“Islamic fundamentalism can be countered by the neutrality of Secularism.”
– Raza Habib Raja seems to think that the situation in Pakistan is pretty hopeless from the point of view of liberal freedom of speech. It does seem like conservative politics, conservative religion and conservative culture go together in a very authoritarian way, and it doesn’t seem like a healthy mix. One problem is that this situation is very open to human corruption and enourages the worst sides of human nature.
“It is the distortion of Christianity with its self-righteous claims of persecution that would put Jesus off his morning coffee.”
– the main complaint against the Christian right, and the reason the rest of us see them as such a pain in the arse, is their preoccupation with enforcing a very narrow view of sexual politics.
It has to be said that from their own point of view, it makes sense to do this. Part of their function has been to enforce the existing rules of society and culture, and two of these are monogamy and the patriarchy. Enforcing means promoting one thing and punishing another, and that’s what they do.
Being against homosexuality and abortion are firmly within the patriarchy and actually nothing to do with monogamy. Patriarchy can be seen as the human translation into social norms of the ancient primate behaviour of mate guarding of females by males through real or threatened violence. Mate guarding has two aspects: controlling [female sexuality] and protecting [guarded females from other males]. So, most of the patriarchy is just useless, or worse, but the “protecting” function is still necessary and valuable.
Monogamy is a good thing for children’s sakes. Monogamy doesn’t depend on oppression to make it work, since both sides want it and benefit from it.