Wednesday, February 02, 2005

When Muslims Convert

Scott Johnson points to an outstanding article in the new Commentary about what happens when Muslims convert:
. . . thousands of Muslims in the West embrace Christianity each year, and the courage they must muster to do so is of an entirely different order from the bravado of someone protesting against supposedly pervasive social prejudice. These converts stand accused, rather, of apostasy. . . . In the Islamic world, there is a broad consensus, both popular and scholarly, that apostates deserve to be killed.

The author, Daveed Gartenstein-Ross, details much evidence to support this claim, and then comes to another important point:
Advocates of jihad, to say nothing of actual terrorists, can be found in every corner of the West. More disturbing, because of what it says about our own ideological self-defenses, is the respectability that has been granted to spokesmen for Islamic fundamentalism who have learned to promote their agenda in our own idiom, even as they argue that mere conversion out of Islam should be considered a crime.

This rote adherence to the principle of pluralism--even in the face of ideological and practical totalitarianism--is a given here in America.

But Europe may be having second thoughts about no-questions-asked multicultural acceptance. With what we've seen recently in the Netherlands, France, and elsewhere, it seems possible that the Europeans may be willing to culturally confront Islamism, even if they though they have been less willing to do so militarily.

And in truth, I'm not certain which field of battle is more important.

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