Rushdie has written a very interesting op-ed arguing that Islamic “traditionalists” are hindering the fight against Islamic jihadists. What is needed, he thinks, is a Reformation. Commenting on it is tricky: the outcome of this debate within Islam is obviously very important, but it is, perhaps, impertinent for a non-Muslim to weigh in. I would certainly be delighted if Rushdie’s project were successful. Still, it does seem as though Rushdie’s hoped-for Islamic “reformation” is not analogous to the Protestant Reformation so much as it is to a process of change among Christians that started before the Reformation and, more importantly, is still continuing. Consider Rushdie’s critique of the traditionalists: “Traditional Islam is a broad church that certainly includes millions of tolerant, civilized men and women but also encompasses many whose views on women’s rights are antediluvian, who think of homosexuality as ungodly, who have little time for real freedom of expression, who routinely express anti-Semitic views. . .” If those are your concerns, then what you need isn’t an Islamic Martin Luther. It’s more like an Islamic National Council of Churches. How realistic is it to expect this sort of change any time soon? How many Reformationists are there, anyway? (I suspect they punch above their weight in the media.) Isn’t there a risk that if “traditionalists” are led to believe that they face a choice between this type of “Reformation” and jihad, a not insignificant number of them will choose jihad? I wish the Reformationists luck, but it’s hard to believe that they’re where our real hope lies.
Every now and then the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals — arguably the nation’s most progressive federal circuit — can offer up a legal surprise. Yesterday, it gave us a legal shock, when a divided panel of its judges affirmed last year’s federal district-court injunction temporarily blocking enforcement of ... Read More
EDITOR’S NOTE: The following is Jonah Goldberg’s weekly “news”letter, the G-File. Subscribe here to get the G-File delivered to your inbox on Fridays. Dear Reader (But not Allegra Budenmayer, may she rot in Hell), Some of you may recall that my favorite essay by the late Tom Wolfe is “The Great ... Read More
President Trump did get one thing right on Monday in Helsinki: Vladimir Putin did make an “incredible offer.” The two leaders had discussed the dozen Russian intelligence officers indicted by Special Counsel Robert Mueller just three days earlier. As we’ve related, the indictment reveals nothing of ... Read More
‘Democracy demands that we’re able to also get inside the reality of people who are different than us, so we can understand their point of view. Maybe we can change their minds, maybe they’ll change ours.” That was Barack Obama speaking in South Africa on the 100th anniversary of Nelson Mandela’s ... Read More
Denzel Washington’s The Equalizer 2, a pointlessly violent sequel to his pointlessly brutal 2014 box-office success, confirms the pointlessly dangerous black-male stereotype that sells. He portrays Robert McCall, a former CIA agent who comes out of seclusion to act as policeman of the world-killing foes at home ... Read More