Earlier today Raheel Raza’s organization Muslims Facing Tomorrow held a rally near the parliament building at Queen’s Park. The reason for the event was to support the plight of the Christians and the other religious minorities in the Middle East, who suffer under the blows of ISIS and other Muslim terrorist groups.
The rally coincided with the annual book fair – there were dozens of large tents hosting well-known and obscure publishers, magazines, libraries, clubs, etc. As it is normal in Toronto, the fair was dominated by “progressive”, socialist, and even communist exhibitors, with e few Muslim propagandists giving away free Korans and other junk. Near the south end of the park, a tiny group of self-hating Jews with signs and Palestinian flags were calling for the boycott of the bookstore chain Chapters Indigo. (Why – it wasn’t clear.)
I am mentioning that, because with so many people with progressive views walking around, it was reasonable to expect that a rally with a clearly defined humanistic purpose would attract many enthusiastic supporters. Yet that wasn’t the case. As Raheel Raza noted, after sending thousands of e-mails and other promotional materials, not many showed up. There were probably about 80 attendees.
That “moderate” Muslim event was in stark contrast with other Muslim gatherings. In his coverage this afternoon Blazingcatfur observed:
On July 26 2014 Toronto’s Shia community mustered over 6000 participants for their Al Quds Day Anti-Israel Hate Fest held at Queen’s Park.
On September 21 2014 Muslims Facing Tomorrow managed to attract some 80 participants for their rally held on behalf of persecuted Christians.
It was hard to ignore that difference. Still, I noticed some progress. Last year the event attracted fewer people. Today it was supported by more organizations like Canadian Thinkers’ Forum Forum for Learning, Muslim Committee Against Anti-Semitism, Progressive Muslims Institute Canada, Western Canadian Muslims for democracy, Quest for Learning Centre, International Christian Voice, Speakers Action Group.
There were also representatives of other organizations, like Friends of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, whose director Avi Benlolo was one of the speakers. I also spotted several members of JDL-Canada, who came to support the rally, as well as Benjamin Dichter, candidate for Councillor Ward 27 in the upcoming municipal elections, and Al Gretzky from the Freedom Party.
The participants carried many signs, which expressed support for the targets of the terrorist attacks in the Middle East and condemnation of the perpetrators of the terror.
Another positive sign was that the event finally caught the attention of the government. Maybe because the issues raised have become so urgent that it’s impossible to ignore them anymore?
Three current members of the House of Commons attended the rally and even spoke: Bernard Trottier (MP, Etobicoke-Lakeshore), John Carmichael (MP, Don Valley West), and Brad Butt (MP, Mississauga-Streetsville). Even the federal Minister of Multiculturalism Tim Uppal delivered a short speech.
Condemnation of terrorism was the common thread in all speeches, though that was expressed in many different ways. The politicians, as one may expect, threaded carefully, trying not to offend too many people or disturb the sacred cow of multiculturalism. The Muslim speakers were more direct. Some of them (especially Raheel Raza) didn’t miss the opportunity to express their disappointment of the silent Muslim majority, whose fear or indifference make things more complicated for everybody.
Prof. Salim Mansur delivered the most passionate speech, calling for taking clear positions against terror and inhumanity.
Though I admire the dedication of those Muslims to the idea of justice, it is hard to escape the fact that their influence is modest, to say the least. Many of them still don’t want to admit that the problem is in Islam itself – that rigid ideological doctrine doesn’t allow different interpretations and as it is now, some of the points in the Koran and the other Muslim scriptures justify what the terrorists in the Islamic State are doing. There is no way to resolve the difficulties without a deep theological and political reform in Islam. But again – any such attempt is met with hostility by most Muslims and those who propose reforms may literally lose their heads.
It’s a vicious circle, which has no solution within Islam. Probably only a total collapse of Islam as a political system may finally deprive it from its ambitions to take over the West and confine it to the mosques. The places of worship are where religions belong.
© 2014 Blogwrath.com