01 December 2009

The Swiss minaret ban

For several years there have been clear signs that the Western world is taking a harder line against the internal Islamic threat to its values created by unwise immigration policies. As far back as 2004, police forces in Europe began working to coordinate a crackdown on honor killings, the murders of women and girls by their own families for transgressing Islamic moral standards, a shockingly widespread problem among Muslim minorities in Europe. Last year Britain set up a "forced marriages unit" which rescued 400 victims in its first six months of operation. Canada's new official citizenship guide, released last month, declares that Canada will not tolerate what it openly calls "barbaric cultural practices" such as honor killing and clitorectomy. And just last Friday a fervent opponent of Islam, Lord Pearson of Rannoch, was elected leader of the UK Independence Party (UKIP), Britain's largest "minor" party; he "has said he will make the fight against radical Islam a major focus for the party", giving voters a more attractive protest vote than the also anti-Islamist but disturbingly fascistic BNP.

Now comes Switzerland's ban on new construction of minarets, approved in a referendum by 57% of voters despite virtually unanimous opposition by political and media elites. The media in Switzerland and the rest of Europe have been quick to condemn the voters' decision -- but check out the hundreds of comments posted to the article by readers, most of whom are presumably British, not Swiss (it's a British newspaper). As one says, "It just goes to show how out of touch the politicians are with the majority of voters too. If this referendum was held in every Western Euro-pean country then the result would be exactly the same in all of them as was the case in Switzerland."

Commentary in the US has generally been negative, ignorantly interpreting the Swiss vote as a manifestation of bigotry rather than as a liberal, democratic society opposing a totalitarian religious ideology which has introduced barbaric, anti-liberal values and violent behavior into that society.

Some have argued that the ban is pointless because there are only four minarets in Switzerland anyway. But as with the other actions mentioned above, an important part of its value is psychological. Such decisions send a strong message that Islam and its practices are no longer welcome in the West. The cumulative impact of that message should be that Muslims who are willing to assimilate into Western culture will be more motivated to abandon Islam entirely -- and that the more fervent believers who are unwilling to do so should leave the territory of the West.


Blogger Holte Ender said...

The Swiss government did not decide to hold a referendum, the Swiss constitution is set up that way, the government is legally bound to go to the voters on many issues, major or minor, an anomaly in a country that is not what I'd call liberal and has the most secretive banking system in the world. It is true that if a similar referendums were held in other western European countries their populations would go the way of the Swiss.

There some nasty political movements that are winning votes, you mentioned the BNP and there is the French party of Le Pen, they are not what is needed, UKIP is a right of center party but does not have fascist leanings. What it boils down to is that the people do not want a 7th century belief system dominating their inner cities. Radical Islam is a threat, but radical any religion is a threat too.

01 December, 2009 05:32  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

I'm somewhat familiar with the BNP, Le Pen, and the Austrian Freedom Party. I think if anything they've harmed the anti-Islamic cause because people like Geert Wilders, Pim Fortuyn, and Ayaan Hirsi Ali, who are trying to defend liberal pluralistic society, get lumped in with the neo-fascist extremists by the media.

Within the US we're actually more threatened by radical fundamentlist Christianity. The rest of the Western world seems to have put that problem behind it, only to bewilderingly import another similar problem from the Islamic world. One can't blame Europeans for wanting their immigrants to either get all the way in (assimilate) or get out.

01 December, 2009 05:55  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I applaud the Swiss people for putting their collective foot down and saying they won't tolerate the islamic blight in their country.

01 December, 2009 17:15  

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