It is always amusing when Hollywood air heads who thinks his celebrity status make him an expert on everything gets torn to sheds by people who actually know what they are talking about. Latest example was when Ben Affleck, winner of several worst actor awards, a man who in real life is more vacuous that the people he plays, and New York Times columnist Nickolas Kristof started to berate ‘the right’ for their ‘bigoted Islamophobia’.
News anchor Bill Maher (a man not noted for his love of the USA’s religious right) and writer Sam Harris another left leaning journalist jumped all over Affleck and Kristof’s politically correct hypocrisy.
Harris argued, “liberals have really failed on the topic of theocracy, they’ll criticize white theocracy, they’ll criticize Christians, they’ll still get agitated over the abortion clinic bombing that happened in 1984, but when you want to talk about the treatment of women and homosexuals and free thinkers and religious minorities in the Muslim world, I would argue that liberals have failed us.
He added “the crucial point of confusion is that we have been sold this meme of Islamophobia where every criticism of the doctrine of Islam gets conflated with bigotry toward Muslims as people, that’s intellectually ridiculous.
Affleck then jumped in and accused Harris of denying the existence of Islamophobia (if Harris had denied the existence of Islamophobia, which he didn’t, he would have been right, it’s a made up word for a made up prejudice;) and accused Maher and Harris of being racist, arguing that their comments on Islam were the equivalent of calling someone a “shifty Jew.
Affleck did not need to be accused of having more testicles than brain cells, his idiotic outburst was effectively a confession.
Harris countered by saying that bad ideas should be criticized, and that “Islam, at the moment, is the motherload of bad ideas.
Kristof argued that Maher and Harris were giving an “incomplete picture of Islam and pointed to Muslims who have fought against extremism. Harris responded by pointing to polling data on the beliefs of Western Muslims, and argued people have been “misled to think that the fundamentalists are the fringe.
Against the argument that moderate Muslims do not receive enough coverage, Maher responded that this is because Islam is the “only religion that acts like the Mafia that will f*cking kill you if you say the wrong thing, draw the wrong picture, or write the wrong book. There’s a reason why Ayaan Hirsi Ali needs bodyguards 24/7.
After Affleck accused Maher and Harris of taking a similar mentality to those who stereotype people based on race, Maher responded “I can show you a Pew polls of Egyptians, they are not outliers in the Muslim world, that [says] 90% of them believe death is the appropriate response to leaving the religion. If 90% of Brazilians thought that death was the appropriate response to leaving Catholicism, you would think it was a bigger deal.
Kristoff then argued that Maher’s and Harris’ rhetoric “does have the tinge a little bit of the way white racists talk about African-Americans, to which Maher stated “what you’re saying is because they’re a minority, we shouldn’t criticize.’
The most reassuring thing about this exchange is it shows the left are turning on each other. As holy wars rage in the middle ease are we in the west about to be treated to holier-than-thou wars from the left?