Arabs need a US-like First Amendment

Arabs need a US-like First Amendment

Posted in the Islam Forum

Since: Oct 06

Location hidden

#1 Jul 4, 2013
http://jordantimes.com/arabs-need-a-us-like-f...

'I thought I would use my column, which appears on US Independence Day, to celebrate one of America’s most valued contribution to the world: the First Amendment.

Here is the exact text of the amendment adopted in 1791 as part of 10 amendments that make up the US Bill of Rights:“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.”

At a time when religion is clearly the biggest obstacle to progress in the Arab world, it would be great to have a First Amendment-like clause in all Arab constitutions.

The failed first year of Muslim Brotherhood presidency in Egypt, the failure of Hamas Islamists in Gaza and the sectarianism rocking Syria, Iraq and Bahrain, to name a few Arab countries, are enough to make one dream of a governance structure in the Arab world that is not based on or involves religion or takes sides in a religious sectarian conflict.

The First Amendment of the US Constitution is also a great source of inspiration and support for freedom of expression, freedom of the press and the right of people to hold peaceful protests.

Denying the legislature the chance to pass media-restrictive laws would go a long way in planting permanently the seeds of the right to freedom guaranteed in the 19th article of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which states that everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; the right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media regardless of frontiers”.

Since: Apr 12

Location hidden

#2 Jul 4, 2013
There'll probably be hope when Arab governments start believing they can afford those wonderful "free" stuff.

Since: Oct 06

Location hidden

#3 Jul 4, 2013
Rusty Tin Can wrote:
There'll probably be hope when Arab governments start believing they can afford those wonderful "free" stuff.
Well then that won't be happening anytime soon...
Faith

New Baltimore, MI

#4 Jul 4, 2013
Interesting. The only stumbling block I can foresee is that bit about beheading people for things like "blasphemy", "apostasy ...witchcraft..

Let's face it. Some "cultures" can't handle freedom....I'm thinking specifically of muslims.

Since: Oct 06

Location hidden

#5 Jul 4, 2013
Faith wrote:
Interesting. The only stumbling block I can foresee is that bit about beheading people for things like "blasphemy", "apostasy ...witchcraft..
Let's face it. Some "cultures" can't handle freedom....I'm thinking specifically of muslims.
A Muslim wrote the article and seems to understand that islam would be out of the picture. He's probably considered a traitor by the muslims who post here though.

Since: Dec 07

Location hidden

#6 Jul 4, 2013
The muslims aren't going to let go of their bloodthirst. Not even to benefit their own children. They hate non muslims more than they care about the world they are leaving for their offspring.

“Tell it as it is.”

Since: Jun 12

Australia

#7 Jul 5, 2013
Ravenclaw wrote:
The muslims aren't going to let go of their bloodthirst. Not even to benefit their own children. They hate non muslims more than they care about the world they are leaving for their offspring.
Not all are like that. Many, if not most in the Arabic nations are. They don't even know there is an alternative, and have had it bred it into them for generations.
Those who have been exposed to alternatives are kept in by threats, peer pressure and habit. Shown how and given the opportunity they may walk away from it.

Since: Apr 12

Location hidden

#8 Jul 5, 2013
Trisha wrote:
Well then that won't be happening anytime soon...
How inconvenient would it be for the rulers if people were allowed to speak freely? It was brilliant and unselfish for the makers of the constitution to realize the importance of it to put it down to restrict their own power.

Like old china, muslim culture is too rigid with legalism. Don't this and don't that... and it reflects the religion of Islam, in which the much teachings are "negative" rather than the positive in nature (such as Love thy neighbors - in Islam is more like "love not the unbelievers" - the one "positive" command I can think of is something like "kill the unbelievers stuff") Old chinese cultures also place much limitation on freedom of speech, and children questioning parents would be treated harshly in many cases, and that became the "norm". My own family history has some stories like this, so do most my grandparent's friends - when "authorities" speak, you better not question.

Legalism in religions does not go well with my experience, ultra legalistic societies fails because they rely on laws rather than acts of love for the people. "Laws can't change hearts, only Love can" - and that is one thing in my belief system that has enormous experiential relevance.

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