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Offline *~MuDa~*

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Town moves against Islamic school ...cN YOU BELIEVE THAT?
« on: May 26, 2008, 09:21:41 PM »
With its lace curtain bungalows and steepled Anglican church, the once tranquil town of Camden in New South Wales seems the most improbable of settings for a row that combines race and religion.

Proud of its rich history, the town promotes itself as "the birthplace of the nation's wealth", for it was here, in the early 19th Century, that the sheep and dairy industries first began to flourish.

Now the town, which lies on south-west fringes of Sydney, is confronting a very 21st Century issue: the proposal to construct an Islamic school for some 1,200 Muslim pupils.

Behind the proposal is the Sydney-based Quranic Society, which has purchased 15 acres of land on the fringes of town, and produced detailed plans and designs.

None of them reference any obvious Islamic influences. Functional and non-descript, the two-storey school could easily be a light industrial development.

Camden council is currently deciding whether to grant planning permission and allow the controversial development to go ahead.

'Wrecking Australia'

At the council's headquarters, 12 bulging ring-binders hold more than 3,200 submissions from the public. Only 100 are in favour of the development.

The council will deliver its verdict either later this month or early next.

 
 This is not a nationalistic issue, it's not a religious issue, it's a planning issue, and it will be addressed on those merits

Chris Patterson,
Camden mayor

Twice the town has managed to rebuff the fast food giant McDonald's. Now it has mobilised to block the construction of the Islamic school.

Back in November, more than 1,000 local people took part in a public meeting. Many participants expressed themselves with little regard for political correctness.

"This has to be one of the nicest places in New South Wales," said one woman, who has lived in Camden for the past nine years.

"Everywhere is being destroyed. Why don't we tell the truth. They're wrecking Australia. They're taking us over," she said.

"Why hasn't anyone got any guts? They've got terrorists amongst 'em... They want to be here so they can go and hide in all the farm houses... This town has every nationality... but Muslims do not fit in this town. We are Aussies, OK."

Some of the loudest cheers of the night greeted a speech from a local man in his late 70s.

"Can I just say this without being racist or political?" he said. "In 1983, in the streets of London a parade by Muslims chanted incessantly 'If we can take London, we can take the world'. Don't let them take Camden."

Some speakers focused solely on the environmental impact of locating an urban-scale school in such a bucolic setting; and, in particular, on the traffic congestion it would bring.

 
Some of the protesters wore anti-Islamic immigration slogans 
One speaker implored the crowd to stick to planning issues, and not let the campaign be contaminated by racism or xenophobia.

When the chair of the meeting invited anyone in favour of the development to speak up, no one stepped forward.

Camden does not harbour a large Muslim community - census figures suggest about 150 families.

Most of the pupils at the proposed school would therefore be bussed in from Sydney, a journey that takes about an hour each way.

'Planning issue'

Andrew Wynnet of the Camden/Macarthur Residents' Group showed me the site of the proposed school, and focused on its unsuitability and undesirability.

"When you have no Muslims living in Camden, why have a Muslim school here?" he asked.

He was also concerned about its long-term, demographic impact.

"The character of the town will change. When you have a large facility like this, the parents will follow. That amount of parents will change the character of the town."

If you introduce 1,500 Muslim people to the town they'd be a majority. And that's not what this town is about."

Bravely, given that local council elections are due later in the year, Mayor Chris Patterson has adopted a neutral stance.

Presumably, it would have been more politically expedient to veer towards populism.

"This is not a nationalistic issue, it's not a religious issue, it's a planning issue, and it will be addressed on those merits," he says.

Determined that the planning process should be allowed to play out, Mr Patterson does not want to prejudge it.

Acrimonious

Many locals fear that the campaign is being hijacked by right-wing, nationalist groups with their own agendas.

The Australia First organisation has been advertising for members in Camden, and says it plans to field a candidate in September's local elections.

Pauline Hanson, the former leader of the One Nation Party, has also paid a visit to the town, though the local paper, the Camden Advertiser, reported that she mistakenly thought the proposal was for a mosque rather than a school.

 
Camden residents vow they will not give up easily

The increasingly acrimonious and race-charged debate has also crossed into mainstream politics.

Camden is part of a Liberal-held parliamentary constituency which was high on Labor's target list at last November's federal election.

Campaigning in nearby Campbeltown, the then opposition leader Kevin Rudd said that the local infrastructure could not support such a large school, and that he therefore opposed it on "planning grounds".

The Quranic Society has kept a low public profile and was not available for comment.

But its position has been that Australian parents have the right to educate Australian children wherever they wish, regardless of race or religion. If the council rejects its planning application, it could appeal to the Land and Environment Court.

Camden residents will not give up easily.

"This town has fought all sorts of developments," Andrew Wynnet. "It will take on all-comers regardless of religion."
...He begot not, nor is He begotten!
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Offline Jack Fulcher

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Re: Town moves against Islamic school ...cN YOU BELIEVE THAT?
« Reply #1 on: May 27, 2008, 07:58:27 PM »
Well, since it's apparently OK to paste news articles here, I'll contribute something I found noodling around the net.  It's the same subject - persecution of religion.  This one's in Nigeria, and I really have no way of knowing or vetting the accuracy of this report.  Does anyone know what's happening in this case?  Does this happen often, or is this a rare and isolated incident?  I suspect the latter, but all the same this seems very unlike the nice people I know from this board.  Where is Ningi?  Let me know if you know anything about this.  Thanks, Jack

NINGI, Nigeria, May 19 (Compass Direct News) – Islamists under the auspices of a paramilitary force last week destroyed six churches to protest a police rescue of two teenage Christian girls kidnapped by Muslims in this Bauchi state town. Police recovered the two Christian girls, Mary Chikwodi Okoye, 15, and Uche Edward, 14, on May 12 after Muslims in Ningi kidnapped them three weeks ago in an attempt to expand Islam by marrying them to Muslim men. Police took the two girls, who had been under foster care, to safety in southeastern Nigeria where their biological parents live. The kidnappers had taken the girls to Wudil town in Kano state. Following the rescue of the girls, Muslims under the Hisbah Command, a paramilitary arm of Kano state’s Sharia Commission, went on a rampage on Tuesday (May 13), attacking Christians and setting fire to the churches. Joseph Abdu, pastor of the Deeper Life church, told Compass that damages to his church property amounted to about 13 million naira (US$112,857) – and that his congregation had shrunk to 40 people from the 130 who attended before the attack. Muslims have kidnapped at least 13 Christian girls in the town, Christian sources said.



Offline Dan-Borno

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Re: Town moves against Islamic school ...cN YOU BELIEVE THAT?
« Reply #2 on: May 27, 2008, 09:24:44 PM »
Jack, you are supposed to start a fresh topic instead,
i dont think it will be fair to the initiator of the above
thread, may be when you transfer it as a new thread
you might likely get response, as i understand you dont
have knowledge of what is happening in Nigeria at all.

Pls start up a new thread.
"My mama always used to tell me: 'If you can't find somethin' to live for, you best find somethin' to die for" - Tupak

Offline sheriff 05

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Re: Town moves against Islamic school ...cN YOU BELIEVE THAT?
« Reply #3 on: May 27, 2008, 09:44:08 PM »
While I wasn't there in person (so therefore cannot fully attest), this report Jack is most likely not true and beats logic for a couple of reasons

1. The practice of kidnapping people's daughters and marrying them off are not practiced in Islam (and definately not northern Nigeria) at all, as an absolutely neccessary precondition for marriage is consent.

2. For all our ills as a country, the practice of freedom of expression and media reporting is very strong. 6 churches is a lot of buildings and not just a kiosk or a trailer or a caravan somewhere. If this was true it would surely have been reported by media houses in Nigeria (at least one!!).

3. I am facinated by the monumental church in Nigeria built for 130 people and costing 13 million Naira.

4. I also did a brief search and noticed that compass Direct News was the only place where the incident was reported (all other citations were secondary citations from Compass direct news). That either means they are by far the most prudent and caring news agency in the world, diligently concerned about reporting facts as and where it happens, or...... (do the math!!) (Muda's piece was quoted from the BBC and I took the pain of validating it).

Like all people, We the Muslims in Nigeria are not perfect. We do have our problems and we do commit wrong deeds which myself and other members in this forum have explicitly condemned on numerous occasions. However, on this article Jack, I fear we are wrongly accused.

If however it is proven that this incident did happen (which is highly unlikely), then like all true Muslims I will be the first to condemn it.

Muda, on the issue of the Islamic school, while it may seem odd, I believe that as much as the Australian Muslims felt they had a right to build the school in the first place, so also the people of the town have a right to say they dont want it. There is nothing wrong with either party in my view, afterall as citizens, they both have equal rights and in fairness they must both be listned to.. At the end of the day, it was all about numbers and what the majority of the people wanted. The overwelming said no, then no it is..... (until a time when they are made comfortable enough with the idea to say yes)..
« Last Edit: May 27, 2008, 10:16:15 PM by sheriff 05 »

Offline HUSNAA

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Re: Town moves against Islamic school ...cN YOU BELIEVE THAT?
« Reply #4 on: May 27, 2008, 10:17:19 PM »
This thing about Ningi, it did happen. But its not at all like the compass reported it. I dont know who these ppl behind the compass are, but they can never achieve their mischievous ends of stirring up xenophobia and hatred.
You will be surprised to hear that the girls wanted to voluntarily convert from being christians to being muslims. They were living with some ppl who were their guardians. Something or other happened between them and the guardians and I think they must have reported the matter to the emir of Ningi, who decided to give them his protection. Later on, the guardians came looking for the girls after the problem or what ever it was had cleared up. I believe the guardians are not muslims and there was a likelihood that they may not allow the girls to become muslims, so the girls were taken to Kano or somewhere. Those miscreant youths who went on a rampage were aware that the girls wanted to change from being christians to becoming muslims, but they didnt know anything of the turn of affairs whereby the legal guardians of the girls had come looking for them. What they thought was that the emir of Ningi was conniving to get the girls not to convert to Islam and so they decided to take matters into their own hands and actually burnt some parts of the emir's palace as well, which goes to show you that the matter wasnt against christians; it was the anger the youths felt towards the emir of the town not the christian community. They were wrong to take matters into their own hands of course, but at the same time, the compass was wrong to write such lies.

About Australia. Yeah! it doesnt make sense to try and build an Islamic sch where the muslims do not live. Its a recipe for trouble, given the general sentiment of uninformed/ ill informed westerners on Islam.  Period.
Ghafurallahi lana wa lakum

Offline sheriff 05

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Re: Town moves against Islamic school ...cN YOU BELIEVE THAT?
« Reply #5 on: May 27, 2008, 10:22:17 PM »
I graciously apologise, stand corrected and withdraw my ill informed sentiments... thank you Hajia Husna for clarifying ... this recklessness from our youth is stupid and most alarming...
« Last Edit: May 27, 2008, 10:27:22 PM by sheriff 05 »

Offline HUSNAA

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Re: Town moves against Islamic school ...cN YOU BELIEVE THAT?
« Reply #6 on: May 27, 2008, 10:24:56 PM »
Lord you have nothing to apologise for, but it was rather gracious of you to do so...
PS we all make mistakes.
Ghafurallahi lana wa lakum

Offline Jack Fulcher

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Re: Town moves against Islamic school ...cN YOU BELIEVE THAT?
« Reply #7 on: May 28, 2008, 12:01:14 AM »
Thank you for all your responses.  It was very late in Kano, and some of you were staying up and checking the board.  I appreciate it. 

I apologize, Dan-Borno.  I thought this was the same topic as the original post (oppression of one religion by another), but I see your point that its difference is not sufficient to justify its inclusion.  I will be better about this in the future.

As usual, Husnaa has done the heavy lifting for us and has shown us her great research skills.  I am glad to hear that this event was blown out of proportion by this "Compass Direct News" organization.  I went to their site and they apparently specialize in stories about Christians being oppressed by other religions; thus they tend to be biased.  There are still a few unanswered questions regarding what happened, in my mind at least:

1.  If these girls are 14 and 15 as the story says, how is it that they can just run away from home and not be returned to their families.  I know that different countries have different customs, but in the US children cannot just leave home until they turn 18.

2.  Were these girls going to marry Muslim men and become part of their families?  Is that right, especially at their ages?

3.  Is Sheriff right that Nigeria doesn't allow her daughters to be kidnapped or sold off for marriage?  I know that this is accepted custom in most Arab states - there was a recent case in Kuwait where the 10-year old (I think) ran away from the old man she had been sold to by her parents, and at least one Kuwaiti judge took her side.  And there were some Palestinian parents who were jailed for selling their 9-year olds into marriage.  They were arrested not for selling the kids, but because they were just too young.  I believe this happened the second half of last year.

4.  Were these girls being abused at home?  If so, there should be some sort of welfare agency to step in and act in their interests. 

5.  If not, we may just have a case of teenagers.  I don't know how many have raised teenagers, but they can be a real terror, believe me.  If my kids could have run off to the mayor of my town, they would have done so at least once a month.  I think they are just insane at that age - they hate everyone, especially their parents.  They're great friends now, but when they turned 13 the whole house was an insane asylum. 

In any event, it appears that this was a case of miscommunication.  I appreciate all the work you put into this research, Husnaa and Sheriff. 

As for the school in Australia, I'm torn on this issue.  My heart is with those who want to express themselves by having the school built.  Free speech is essential for those who want to create and develop their economies and societies.  I'm also somewhat sympathetic to those who want to retain their cultural heritage.  The article mentioned that the town had prevented the building of a McDonald's fast food restaurant.  This act is common in the US.  However, we have dozens of Mexican, Chinese, Thai, Japanese, and Somali restaurants.  There's even an Afghan restaurant near my house.  Some towns just don't like McDonald's restaurants - they cheapen their "look," I guess. 

A problem I've read about with Muslim immigrants in Europe is that they usually don't assimilate into the culture.  In California, Mexicans come accross the border (illegally) to work, and they learn the language and eventually become Americans.  At least their kids do.  I've also mentioned before here someone I work with who is from Lagos.  He's one of the top utility auditors in the country, in my opinion.  His kids are at Harvard and University of California at Berkeley.  They've fully assimilated.  But if someone wants to come here and work (and millions apparently do, whether it's legal or not), I'd say they should plan to assimilate - if they do we'll accept them (even if some of us squak about illegal immigration - they like to talk but we don't listen much). 

I know someone from Paris and she says that the Muslims there (mostly from Turkey, apparently) just stay by themselves, don't allow their kids to make friends with others, and sometimes kill their daughters if they are too friendly with the French boys.  As a result, according to this friend, they're not liked much by the French.  On the other hand, my experience is that the French really don't like many people, especially if they don't speak French. 

So I guess I'm still undecided on this.  Jack



Offline HUSNAA

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Re: Town moves against Islamic school ...cN YOU BELIEVE THAT?
« Reply #8 on: May 28, 2008, 05:24:54 AM »

As usual, Husnaa has done the heavy lifting for us and has shown us her great research skills. 

Jack, u are in danger of becoming oily... stop trying to be too palatable.. you will become bland. I didnt  research anything, I listened to the Beeb in Hausa, who broke the story and I think followed it up with the aftermath.

1.  If these girls are 14 and 15 as the story says, how is it that they can just run away from home and not be returned to their families.  I know that different countries have different customs, but in the US children cannot just leave home until they turn 18.

I think the kids had a misunderstanding with their guardians who are not their biological parents, and its probably that the real  primary issue is that they wanted to convert to Islam. That would be the premise under which the amir would have offered his protection to begin with, otherwise if it were any other social issue between them and their guardians, the girls may have gone to their local elders chiefs of their own communities.. not sure..  You must remember however, that many ppl live in poverty stricken conditions, and the 'modern' machinery to bring home recalcitrant delinquents is not properly in place in our societies and especially in a provincial community like Ningi, which is a small town in a backward state.

2.  Were these girls going to marry Muslim men and become part of their families?  Is that right, especially at their ages?

who knows?

3.  Is Sheriff right that Nigeria doesn't allow her daughters to be kidnapped or sold off for marriage?  I know that this is accepted custom in most Arab states - there was a recent case in Kuwait where the 10-year old (I think) ran away from the old man she had been sold to by her parents, and at least one Kuwaiti judge took her side.  And there were some Palestinian parents who were jailed for selling their 9-year olds into marriage.  They were arrested not for selling the kids, but because they were just too young.  I believe this happened the second half of last year.

He is absolutely correct.  Nigeria doesnt allow it, but it doesnt mean that ppl dont attempt it. The word kidnap is rather too strong or wrong in this context. Girls are not kidnapped in the classic sense of the word, but nevertheless marrying off a daughter at 9 or ten or 12 almost amounts to kidnap, because she is incarcerated in a marital house and her freedom of movement curtailed. These days it hardly happens because many men have come to regard marriage to economically dependent women as a liability. If it happens, its mostly in the rural communities.

Daughters are not sold off in marriage either, but some parents are not immune to letting money be the main objective for handing the daughter over to a man, maybe three times her age (especially if she is just turned a teenager) in marriage.
Remember one thing Jack, poverty makes ppl do many crazy things. There is a lot of child abuse which goes on in Nigeria and unfortunately it is on the rise.


4.  Were these girls being abused at home?  If so, there should be some sort of welfare agency to step in and act in their interests. 
Maybe.

5.  If not, we may just have a case of teenagers.  I don't know how many have raised teenagers, but they can be a real terror, believe me.  If my kids could have run off to the mayor of my town, they would have done so at least once a month.  I think they are just insane at that age - they hate everyone, especially their parents.  They're great friends now, but when they turned 13 the whole house was an insane asylum. 
The problem with kids in the west is that they are too disrespectful to their parents. Parents in the west have really lost their parenting skills. I cant imagine my daughter shouting abuses at me, or my son, lol na bulala soup hin go drink for that night!! ;D ;D.



As for the school in Australia, I'm torn on this issue.  My heart is with those who want to express themselves by having the school built.  Free speech is essential for those who want to create and develop their economies and societies.  I'm also somewhat sympathetic to those who want to retain their cultural heritage.  The article mentioned that the town had prevented the building of a McDonald's fast food restaurant.  This act is common in the US.  However, we have dozens of Mexican, Chinese, Thai, Japanese, and Somali restaurants.  There's even an Afghan restaurant near my house.  Some towns just don't like McDonald's restaurants - they cheapen their "look," I guess.   

I still think that given the fact that muslims are a minority in that community and that many do not live in Camden, they should really have bought the land in a place where they form a sizeable number to be able to put forward a valid point for having the Islamic school where they are. Its really a case of trying to live harmoniously. Look at it this way, even if the school were built, given the negative sentiments of the Camden residents, neither the pupils of the sch, nor their teachers would be comfortable in the hostile environment, and there is always the potential for violence to be visited on the muslims from the more radical elements of Camden, and the less radical elements arent going to do a thing about it, becos its their latent reactions being actualized by a 'brave' few.

A problem I've read about with Muslim immigrants in Europe is that they usually don't assimilate into the culture.  In California, Mexicans come accross the border (illegally) to work, and they learn the language and eventually become Americans.  At least their kids do.  I've also mentioned before here someone I work with who is from Lagos.  He's one of the top utility auditors in the country, in my opinion.  His kids are at Harvard and University of California at Berkeley.  They've fully assimilated.  But if someone wants to come here and work (and millions apparently do, whether it's legal or not), I'd say they should plan to assimilate - if they do we'll accept them (even if some of us squak about illegal immigration - they like to talk but we don't listen much).

My  major at University was geography, so I once did a course on urbanization and the social problems that come packaged with that. One of them is this problem of assimilation of immigrants. It seems that first generation immigrants never really assimilate into the community melting pot. The second generation are transitional and the third is completely brewed into the pot. However, it comes with accepting the norms and values of the host society. This kind of assimilation happened with Arab muslim  immigrants who settled in America. By the fourth generation, there were hardly any muslims left amongst them. Many of them only had their token Arabic names. The assimilation was so complete that the only muslims amongst them were the really old ppl. Many had married non muslims or converted because the Islamic doctrines had been neglected by the first settlers through negligence. That is the danger of assimilation for muslims. When ever I think of this, rightly or wrongly, ppl like Paula Abdul and Ralph Nader, come to my mind..... This danger has obviously been recognized by subsequent muslim immigrants.

What I have noticed is that no one ever complained before about the non assimilation of muslims into  mainstream society, until after 9/11. It will be rather hard for muslims to completely assimilate given that it means we will have to shed all our Islamic values which are non negotiable really. What we have to do is get ppl to understand us first, then learn to live with our values, rather than trying to get us to assimilate western values.
PS Islamic values do not include suicide bombing and terrorism. Those were Bush's Frankenstein's monsters. He evolved them. They were not there previously, and like Frankenstein's monster, they have become uncontrollable.
« Last Edit: May 28, 2008, 06:18:01 AM by HUSNAA »
Ghafurallahi lana wa lakum

Offline King

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Re: Town moves against Islamic school ...cN YOU BELIEVE THAT?
« Reply #9 on: May 28, 2008, 02:43:46 PM »
Yea Sheriff, how about trying not to stick your foot in your mouth next time? Eh?

Offline Jack Fulcher

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Re: Town moves against Islamic school ...cN YOU BELIEVE THAT?
« Reply #10 on: June 06, 2008, 05:07:55 AM »
Husnaa, I don't believe I've ever been accused of being "palatable" before.  Can I quote you when I'm accused of being insulting and disrepectful in the future?  I assure you, it's only a matter of time....

So how's this for non-oily?  I think you're full of beans.  Only on a few points, however.  For example, you blame poverty for the hideous conditions these kids find themselves in (e.g., having to marry some old guy when they turn13 or 14).  Poor people on this hemisphere don't do that sort of thing.  It sounds more due to the customs of your area.  Why does the law allow such things?  It's not enough to say that Shari'ah or your local imams say it's OK to sell the kids - to paraphrase what your mother told you, if your imam told you to jump off a bridge, would you do it?  Of course not.  I believe that you need to make decisions for yourselves, and if your neighbors are doing something wrong, you need to stop them.  I think I said before I asked a jewish acquaintance of mine why jews don't stone adulterers anymore, even though they say they're living under Mosaic Law.  She said that the jews just wouldn't stand for it.

Most of these old religions and customs were designed by men and thus things are set up to let the guys run the world.  That's one thing that feminism has done in the West - women have much more say about their lives than they do in other parts of the world.  So they work along side men and contribute their intelligence and skills to the society.  As an economist, I see this as using resources more efficiently than in places where women can't work, can't drive, must even eat in a different part of the restaurant.  I think this is one of the reasons Africa and the Middle East have lagged in their economic development.  You mention elsewhere in this board that you're reading a book by Bernard Lewis.  He also wrote "What Went Wrong?" which is about how the Persians and Ottomans were so advanced compared with the Europeans 500 years ago, but they've fallen so far behind.  I find the book very interesting and would like to discuss it with you if you have a chance to read it.

Anyway, my dear friend Husnaa, I hope I haven't been too palatable today.  I must run now, but if my job slows down a little this next week I hope to be able to write more.  Please take care everyone!  Jack

Offline HUSNAA

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Re: Town moves against Islamic school ...cN YOU BELIEVE THAT?
« Reply #11 on: June 06, 2008, 06:17:41 AM »
Husnaa, I don't believe I've ever been accused of being "palatable" before.  Can I quote you when I'm accused of being insulting and disrepectful in the future?  I assure you, it's only a matter of time....

So how's this for non-oily?  I think you're full of beans.  Only on a few points, however. 


Anyway, my dear friend Husnaa, I hope I haven't been too palatable today.  I must run now, but if my job slows down a little this next week I hope to be able to write more.  Please take care everyone!  Jack

Lol hahahaha.. No u were not palatable today.. you were agreeable   ;D..
 No on a serious note Jack, I said what I said because you really didnt sound sincere before, more often you were verging on being patronizing or trying to be too amenable as if u were trying to handle imbeciles.. that's the impression I got. Well being a little scornful when u feel it is deserved is also fine, cos it makes one feel u are genuine and bonafide.. like my friend KING. Unlikd my friend KING though... one should see where the borderline is drawn between academic debate and verbal fisticuffs.. ;D ;D ;D ;D

PS, seen one or two points in yr comments which I wuld like to pursue but not now.. I'm on a very tight time leash, so maybe some other time in the distant future.....
« Last Edit: June 06, 2008, 06:21:26 AM by HUSNAA »
Ghafurallahi lana wa lakum

Offline Jack Fulcher

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Re: Town moves against Islamic school ...cN YOU BELIEVE THAT?
« Reply #12 on: June 09, 2008, 11:46:58 PM »
Lol hahahaha.. No u were not palatable today.. you were agreeable   ;D..
 No on a serious note Jack, I said what I said because you really didnt sound sincere before, more often you were verging on being patronizing or trying to be too amenable as if u were trying to handle imbeciles.. that's the impression I got. Well being a little scornful when u feel it is deserved is also fine, cos it makes one feel u are genuine and bonafide.. like my friend KING. Unlikd my friend KING though... one should see where the borderline is drawn between academic debate and verbal fisticuffs.. ;D ;D ;D ;D

PS, seen one or two points in yr comments which I wuld like to pursue but not now.. I'm on a very tight time leash, so maybe some other time in the distant future.....

OK, I think I'm hearing you, Husnaa:  More scorn and less palatable.  I can do that.  In fact, my employees agree with you when you say I talk like I'm talking to imbeciles - they think I'm doing the same to them.  I'll have to work on my tone, I guess.  I hate being a boss - I'd just rather do the work and go home.  Telling someone else what to do just goes against my grain. 
 
However, Dave has gone so far as to say that "Americans think everyone else is stupid."  I think Dave is just parroting the standard European line that the Americans exploit them and they're just a bunch of victims.  Boo hoo.  Back in the 1950s they called it the Brain Drain, where we hired their best and brightest to work in our universities and research institutions.  This is nonsense - not that we didn't hire their best, but that it was exploiting them.  This is what markets do - they make sure that resources go to be used where they are most productive.  This produces more for everyone - what are you looking at right now?  This was technology developed by the countries who were willing to pay for it - the US, Britain, and other northern European countries.  If you had someone who was good at electronics or software, chances are we hired them to build this stuff.  We have Indians and Chinese people all over our universities and hospitals.  I work with a man from Lagos, and I consider him one of the best utility auditors in California.  His sons are going to Berkeley and are going to be doctors and researchers.  It's unlikely they'll return to Nigeria, however, and this is a shame.  If your society were to put more resources into the university and basic research, you'd retain more of your intelligent kids to work on your local problems.

So Americans don't think they're smarter than the rest of the world - we each have a co-worker or doctor from another country who shows us how smart they are.  If we have an advantage, maybe we work harder and longer than most.  Also we are diverse and draw from many different cultures.  This makes us stronger.  We encourage dissent from the people, which makes us more creative.  I'm convinced that the Enlightenment started this process, and that cultures that do not adopt the lessons of the Enlightenment are at a strong disadvantage.  You can look at the culture of Israel versus the culture of Iran and see the difference - Israel is a technologically strong and growing economy, while nothing has been invented in Iran in years.  They are stagnant.  No matter what you think of Israel as a country, as an economy you must admit it's much stronger than those around it.  Even Saudi Arabia is a weak and vulnerable economy when you consider that it's almost all based on oil, and that when we have the breakthroughs in alternate energy we're working on, their free money they get every year will start to dry up.  Notice that keeping the price of oil up is a bad strategy for SA because it gives us an incentive to develop these alternative sources.

Well must go.  Keep up the great comments, Husnaa.  And have a good week all.  Jack

Offline Fateez

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Re: Town moves against Islamic school ...cN YOU BELIEVE THAT?
« Reply #13 on: June 10, 2008, 01:45:17 PM »


HEhe, seems like it's Camden, Camden, Camden everywhere! Anyway, there's this really

funny TV show I watch called Salam Cafe. Kind of a tongue-in-cheek look at the funny side

of life as an Aussie Muslim. Episode 5 discusses the Camden Muslim School story in detail...

enjoy....it's really funny :)

http://www.sbs.com.au/salamcafe/

"Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.”    ~ Mark Twain


Offline Fateez

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Re: Town moves against Islamic school ...cN YOU BELIEVE THAT?
« Reply #14 on: June 10, 2008, 04:53:33 PM »


I have another one.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SeQPAJt6caU

A 4 min short Youtube clip from a character from the show Uncle Sam.

He goes to Camden to hear what the residents have to say. It's hilarious!
"Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.”    ~ Mark Twain


 


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