|Home | Articles | News | Blog | About | Mailing List | Resources | Prominent Islamists | Middle East Forum | Keep Us Informed | Donate|
Stop the Pandering, Say Secular Muslims
by David J. Rusin • May 6, 2008 at 11:33 am
Frustrated by governments bending over backwards to accommodate Islam in the public square? Some Muslims are fed up with them as well, and a group in the UK has recently stepped forward to speak out on behalf of this "silent majority":
Originally founded in 2006, British Muslims for Secular Democracy (BMSD) aims "to promote civic engagement, social inclusion, responsible citizenship, and good governance, particularly within constituent Muslim communities of Britain in order to build an understanding of the shared values between all citizens to enable them to live in an inclusive, pluralist, secular, and confident Britain."
It is too early to tell whether BMSD will be the real deal, but there are reasons for optimism. Alibhai-Brown's comments echoed her group's censure of Archbishop Rowan Williams for suggesting that some aspects of Shari'a law should be accepted in the UK; a February press release called his position a "denial of the principles of gender equality and inclusion and shared citizenship" — a bold and welcome statement.
As Daniel Pipes frequently contends, "Radical Islam is the problem, moderate Islam is the solution." Moderate Muslims who work to integrate their community into the broader social framework are thus indispensable for neutralizing Islamism at its source.
How will we know that they have succeeded? When objections to pandering are no longer rare enough to make the news pages.