The American left sides once again with Bronze Age fanaticism

The American left sides once again with Bronze Age fanaticism

Here’s yet more criticism of Benedict, this time from the politically correct, liberal side of the aisle, the “how have we hurt their feelings?” wing of American academic liberalism.

Paul Cobb, assoc. professor of Islamic history at Notre Dame, says Pope Benedict should have been more sensitive to Islamic feelings. He says that while Benedict apparently wanted a dialogue of equals, he should have recognized that they are not.

You might ask, “Then why all the anger?” In a healthy intellectual and religious climate, surely two faithful members of two different faiths can bear to hear an insult to their faith quoted to them, at least as part of a larger argument, no?

But there’s the rub. For we do not have a healthy climate in which such a dialogue can unguardedly take place.

I am reminded here of the title of the late Ralph Wiley’s observations on race relations in the United States, “Why Black People Tend to Shout.” Like them, Muslims shout because, for so long, they have not been heard. If the Crusades aren’t to blame for Muslim distrust of Western comments on Islam, then surely three centuries of direct and indirect imperialism cannot have helped.

“Hurled down ex cathedra”

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  • “The fact that the vast majority of the world’s Muslims live without the privileges of income, education, literacy, human rights, statehood and health care that Benedict’s audience takes for granted renders even an invitation to converse worthy of suspicion.”

    So the muslims are stultified, and nobody can enlighten them until they get themselves out of poverty, and they can’t get out of poverty until they’re enlightened.

    If this analysis were right, it’s a despair-inducing catch-22.