Tensions & Applications (Tolerance)

Tolerance and fundamentalism, offence, Muslims traditionalists, freedom of thought.

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fundamentalism: militantly conservative religious movement, strict conformity to sacred texts. -label usually pejorative. -just people outraged at western political, economic, cultural domination

belief systems: uncritical devotion.

tension towards autonomy & self-determination. people intolerant, oppose society based on alternative/neutral principles of good life.

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failed attempt car bombs -David Cameron wants ban 'Islamist' group -Hisb ut-Tahrir -gaining power politically.

journalist -John Hari thinks they're middle-class professionals want impose shariah law over planet

Secular political liberalism (J.S. Mill) ---tension--- Traditional Muslim

Hari 'any organisation that plans imminent violence in Britain should of course be outlawed' only reason stop free speech (like Mill) if want to kill

best way -act on liberal values by destroying them in argument.

-may look 'Islamaphobic' or they can't see liberal views of free expression, argument as tolerable or effective.

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Causing offence

  • publication cartoons -Prophet Mohamed, Danish Jyllands Posten, Sept 05.
  • Danish gov. refuse apology -doesn't control media, free speech
  • Muslims outraged, protests Oct 05-Feb 06
  • cartoons +story in European papers
  • UK didn't republish cartoons -Guardian explains why:

''we believe now as then that it was our right to do so (publish the cartoons) but not our duty to cause gratuitous offence...Muslims refected Voltaire's maxim: ' i disagreee with what you say but will defend to the death your right to say it'...Freedom of expression is vital. It is not part of a global 'crusade' against Islam''
-common sense not to offend

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on the other hand..(Munira Mirza)

Munira Mirza -UK media response 'special sensitivity' because about Islam.

respect for diversity (or avoiding offence) ---conflicts--- freedom of thought (needs protection in free society).

'media outlet have very little problem satirising Christianity. Muslims treated as special group, worthy of more protection because of their apparent victim status...press freedom is the foundation of a free society..Many Muslims want same freedoms as everyone else to debate, critisise and challeng their religion'M. Mirza feb 06

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Waldron- tolerance isn't not critisising

Waldon 'mutual respect cannot possibly require us to refrain from criticism' but be 'serious, earnest +respectful'.

Salman Rushdie is wrong 'spun fantasies, told ribald jokes, used obscene language, mocked the sacred' -disrespectful

'what is serious and what is offensive, what is sober and what is mockery -these are not neutral ideas..free expression can't do its work if it remained psychologically innocuos' -Waldron

'peoples mus leave on another to address the deep questions of religion and philosphey..great themes of religion matter too much to be closedted by the sensitivity.. there is no other way we can live together and respect each other's grappling with life' -Waldron

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