Thursday, April 23, 2009


Nicholas Kristof:

If the Islamic world is going to enjoy a revival, if fundamentalists are to be tamed, if women are to be employed more productively, then moderate interpretations of the Koran will have to gain ascendancy.

Dear Mr. Kristof,

Most Muslims are not fundamentalist. Therefore, "moderate interpretations" of the Koran are already "ascendant," even if your preference is to reduce the whole of the "Islamic world" to whatever minority elements preoccupy your attention.

Like most Westerners, you seem uninterested in Muslims per se; they are only interesting insofar as they carry a criminal potential. You know, kind of like "black people" before they proved their worth in sporting and other culturally valued events. If only some kid from Palestine would win the Masters, we might worry about whether there's any food getting into Gaza -- you know, because there are "people" there.

Additionally, I would love to know how women are "employed productively" in your society. Is it mostly through underpayment or by making maternity leave an employer-sponsored crapshoot rather than a reproductive right? Please let me know; I expect you are as much an authority on your own society as others.

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