Tag Archives: Bigotry

New Trendy Bigotry: Rent a Jew, Rent a Muslim, Rent a Bigot (or Elect One)………

Shuwaikh-school1 Me1 (2)Sharqeya-Baneen-15

KuwaitCox2 Hiking

“Do Jews get a discount when they buy a car? Do they own McDonald’s? Do Jews control the media and international banking? Do any of them live here anymore? These are among the questions German school children ask Jews who volunteer in a new outreach program with the provocative name, “Rent A Jew.” The Jews in question are not actually “rented” since they volunteer their time. But they do present themselves as living exhibits of something young Germans hear about constantly, thanks to their curricula on Germany and the Holocaust but rarely see: living, talking, walking Jews as they live their lives today. The program – launched in 2015 by the Munich-based Janusz Korczak Academy in collaboration with the Jewish Agency for Israel – is beginning to catch on. The Jewish Agency provides funding for the program, which mixes education with humor. “Rent a Jew,” the group’s tagline urges. “You will never forget your first.”

What next? Rent-a-Muslim for the Trump and Bannon and Gaffney kids to learn from?
Some say Muslims may be the “new” Jews in Europe and the United States. The next target for frustrated underemployed Christians and Evangelicals who can’t wait for “The Day” when all Jews are expected to convert to their peculiar old sect started by Jesus of Nazareth.

I don’t believe it, this thing about Rent-a-Muslim. It takes a long history, many centuries of suspicion, discrimination, abuse, and massacres to get to where the Jews are. And requires us to have a lot of talent that makes others realize their own shortcomings, which we don’t have yet. Besides, Muslims are nowhere near being group targets of life-and-death situations: there just are too many of us, and we are not one race or one nation. We come from all over.
Even the New Neo-Republican Party can’t build that kind of a wall. I believe that in this Congress and at the New White House they are realizing that and focusing on their real long-term enemy: a well-educated and healthy American people.

Besides, Muslims don’t make good scapegoats. We make better goats than scapegoats, given how our native countries are managed.

Maybe Rent-a-Bigot can become a viable business in some coastal states. A quaint conversation piece on one of the two coasts. Unless you elect a whole passel of them and let them loose on a country.

FYI: unlike the myth being encouraged in extreme right wing media, not many Muslims prefer slitting throats. Many prefer AK-15 (but that would be a Russian connection no?). One other thing is worrisome, tough: many of us like our food, especially our meat, Kosher (except we called it Halal after we copied it from the Jews about fifteen centuries ago).
More on this later, possibly, stay tuned…….

M. Haider Ghuloum

Inshallah: a United States of Political Paranoia on Social Media?……..

Shuwaikh-school1 Hiking Sharqeya-Baneen-15

KuwaitCox2                 Me1 (2)

“An Iraqi student at UC Berkeley was removed from his Southwest Airlines flight from Los Angeles to Oakland earlier this month when a woman overheard him speaking in Arabic and reported him to a Southwest employee…..

UPDATED: Adds new @SouthwestAir claim eavesdropping passenger said she spoke Arabic – not yet clear that’s true.
The Intercept @theintercept
Iraqi refugee kicked off plane for speaking Arabic says Islamophobia boosts ISIS http://interc.pt/1SgOIQB by @RobertMackey

Wajahat Ali Verified account ‏@WajahatAli Apr 17
I explain “inshallah”after this #SouthwestAirlines fiasco where a Muslim kid was kicked off for speaking Arabic……….”

And so it went. But the fact can’t be denied: a young man, apparently an Arab, was kicked off a flight because a fellow passenger heard him speak what she thought was Arabic and “reported him” to the crew. The kind of stuff you’d read in old thrillers of Nazi Germany (no exaggeration here).

Inshallah: God Willing……… Every Muslim and Arab  says this when asked to do something or when asked if he/she will pass her exam or succeed or….. I suspect even some Arab Christians say it, since it means God Willing.

All this precedes the current poisonous Republican election campaign of 2016. Many times people, families, Arab and/or Muslim, some of them possibly Christian, have been reported removed from flights across the USA for suspicion of speaking Arabic (it could be Hindu for all the other passengers know). Since when is the suspicion of a language grounds for serious discrimination?

And does that make everyone who speaks Spanish an illegal? Or anyone who speaks Chinese (Mandarin…..) a spy? Or any unarmed black teenager who speaks and dresses a certain style a life-threatening thug that should be shot immediately?

This is not about one airline. I must add that I and my family here in the USA have had dealings with Southwest Airlines in the past three years with no problem. No signs of prejudice whatsoever. Nor have I experienced any form of prejudice in other venues or with other institutions and businesses. Even with my first name which is the most Muslim of names.

No, I am not blaming the social media for rapidly spreading, embellishing, or  magnifying the news. Not yet.
Mohammed Haider Ghuloum

Tale of Two Civilized Cities: Stockholm vs. Riyadh…….

Shuwaikh-school1 Hiking Sharqeya-Baneen-15

KuwaitCox2 ا

“Is there a sharper knife that tears at the fabric of society than the threat of physical violence on the basis of ethnicity, nationality, gender or political affiliation? The recent images of young men, wearing hoods and dressed in black, roaming the streets of central Stockholm looking for “north African street children” to “punish” for their mere existence reminded Sweden and the world of the worst elements of European history. People immediately took to social media to express their shock that this could happen in a country like Sweden. Or, to be more accurate, Sweden as they imagine it to be………..”

Media reports increased incidents of physical attacks on “dark” people or people who look “foreign” in some European cities. Even in Stockholm. Especially in Stockholm, capital of Sweden. The latest was a report of a hundred or so masked people beating up people who looked foreign at train stations. Which means it was probably organized, premeditated.
Now let’s go to Riyadh, capital of Saudi Arabia, a country I often criticize strongly for its human rights abuses and intolerance. A country most Europeans consider so different that it is “barbaric” to them, even as they happily take its money as they forget their own much more barbaric recent past.
Nobody gets attacked by mobs of masked men at a bus station for looking “different”, not even in intolerant Riyadh. Unlike cities in Europe, where foreigners are being assaulted from Paris across to Budapest and Athens. Nobody wears funny bed sheets and burns crosses in front of “others” homes in Riyadh either, even if crosses are banned.
Could it be that instinctively bigoted Europe is going back to its old habit of a few hundred years ago, especially when times are hard? When “others” were persecuted, tortured, and killed for being “different”? It could, it could.
Civilized” is truly a relative term, it is in the eye of the beholder………
Mohammed Haider Ghuloum
Follow ArabiaDeserta on Twitter

Lesson of the Jews: Should Muslims Cower after Every Wahhabi Act of Terrorism?……..

Shuwaikh-school1 Hiking Sharqeya-Baneen-15

KuwaitCox2 ChristmasPeanutsA

Personally, I see that Muslims have been cowering these past few days in the face of public bigotry. I must add that I have noticed this “bigotry” only through the media, which tend to magnify the importance of every unusual position and statement. After all, the crimes of terrorism have been committed by a Wahhabi minority, and they have targeted Muslims and others. The Wahhabi terrorists no more represent Islam than the Trump bigots represent a majority of the American people.
We should remember what happened to the Jews of Europe, who also cowered as they faced open popular and official bigotry and were easily shipped like cattle to their deaths across a bigoted Europe. Bigotry needs to be condemned loudly and publicly, especially by its victims.

Cowering in the face of bigots gets you nowhere, just ask American blacks who have lived through the Old South (and much of the North). Muslims in the United States should condemn this Wahhabi terrorism, as they have mostly done, but they should also confront the noisy minority of bigots forcefully and publicly. While keeping in mind that this is an election season, and that is when the mutants come out…………
Mohammed Haider Ghuloum

Follow ArabiaDeserta on Twitter

Marine Le Pen Meets Egyptian Islamic Hypocrisy at Al Azhar: J’Accuse au Caire……..

Shuwaikh-school1 RattleSnakeRidge Sharqeya-Baneen-15

KuwaitCox2 LePenAlAzhar

“French far-right leader Marine Le Pen held talks in Egypt with Al-Azhar that broached the top Sunni Muslim body’s “serious concerns” over her party’s stance on Islam, it said. National Front president Le Pen met late Thursday with Ahmed al-Tayeb, grand imam of Al-Azhar, at its Cairo headquarters during which he questioned her organisation’s “hostile opinions towards Islam and Muslims”, an Al-Azhar statement said. Tayeb added that the National Front’s “opinions must be reviewed and corrected”. The National Front, which had a strong showing in local elections in March, has campaigned on politically explosive issues of immigration and the integration of Islam into French society after the Paris Islamist attacks……………..”

“For decades, Egyptian regimes have robbed the Shiite Muslim minority of their right to practice their religion freely and publicly. Egyptian Shiites have been subject to persecution, detention and imprisonment. On May 18, the prosecution accused Shiite leader Al-Taher al-Hashimy of attempting to spread Shiism, disturbing social peace and conducting covert activities………..  On May 12, a physician was sentenced to six months in prison for practicing Shiism, according to a statement released by the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights (EIPR). He was found guilty of blasphemy, attempting to cause sectarian strife, as well as threatening national security by attempting to spread Shiite ideology…………..”

J’accuse au Caire……….

Interesting to see the self righteous shaikh (now Imam) of Al-Azhar exuding hypocritic piety. From the picture of the meeting (above) it is easy to spot the more honest and more intelligent person at that meeting: she is wearing high-heels, not a turban.

So who do you think has more freedom, Muslims of France or Muslims of Egypt (especially Shi’a Muslims)? And where do Muslims have more freedom of religion especially: in France or in Egypt?
No, let me rephrase this: who has no freedom to worship at all, Muslims of France or Shi’a Muslims of Egypt?
Let me rephrase it again: who is more hypocritical and repressive, the government and religious establishment in Egypt or the French far right like Front National?
Let me phrase it differently: which country is more repressive of other sects and religions, including other Muslims: Egypt or Israel?

In which city is a taxi driver very likely to tell you to get out of his car if you tell him you’re a Shi’a: in Cairo or in Tel Aviv?

This is not to deny the existence of Islamophobia and bigotry in Europe. But why ignore and deny the worse cases of inter-Islamic bigotry and repression of religious freedom at home?
Now try to be honest about your answers, if you can………….

Mohammed Haider Ghuloum                          Follow ArabiaDeserta on Twitter
[email protected]

The Farce of Selective Free Speech on Public Transport……..

Shuwaikh-school1 RattleSnakeRidge Sharqeya-Baneen-15


New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority has banned all political advertising on its subways and buses, allowing it to refuse to display an ad about Muslims killing Jews. The resolution passed Wednesday night at the MTA board meeting. The decision comes after a federal judge earlier this month ruled that an anti-Islamic ad which includes the statement “Killing Jews is Worship that draws us close to Allah,” is protected speech under the First Amendment and said it must be run on public transportation……….  U.S. District Judge John Koeltl on April 21 rejected the MTA argument in rejecting the ad that it could be seen as a call to violence against Jews and could incite terrorism. The ad is sponsored by the American Freedom Defense Initiative, which is headed by blogger Pamela Geller and is known for its sharp anti-Muslim rhetoric. The ad has run in other cities, including Chicago and San Francisco, without inciting violence……………

“A US appeals court ruled on Wednesday that Seattle-based King County officials did not violate free speech by prohibiting local buses from displaying anti-Israel advertisements. The ruling came in reference to a 2010 advertisement on a bus reading,”ISRAELI WAR CRIMES YOUR TAX DOLLARS AT WORK.” ………..”

A court rules that it is okay to advertise on public transport against Islam: it is free speech to put bigoted ads against Muslims. Another court rules that it is not okay to advertise on public transport against Israel: it is not free speech to have anti-Israeli advertisement on public transport.

So, whenever there is a proposed advertisement on a public transport that criticizes Israel, it is banned. It is not free speech. Yet anti-Islamic ads by islamophobic bigots are allowed by judges like this one in New York. They are free speech. Proposed anti-Israel (not anti-Semitic) ads on public transport in Seattle and other cities were banned in the past. So much for the farce of selective free speech.

Mohammed Haider Ghuloum                    Follow ArabiaDeserta on Twitter
[email protected]