“Islam, at the moment, is the motherlode of bad ideas.” – Sam Harris
Montesquieu argued further, “…The laws have a lot to do with the manner in which
different people procure their subsistence”
Race is defined, particularly in its US and Nazi versions, by the genetic composition of the
individual. – Shein
You’ve probably been following conversation that erupted between actor Ben Affleck and TV comedic pundit Bill Maher (and sidekick Sam Harris) that made waves on social media and still are. In the video, seen below, Ben Affleck chastises the words of Bill Maher and Harris who make generalizations about Islam, making such comments as the above from Harris. Like Reza Aslan says, it is not that religion is violent, but that violent people are violent. That religion becomes a screen upon which violent people project to justify their violence. Also, to make such a blanket statement about all of Islam is to dismiss those who don’t fit in this category.
What are generalizations if not predetermined caricatures that are socially assumed to be agreed upon and given authority as truth-statements. Most generalizations are subjectively made. If you walk down the street and randomly get into a fight, you might then make the claim or assumption that that street is dangerous to walk down. This is itself the limitations of generalizations, it doesn’t account for anything outside of a closed system/experience. There is no serendipity. Also, when race and religion are treated hierarchically, as if one is better than the other, then we have to address the power involved in displacing one religion over another. Hierarchy is simply a system designed to enforce order and homogenize everyone involved into normalizing the individual. The idea of making violence intrinsic to a religion or a race or a group is the attempt to dismiss any value of people groups, religion, race and difference.
Western Multiculturalism has come to mean: Respect me in the way I am comfortable or I will take you to court. We have come to legislate comfort. But, what is so discomforting about people being too close, about people having opinions about us? why is it so horrific? A french Psychoanalyst Jacques Lacan once called this moment where words lost all meaning and usage, the Real, its like sitting and watching a horror and all you can do is jump, or gasp but that moment is so scary all we can do is try to distant ourselves from it. this is a hint into why in the West, people are so protective of their identities, because its too close to the truth that we have no identity at all.
This is the problem in our current state of anemic democracy, we’ve turned the roles into god-like roles, where it’s become taboo to say certain thing about people and their actions. This is the deepest form of disrespect, because it refuses to engage with the person and attempt to sustain the role that the person is filling as some sort of divine role, which isn’t that far from our paleolithic beginnings. When Affleck brings up the fact that Maher is generalizing, this right here, as Leftists is where we need to listen. It’s this critique that exposes the very problem with a lot of leftist thought today, namely that it has come to mirror that of Conservative discourse and has learned to try to scare people into agreement.
By abstracting Islam, faith and religion, it then turns the humans involved in that religion into victims of their belief system. There is no responsibility to choice, and human agency. It just lazily turns them into monsters and automatons. Leftist fundamentalism is no different than fundamentalism on the right, mainly due to the fact that t defines itself against conservative ideology which gives leftist thought its very coordinates for disagreement.
. This is irresponsible….
Violence begets violence, not Islam begets violence…..
Philosopher Slavoj Zizek once made the point that true multiculturalism is the ability to criticise one on their beliefs and practices without absolute recoil. Today that kind of multiculturalism exists nowhere. Critique is necessary to develop a healthy view of ones self and reality. In this interview, Ben Affleck and Bill Maher were both right and both wrong. But both become a critique on the plight of leftism today. That race, religion, geography, history are not easy caricatures. That the politics of the Left need to step up their game. That if anything is going to change on how we address issues like violence, religion, Islam and identity we have to move beyond the gaze of the media. The media cannot have the last word on how we believe.Source: