My recent post on identity and Amin Maalouf seems to have drawn an absolute blank here, even though I personally consider the points he raises to be at the heart of the WoT and related issues. Over in Canada, Randy McDonald has picked up the thread, and relates Maalouf’s ideas to the issue of homophobia, taking as his starting point the recent execution of two young men in Iran for what appears to have been their sexual orientation:
I was saddened, though not altogether surprised, when Ikram Saeed recently commented that criticizing those Muslims who believed that their religion requires the ritualized torture-killings of non-heterosexuals is an act of racism. I say “not altogether surprised,” since Ikram had earlier commented that people victimized under shari’a law were “wimpy” if they lacked the capital–social, economic, political–that they needed to escape. This sort of morally blind privatization of public goods that ends with the privatization of human rights, the kind of process that reduces rights from universal goods to things that you can have only if you were lucky, serves bigots’ ends quite nicely.
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