Sunday, July 17, 2016

Repugnant transactions in Saudi

The NY Times has an interesting story on Saudi Arabia: A Saudi Morals Enforcer Called for a More Liberal Islam. Then the Death Threats Began.

Some of the story focuses on repugnant transactions:

"Their embrace of technology runs counter to the history of Wahhabi clerics rejecting nearly everything new as a threat to the religion. Formerly banned items include the telegraph, the radio, the camera, soccer, girls’ education and televisions, whose introduction in the 1960s caused outrage."
"The government has sought to control the flow of religious opinions with official fatwa institutions. But state-sanctioned fatwas have provoked laughter, too, like the fatwa calling spending money on Pokemon products “cooperation in sin and transgression.
While the government seeks to get more women into the work force, the state fatwa organization preaches on the “danger of women joining men in the workplace,” which it calls “the reason behind the destruction of societies.”
And there are fatwas that arm extremists with religious justification. There is one fatwa, still available in English on a government website and signed by the previous grand mufti, that states, “Whoever refuses to follow the straight path deserves to be killed or enslaved in order to establish justice, maintain security and peace and safeguard lives, honor and property.”
It goes on: “Slavery in Islam is like a purifying machine or sauna in which those who are captured enter to wash off their dirt and then they come out clean, pure and safe, from another door.”

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