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Something that caught my eye today whilst surfing:-

Most mosques in the Western world pose no threat to non-Muslim citizens; but a few do pose such a danger, because of the hatred that is preached in them. In such cases police forces generally have the legal armoury they need to step in and make arrests if necessary.

Quashing extremism will surely be easier in an atmosphere where the founding and running of mosques is an open, transparent business. As Nicolas Sarkozy, the French president, once said: It is not minarets which are dangerous; it is basements and garages which hide secret places of worship.

Will someone please tell the Swiss? Politicians from two of the biggest political parties are seeking to insert a sentence into the country’s constitution forbidding the building of minarets.

Measures of this sort exemplify the bigotry that lies behind much of the opposition to mosque building in Europe. Christians in the West have long complained about how hard it is for their brethren in Muslim lands to build churches. Fair enough. But they should practise what they preach.

Mosques in the West | Islam, the American way | Economist.com

I’d never though about this before.

It puts the building program that Maula has carried out in the Western world in perspective, explaining why its still much harder in Western Europe, where progress has been, and continues to be, difficult, compared to the USA where the difficulties have proven easier to surmount.

Generally it seems Protestants are more forgiving of strangers in their midst compared to Catholics. Common Law countries also seem more welcoming than civil law countries. Is any of this causation as opposed to mere correlation? Not a clue.

It’s curious though.

EDIT : Zed has rightly pointed out that I should have used the word masjid in the title of this post, which is the proper Arabic word for mosque in the bohra community as well as in the broader Islamic world. I’ve decided to leave this post unchanged for the moment, and am writing a post on how we use words symbolically as well as for their meaning to give this observation and its implications proper thought.

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