Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Dean Esmay

Robert Spencer and Dean Esmay are having a bit of a debate. I only just found out about Esmay's site recently from Murdoc Online, but I've been a long time reader of Jihad Watch. There- that's my bias exposed up front.

Spencer fisked an article Esmay wrote- Esmay got a bit peeved and called Spencer a traitor (although his reasoning for such seems to be a little thin shall we say). Spencer then contacted Esmay and invited him to a public debate. One of the points he made is this-

"Please provide an Islamic refutation of them sufficient to convince violent jihadists today to lay down their arms."

This is, of course, perfectly reasonable- if there is no way to refute the jihadis then surely that means that they are right, and Islam does justify what they are doing? If there is no Islamic refutation of what the jiadis are doing then the reformers can never win- the jihadis will continue to use their Islamic justification for acts of terror and they will have the writings of the Koran, etc to back up their worldview. If, on the other hand, they really are "misunderstanders" of the religion of peace, then surely such a refutation will be easily provided? Sounds reasonable to me, or am I being unreasonable?

Esmay went to to snidely add- "I don't think you believe that anyone can provide this, any more than you can provide sufficient Christian or biblical scriptural references to persuade the Lord's Resistance Army or the Christian Identity movement to give up their hatreds or their radicalism."

Well, actually that's very simple to do. It's Exodus, Chapter 20, verse 13- Thou shalt not kill.

That refutes pretty much everything that the Lord's Resistance Army stands for. Not that the LRA is a Christian group- they are a cult based around a self-professed spirit medium who fasts during Ramadan and who won't eat pork. Oh, and he creates new commandments- number 11 is thou shalt not ride bicycles. I'm not quite clear what Joseph Kony has against bicycles but his punishment for riding one is to cut off your feet. If he quotes Bible verse to justify his horrendous activities, I'd sure like to hear it. The same quote by the way also applies to the Christian Identity Movement (of whom I was completely unaware until today). They believe that their violence is justified if it is aimed against sinners (abortionists, prostitutes, etc). Once more- Thou shalt not kill. There are no ifs or buts there. It's a simple and straightforward commandment.

Esmay goes on to prove that his knowledge of some areas is certainly limited-

"The Lord's Resistance Army, the IRA, the KKK, the Christian Identity movement, and so on and so forth all can quote scripture to their purposes, Robert. What of it?"

The IRA quote Bible verse to justify their actions? I'm astonished by the colossal, staggering ignorance of that statement. The IRA may come from the Roman Catholic community but they are not a religious terrorist group- they are a political one, with a very clear political aim; a united Ireland. Trust me, most of these people wouldn't know a Bible if you threw one in their face. For Esmay to claim that thay are some sort of Christian terrorist group is the most ridiculous thing that I've heard in a very long time indeed. He obviously has no clue whatsoever about this part of what he says.

I'll leave the rest of it up to Mr. Spencer- I'm certainly interested to see just what he has to say on the matter.

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