SW: luke personalized

When Religious Fanatics Claim Power in Government

Yes, I am about to go on a bit of a rant/commentary regarding the British teacher in Sudan who was arrested for allowing her seven year-old students to name a teddy bear Muhammad.

Read my source article here.

This is a prime example of what Phillip Pullman is saying when he says, "Religion is at its best when it's far from power. When a religion gains power, it goes bad."

Such a simple thing that could have been cleaned up with a "Look, this could be considered insulting to the surrounding Muslim community, maybe you should name the bear something else" has turned into a call for violence!

The protesters streamed out of mosques after Friday sermons, as pickup trucks with loudspeakers blared messages against Gibbons, who was sentenced Thursday to 15 days in prison and deportation. She avoided the more serious punishment of 40 lashes.

They massed in central Martyrs Square outside the presidential palace, where hundreds of riot police were deployed. They did not try to stop the rally, which lasted about an hour.

"Shame, shame on the U.K.," protesters chanted.

They called for Gibbons' execution, saying, "No tolerance: Execution," and "Kill her, kill her by firing squad."

The woman shouldn't have been arrested in the first place, and now this??? What, did someone go up to the local authorities and say, "If you are a good Muslim, you will arrest this woman for what she did and sentence her to 40 lashes!"

"No tolerance: Execution!"

How ridiculous of a statement is that?! How can you expect to earn respect from others if you can't tolerate mistakes that can be easily corrected??

A Muslim cleric at Khartoum's main Martyrs Mosque denounced Gibbons during one sermon, saying she intentionally insulted Islam. He did not call for protests, however.

"Imprisoning this lady does not satisfy the thirst of Muslims in Sudan. But we welcome imprisonment and expulsion," the cleric, Abdul-Jalil Nazeer al-Karouri, a well-known hard-liner, told worshippers.

"This an arrogant woman who came to our country, cashing her salary in dollars, teaching our children hatred of our Prophet Muhammad," he said.

Dollars?? Does he know how weak the American dollar is these days?? She's British, sir, they take their money in pounds! I'd rather get paid in pounds than dollars!

I have known (albeit not very well) and worked with Muslims, and I can't really imagine any of them behaving is such a manner. I used to work with a Sudanese man who came to America after converting to Christianity. He loved his family, his new country, and even though he said things could be bad in his old home country, I assumed he still loved Sudan. What does he think of it now?

Power based on religion is a harmful thing. My ancestors came to this continent to escape such abuse. God has given us the will and tools a rules to govern ourselves, and His Power should not be used against other if they feel like worshipping Him in a way different than your own.
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