But this woman is a black, feminist atheist from Somalia. And so what we’re learning here, which is fascinating, in the hierarchy of progressive-politics identity-group victimhood, Islam trumps everything. Islam trumps gender. The fact that she’s a woman doesn’t matter. It trumps race. The fact that she’s black doesn’t matter. It trumps secularism. The fact that she’s an atheist doesn’t matter. They wouldn’t do this if it was a Christian group complaining about her, if it was a Jewish group complaining about her. But when the Islamic lobby group says oh, no, we’re not putting up with this, as I said, these jelly-spined nothings at Brandeis just roll over for them. – Mark Steyn
Last Tuesday, on April 8, Brandeis University rescinded its invitation to human rights activist Ayaan Hirsi Ali to receive an honorary degree from the institution. Brandeis caved in the face of intimidation from CAIR and other Muslim Brotherhood front groups, as well as a student petition on Change.org and a faculty petition – the contents of which have now become known.
The faculty petition is a textbook case of leftist pathology and of how “progressives” demonize true heroic freedom fighters and push millions of victims of totalitarian regimes and ideologies into invisibility for the sake of their own egotistical and destructive agendas.
A case in point in this ugly leftist narrative is how the signatories of the Brandeis petition have succeeded in banning a woman from their university who is the victim of female genital mutilation (FGM), suffered under an Islamic knife because of Islamic doctrine. She represents millions of Muslim females — mutilated and mutilated-to-be. And yet the signatories of the petition are callously indifferent, because they have their progressive program to attend to and fulfill.
The Brandeis faculty petition, written on April 6 and addressed to President Lawrence, stresses “the horrible message” that inviting Ali to the university “sends to the Muslim and non-Muslim communities at Brandeis and beyond” because of Ali’s “virulently anti-Muslim public statements.” Aside from complaining about Ali’s truth-telling about Islam, the petition also issues a dire warning about the “unnecessary controversy” that the human rights activist’s presence would bring to the campus.
To be sure, who needs nightmarish scenarios like debate and intellectual diversity when the Marxist Left has already lovingly bestowed the peaceful the Party Line?
The petition then references the major issues with which Ali is concerned: female genital mutilation, forced marriages, and honor killings. “These phenomena,” the petition flippantly notes, are not “exclusive to Islam.” This is a standard and perpetual tactic of obfuscation and equivocation employed by the Left whenever a monstrous evil is labelled in a totalitarian enemy. It serves as an excuse for inaction by presupposing that if a crime is committed by someone else, somewhere else, that it somehow justifies doing and saying nothing in the face of a crime being perpetrated on a mass scale right before our eyes – and one that we can do something about.
In other words, the logic implies that if a sin or an injustice exist somewhere else on the planet, that one must never fight for — or defend the victims of — any one ideology or system (unless it is of the western variety, of course).
Thus, if one dares to show concern for the millions of Muslim girls who are victims of female genital mutilation, the leftist will reflexively retort: “Muslims are not the only group that practice FGM.”
But so what? The bottom line is that Muslims are the principle religious group that practices this sexual violence against women. And if a young girl is a victim of FGM, the chances are that she lives in a Muslim household and in a Muslim culture. And this barbarity is kept alive and legitimized by Islamic theology.
The faculty petition to President Lawrence also expresses a deep concern about the fact that Ali has suggested “that violence toward girls and women is particular to Islam or the Two-Thirds World.” This is intolerable (even though completely true) because, according to the petition, it obscures “such violence in our midst among non-Muslims, including on our own campus.”
This is another consistent tactic that the Left engages in to insert its falsehoods into dialogues about oppressed people under monstrous tyrannies. The plain fact staring everyone in the face is that while violence may exist among non-Muslims, their laws and institutions delegitimize and illegalize such conduct. For instance, if a non-Muslim anywhere in the United States, including on a university campus, engages in violence against a woman and the police are called, he will be charged. In Islam, violence against women is inspired and sanctioned by the institutions themselves, precisely because misogyny, including wife beating, is embedded in the Qur’an.
In other words, non-Muslims who are violent toward women operate despite and against the laws of their lands; Muslims, on the other hand, are violent toward women because of their laws, and that is why they are, in turn, protected by those laws.
Thus, in terms of female genital mutilation, millions of Muslim girls are victims of this horrifying crime which is rooted in Islam and is integral to Islam’s misogynist structures. The road to saving millions of Muslim girls from this crime is to do what Ayaan Hirsi Ali is bravely doing, and what the signatories of the Brandeis faculty petition are trying to stop her from doing: to isolate and pinpoint Islam as the main culprit in this context.
The point cannot be stressed enough: female genital mutilation is fundamentally Islamic and it is rooted in Islamic texts such as Umdat al-Salik:
“Circumcision is obligatory (O: for both men and women. For men it consists of removing the prepuce from the penis, and for women, removing the prepuce (Ar. Bazr) of the clitoris.” Sacred Islamic Reliance: page 59, Umdat al-Salik (“Reliance of the Traveler”), a manual of the Shafi’i school of Islamic jurisprudence, endorsed by Egypt’s very own Al-Azhar University of Cairo — the oldest and most prestigious university in the Islamic world.
This explains why one of Sunni Islam’s “Four Great Imams,” Ahmad ibn Hanbal, quotes Muhammed as saying: “Circumcision is a law for men and a preservation of honour for women?” It is no shock, therefore, that Sheikh Muhammad Sayyed Tantawi of Egypt’s Al-Azhar University has called circumcision “a laudable practice that did honor to women.”
Read more at Front Page (with video)
From ACT! For America:
According to the World Health Organization, more than 125 million girls and women alive today have been subjected to Female Genital Mutilation (FGM).
The African Women’s Health Center of the Brigham and Women’s Hospital, report that approximately 228,000 women and girls in the U.S. have either suffered the procedure or are at risk of having it done to them. Many of these young girls are subjected to FGM when they vacation in a country that sanctions the practice. In other cases, circumcisers are brought into the U.S. – even though FGM is illegal in this country.
ACT! for America has been working diligently at the state level to see legislation passed so that no girl ever suffers the horrors of FGM – either on U.S. soil or elsewhere.
- Mainstream U.S. Muslim Jurists Association Sanctions Female Genital Mutilation by Andrew Bostom
JUST BEFORE PASSOVER, BRANDEIS CHOOSES SLAVERY by Pamela Geller