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Taliban Cretins and Other Ultra-patriarchal Imbeciles


Laws, rules and regulations aside: what's with these Taliban guys? Are they worried they have so little control of themselves that if they saw a woman walking down the street with her ankles (let alone her knees!) showing, they'd all immediately scamper down the street after her like a pack of dogs, attempting on all fours to sniff her ass?

Is it mass priapism? Sexual arousal without end that can't risk even the slightest intimation of female sexuality, lest dire consequences follow?

Or, more seriously, is it that all their laws, rules and regulations governing women are one more, in this case in extremis example of insecure men fashioning a system to exert control over women? A system that purports to be divinely based, and therefore impossible to challenge. And, therefore, a system which can mandate death to any who oppose it.

Be assured, this is not an attack on the religion of Islam. Islam contains many beautiful elements.

But let's face it, none of the world's major religions can be seen as the be-all and end-all of morality. As far as I know, not one of them unequivocally states that human slavery is wrong and therefore forbidden. When written down long ago, the moral rules established in these religions may have been advances over the moral rules then extant. But at least in certain areas, the average human consciousness has gone way beyond holy scriptures-based morality.

Similarly, certain rules, regulations, or "laws" of these religions may also have become outmoded. Such would be the case were Islam to really mandate the Taliban-like strictures on women.

But since the Taliban interpretation of Islam is not accepted by the vast majority of the world's Muslims, it seems fair to say that the Taliban are distorting, not upholding, the essentials of Islam.

So what? Can't people establish whatever religious rules and rituals they want?

Sure, up to a point. If someone said that the only way to find God is to stand on one's head eating strawberries while someone places radishes between your toes, fine. Let them do it to their heart's content.

Who are we to say that even the most outlandish rule or ritual is not the true course to divine knowledge? All such rules and rituals, and the persons following or performing them, should be accorded the utmost respect and deference.

But a forbidden point is crossed when either of two things occurs:

First, even a benign rule that in itself does no harm is wrong when another is forced to observe it. So it's not, in itself, terribly harmful to have a requirement that men not shave and grow beards. But it's wrong to force all men to grow beards.

If you want to have a society which mandates observance of a set of religious laws, then go somewhere with your followers and set up such a society. But don't impose such a system on others for whom these religious laws are nothing more than dictatorial fiats.

Second, and more seriously, is when the religious rules are inherently harmful to those upon whom they are applied. In other words, does that rule or law inherently require the denial of the fundamental human rights of a person?

Such would be the case with forbidding women to go to school or to work. Besides crushing the aspirations of half of humanity, serious physical harm occurs. For example, at one point,  the Taliban system forbid male doctors to treat female patients, and made it extremely difficult for female doctors to work, or for their patients to see them. So the vast majority of women were left without any medical care!

Even were a woman to voluntarily submit to such a system, it's inherently harmful in its effect on children, especially girls, raised to believe in the validity of their having such a severely curtailed role in life.

Could a God who is our Father really want half his children to cause the other half to suffer so terribly?

And any discussion of the Taliban dictatorship would be incomplete without mentioning who is most to blame for the plight of Afghanis subject to the Taliban yoke: none other than the United States. The Taliban, along with other mujahideen, received indispensable weapons, training and other wherewithal from the U.S. government in order to allow the Taliban to fight against, and ultimately kick out, Soviet forces which were occupying Afghanistan at the time.

No rational person would hold any brief for life under Soviet occupation. Yet had the Taliban never fought, Afghanistan would have become free of Soviet control when the Soviet Union collapsed. No one can be sure of what would have happened in Afghanistan at that point, but it's hard to imagine that the result would have been worse than the current Taliban dictatorship.


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