Sunday, September 21, 2008

Of Mice and (Muslim Clerical) Men: Kill Micky

Sharia Law says: Micky Mouse must die?

Any religion can be taken to absurdity, but Islam seems to have more than it's fair share of absurd clerics.

Islamic scholar: Mickey Mouse must die
On Aug 27 Sheikh Muhammad Al-Munajid told viewers of a religious affairs programme that mice were agents of Satan and that Sharia law called for the extermination of all mice: from the common house mouse (Mus musculus) to cartoon mouse (Mickey Mouse).

A former diplomat attached to the Islamic Affairs Department at the Saudi embassy Washington, al-Munajid appears regularly on Saudi television to discuss religious and ethical topics.

On Aug 10 he denounced the Beijing Olympics as the “bikini Olympics,” saying the immodest dress of women athletes was “satanic” and earlier issued a fatwa, or religious edict, against women’s participation in the Olympics as the games were also “satanic”. [...]

To be fair, I have heard of extremist Christians also complaining of "satanic" Disney cartoon characters. But they don't issue fatwas, and they are a small minority and nobody takes them very seriously. I wish I could say the same about some of these Islamic clerics. Many have "issues" about fun.

[...] According to a translation of the broadcast prepared by the Middle East Media Research Institute, al-Munajid was asked to state the Islamic legal teaching on mice. He responded that mice were called “little corrupters” in Sharia and it was permissible to kill them at all times.

“The mouse is one of Satan's soldiers and is steered by him,” he explained, adding that should a mouse come in contact with food, the food must be disposed of as the mouse is an impure creature.

“According to Islamic law, the mouse is a repulsive, corrupting creature,” al-Munajid said, adding that he was concerned that popular culture had given mice an undeserved positive image.

“How do you think children view mice today – after Tom and Jerry?” he asked.

“Even creatures that are repulsive by nature, by logic, and according to Islamic law have become wonderful and are loved by children. Even mice. Mickey Mouse has become an awesome character, even though according to Islamic law, Mickey Mouse should be killed in all cases.”

Don't get me wrong; I'm all for killing vermin. I live on a farm, and I kill vermin. One doesn't have to be Muslim or even religious to understand that vermin carry diseases and need kill'n. It's just that in a modern, enlightened culture, people generally understand that one can make distinctions between disease carrying vermin, domestic pets, laboratory animals, and cartoon characters. Mice can be each of these, yet each is distinctly different, and not hard to understand. But if you are slavishly devoted to rigidly interpreting a book according to 7th century standards, in a completely literal and narrow context, you are going to cause a lot of problems in the 21st century. Like having to kill everyone and everything that disagrees with your interpretation of your 7th century religion.

The truth can always hold up to scrutiny. The Islamic world could benefit greatly by scrutinizing many of their long-held beliefs. In this regard, I think there are some reasons to be hopeful. The 21st century beckons us all. I think we can all get there in one piece, and live in peace, if we don't become unduly overly-concerned with things like rodents in all their many manifestations. Or women in sports. Or short pants on soccer players.

As for this particular cleric, I have to agree with George Handlery at the Brussels Journal:

Duly Noted: Mickey Mouse Must Die
[...] There must be a shortage of Christians, Jews, Hindus, Animists and Buddhists to kill. When will the Religion of Peace go after Donald D.?

Here is a video of the cleric who feels threatened by Micky Mouse:

Saudi Cleric Muhammad Al-Munajid: Mickey Mouse Must Die!

Related Links:

Is Islam compatible with a free society?

Hamas Micky Mouse becomes Martyr on TV
(apparently mice are good when they die for Jihad)

Omar Sharif and other Arabs in a changing world


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