“Also these words, "kill women with Sharia law, and kill innocents for not being Muslim" are not applicable to all the muslim-majority country. A handful of the first kind we are guilty of, offset by, I hope, wide public denouncement leading to legislation of specific punitive measures. The second kind is entirely unheard of. I think in your mind you are merging all the bad things you have heard of a couple of muslim-majority countries and applying to without differentiation to every one of us. It really hurts your argument, and perpetuates the stereotype of 'the ignorant american.'”
“well infrequent as it is in my country, it does happen, along with many other kinds of human rights violations for which I never make up excuses. On the other hand, killing in the name of religion isn't unheard of in USA either. Only a handful of western countries have a sort of clean slate when it comes to HR at present within their territory, if you discount the snowball effect of their past and present foreign policies as well as direct support of dictators and bad law-enforcers (including in my country), so no one should really cast the first stone here. Important is to take responsibility, which I do. Do you?”
“well yeah, the bigoted villain can come after him solely because he's a Muslim without stopping to examining his opinions and/or the reasons why... he/she can also come after him because of something some complete bunch of strangers did... villains tend to be mindless and thoughtless like that. All and all, it's those bigots you should be afraid of, they're making your countrymen look very unpleasant, whereas gradual inclusion of all kinds of people into comic hero-hood is making you look tolerant, inclusive and respectable.”
feraltyger on Sep 10, 2012 at 19:07:01
“Yes, when your countrymen kill women with Sharia law, and kill innocents for not being Muslim it makes your people look great. Keep up the good PR work.”
“Well those people at the airports aren't married to brown people, and aren't probably as curious about other people's religions. If you are married to a South Asian, you must have heard/seen some of the harassment that comes with it. Not to say anything of the people with the *wrong* (read: poor) kinds of passports. Still, as I said, I do understand the wish to be very careful and don't mind the checks, except that I can't forget about that Brazilian who was shot to death or the fact that tossing anyone in Guantanamo never seems to require much proof, if some of the returnees are telling the truth. Moreover, how long can this state of vigilance go on? There must be a better way to deal with it than going on shooting the products of the wrong system.”
“One man's insurgent is another man's freedom fighter.That has been true for all the state-versus-peoples fights all over the world. Happened in my country twice, once involving two groups of Muslims, another time two different ethnicities. So forgive me if the term isn't as deciding to me as it is to you.
I won't call the people in Gaza who blow themselves up heros, but I doubt they have any other means to draw attention to their limbo situation or fight with a much more powerful opponent whom they consider aggressor.
As for America's classification of terrorists, perdon me for not keeping track since it changes by the decade... now they're arming them, now they're denouncing them, now they're secretly arming them, now they're razing them. It's rather disorienting, and makes me wonder whether the real reason behind this kind of classification is identifying the real threats to the country, or motivated by ulterior economic/political concerns. The war on terror, in my humble opinion, has worked as the single most persuasive tool of recuitment. Bush either sucked at strategy-making or his country this disservice knowingly.”
“Did I claim Muslims to be more or less peaceful than any other communities? I don't think so.
Muslims, especially those not earning a living in USA, mostly do resent USA's imperialistic policies which can be traced back to as far as at least WWII. I would love some lively debate on that issue, but your spelling of the word assumption as well as this sentence 'I ... will ... support any cause I please, therefore your opinion doesn't matter' is making me think that you might be a teenager, or an adult who didn't go to college, and/or suffering from some sort of inability to process logic and reassess pre-existing notions and therefore I'll save my breath for some intelligent, well-read American.
I would like to assure you that whatever justified/unjustified grievances Muslims (and really, I know of Hindus and Budhists here who hate America) have against America, comics like this and other small but nice gestures will force them to reassess Americans in new light, because, you see, unlike you, most of the people in the world *are* capable of weighing other peole's opinions and changing their mind when warranted.
I'm not replying, feel free to let lose your juveline streak.”
“Also, every religion is essentially about how to live. I'm guessing the rules in Islam seem arbitrary to you since you never really came across any of the debates/discussions that can surround every 'law' that was derived from Qoran, Most of the 'law's were merely alluded to in the Book (e.g. how to pray/ how to fast) and the rulings were worked out later by scholars. Shariah should be as open to reasonable disagreement and amendment as any law, and moreover to personal brainstorming (on the basis of a different interpretation of a verse), if not for the death grip of those usurper clerics.”
iowastate on Sep 10, 2012 at 17:30:46
“I mean those such as Shinto and Buddhism that are in and of themselves "a way of life" rather than a religion with the purpose of instruction you on how to live.
I have read the Bible and much of the Q'ran = and I have fasted during Ramadan for the past 6 years.
I respect all of the worlds religions and feel that they all have part of the truth and none of them have all of the truth including the religion I practice myself.
People accept the religion they feel comfortable with - it was a close call between Shi'a Islam and Buddhism for me and the girl I like the best is Buddist was the deciding factor.
my personal philosophy I would call a combination of Buddhism, Islam, and Goddess Worship.
I can't escape Catholic totally since my mum was one and she raised me to respect it. I just could never believe in it.
without the extremist cults that are the bane of Islam and Christianity these two religions would be very close to each other.”
“Ok, since you have a fair grounding on world religions, why don't you check out Sufi'ism, it's one of the better ways of reading the Quran. You can also check out the Huffpost Islam for an introduction to the range of ideas. The top-down version of Islam that's more prevalent and we both find despicable comes from a Soudi-oriented understanding and it is as political as any other source of power. I grew up in a time when this version had much less of a hold on the Muslims in my country and I grew up listening to the verses/Prophet's quotes that emphasise the personal nature of one's relationship with Allah, the virtue of exploring the words on your own and reflecting on them (which is stressed more than once in Qoran itself), and for sure I am not obliged to abide by anything any human being utters, the post of cleric itself is an invention of latter day administrators as a way of consolidating their hold on mosques and the surrounding societies. Things like monks, priests, institutions of hegemonizing certain interpretation have arisen solely out of power plays and crisis of legitimacy of rulers. Can't stress how far from Qoran and even Prophet's life that actually is.”
“For example, it's another example I can now throw at the people who use blanket insults to describe all Americans. So far I only had the Muslim intern at Bones and the writers at Counterpunch, DemocracyNow etc. It's a good thing.”
“You don't agree that American Muslims are subjected to stereotyping and the whole environment could benefit from some new perspective? Geez at least I know what goes on in my country. Also, you do realize this kind of thing increases/creates respect for your country?”
AmericanItalian on Sep 10, 2012 at 16:49:14
“Sorry, let me clarify. I agree there is stereotyping. Sadly there is stereotyping for every culture and race.
I do not agree with the comic character. I do not think a religion is needed.
It's not a right or wrong thing. It's an opinion. I'm not saying either of us is right or wrong. Because neither of us can be. This is truly an opinion case.”
“You're right about non-Muslim Arabs and that's all the more reason to make this character Muslim, because these are the ones facing the issue DC is trying to deal with. It's all the more relevant due to the controvery presicely and because the villains now all seem to be muslim, so some positive portrayal of the same group is surely due about now.
Any group of people that has to hear 'go back to___' deserves a comic book hero.
If there's a Christian hero from a country where Christians take the flack, I'd definitely be on forums defending it, although I must admit i'm more prone to be vocal when it comes to my religious origin (outside of my country. Here I'm dealing with the tyranny of the majority), ethnicity and gender.”
AmericanItalian on Sep 10, 2012 at 15:31:50
“Sorry, don't agree. Though I can respect your last paragraph.”
“Wiping with hand isn't a Muslim thing, it's an Asian thing. I'm guessing you're not very familier with any culture but your own.
He can think you a non-believer and happily co-exist with you, there's a whole chapter in Quran on that one, with a verse that roughly translates into 'Let you have your religion and let me have mine'. If the misinformed and mal-educated kinds of Muslims do come after you, I believe a Green Lantern will save his countrymen from evil.”
“I think a Muslim character is much needed to counteract the negative images of Muslims, as opposed to any other religious groups. The article suggests that his background story would deal with the struggles (i hope internal as well as external) in a post-9/11 America. It'd be very compelling character study, if nothing else, and representation of a mis-represented community. Do Hindu and Buddhist kids so through systematic negitivity? Honestly I'm thinking a kickass traditional Christian/right-leaning character would be refreshing at this point. Like Booth in Bones. I love the muslim intern in Bones as well. USA always starts systematically tearing down stereotypes through pop-culture (take the TV representation of Jewish/Italian/Irish people) and I have a lot of respect for that.”
“Well I survived England for a year and my relatives in Texas survive USA, I don' see the prblem here. Also, if a bacon villain does appear, he can have some nice Christian friend for support. I think his arch-enemy will be some bigot who'll target him for no other reason but his religion.”
“I think it's very appropriate to make him religious, because it strike at the heart of the problem here: the discomfort with Arab-Muslims who mostly are (or are perceived to be) quite attached to the Islamic elements of their identity. Making the Arab-Muslim non-religious won't really 'hit home.'
Also, Muslims in many societies have learn to reconcile religious faith/practices and reason as well as common sense/conscience. For this character to be representative (and to have any real impact on both Muslim and non-Muslim) it must be religious.
If the environment was as anti-semitic now as it was in the previous decades (and if the Jewish people were ridiculed more for their faith and less for their racial features/perceived characteristivs) a hero like this might indeed have been warranted.
Someone should write in a Christian superhero in Pakistan. More than one would be great.”
AmericanItalian on Sep 10, 2012 at 14:31:18
“Not all Arabs are Muslim. So I can not agree with you because then it only limits this character to it's religion does not allow for those who are not Muslim to accept such a character. It has never been the job of a comic book to try to bring light to someones religion, especially with such controversy surrounding the religion of Islam.
You will never see a Christian superhero in Pakistan. At least not one that makes the news stands.”
“I'm assuming your idea of what is and isn't in Quran come from reading bits and pieces here and there, as is my knowledge of ther religions (and of Quran for a long time too). Fair enoguh. So, about the 'crap' in quran,
1) the most blazen ones has a lot to so with interpretation, both literal and otherwise. There are some pretty radical schools of though that don't get much attention, but they are pretty refreshing, even though they can be traced back to long ago. In my opinion, the actual 'craps' in quran are much subtler and surfaces only when you read it with an actual critical, analytical eye to figure out the underlying objectionable (IMO) assumptions. Not something that preoccupies a lot of people, least of all someone coming from this GL's background. He appears to be one of those Muslims who can reconcile faith and reason neatly and there are many of those out there, including score in my own conservative family.
2) reforms are underway. it's complicated as religion in Muslim-majority countries are intricately wound with culture and soceital laws. Howeve, reform will come and it must come from within. Pressure/aspersion from outside will do nothing but consolidate orthodoxy.
“I understand where the fear of brown people come from... if I were an American flier I'd want as much screening as possible too. But you also need to understand that brown people (from all religions/countries/even people who are famous in half the world e.g. Shahrukh Khan) who undergo this kind of scrutiny, without actually doing anything wrong, and often despite being on the right side of the 'war', feel quite violated. You must understand this constant suspicion is one of the things that create and fester resentment, which, even when not violent, is still harmful for national/soceital integration. I have a Muslim-looking Sri Lankan Danish friend who has enough strip search experience to anger the whole tamil community.”
iowastate on Sep 10, 2012 at 16:41:52
“and by the way I am not a Christian - I am a Buddhist and I hold Hindu, Shinto, Zoroastrianism and Taoism in high esteem. I prefer the religions that are a way of life and not those who have clerics who tell you to do as I preach not how I live.”
iowastate on Sep 10, 2012 at 16:37:51
“this is NOT a fear of brown people - I'm married to one of them.
and when you are are in a war against Global Terrorism you are not doing your job if you fail to spend more time looking at those who look like the ones who are making the attacks. How many Blondes and six year old girls have carried suicide bombs or hijicked airplanes.
it is necessary to use at least a little bit of logic.”
“1) Hey I was pretty averse to religious people in general, Muslims most of all, me being a woman in a Muslim-majority country. Then my youngest brother turned into religion and while I still despise how faith allows good people to do bad stuff, I am beginning to understand that religiosity can spring from spirituality, which is the opposite of fear. Take Sufiism for example, or Buddhism in its original form.
2) I think it was necessary to make the character religious, because ultimately the aim is to change attitude about Arab Americans who are mostly religious or perceived as such. Making him non-religious won't really challenge the stereotypes.”
Acorn Tree on Sep 10, 2012 at 16:41:55
“but that doesnt mean i dont understand your pointit is a nice idea but i dont think it will have much if any impact.”
Acorn Tree on Sep 10, 2012 at 16:39:00
“1) those arent religions they are philosophy's. like Taoism.
2) i will not be more tolerant of stupid ideals that make people hate one another.”
“wow you really know next to nothing about Muslims, no wonder you're so averse to the whole group. Listen,
1)Muslims are a very large and very diverse group. What happened in pakistan (which is more of a political economy issue via manipulation of ignorance and faith) is unthinkable in many other Muslim country.
2)the fact that there are instances of our squabble with all the major religious groups is precisely because we are numerous and spread almost all over the world, and religion (just like ethnicity) becomes a big mobilizing factor in fights over power and resources. Also, a large mumber of us reside in Asia and Africa, with history of colonization and presence of poverty and lack of education, which fuels conflict and violence.
3) Muslims are heterogenious and Islam can be extremely personal. You don't know what kind of a Muslim Baz may be. He may be one of those who fear Allah and forgo the rest. He may be only culturally Muslim. Or he may be devout, doing his job while fasting like many others and avoiding certain kinds of food, maintaining his faith while coexisting with people from other religions (something, you might not know, codified in a single, widely popular Quranic verse 'laqum dinukum waliya din'). Educate yourself, my dear friend, just like those terrorists who need to educate themselves both about theor own religion and that of others. Don't be like them.”
“As they say in economics, aid is 'palliative' i.e. it will forever help us control/stomach poverty without asking 'what is creating and sustaining poverty?' (political economy answer: the capitasist economic system of disposession and exclusion for the sake of accumulation). Advice of patience and faith serves the same purpose, I belive. The real help would be to ask 'what is causing this suffering?' What do you think is causing the internal suffering of religious muslim homosexuals and the external suffering of all homosexuals in general?
(p.s. let's go logically decimate the Islamophobes here:http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/09/06/the-new-green-lantern-sim_n_1859031.html)”