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    Keeping it real: How British Muslims responded to the sacrilegious film

    Keeping it real: How British Muslims responded to the sacrilegious film
    Zab Mustefa
    October 7, 2012


    While some angry Muslims marched through the streets to protest the anti-Islam film by destroying public property in their own homelands, a group of British Muslims decided to use the opportunity to clear misconceptions about their religion.

    PHOTO BY DISCOVER ISLAM UK FACEBOOK PAGE



    It was meant to offend, and offended they were. But, for them, the appropriate response to the amateur anti-Islam film Innocence of Muslims was to spread knowledge, not create chaos.

    “We simply reacted to the film in a reasonable and responsible way,” says Walid Kamil, Discover Islam’s public relations manager. “We want to get the message across that we [Muslims] are peaceful people.”

    Many Muslims reacted violently in the aftermath of the film; the American ambassador to Libya was killed and as many as 20 people died in rioting across Pakistan. In Britain and Ireland, volunteers of UK-based charity Discover Islam took to the streets as well but only to distribute copies of the Holy Quran and a biography of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh).

    “Islam doesn’t teach us to kill like that and for us the best way to respond is by informing people, not by carrying out violent acts,” says Walid. “We aim to show that Islam isn’t about violence, it’s about compassion and respecting others. So this is the message we are trying to get across through the simple act of distributing the Holy Quran and the Holy Prophet’s (pbuh) biography.”

    Launched in 2008, Discover Islam has been advocating for a better understanding of what Muslims represent in response to increasing anti-Islamic sentiment across the UK and Europe. True to their word, when the film was first premiered in the US, they prepared a non-violent protest movement.

    Armed with 210,000 copies of the Quran and a biographical account of the Holy Prophet’s (pbuh) life, Discover Islam volunteers covered multicultural events, such as the London Olympics and Paralympics, where they set up stalls, approached people and got positive feedback.

    “I’ve had non-Muslims come up to me over the past few weeks, telling me that in the Quran it says to kill and pillage. So I pull out some quotes to help them understand and the reaction is always one of surprise. They always walk away with a better comprehension of what it is we believe in,” says Walid.

    Negative perceptions and stereotyping of Muslims as radicals has become a favourite pastime with the rise of far right groups such as the English Defence League and British National Party that deliberately target Islam. Muslims are increasingly ostracised for anything and everything, from hijab to halal meat.

    Recently, British market research agency YouGov released alarming poll results, which found that 41% of Conservative voters in the UK believe that the violent attacks carried out as a backlash to the film were supported by all Muslims. The numbers were even worse in the US where 59% of Republicans held the same view.

    While Walid cites the media as responsible for sensationalising Islam, he has no truck with those who preach a violent response. “The Prophet (pbuh) was met with violence on many occasions but he didn’t respond with aggression. He was patient and this is the true meaning of Islam. If someone steals your car, it does not mean you should steal his car. Islam is about peace and patience. Our religion doesn’t urge us to be unjust towards others, it teaches us to be tolerant to Muslims and non-Muslims alike.”

    The response to their movement has been phenomenal. The charity’s Facebook page rocketed from 1,000 to 15,000 likes in a matter of weeks and, since the film’s release, Walid has received calls from all over the world asking for training, advice and consultancy on how to divert angry reactions into peaceful ones.

    “Our phones haven’t stopped ringing with calls from Australia to Morocco on how to deal with the [recent] French cartoons and the film,” Walid says. “It’s not to say that we are happy with how western governments dealt with the film. There definitely wasn’t enough done to condemn it because it’s freedom of speech but if you insult the Queen you can be jailed. So in that respect, there is a lot of hypocrisy.”

    But Walid is clear that the organisation’s objectives are not evangelical and their only purpose is to promote better understanding of Muslim beliefs among people from other faiths.

    “We’re not here to preach or convert anyone. Everybody has a right to be free and believe in what they want whether that is as an atheist, a Jew or a Hindu,” he says. “We’re happy to meet anyone and invite them to come have coffee with us and find out what Islam is really about. We’re not here to judge and just want everyone to get along with one another and live in peace.”

    tribune.com.pk

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    Well, well done for not going on a rampage like the usual Muslim rabble, have a gold star.

    Now, if only this would be the reaction every time they get a bit cheesed off I might actually have some respect for the cunts, and believe them when they say they and it are peacable.

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    Mid, they are such a loving and sociable lot... and forgiving and tolerant..
    Fuck off dickhead.

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    Quote Originally Posted by khmen View Post
    Well, well done for not going on a rampage like the usual Muslim rabble, have a gold star.

    Now, if only this would be the reaction every time they get a bit cheesed off I might actually have some respect for the cunts, and believe them when they say they and it are peacable.
    What's stopping you feeling differently about the two different groups mate? Why are you only allowing yourself one opinion of the entire group when you've quite clearly established the differences between them. Isn't that like believing all footy fans are hooligans.

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    Hmm...good question ES.

    I don't see anywhere near enough of this type of thing from Muslims. If more Muslims were vocal in condemning the actions of the stereotypical frothing-at-the-mouth-death-to-the-infidels types, then it would be a lot easier to believe them when they say that it is a minority who feel this way.

    As it stands, the predominant image of Muslims protesting is one of rabid mobs ranting and rampaging. If the average Joe Muslim takes such easy offence at sleights to their prophet/religion, then surely the vast majority of them should be up in arms and counter protesting the people who they claim are using the name of their prophet/religion in such a false manner? Surely that is the ultimate insult to the prophet, perverting his words and intentions?

    I'm sorry, but until the same level of apoplectic rage is directed at their fellow Muslims abusing the Koran to further their agenda then any claims to be moderate and peacable are hard to believe. Therefore, I lump them all in together as either extremists or those who enable extremism to some extent, whether actively or passively.

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    four lions the channel four movie. good humour on a touchy subject, admittedly not that close on religious points but still shows that not all are in the same boat.
    E S has a fair point.

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    in libya it was a minority, heavily armed, for some strange reason...

    imo, the truly concerning riots were in egypt... because it probably (also) wasnt about the movie, but rather about their frustration, even with the muslim brotherhood now... and as they are living from tourism - very much, its all even more bad and destructive...

    the movie, or any such things, are possibly more catalysators for the population, to get up...
    mostly even, it might be just minorities, who use it as an excuse for looting...

    one must see, that they are very poor and much oppressed in their countries... they can see, what the world is doing (internet, news etc) and themselves have to stand back behind all and everything... much frustration, and riots break out easily... if the country was in an "average" development, compared to the rest of the world, it probably wouldnt happen...

    imo, its not about the movie...

    maybe they feel anyway humiliated, because they are so inferior to others (economically etc)...
    and then there comes the religious insult on top of it, and all boils over...

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    Quote Originally Posted by khmen
    I don't see anywhere near enough of this type of thing from Muslims
    maybe the news chammels don't see it as good news?

    you are obviously unable to make up your own mind about the truth....it is out there

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    ^ Exactly. Unsurprisingly, footage of people not demonstrating doesn't often lead the news. And Muslims being reasonable is definitely not a sexy story: neither The Guardian nor the BBC have anything about this on their websites.

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    ^&^^

    Agreed, and good points. Obviously the only Muslims we in the west see on the TV are the more extreme element. I'll freely admit that my perceptions of the issue are to some extent biased based on the media I'm exposed to.

    I try to not get sucked into it and view things objectively, but I still have the nagging doubt that I just don't see enough Muslims standing up to defend their faith against what should, IMO, be seen as equally derogatory to that stupid film.

    That leads me to believe that many support the extreme viewpoints to some extent, I may be wrong but that is my perception.

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    one thing is a fact, sadly... that very religious people look down on people of other religions or even their same religion, which they dont find to live/behave as properly as themselves...

    thats true for all religions... christians, jews, muslims...

    they dont necessarily take the side of their "brothers" in a dispute, but they also dont stab a knife in their backs - even though it was overdue...

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    ^ Like pretty much everything in life, for some that's true, for some it's not.

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    discover islam is not about british muslims being all cuddly and nice, it is a bahraini funded organisation designed to promote islam throughout the world.

    basically it is a well oiled and lavishly funded pro islam propaganda machine.

    every word those smiling guys said, and every word written in their pamphlets will have been prepared and scripted by a team of professionals back in bahrain.

    they are promoting and selling a product, nothing more.

    stay away from them, dont give them your phone number and take no notice of them.






    Discover Islam Society, is a registered not-for-profit educational institution based in the Kingdom of Bahrain. It was established out of a need to provide relevant, meaningful and accurate information about Islam. Over the years, centre has gained a great deal of recognition in Bahrain and beyond.


    The Society produces and distributes high-quality, scholarly educational products including books, pamphlets, audio and video tapes, CD's and other resource materials, and provides a 24-hour live internet television channel and offers its publications free of charge to the inquirers from and around the world
    Last edited by taxexile; 07-10-2012 at 08:38 PM.

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    well, it was needed to counter the rabid anti-Islamic fervour we often see, even here on the devout TD

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    ^^ Of course they're pro-Islam. What do you expect a Muslim group to be? Pro-Catholic? Atheist? The point is that you always hear the same crap about how Muslims never condemn violence such as that against that shitty youtube film. Well here are some that have.

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    Well here are some that have.
    when i see mr. and mrs. normal do it, the man in the street do it, off their own bat, then i will be more inclined to believe the convictions behind their statements.

    when bahraini funded drones and puppets say it, in a staged and filmed setting,and claim it to be a spontaneous response by british muslims, well, please excuse my cynicism.

    i have worked closely with british muslims, and know full well that there are good and bad, but this ...... this is just a very timely sales pitch backed by god knows who..... only that they are based in bahrain.

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    when i see mr. and mrs. normal do it, the man in the street do it, off their own bat, then i will be more inclined to believe the convictions behind their statements.

    when bahraini funded drones and puppets say it, in a staged and filmed setting,and claim it to be a spontaneous response by british muslims, well, please excuse my cynicism.
    So you object to a Muslim group using PR but at the same time, you expect to see this happening. Unless you spend your time hanging around Bradford, how do you think that's going to work out? Of course, no real voluntary organisation has a PR manager does it? Greenpeace or the RSPCA never do things for the cameras. Nope. Not ever.
    only that they are based in bahrain.
    Oh well, if someone in Bahrain pitched in with the cash, it's clearly the work of Satan himself. The only rational conclusion is that these guys must just be doing this for the money and in all likelihood it actually doubles up as an al Qaeda cell, too.

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    Pronce. PH said so AGAIN!
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    Quote Originally Posted by taxexile
    when i see mr. and mrs. normal do it, the man in the street do it, off their own bat, then i will be more inclined to believe the convictions behind their statements.
    I think your theoretical mr and mrs normal are more likely to shrug sadly when the loonies go off and then carry on with their lives and the daily concerns that affect everybody.

    Expecting a billion muslims worldwide to drop everything and declaim the actions of a tiny percentage making trouble does not make sense really.

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    I was actually in a Muslim household when the story was showing on the news

    they thought that anyone saying bad things about the prophet should be jailed, that it was a blasphemy and disgraceful

    we then carried on eating with a few comments about the weather and how hot it was in their parents country
    I have reported your post

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    Quote Originally Posted by DrAndy
    I was actually in a Muslim household when the story was showing on the news
    What part of London were you in then ?

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    Wonder if those people would pose smiling with 'Find Jesus' or Watchtower handouts, or just tell them to piss off?

    So they respond to the 'film' by pushing their bullshit, instead of just shutting up and carrying on with their lives. This is good? They really don't get the basic message. Believe any shit you like, just keep it out of the public domain.

    Note: It was not a terrorist attack. It was a fuckin, and I mean fuckin, bad movie. If they were handing out leaflets "Why rioting and killing in response to speech is unacceptable' it might have made more sense.

    Patronising shit from those in the pics. One could almost say apologetic.

    Like you would do to a particularly retarded child. Says it all, doesn't it?


    Another Mid Special.



    Btw. If anybody is gonna quote the Holy Books of Shit, quote it all, not just the few 'good' bits.


    Some would call them lying scum. Not me, of course. But some would. And they may not be wrong...
    Last edited by FlyFree; 08-10-2012 at 06:23 PM.

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    There could be a billion groups of ordinary muslims like this and some people would still not be happy that muslims are doing enough to counter the 'extremists' tag...


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    some people would still not be happy that muslims are doing enough to counter the 'extremists' tag...
    because they aint. it is a religion of extreme beliefs with little room or desire for compromising those beliefs. it is a religion of the stone age.

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    Quote Originally Posted by taxexile View Post
    some people would still not be happy that muslims are doing enough to counter the 'extremists' tag...
    because they aint. it is a religion of extreme beliefs with little room or desire for compromising those beliefs. it is a religion of the stone age.
    Adherence to a "faith" (religious, political, social, economic, technological, etc...), by it's very nature, is an expression of extremism. The point at which you abandon the option to be wrong, is the point at which you become wrong.

    ...this applies as much to Islamofascists, as it does to Grauniad readers: they are different species of bigotry. A faith whose sacrement is to imply that the apostate are bigots is anything but innoculated from being a haven of bigotry.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JQVmkDUkZT4

    we are all figments of our own imagination.

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    Quote Originally Posted by khmen View Post
    Well, well done for not going on a rampage like the usual Muslim rabble, have a gold star.

    Now, if only this would be the reaction every time they get a bit cheesed off I might actually have some respect for the cunts, and believe them when they say they and it are peacable.
    These are muslims mistakenly practicing Islam as a religion which it is not.

    Real Islam is an ideology. If Nazism was practiced as a religion, it wouldn't have been a problem either.

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