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Faith

Muslims worldwide support democracy and religious freedom

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  • Kafantaris WARREN, OH
    May 1, 2013 5:05 a.m.

    The question is which religion is more tolerant?
    Tolerance has a holiness all to itself that transcends all religions, all cultures and all races. It's the ideal civilized man should strive for; and the single barometer he should be measured with at the end of his life.
    This is because tolerance demands learning, understanding and life experience; it demands courage to express it; and constant vigilance, for the herd mentality is always encroaching, and will forever be the easiest road to follow.

  • Tilka PORTLAND, OR
    May 1, 2013 9:44 a.m.

    That is until they get control of the country so they can limit religious freedom to anyone other than Muslims.

  • Tyler D Meridian, ID
    May 1, 2013 9:55 a.m.

    “The view of Sharia, or Islamic law, as part of a democracy may seem contradictory to Westerners”

    It may not be contradictory to democracy but it is certainly contradictory to freedom.

    The fact is many of our western values we hold dear are in direct conflict with much of the Islamic worldview. We can bury our heads in the sands of moral & cultural relativism, but this is simply a fact (as many parts of Europe struggling to integrate their Muslim populations are beginning to realize).

    That the European Union is considering passing blasphemy laws (and in some parts of Europe they already de facto exist) making it a crime to criticize religion should chill us to the bone. Accommodating the demands for such nonsense here will not only destroy the principles on which our country was founded, but in the end will only serve to Balkanize us further.

    Ironically America, as the most religious of all western democracies, may end up being the last bastion of hope to preserve a political and intellectual heritage that, given the length of our own religious Dark Ages, stands as one of the finest achievements in human history.

  • Obama10 SYRACUSE, UT
    May 1, 2013 10:24 a.m.

    What a piece of propaganda! Have you not been following the events in Egypt and the Coptic Christians plight against Muslims? How about the fate of the Christian preacher in Iran who is sentenced to die for his beliefs. Please name one Muslim country where religious freedom is prized and honored. They may "allow" little groups of Christians, but these groups are watched and monitored and tormented. The Muslim religion is very specific that there is only one religion and any others are infidels and dogs. Your own newspaper today has a story about countries who are "religious abusers". Check that list and see how many are Muslim countries.

  • Twin Lights Louisville, KY
    May 1, 2013 11:21 a.m.

    I suppose that Sharia law and democracy might work together in theory, but have we ever seen this in practice?

    Because religion does influence so much of society's thinking, to give it an official role not only selects one religion above the others but also gives its ideas even greater sway in the public sphere.

    Perhaps the reason the US has remained so religious is specifically because there is a boundary between church and state - one that keeps both healthy.

    Look at the last three bullet points in the article. Honor killings (only two countries with majority support but minority support in others), women get to decide to wear a veil or not (whoo hoo!), and many Muslims want their religious leaders to have at least some or even a lot of political influence.

    I cannot see how allowing significant political influence to religious leaders will help install democracy. Instead, such influence seems to lead to dictatorship or oligarchy. At least that seems to be a well worn pattern. Hard to see how it will change.

  • FT1/SS Virginia Beach, VA
    May 1, 2013 2:43 p.m.

    Really! Try telling that to the Coptic Christians in Eygpt, the Christians driven out of Iraq, and the thousands of minority Christians killed by the majority muslims in Africa, naming Nigeria as one. The goal of muslim leadership is sharia law on the world. On some of there websites state "We'll invade you with your democracy, and conquer you with our religion". Muslims have no tolerance for "infidels". The author of the article needs to do some research.

  • John Pack Lambert of Michigan Ypsilanti, MI
    May 1, 2013 3:49 p.m.

    What they should ask is "should there be any legal implications for people converting from Islam to another religion". Amorphous support for "religious freedom" can mean all sorts of things, what is needed is explicit support for people not facing legal issues with conversion. I am sure that many of these people would oppose legal consequences for changing religion, but I do not believe this study actually reflects the level that people support religious freedom in any meaningful way. It is easy to say you support it when the term itself has not been given any definition.

  • FreeMan Heber City, UT
    May 1, 2013 5:01 p.m.

    Obviously must be true because there is a study that says so. And as evidence of this, look at all the missionaries in muslim controlled countries.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    May 1, 2013 5:03 p.m.

    Extremists of any type are a detriment to having a civil society. Some use weapons, some use words to sow terror and fear.

    According to a Pew report the countries with the largest percentage of the world's Muslim populations are, Indonesia, Pakistan, India and Bangladesh.

  • George New York, NY
    May 1, 2013 5:23 p.m.

    @Obama10
    Have you followed the blight of Muslims in Somalia and DRC at the hand of Christians? If you are going to make sweeping judgments on religions because of the actions of some of its members.

  • GK Willington Salt Lake City, UT
    May 1, 2013 7:55 p.m.

    RE: Tilka

    So, how does that differ from the unstated goal of Evangelical Christianity?

  • Janet Ontario, OR
    May 1, 2013 9:34 p.m.

    My husband and I (both LDS) have been taking courses in Islam and the Quran so that we can better understand the religion of 1.2 billion people on Earth. I would recommend such study to everyone. One thing we have learned is that the social, cultural, and political climate of a country has much to do with how a religion is perceived and lived. By the way, Uzbekistan was one of the countries listed as most intolerant of religious freedom, and it is over 95% Muslim, but Muslims are severely restricted there. North Korea is possibly the most oppressive nation on Earth, but it certainly isn't an Islamic nation. We live in a complicated world. to "make sweeping judgments on religions because of the actions of some ... members" is always foolish.

  • cjb Bountiful, UT
    May 1, 2013 11:02 p.m.

    Moslems can't believe that the Koran is the un-erroring word of God and believe in freedom of religion. The Koran teaches that Moslems who convert to an other religion or otherwise abandon that faith must be executed.

  • lost in DC West Jordan, UT
    May 2, 2013 5:43 a.m.

    Goerge,
    have you followed the plight of Christians and other non-muslims (as well as other muslims) at the hands of radical muslims in:
    Pakistan
    Afghanistan
    Iran
    Indonesia
    Phillipines
    EUROPE
    NIGERIA?

    Stop excusing institutional and governmental persecution BY muslims with isloated cases of persecution of muslims

  • twells Ogden, UT
    May 2, 2013 7:10 a.m.

    Sharia law is a political tool for Theocracy. Most Americans want to believe that all religions have the same messages. Unfortunatily, this is not true. How can you have a Democracy and a Theocracy at the same time? Much has been written about the injustices of Christianity. It is true there have been injustices because humans use the tools of the day to get power. What divides people quickly? Religion and Politics. Americans are charitable and pretty tolerant. A good Muslim must embrace Sharia-not Democracy. It is hard for most Americans to believe other cultures would not embrace freedom. If you are a Muslim you embrace freedom long enough to implement Sharia. There are Americans that think this Country is rung by Christian zealots. If these same Americans had to live under Sharia law they would soon long for days past. Sharia is strict and demanding-it would be like returning to the days of the Christian Crusades. Not many Americans like being told what to do. I Chose America-not Sharia

  • George New York, NY
    May 2, 2013 7:37 p.m.

    @lost

    Have you followed the muslims and persecution of Muslims in Somalia and the DRC by Christians? I stand by my previous comment but thanks

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    May 2, 2013 10:11 p.m.

    “The view of Sharia, or Islamic law, as part of a democracy may seem contradictory to Westerners”

    Religious people trying to impose religious views on everyone else via a democratically elected government? Yeah, it's rather contradictory but hey, I'm familiar with Mike Huckabee so at least the concept is familiar.

  • casual observer Salt Lake City, UT
    May 2, 2013 10:36 p.m.

    Except that most Muslims believe the death penalty is appropriate for those who leave Islam. Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Northern Africa nations, Indonesia and other Islamic nations suppress Christianity, often brutally. If that is religious freedom then we need a new definition.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    May 3, 2013 10:12 a.m.

    cjb
    Bountiful, UT

    casual observer
    Salt Lake City, UT

    ============

    When my Granparents joined the LDS church - My Great-Grand-parents, and all their family and friends litereally "Dis-owned" them.
    Treated them as if they were dead.
    Had nothing to do with them, and wouldn't even speak to them the rest of their lives.

    And THAT was in America,
    THAT was against Christians,
    and THAT was against Family!

    Christians can't believe that the Bible is the un-erroring word of God and believe in freedom of religion.

    If that is religious freedom then we need a new definition.

  • LDSinTexas Austin, TX
    May 4, 2013 10:26 a.m.

    To LDS Liberal. I'm truly sorry your great-grandparents were disowned by their families. But they were not e excited under U.S. Law for having done so. Muslim law does. Read the comments and the words of Muslims themselves. If Muslim law had been in effect back in the 1840's and after, your ancestors would not have lived, and you would likely not be here. Being dis-fellowshiped by your family is no where near the penalty of the loss of their life, under the law. You can not even hope to equate these actions as the same. Thank The Lord that we have the freedom to choose, and change, our religion without fear of death. I'd rather be alive and living the gospel than dead for having changed my religious affiliation to one that wasn't acceptable to my Government.

  • John C. C. Payson, UT
    Jan. 8, 2015 3:33 p.m.

    I believe the Bible is the word of God, and I believe Christian believers in the Bible can live peacefully with other religions in a democracy. I believe the Koran carries much truth that was inspired by God to Mohammed. The LDS Church shares that belief, even if most members seem surprised by our First Presidency's Statement on February 15, 1978: "God's Love for All Mankind". Muslims all over the world have shown for centuries that they can live peacefully with other religions.

    Can you believe that Russians, Arabs, Indonesians, Chinese, Africans, and many other people see our TV and Cinema and believe Western culture is morally corrupt? Are you surprised that politically ambitious demagogues will use our flaws to paint us all as evil? Then don't be surprised when politically ambitions American demagogues cherry-pick evidence of some Muslim behavior and attempt to stir up hatred against all Muslims. We must rise above such narrow-minded thinking.

    We are all God's children and can live together with a little thoughtfulness.