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Defence of Islam and Locals

Defence of Islam and Locals

Old Jul 31st 2010, 7:53 am
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Default Defence of Islam and Locals

There seems to be a lot of posters (mostly newish) who are keen to jump to the defence and counter attack what they percieve as the unjust attacks on islam and locals/arabs on the bored these days.

out of interest how many of you jumping to the defence are NOT muslim or arab and have been in the region longer than 3 years?

I'm discounting muslims becasue you will obviously jump to defend you fantasy belief system, arabs becasue its a cultural defence and newbies because you havent yet passed any honeymoon period.

I actually am curious as to how many people can be non religious, non arab and manage to maintain either a neutral or positive view towards islam and the locals/culture?

i've been here on and off since the 70's and personally feel the a)islam has in general become a less tolerant and more extreme religion in the region over that time and b) that the locals have most definitely changed with the younger two generations mostly being shits.

I will add a caveat that if you go into the rural areas the above issues disappear almost as if you are reverting in time....curious
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Old Jul 31st 2010, 8:12 am
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Default Re: Defence of Islam and Locals

I still find Islam a very beautiful, if often curious, religion - and find it a crying shame when people twist it to justify blowing people up.

I've also met some of the warmest and kindest people here.

The coming together of local desert culture, Islam and the modern world, however, has not served this part of the world very well. The problems are terrifying in their proportion and the lack of action horribly frustrating.

As I have said before, I think - I care for the future of Saudi Arabia, messed up as it is. I cannot summon the same emotional investment for the UAE.
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Old Jul 31st 2010, 8:17 am
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Default Re: Defence of Islam and Locals

I don't count myself as one of those newbies you're talking about, but from a personal perspective, I'm a strong believer in the principle that if you choose to move somewhere, you live by the local rules and not try and bring those of your original country with you.

In the UK, this would be applied to those who seek to change the system: i.e. those that want to bring in Shari'ah law. I haven't issue with you if you want to live by those laws, but don't expect to come to a prosperous country – one which you could argue is prosperous precisely because it doesn't have Shari'ah law – and try and impose the cultural norms of your former home.

In exactly the same way, I haven't come to the UAE and expected them to bend to the whims and fancies of those from a Western cultural background. (Though I know they do – but that was a decision they'd made long before I even had ever thought about coming here).

That said, I am in my honeymoon period. I haven't had a chance to get out and explore because of the heat and humidity and I haven't run into some more of the less obvious nuances of the culture.
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Old Jul 31st 2010, 9:53 am
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Default Re: Defence of Islam and Locals

If I do speak out, it's when I think people are making crass generalisations of the kind published in Daily Mail stories. Whatever your view on their religion (or any belief system) and culture, stoking up ill-informed anti-Islam feeling really isn't productive. Detached and objective criticism is fine, of course. Nothing should be above criticism or comment.

Yes, I'm off to knit some tofu and hug a tree now.

Last edited by littlejimmy; Jul 31st 2010 at 9:56 am.
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Old Jul 31st 2010, 10:08 am
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Default Re: Defence of Islam and Locals

I'm not bothered by Islam. All religions have their fanatics, including Christianity and Judaism (although I'm aware Christianity doesn't suffer from the problem of fundamentalist terrorists that Islam unfortunately does).

Religion is religion, it can be a wonderful cultural force and has brought wonderful sense of being and cultural identification to millions of people. Every day I go out in DXB and I see happy Muslim families and happy Christian families and happy Hindu families probably even a handful of happy Jewish families. There's not a whole lot to separate the cultural values of most people in DXB. They just want to live life as happily and peaceful as possible.

But - while the extreme fundamentalists do cause problems, moreso for the local rulers and ordinary people than they do for Westerners, the other major problem in the region is the corruption of values as a result of the sudden infusion of extreme wealth. My antipathy towards Emiratis has nothing to do with Islam, it has everything to do with the extreme sense of entitlement and the corrupting effect of luxury that has sprung up among the locals, especially the younger generation. Some of the people I grew up with and went to school with were no different, and guess what, I didn't like them either.

I'm absolutely confident that the elders are aware of the problem on their hands but what's infuriating is that they refuse to publically acknowledge it. The tribal mentality that may have worked when Emiratis and Gulf Arabs were impoverished tribes in a harsh world is still carrying over to the modern day with disastrous consequences - the acceptance and applying of double standards in the legal system and social conduct is a perfect example. When two arseholes do stupid stunts on Sheikh Zayed and get off with a light slap and a 1,000 AED fine it tells you there's a deep seated flaw that's erupted inside the Emirati society, and God knows what the long term consequences are going to be.

But I won't be around to find out, inshallah.

Last edited by Ethos83; Jul 31st 2010 at 11:40 am.
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Old Jul 31st 2010, 11:24 am
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Default Re: Defence of Islam and Locals

I think, every single one, who is critical about this culture and society is as critical about his own. That's how we are raised and brought up. We are able to put question marks behind things and we are even encouraged to do so. Because only a free society, where a constant open dialogue is allowed can develop and make the place a better one. If no criticism is allowed, everything comes to a standstill.
I don't care too much about religion. If someone feels better praying to whatever he believes in, fine with me, as long as they don't try to impose it on me.
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Old Jul 31st 2010, 12:04 pm
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Default Re: Defence of Islam and Locals

Shiva, you raise an interesting point.

Culturally it is hard to adapt in the UAE and that is due to the divide, there is critisism where it warrants but the abuse and downright ignorance of some is beyond belief, the other thread for example about "i saw something interesting today" how many times have we witnessed a expat woman in the UAE without manners, being rude to staff, their kids abusing the maid, and yet it is never raised only when a UAE nataional child who obviously has manners is berated on a forum for the hard work that the child parents have put in !!!!

Not all UAE nationals are the stereotype that people have an image of !!

I wish really there was a meeting point where this could be portrayed and just maybe some of the negative views of people who have little or no understanding could be quashed.
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Old Jul 31st 2010, 2:29 pm
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Default Re: Defence of Islam and Locals

If I didn't like it here, I wouldn't be here. I did nearly jack it all in as for a while it didn't feel right. Now I like it - I have no idea when I will leave.

I'm not saying it is perfect by any stretch, but nor is the UK. I am more than happy to (and in fact want to) be around different cultures.

I guess I actually enjoy getting in a queue that is 10 wide and one deep, or getting beeped when filling the car with petrol, or (as I did the other day) picking up the Pakistani camel farmer and giving him a lift home, some apple juice and some cold water. It does of course cut both ways - I once asked an Emiriti family for some food for my child as we were stuck without access to food and he was hungry, they (of course) obliged. Could I have done that in the UK? Probably not.

It's all part of life here.

Now, if only we could find a way to get rid of the Lebos...

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Old Jul 31st 2010, 3:11 pm
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Default Re: Defence of Islam and Locals

Originally Posted by Ethos83 View Post
(although I'm aware Christianity doesn't suffer from the problem of fundamentalist terrorists that Islam unfortunately does).
Oh yes they do-They are always blowing up abortion clinics and shooting doctors


Originally Posted by shiva View Post
I've been here on and off since the 70's and personally feel the a)islam has in general become a less tolerant and more extreme religion in the region over that time and b)
Christianity has in become a less tolerant and more extreme in that time as well..My mom and grandma went to church every sunday back in the 70's and they were just good people, good people that went out of their way to find people to help and they rarely ever mentioned religion..Christians in America nowadays are just over the top proselytising, backwards hate mongers- holy warriors who won't be happy until just about every other religion is wiped off the face of the earth..They love war?

Last edited by Toast Patterson; Jul 31st 2010 at 4:22 pm.
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Old Jul 31st 2010, 3:50 pm
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Default Re: Defence of Islam and Locals

let me rephrase that question:

Apart from muzzies, who are obviously too stupid to think objectively about their lives, how many people think this place is civilised? Newbies need not answer as you haven't seen what this place is really like.

Leading Questions 101.
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Old Jul 31st 2010, 3:50 pm
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Originally Posted by Toast Patterson View Post
..Christians in America nowadays are just over the top proselytising, backwards hate mongers- holy warriors who won't be happy until just about every other religion is wiped off the face of the earth..They love war?
I agree ..those muslims killing nearly 3000 people in NY did piss them off

and in london it was only 56 deaths ... and the brits got irritated over just that few ..
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Old Jul 31st 2010, 4:21 pm
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Default Re: Defence of Islam and Locals

Originally Posted by Ray View Post
I agree ..those muslims killing nearly 3000 people in NY did piss them off
I don't know if you're joking or not but either way you gotta agree that there was a huge overreaction to 911 here. I'm mean 45,000 people die everyday in America and were gonna completely change our way of life forever because an extra 3000 go in one day?
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Old Jul 31st 2010, 4:34 pm
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Default Re: Defence of Islam and Locals

Originally Posted by Toast Patterson View Post
I don't know if you're joking or not but either way you gotta agree that there was a huge overreaction to 911 here. I'm mean 45,000 people die everyday in America and were gonna completely change our way of life forever because an extra 3000 go in one day?
I never Joke ... ..but I would shoot you for fun ....
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Old Jul 31st 2010, 4:42 pm
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Default Re: Defence of Islam and Locals

Originally Posted by Toast Patterson View Post
I don't know if you're joking or not but either way you gotta agree that there was a huge overreaction to 911 here. I'm mean 45,000 people die everyday in America and were gonna completely change our way of life forever because an extra 3000 go in one day?
Seriously? I know you arent comparing deaths from natural causes, accidents, homicide etc etc...to 9/11..

A huge over reaction...maybe...but what would you have done? sat down and had a chit chat with Osama over a nice cup of herbal tea?

Would it have gone somthing like this..."so Mr Bin Laden, what can we do as Westerners to ensure you don't kill 3000 more of us in one fell swoop, because it is our fault after all"..

Come on now...no more silly comparisons.
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Old Jul 31st 2010, 4:45 pm
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Default Re: Defence of Islam and Locals

Originally Posted by Toast Patterson View Post
Oh yes they do-They are always blowing up abortion clinics and shooting doctors




Christianity has in become a less tolerant and more extreme in that time as well..My mom and grandma went to church every sunday back in the 70's and they were just good people, good people that went out of their way to find people to help and they rarely ever mentioned religion..Christians in America nowadays are just over the top proselytising, backwards hate mongers- holy warriors who won't be happy until just about every other religion is wiped off the face of the earth..They love war?

A teeny bit of a sweeping generalization, dont you think...
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