The ECHR’s ruling on defaming Mohammed is bad news for Muslims

The ECHR’s ruling on defaming Mohammed is bad news for Muslims, by Qanta Ahmed.

In a monumental irony, the ECHR’s agreement with an Austrian court that offensive comments about the Prophet Mohammed were ‘beyond the permissible limits of an objective debate’ has handed a big victory to both Islamists and Islamophobes — while infantilising believing Muslims everywhere. …

As a practising Muslim, I find this notion — that the Prophet was a paedophile — to be as abhorrent and nasty as they come; not to mention completely false. Yet I could not disagree more with the ECHR’s ruling. …

Muslims are perfectly capable of addressing the applicant’s claims directly. If I were to be confronted with these views, I would simply explain that biographies of Aisha (the Prophet’s final wife) were not known until 150 years after her death; that scholars believe Aisha may have been as old as 16 at the time of marriage; that puberty was typically regarded as the onset of adulthood in seventh-century Arabia (while this may be incompatible with our modern worldview it is worth remembering that the Holy Virgin Mary would have likely been in her early teens when giving birth to Jesus); and that the Quran itself invalidates marriage if not between two consenting adults (thus making the idea that the Prophet married a child literally impossible). …

Ultimately, the ECHR’s logic rests on a depressing assumption that Europe’s Muslims are somehow incapable of intellectual debate and too fragile to hear criticisms of their religion. Yet this scrutiny is crucial for exposing Islamism — the totalitarian imposter of Islam — and countering its evils.

The western political class are treating Muslims as mascots, with pretend rights that ultimately prevent them from becoming real citizens on the same basis as everybody else. They say they are protecting the mascots, but really they are protecting themselves from criticism.  It’s similar with several other protected classes — everyone other than straight white men, really. Shortsighted and foolish, but on par for our ruling class.

hat-tip Stephen Neil