the Middle East, chanting and dancing and exchanging sweets and celebrating right after 9/11.
But if we apply those percentages to the total Muslim population—and even if we excuse the 85-90 percent for their silence, since we know that their own lives would be endangered if they spoke up against the terrorists in their midst—we still find between 150 million and 225 million people, world-wide, who agree that it is a good idea—even a religious obligation—to conduct a ‘holy war’ again the West and against all non-Muslims. That’s about 2/3 of the population of the United States! Hardly “an infinitesimally small” number!
Petition E-411 says their actions have been used as a “pretext for a notable rise of anti-Muslim sentiments in Canada.” My dictionary defines “pretext” as “an excuse; an alleged reason; or a red herring”, thus implying falsehood. But maybe these activities, which are now appearing almost daily in world news—and of appalling barbarity, including the raping, beheading and crucifixion of women and children—are these not real reasons for public apprehension?
And as to the allegation of “a notable rise of anti-Muslim sentiments,” such incidents, while regrettable, are much less frequent than anti-semitism or anti-First Nations bigotry, or discrimination based on age or body type, according to police ‘hate crime’ statistics.
E-411 claims that the terrorists “do not reflect in any way the values or the teachings of the religion of Islam.” Really? They are faithfully obeying the commandments of the Quran, such as in Surah 9 and elsewhere over 100 times, to attack and kill non-Muslims; and they are following the example of their prophet as reported in the aHadith.
Based on the Quran and the most-respected aHadith, ISIS are surely among the most faithful followers of Muhammad.
Text of M-103
That, in the opinion of the House, the government should:
(a) recognize the need to quell the increasing public climate of hate and fear;
Is there an “increasing climate of hate and fear in Canada? Ms Khalid gives no statistical support to this allegation.
(b) condemn Islamophobia and all forms of systemic racism and religious discrimination and take note of House of Commons’ petition e-411 and the issues raised by it; and
(c) request that the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage undertake a study on how the government could
(i) develop a whole-of-government approach to reducing or eliminating systemic racism and religious discrimination including Islamophobia, in Canada, while ensuring a community-centered focus with a holistic response through evidence-based policy-making,
(ii) collect data to contextualize hate crime reports and to conduct needs assessments for impacted communities, and that the Committee should present its findings and recommendations to the House no later than 240 calendar days from the adoption of this motion, provided that in its report, the Committee should make recommendations that the government may use to better reflect the enshrined rights and freedoms in the Constitution Acts, including the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
(Private Members’ Business M-103)"
Laws and government regulations crafted by Parliament are very much a matter of words. Words have meanings, and those meanings have consequences. So we must carefully look at the origins and meaning of words such as ‘Islamophobia’.
Medically, a phobia is defined as an irrational fear. Agoraphobia is an irrational fear of open spaces; gatophobia is an irrational fear of cats. One assumes, therefore, that “Islamophobia’ implies an irrational fear of Islam and its adjuncts, like Sharia.
Sharia, the legal code of Islam in Muslim-majority nations, condones wife-beating, female genital mutilation, honour-killing, death as the penalty for anyone who leaves Islam to convert to another faith, amputation for many petty crimes, death for speaking critically of Islam or Islam’s Prophet… and much more that is poles apart from Canadian values and from the words of the Canadian Constitution, the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, or our heritage of English Common Law.
Furthermore, it is not irrational to fear, dislike or oppose such decrees. Nor is it “irrational” to fear that someone who parades with a placard reading:
BEHEAD THOSE WHO INSULT ISLAM may, in fact, be serious in his threats. It is merely prudent. It has happened.
So apprehensions about those who campaign to weaken our resistance to what Islam has done in other parts of the world is not a phobia. It merely reflects a desire to protect Canada’s rich heritage of rights and freedoms.
So where does the word “Islamophobia” come from? It is, in fact, by their own admission, a propaganda word used by the Muslim Brotherhood to defend what the Ikhwan [the Muslim Brotherhood] itself calls its “cultural jihad against the West.” But Robert Spencer of Jihad Watch says it was first used by the Ayatollahs of Iran in the late 1970s, as a parallel to “xenophobia”. The Muslim Brotherhood, we must remember, is a major supporter of terrorism world-wide, and was named as an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation trial—the largest terror-financing trial to date in the United States.
Does this mean that there is no such thing as “Islamophobia”? No, I think it is very real—an irrational fear of Islam. Islamophobia, thus defined, is to be found mostly in the mainstream media and among politicians, who share a pathological and irrational fear of telling the public the truth about Islam.
What is that truth? It is that Islam is not a religion, as most suppose. Rather, it is a totalitarian system of absolute control over social, political, and economic life… wearing the mask of a religion in order to be able to take advantage of the West’s heritage of religious liberty for its “stealth jihad”. But Islam doesn’t extend such religious liberty to other faiths. That’s why there are no churches in Saudi Arabia, the home of Islam; and why Christians and Jews are oppressed in Muslim-majority countries.
Indeed, more than 100,000 Christians are killed for their faith every year—mostly in the Muslim-majority countries of the Middle East.
That explains why, when M-103 was carelessly passed by the House of Commons without the requisite degree of investigation into what such a motion might do to Canadians’ freedom of speech and expression, many concerned citizens mounted a counter-petition against Shariah Law.
Put simply, most Canadians do not want a campaign against our liberty to speak and write critically about any religion or philosophy; we intend to preserve and protect that right—a right that is not extended to non-Muslims in Muslim-majority countries.
Canadians do not want our culture of the hard-won liberties of free men and women to be curtailed by the government that is supposed to defend those freedoms for us. If this government, this Parliament, will not strike down this attempt to limit our freedom of speech and expression, it will have violated its oath of office.
Ron Gray lives in Abbotsford, BC.