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Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Another Woman You Should Know

Posted by on March 22 at 10:32 AM

In response to my post about Dr. Wafa Sultan—watch her in action here—David Summerlin, a regular in our forums and comment threads, brought Irshad Manji as an example of another free-thinking, secular Muslim.


Manji’s book, The Trouble With Islam Today, is a must-read. She’s not part of the “Islam-means-peace” crowd that I was slamming in my earlier post. She acknowledges that there are huge problems within Islam, and that, in practice, political Islam means anything but peace. Buy her book.

And check out her recent op-ed in the New York Times—”How I Learned to Love the Wall”—supporting the wall that Israel is building to seperate itself from the Palestinians.

She also signed the “THE MANIFESTO OF 12: Together Facing the New Totalitarianism,” which is up on her website Muslim Refusenik. (An aside to David S.: I thought you didn’t support the Manifesto?. Or am I remembering that incorrectly? Not being snarky—honestly can’t remember what you said about the Manifesto of 12, but seem to recall that you were opposed.)

Manji is also one of local superstar Laurence Ballard’s heros, and I swiped the pic of her above from Ballard’s website.

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Can we greenlight these two women to become US citizens (if they haven't done so already?) I would love to have their voices in DC, and then maybe everyone else would start to stand up as well.

Looks like I was writing my response on your other thread while you were putting this one together. Here's a cut and paste from the other thread:

...I thought that you, David, didn't support. Or am I remembering that incorrectly?

You probably remember correctly. I think the manifesto frames the argument poorly--following the same line of reasoning Hitchens used (reasoning suited only for bludgeoning).

I think Irshad Manji does great work, and I support her. I plan to sign over to Project Ijtihad any proceeds I receive from the piece you had me write, along with my own matched funds. She and I had a friendly correspondence about it.

Salman Rushdie also signed the manifesto, and I have great respect for him--and respectfully disagree with his decision to back the manifesto.

Manji and Sultan are evidence of Muslims who have embraced modernity. "Modernity" should be able to embrace them, and without admonishment about "the Muslim thing."

In the battle of fundamentalism vs. modernity (not restricted to Islamic fundamentalism), it would serve us well to recognize that only modernity has something to lose.

Secular Muslim - makes no sense - put that phrase back in the can -

I thought of Irshad Manji when I read your earlier post but I couldn't recall her name, just her face. I saw her on Vicki Gabereau (Canadian talk show) a couple years ago, the way she spoke was riveting. She's an amazing and brave woman and I'm glad someone else was able to give her name and link to her book too.

sigh. another day, another anti-islam post.

here's a book that could make this clash-of-civilizations bs more productive:

Exactly, WF, and that's the angle that Hitchens et al conveniently ignore. The anti-Islamic crap isn't so much inaccurate as it is a whitewash of our own culpability re: the prevalence of fundamentalist extremism in regions whose natural resources we covet.

Regardless, Irshad Manji rocks.

in addition to good politics, manji has great hair.

Right on! Go secualar humanists go!

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