Friday, March 31, 2006

What's Wrong with Beliefnet? is a popular website that focuses on the world's major religions and one that offers a spiritual alternative to its readers. I am not a great fan of their methods and I find that some of the writers who contribute to the columns on Islam are a bit too apologetic for my taste. Having said that,I must credit them with generally taking a balanced approach to Islam. They tend to steer clear of controversy, though they have featured people like Asra Nomani in the past.

I was therefore truly dismayed that they have now chosen to feature the blog of Kathy Shaidle on their website. Kathy was, until now, a Canada based blogger little known outside of the Catholic blogosphere. Her blog is named "Relapsed Catholic" and chiefly consists of large doses of venom directed against Muslims and Islam in general. She panders to that extreme minority that believes that Islam is the root of all evil. In short, a pest best ignored. But by affording this Islamophobe the chance to spread her vitriol, Beliefnet has greatly erred. She has now access to a large readership with little in the way of balance in opinion.The simply brilliant Antonia Zerbisias says it better than I ever can:

In issuing their fatwa on the Muslims who are calling for the heads of people whose mightiest weapon is the pen, the North American pyjamahadeen have gone too far, using the incident as another reason to bash Muslims and sow further divisions between what are already "clashing civilizations."

It's like they have been waiting for just this opportunity.

Case in point: Toronto-based blogger Kathy Shaidle (a.k.a. Relapsed Catholic) whose religious politics would have easily qualified her as chief judge and bonfire builder during the Spanish Inquisition. The woman never misses an opportunity to insult Islam. And so, it was hardly surprising that, not only did she publish the offending cartoons, she giddily took up the torch and ran with it.

On Sunday she posted a Tom McMahon cartoon claiming that when it comes to skyscrapers Muslims "destroy" them, and when it comes to cartoons Muslims "riot about them" — as if this applies to every single Muslim every single minute.

Why she doesn't call her blog the Daily Auto Da Fe — for the public burning of heretics in Spain — is beyond me.

The cartoon uproar has merely added fuel to her fire, one she and others of her ilk had been hoping for ever since the calls for Muslim blood over the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001 calmed down.

I have written to Beliefnet and have expressed my outrage in strong terms. I believe that if enough of us make our displeasure known, there is a strong possibility that she may get the pink slip. For a website that prides itself on a non partisan approach, Beliefnet has really messed up. Let us help them make amends.

(editor's note: Haters take note. We allow your comments to be posted here (with some exception; we do not allow profanity, harassment, and some other things. All commenting is at our discretion and we reserve the right to edit or delete). Kathy Shaidle, on the other hand, doesn't allow commenting on her blog, while she does cyber-pound on the head of anyone who dares disagree with her. And sends out her attack poodles to boot. WWJD, anyway? Thanks for pointing more readers our way, Kathy.)


Blogger Chief Troll said...

Kathy Shaidle is a breathe of fresh air at Beliefnet. These are difficult times and hard questions need to be asked. She is critical to offsetting the moonbat views that are all too common to that site.

1:01 PM  
Blogger Chief Troll said...

Oh and by the way, Ms. Shaidle is in fact a popular and well regarded elder statesman of the blogosphere. The vast majority of her readership is in fact US based. Her articles have appeared in such publictations as the Dallas Morning News- George Bush' favourite I must add.

1:09 PM  
Blogger Bubbles the Terrible said...

Verily, thou art shitting me.

"...a little known blogger..."

Have you always been this out of touch with your surroundings?

Islamophobe? Another meaningless neologism standing in for reason and sanity. Who's afraid of Islam? Nobody. Now, who's afraid of "thin-skinned, foaming, bronze-age fanatics?" Well, that's something else entirely isn't it.

It does not escape the attention of others, at least those others who have an attention span (which necessarily disqualifies that lumbering troll Zerbisias), that when Muslims murdered close to 3,000 people in the name of their prophet, scarcely any protest ensued. Scarce I say, other than spontaneous demonstrations of joy at the death of others. (witness what your culture rejoices in - your culture is your fate) But when someone draws a cartoon that offends? People died, and cities burned.

How is it that the entire Muslim culture regards murdering 3,000 people as trivial, while losing their f****** minds over cartoons?

I suppose it's progress that you're writing about your distress instead of killing someone. But please, call us when you figure out that protesting someone telling the truth doesn't make it less true, it just confirms your own provincial blindness and capitulation to academic fashion.

4:33 PM  
Blogger BillyHW said...

What's wrong with Islamophobia?

5:00 PM  
Blogger Janjan said...

I'm afraid of Islam, so I suppose I am an Islamaphobe. I think it's healthy to be wary of a religion whichallows for the beating of wives, etc.

5:23 PM  
Blogger M. Alexander said...

"Toronto-based blogger Kathy Shaidle (a.k.a. Relapsed Catholic) whose religious politics would have easily qualified her as chief judge and bonfire builder during the Spanish Inquisition."

High praise indeed. I confess, I am a bit jealous.

Keep reading Kathy Shaidle and you may actually learn something.

9:53 PM  
Blogger ajsuhail said...

Looks like we have some visitors form the right wing blogosphere. Good; they may actually learn something.

3:05 PM  
Blogger ajsuhail said...

Looks like this article has really upset Kathy.Apart from calling me a twerp and making fun of the way I write, she is outraged that she was called a little known blogger.The fact is she is little known outside her circle of admirers who hold the same right wing, Islamophobic and bigoted views.

3:12 PM  
Blogger DrMaxtor said...

Well AJ, speaking the truth does have a price. I hope you can live with yourself for having so easily exposed Kathy Shaidle's nonsense. I checked her blog, the woman is an idiot, to put it mildly.
More uninformed, illiterate, borderline opinions from the usual reich wing cretins.....what a shocker.

6:37 AM  
Blogger ajsuhail said...

The funny thing is that Kathy is so unsure of her ability to defend her point of view that she has turned comments off on her blog!After all, a person who says that she does not believe that women should vote is bound to get the rough end of the stick.

6:08 PM  
Blogger 21st Century Kashmiri Nomad said...

She represents and articulates what many people feel. Its better these things are out in the open than hidden eating away at someones insides.

4:01 PM  

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