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Yezidi woman stoned to death in "honour killing"
May 4, 2007 11:13 PM   Subscribe

A teenage girl was stoned to death for loving the wrong boy. Du’a Khalil Aswad, a 17-year old Yezidi girl who lived in Northern Iraq, fell in love with a Sunni Muslim boy, and possibly converted to Islam. For this she was stoned to death in a public "honour killing" which was recorded on video and spread on the internet (warning: graphic and disturbing. YouTube took theirs down.) 23 Yezidis have been killed in retaliation. [Via Disinformation.]
posted by homunculus (265 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite

 
The first link is graphic and distubing as well.
posted by bigmusic at 11:19 PM on May 4, 2007


I watched a video of a stoning in Iran when I was in college. It was shown by an Iranian professor who taught "Peoples of the Middle East." The woman was buried to her waist in the ground and a white sheet was placed over her. At first, you only saw the stones hitting the amorphous shape, but gradually, as the stones increased, scarlet splotches of blood began to seep into the cloth. Someone threw a large stone that tore part of the cloth, which seemed to incite a frenzy. Eventually, the cloth was completed rent by the rocks and all that was left was a mutilated body slumped over. It looked like an animal rather than a human. It was savage and nauseating.
posted by Falconetti at 11:23 PM on May 4, 2007 [2 favorites]


OUTRAGEFILTER
posted by quonsar at 11:29 PM on May 4, 2007 [3 favorites]


Liberation...Democratization...Rock On
posted by taosbat at 11:31 PM on May 4, 2007


!
posted by taosbat at 11:33 PM on May 4, 2007


Protest in Arbil.
posted by Abiezer at 11:36 PM on May 4, 2007


I'm not sure if stoning a 17 year old girl to death is bad. I think I'll watch the video to make sure.

Not.
posted by Citizen Premier at 11:37 PM on May 4, 2007 [2 favorites]


Monkeys in pants; that's all we are. Monkeys in pants.
posted by docgonzo at 11:49 PM on May 4, 2007 [5 favorites]


I dont care what imaginary asshole you worship.

Guess what?

Youre a cunt and should die having a panda jammed up yer peehole.

/simplistic? Yeah, but I'se drinkin.
posted by Senor Cardgage at 11:56 PM on May 4, 2007 [1 favorite]


Perhaps it’s time for the human race to die and let the cockroaches take over - maybe they can develop into intelligent life, because we sure don't seem to be able to.
posted by DreamerFi at 12:22 AM on May 5, 2007


maybe they can develop into intelligent life, because we sure don't seem to be able to

religious BS comes with the intelligence, unfortunatley, just as malware comes with complicated OSs, for similar technical reasons.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 12:26 AM on May 5, 2007 [5 favorites]


Fuck.

.
posted by aclevername at 12:27 AM on May 5, 2007 [1 favorite]


Who is this Publius Pundit? I'll sue I say, I'll sue! How can he steal what I have already stolen? Has he no honor? He does appear to be a friend of the people though.
posted by publius at 12:29 AM on May 5, 2007


"simplistic?"
No, some things really are simple.
There is no place in the 21st century for this shit.
posted by 2sheets at 12:34 AM on May 5, 2007 [1 favorite]


You would think with such an abominable act that there would be no real need or place for editorial embellishment - the writeup in the stophonourkilling link says that "hundreds of men beat and stoned" the victim and that they "stripped her body". As far as I can tell both of these descriptions are patently false. Am I wrong?? Morelike 8 men and no stripping.
Tin tacks? Well, if 'we' wish to effect changes in different cultures, no matter how noble the intent, it would be nice if we could approach with arguments based in fact and not spuriousness.
posted by peacay at 12:49 AM on May 5, 2007


I swear, the next person who calls me a "culturalist" or some other fucked-up PC moniker.... I'm gonna get Shiite on their ass.
posted by tehloki at 12:51 AM on May 5, 2007


you g*damn culturalist, whatever that is supposed to mean.
posted by caddis at 12:53 AM on May 5, 2007


Morelike 8 men and no stripping

Really? Because in the pictures from the first link she appeared to have a skirt on, and in the video just a shirt and underwear.

Seems like stripping to me.

But I guess 8 men stoning a 17 yold to death is better than a hundred?
posted by aclevername at 1:07 AM on May 5, 2007


I don't know about stripped, but she's down to her underwear in the video, and no one bothers to cover her up. It gives me the feeling there's at least some sexual component to it, although I'm not even close to being culturally clued-in enough to decipher what it might be.
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 1:10 AM on May 5, 2007


In related news , people accused of violent crimes (sometimes without any conclusive evidence) are injected and killed with lethal substances because frying them alive with electricity was too cruel and unusual.

Appartently these well learned, well dressed savages place themselves on some kind of moral high ground and do what they tell others not to do ; we expect them to compare and contrast stoning practices with injection practices so that they don't look as much savage as the stoners. Such are the depths of delusional thinking.
posted by elpapacito at 1:25 AM on May 5, 2007 [8 favorites]


in the video just a shirt and underwear

Conceded. I didn't see that at first.

But I guess 8 men stoning a 17 yold to death is better than a hundred?

Yes of course. That's exactly what I was implying genius.
posted by peacay at 1:26 AM on May 5, 2007


To solve a problem you must first understand it.

Your gut reaction, and mine, is to immediately get mad and want justice. This is our culture and what we are taught and learned.

But look at it from their POV, to them this is justice and right. They see us and see un-religious hate-mongers who are ignorant of their ways.

For example, back in the days of Samurai in Japan, it was perfectly OK for Samurais to kill a lower-caste for just accidentally touching your sword walking down a crowded street, no one would bat an eye.

We can't change their ways just because we think our way is better. Why? What proof can you offer these people other then technological advances? It's like trying to convince creationists that evolution is real. No way.

You can be just as bad as them and hate them and do violence against them, and they will see it not as justice but just more wrong done against them for nothing.

This goes all the to war in Iraq, we are forcing our ways on another people saying "Our way is better, do it or else." Of course they will resisit, who wouldn't?

I think things like this takes special people who can appeal to all sides, understand and explain everything, and bring about change, slowly.

Healing doesn't happen immediatley.
posted by countzen at 1:27 AM on May 5, 2007 [8 favorites]


In related news , people accused of violent crimes (sometimes without any conclusive evidence) are injected and killed with lethal substances because frying them alive with electricity was too cruel and unusual.

You're one of those guys who uses every female genital mutilation thread on MeFi as an opportunity to rant about the Foreskin Holocaust, aren't you?
posted by schroedinger at 1:34 AM on May 5, 2007 [8 favorites]


elpapacito: I'm deeply anti-death penalty, but you have to draw a distinction between private, (relatively) painless execution following years and years of trial and appeal, and this: public execution, mob rule, rage-based brutality completely independent of rational or unbiased justice.

This situation is not the counterexample to capital punishment. It's the counterexample to theocracy.
posted by Riki tiki at 1:42 AM on May 5, 2007 [5 favorites]


As outraged as I get with this sort of appalling shit it's yet another reason why you just can't go around exporting democracy and western values. Doesn't work. Bad shit happens. People in power (Religious/Political) abuse it and it's really down to the oppressed (without external intervention on a military level) to get their acts together and fight back. We can help as best we can by providing support but that's about it.


Remember when men in white robes ran around exacting justice on Blacks in America, hanging them from trees and shit - that was within the lifetime of some people still alive. And look where America (even with all it's faults) is now.
posted by twistedonion at 1:46 AM on May 5, 2007


and no one bothers to cover her up

I found and watched the whole video. I kind of wished I hadn't, but then again sometimes you have to take the blinders off. In the longer video I saw, someone attempts to cover her up at least once early on.

I've written, previewed and deleted about a half-dozen comments about this. I can't seem to find the vein. So here's the raw data:

The number of cell phones you can see filming this is more than a little unsettling. And they don't look like the secretive, I Must Tell The World About This Horror filmings, either. They look like the kind of guys who take pictures of the chick who takes her top off while she's dancing on the bar. Only with less skull crushing.

The relatively peaceful and grateful Kurds did this? Aren't these guys supposed to be the reliable security forces dudes?

This is why I'm an atheist. No god worth eating a wafer or using a compass for would put up with this shit.

I think my neighbor is a witch. When we burn her at the stake, will you bring the marshmallows?

The girl who works in my office half the day on work-study is seventeen. She's helpful as hell and hopes to go to community college when she graduates.

Such are the depths of delusional thinking.

She was seventeen. She had a boyfriend. That's why they beat her to death with rocks.

Oh well, at least the guy wasn't black.
posted by Cyrano at 1:48 AM on May 5, 2007


I simply do not care that one's beliefs may place them in the 'right' in a situation like this.

When it comes to the willful taking of another's life for something so petty as this.. this is savage.

It's one thing to try and execute people to the full extent of the law- to the best of the ability of the justice system- a system that while it unfortunately makes mistakes, also has vindicated itself over and over.

This- this is just fucking murder.
posted by id at 2:02 AM on May 5, 2007


You know who else wrote about teenagers getting killed for loving the wrong people? Shakespeare, that's who.
posted by hattifattener at 2:10 AM on May 5, 2007


Countzen, you got it right, and this is the most important insight that we, as a species, have had. Its not yours, of course, but if we are ever to move on from being little tribal shits who happily dehumanize any non-tribe members, we have to understand how the world looks from their point of view and then deal with it. That's not countenancing anything. That's just being brave enough to be bigger. We need to develop a collective sense of basic decency which is anthropocentric, rather than tribal.
posted by fcummins at 2:12 AM on May 5, 2007 [2 favorites]


"But look at it from their POV, to them this is justice and right."
And you know what? I don't give a good god damn. All the talk of human rights and tolerance and cultural sensitivity is worthless if you see a teenager stoned to death by a mob and can't say without equivocation that it's not going to happen as long as there are sane, rational people who will stop it and use force if needed.
We can all sit on the floor and have some tea and talk about religon, but you will put down the rock or I will shoot you.
posted by 2sheets at 2:22 AM on May 5, 2007 [21 favorites]


id: I couldn't have said it better myself.

There's no way in hell I'm going to watch that video, just the descriptions in this thread is more than enough, and it makes me sick to my stomach.
posted by VirtualWolf at 2:26 AM on May 5, 2007


you have to draw a distinction between private, (relatively) painless execution following years and years of trial and appeal

We can't just focus on the differences so that we feel better for inflicting less (maybe) pain and then conveniently forget about the commonalities ; certainly there is a difference between stoning and hanging and lethal injection, but that's stating the fucking obvious and drawing distinction between killing methods... for what purpose ? The purpose is clear : to feel NOT LIKE the stoners, maybe to paint them as inhuman savages, to claim that our advanced judgment methods makes us better. Yet these are clearly only rationalizations, because the end is exactly the same : exactly like unsophisticated savages we kill people for whatever "reason" , and no amount of denial can change the facts.

public execution, mob rule, rage-based brutality completely independent of rational or unbiased justice.

Don't you see the stunning contradiction ? We don't want mob rule and brutality : because of this desire we build systems that promote rationality and discourse , rule of law. Then we enact law that basically say : we turned every stone and still found you were guilty ...regardless of the fact you are closed behind concrete walls, we still think it is reasonable to kill you.

So ..we want laws and reason against emotive excesses and mob rule..but we still want to kill you, KILL YOU MOTHERFUCKER.

Rational.

Very rational.

Raaaaaaaaaaaaaational.
posted by elpapacito at 2:35 AM on May 5, 2007 [2 favorites]


That was revolting. Stoning is despicable. That act was despicable.

Thanks fo the information/link about the Yezidi.

.
posted by nickyskye at 2:37 AM on May 5, 2007


ld, I think the original point was trying to get at something deeper.

We all filter "what's right" through our acculturation filters.

Most civilized countries of the world look upon our criminal justice system, including its capital punishment component, with abject disgust, yet you feel it is "vindicated".

for something so petty

Of course this event was murder by our standards, and by human standards we liberals would like to see advanced in the world, but this community has other standards.

From what I gather, this sect feels maintaining the ongoing viability of their minority community, plus the usual protection of "face" of the family, vindicates this brutal method of punishment by keeping its members in line

Stuff like this is straight out of the Old Testament.

To draw the circle to a close, I should note that a sizeable minority in this country desire a more explicit government endorsement of this same collection of Hebrew laws, myths, and history. Well, the parts of it they like at least.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 2:43 AM on May 5, 2007


Heywood Mogroot: Of course this event was murder by our standards, and by human standards we liberals would like to see advanced in the world, but this community has other standards.

You know, I don't care what those standards are. Either the people responsible are intrinsically sick and twisted, or their culture is - regardless, they are a detriment to humanity, and need to be put down. Having your culture be an excuse for your inhuman behavior went out with the Nazis, and with good reason.
posted by Mitrovarr at 3:35 AM on May 5, 2007 [4 favorites]


The video on Publius Pundit looks like it's all after-the-fact -- one of the people who was standing in a circle around the victim tried to get a close shot but was jostled so much that the camera's all the hell over the place. You get brief glimpses of the girl's body, and you can see some other onlookers are using camera phones to get shots too. She's in some sort of red top -- a jacket, I think -- and some surprisingly sexy panties for a culture that freaks out and gets all murderous and stuff over the notion of a girl dating a guy who's the wrong flavor. Not that there's anything particularly titillating about any of this. Saddening is more like it. In my culture, she would've been grounded, not gang-murdered. It's like spanking a crying baby with an axe.
posted by pax digita at 4:14 AM on May 5, 2007


The video on Publius Pundit looks like it's all after-the-fact

Yes.

In this one [caution: porn ads abound, in addition to the horrific stoning video], she's still alive at the beginning, struggling on the ground and trying to shield her head. Until it gets hit with a big fuckin' cinder block.
posted by Gator at 4:41 AM on May 5, 2007 [2 favorites]


elpapacito: it's with some difficulty that I'll try to play the devil's advocate here.

By and large, rational supporters of the death penalty don't want to "kill you motherfucker." They see it as a necessary evil. It's a universal incentive to obey the law, and a form of ultimate punishment when incarceration isn't "enough".

In other words, "the punishment fits the crime" has to work both ways. Especially for people who basically live in the prison system anyway, imprisonment alone doesn't rise to meet the viciousness of a cold-blooded murder, and consequently isn't enough to discourage it.

This is the rational pro-death penalty argument as best I can tell, from numerous debates on the topic with people I respect. (I'm intentionally ignoring emotional appeals and tough-on-crime posturing because, though they may be the most visible forms of advocacy, I don't consider them rational)

The relevant problem with this reasoning is that the "viciousness" of a crime is very subjective, and that's where I think you have to draw a distinction between this atrocity and capital punishment in, say, the US. Here, we have quite a bit of oversight, and a constitution that provides fundamental protections in an attempt to avoid abuses. It's only after a very extensive appeals process that we resort to extreme measures.

We don't let angry mobs play judge, jury, and executioner. We don't execute people based on religious offenses. We don't use the execution as a public stunt to make an example out of offenders. We don't intentionally choose brutal and painful methods of execution. We, as a whole, don't do it out of bloodlust, as you seem to imply.

And as much as I'd prefer to live in an America that has abolished the death penalty, I do think that our status quo is fundamentally unlike the savagery we see in this FPP.
posted by Riki tiki at 4:43 AM on May 5, 2007 [2 favorites]


I didn't watch the video and will not. The entire thing is barbaric. I suppose some attempt to "understand" why it was done is warranted, but only in the service of stamping it out. I have to confess it makes me think that we Americans have the force with us, because that is nothing if not the dark side.
posted by MarshallPoe at 4:59 AM on May 5, 2007


Pathetic laws! Based on nothing but a thought of belief. Just like a though that once earth was flat. Where you'd be stoned to death if you dare to say it. Or once a belief that many gods ruled the world. Heck each person had their own god.

Then nothing but out of though, everyone agreeded, "Ah! So we can satisfy our egos, we'll all believe in XYZ god".
posted by mesmerx at 5:10 AM on May 5, 2007


You know what? I agree with posting about honor killings and posting links to news sources about the crime on Metafilter, and I know there's a drive to make Metafilter articles more comprehensive and tactile.

I don't agree with posting videos of the violence itself on the FPP. If you have to, I would recommend doing it after a "more inside".

I've never enjoyed or approved of or thought wise the newer forms of voyeurism and pornography rooted in violence. Sometimes I think we Westerners go too far, thinking we had to be there. We didn't. We don't. We can, from afar, criticize those who were. We do not have to see it to believe it.
posted by kalessin at 5:13 AM on May 5, 2007


It may not be fair to draw an analogy between this cowardly abomination and capital punishment -- but it strikes me that crowd participating in this is disturbingly similar the jeering celebratory crowd outside prison here (Lincoln, NE) when they executed Harold Otey.
posted by RavinDave at 5:16 AM on May 5, 2007


There's only one rule that I know of, babies - God damn it, you've got to be kind.
posted by Bokononist at 5:21 AM on May 5, 2007 [3 favorites]


Find out more about why the followers of muhammad are violent at...
I'm sure that will provide valuable background to this heinous murder in a Yezidi community.
I suppose I'm both a universalist and a cultural relativist. I would not hesitate to intervene if I had the opportunity to prevent something like this, but I've lived in the world long enough to realise that you're not going to arrive at a valid set of universal values that don't need imposing externally without understanding and engaging the variety of cultures in the world.
I think you only have to look to, say, women's movements in cultures where appalling practices like this are still prevalent to see that no community is monolithic and there will be forces of progression. I have little doubt that there will have been people in the community where this crime occurred who are as outraged as any of us here. What I take from history is that the best you can do from the outside is to live up to better values yourself to provide a contrast, and support allies for change inside when they ask.
posted by Abiezer at 5:49 AM on May 5, 2007 [4 favorites]


The analogy to capital punishment is one thing. But we excuse ourselves as civilized rather too easily when we forget that we engage in the functional equivalent of this act all the time, whenever we drop bombs on civilian-inhabited targets, which is all the fucking time. You want to see sheets turn scarlet from blunt force trauma? Look at the aftermath of a concussion bomb on an ordinary house full of women and children. You want to see complete innocents torn to shreds by mobs of men hurling things? Look at the work of the troops we're supposed to "support" (as if paying taxes isn't by definition "supporting" the troops, which I'm sick of doing when it means condoning murder).

There are tens if not hundreds of thousands of Du'a Kahlil Aswads in graves in Iraq today. Whether Sadaam put them there, or mobs of ignorant theocrats, or we did it, it's all murder.
posted by spitbull at 5:52 AM on May 5, 2007


This is not "best of the web". This is humans at their fucking worst.

I wish I could un-know this post.
posted by casarkos at 6:08 AM on May 5, 2007


But that said, it's a lovely spring morning in New York, the kind that makes me want to stretch, smoke a spliff, and say "fuck religion." All of it. All believers. All the irrational nonsense they spout. Fuck national prayer breakfasts and "honor" killing parties and creationism and all the rest. Your "god" is either a powerless fuckhead who allows awful, evil things to happen to innocent people, or s/he/it enjoys and condones this stuff (as many believers, and those doing the stoning or blaming Hurricane Katrina on teh gayz seem to believe).

For what it's worth, I also oppose posting these sorts of videos on MeFi, certainly in FPPs, no matter how much warning is given. We can be outraged without participating in the prurient indignities being visited on this poor girl's last moments. MeFites are intelligent enough to form appropriate levels of anger and outrage over clear verbal descriptions. The video is overkill, and just a little too interesting to some people.
posted by spitbull at 6:15 AM on May 5, 2007


Find out more about why the followers of muhammad are violent at...

More like the followers of Satan! (Well, Shaitan, at least - the equivalant name, if not exactly the same interpretation.)

I haven't and won't watch the video, but I think there are people who should see it, because the leaders they vote for would like to see similar kinds of 'justice' in the U.S.
posted by bashos_frog at 6:26 AM on May 5, 2007


And in other news, Gary L. Gienger of Upton Massachusetts, reports that April in Kurdish northern Iraq is just divine. Mission truly accomplished, even.
Seriously folks, can we hurry up those efforts to colonize Mars? I believe the asshats of all creeds, colors and races will be better left to their own devices once I'm gone.
posted by paxton at 6:28 AM on May 5, 2007


I wonder if she has any brothers, and how they fell about the issue. This is why I think all religious people are completely insane. Even those who think they're harmlessly praying before dinner. You're all completely insane.
posted by autodidact at 6:29 AM on May 5, 2007


i wonder why no one's talking about the 23 guys who got pulled off the bus and killed ...
posted by pyramid termite at 6:44 AM on May 5, 2007


I think spitbull, autodidact and the other religion critics are missing the point. Both religious people and atheists commit acts of barbarism. See the Crusades on the one hand and Soviet class murder on the other. The common thread is, however, barbarism. These people simply do not value human life the way we do. However inspired, that's the common element. It pretty much boils down to "love thy neighbor." They don't.
posted by MarshallPoe at 6:47 AM on May 5, 2007


It's one thing to try and execute people to the full extent of the law- to the best of the ability of the justice system- a system that while it unfortunately makes mistakes, also has vindicated itself over and over.

This- this is just fucking murder.


No, all executions are murder. Without exception. There is no rational need for any execution to ever occur. None whatsoever. Attempting to justify your country's barbaric practices by saying "Hey! Look! Not as barbaric as those brown people!" is completely ridiculous.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 6:48 AM on May 5, 2007


The family of Du’a Khalil Aswad has no honor.
I hope they'll be reminded of this very often in the future.
posted by sour cream at 6:50 AM on May 5, 2007


This is why I think all religious people are completely insane. Even those who think they're harmlessly praying before dinner. You're all completely insane.

Fuck off. Barbarism is a human trait, and whether one uses religion to justify it (as in this case), or political theory (see: Lenin, Stalin, et al) is immaterial.

Moreover, using an extreme example to tar everyone else with the same brush? Smacks of bigotry.

As I have said time and time again: despite a very vocal minority who wishes otherwise, the vast majority of religious people prefer to keep it private, and have no interest in pushing it on anybody else. So how about you keep your stupid little judgements to yourself, m'kay?
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 6:54 AM on May 5, 2007


this community has other standards

See, the thing is the "community" deciding the standards is not comprised of all of the people upon whom the standards will be imposed. To wit: it's largely men deciding what will be done to women.

It's this kind of patronizing, myopic thinking that makes people dislike liberals: every culture has problems -- western ones included, certainly -- but in the rush to be open-minded and non-judgmental some people seem to want to deny that fact. Honour killings happen to be a big problem. Are we really supposed to think this girl went willingly to her death, shrugging, "welp! It's just the culture 'round these parts!" Would honour killings even be such a big problem if women were so accepting of the standards imposed on them? Presumably if these mores were acceptable to everyone, they would be deviated from only rarely and these killings would hardly ever happen, no?

At some point this kind of attitude becomes insulting too: it carries a connotation of "well, you just can't expect any more from these people." Yes, the world can. They're humans, and just like all humans, they're conflicted and flawed, and capable of both great evil and great good.

This is a terrible thing that's happened, and just because it happened somewhere else doesn't make it less so.
posted by AV at 6:56 AM on May 5, 2007 [5 favorites]


OH NOES, I THOUGHT HONOUR KILLINGS WAS A MUSLIM THING!
posted by delmoi at 7:00 AM on May 5, 2007


These people were sane. They were not brain damaged. They were (presumably) just as intelligent as you or me.
There are people in this thread calling for the men who stoned this girl to be killed - what is the difference? That most of them wish to be slightly more humane in the method of execution is nice of them, I suppose.
They were killing this girl for the same reason those people want to kill them. In their eyes, abhorrent behaviour that cannot and should not be tolerated must be stopped. Both groups advocate violence (and in some cases extreme violence) to stop this problem now and stop it from happening again (stoning to death must be a hell of a deterrent).
People use culture, religion, education and reason to solve the problems they see every day. They give mental tools that allow us to work with others in our environment to make things better. The problem is that both sides here don't have a tool for solving vile and 'unforgivable' acts except the ancient stand-bye of violence. I don't have a solution, but I passionately believe that killing everyone who disagrees with you, however justified you think it is, will not work. I may be wrong.
posted by YAMWAK at 7:02 AM on May 5, 2007


By and large, rational supporters of the death penalty don't want to "kill you motherfucker." They see it as a necessary evil. It's a universal incentive to obey the law, and a form of ultimate punishment when incarceration isn't "enough".

Yeah, right.
posted by delmoi at 7:07 AM on May 5, 2007 [1 favorite]


Meanwhile, here in this country, are we even pretending that imprisonment/detention is about rehabilitation anymore?
posted by Uther Bentrazor at 7:08 AM on May 5, 2007


Also: just because there are things wrong in our own culture does not make them right in another. It makes them both problems that need fixing.
posted by AV at 7:16 AM on May 5, 2007 [1 favorite]


Of course people are inherently barbaric. Of course there are other things that can drive us to succumb to barbarism, but none as insidious as religion.

As I have said time and time again: despite a very vocal minority who wishes otherwise, the vast majority of religious people prefer to keep it private, and have no interest in pushing it on anybody else. So how about you keep your stupid little judgements to yourself, m'kay?

Say what you want, doesn't change my feelings that you have an imaginary friend, and are thus insane. I do appreciate you keeping it to yourself, but it doesn't make you any less crazy.
posted by autodidact at 7:20 AM on May 5, 2007


This is a group rape and public murder. "True Believers" creep me out. It doesn't matter what color penis they claim their god has. They are sick fucks, one and all. The Christian fundamentalists are different only by degree.
posted by chance at 7:28 AM on May 5, 2007


Let me put the brakes on and apologize pre-emptively for that last comment. Reading it, I suppose I do come off like a bigot. Out in the "real world" I don't attack people's religious beliefs, and keep my own beliefs mostly to myself like dirtynumbangelboy suggests. I should use more measured language on Mefi... think my blood sugar's low right now or something.
posted by autodidact at 7:28 AM on May 5, 2007


The Christian fundamentalists are different only by degree.

Perhaps, but degrees matter a hell of a lot. Ask the dead girl.
posted by MarshallPoe at 7:40 AM on May 5, 2007 [1 favorite]


warning and disturbing

Honest question: What does posting someone's violent death add to our understanding of the event and its consequences?
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 7:50 AM on May 5, 2007


"regardless of the fact you are closed behind concrete walls, we still think it is reasonable to kill you"

Imprisonment doesn't prevent murderers from killing guards and other inmates.
posted by aerotive at 7:56 AM on May 5, 2007


MarshallPoe and DirtyNumb, just because people can be barbaric in the absence of religious motivations or rationalizations doesn't mean religion isn't to blame for specific forms and incidents of barbarism as such. And both of you invoke Soviet brutality as barbarism in the absence of religion. It wasn't. Soviet communism was a cult of personality. It was certainly a religion in the ways it mobilized popular violence.

We have yet to see a human society that is truly post-religion. I think it's time we gave it a chance.
posted by spitbull at 8:18 AM on May 5, 2007


Honest question: What does posting someone's violent death add to our understanding of the event and its consequences?

What he said.

The only reason this is even news is because it got on YouTube.
posted by thirteenkiller at 8:20 AM on May 5, 2007


Why the hell would you post this.
Ironically, today is
Tammy Wynette's birthday.

For those of you under a certain age I'll explain
:
D I V O R C E
and
Stand by your Man

Just google her, you'll get plenty
posted by Cedric at 8:33 AM on May 5, 2007


This is disgusting. Thank you for posting the video, because until I saw the glee, the lust for murder in these peoples voices, a 17 year old girl kicked and smashed and mortally crushed by her own kin, this was just another death by strangers for unimaginable customs somewhere else. Until I felt the hot tears welling up, the knots in my stomach, the outrage and vomit threatening to burst from my gut, this story was just words. I was saddened to read this last night, when I first saw the Daily Mail story, but until I saw the horrific reality of it, I didn't fully understand.

Similar to the disparity between the VT killings and the every-day deaths of many more in the Middle East, my numbness and isolation from these sort of tragedies kept me safe, kept me from being there and knowing how terrifying it really is. Until it is in my face. Until I became one of those security people who watched a young girl die painfully for vanity. Until I had to hear the sounds of a mod screaming for murder.

I understand that people might not want to see this, and it is their right to not. Not seeing it is your way of keeping it out of your world, but this is the worst of humanity, and this is happening every day, every day. It is more than words.
posted by dozo at 8:34 AM on May 5, 2007 [6 favorites]


We have yet to see a human society that is truly post-religion. I think it's time we gave it a chance.

Great, but in the meantime (and it's gonna be a long meantime--like, forever), can we stop calling religious people murders? Sorta sets the wrong tone...
posted by MarshallPoe at 8:35 AM on May 5, 2007


For example, back in the days of Samurai in Japan, it was perfectly OK for Samurais to kill a lower-caste for just accidentally touching your sword walking down a crowded street, no one would bat an eye.

False. It's easy to glorify the past, because no one is available to belie your description. But there's plenty of evidence that the mythical smoothly-operating society of pre-industrial Japan was just as much a thin veneer as heroism of cowboys in pre-industrial America, or the sheet placed over a body no one wants to see after they've mangled it with their own flaws.

Phrases like "perfectly OK" and "no one would bat an eye" in the context of murder suggest humans are so completely maleable by culture that there is absolutely no shared humanity. That's not a healthy view of the world, not least because it's untrue. The first step in understanding other cultures is understanding that other people are pretty much the same as we are. They get upset when their friends die, they abuse power when given too much.
posted by scottreynen at 8:50 AM on May 5, 2007 [3 favorites]


dozo writes 'Until I had to hear the sounds of a mod screaming for murder.'

Uh-oh. Sounds like Jessamyn is on the warpath again.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 8:50 AM on May 5, 2007 [1 favorite]


This is horrible.

It would also be horrible to see a youtube video of an Iraqi family immediately after a U.S. bomb hits their home, where an eight year old girl impaled on a shard of glass is struggling to crawl out from under the torso of her mother, but loses too much blood and twitches a few times and dies. Is there a youtube video of that? Because I really don't understand anything in the abstract anymore.

And one day, god willing, my children will be so inured to the horror of video that they will actually have to see, touch, and smell the carnage in order to understand or feel anything about it. And perhaps their children will just be completely devoid of any feeling whatsoever. The future's so bright, I can't wait.
posted by luser at 8:53 AM on May 5, 2007 [5 favorites]


Frankly, if the mind of God is so convoluted that this has to fit somewhere in his big scheme, then you damn well should feel very, very hopeless for the universe, because its creator is one ripe bastard.

If you realize that humans are animals and belief and actions like these resulting from belief are just left over remnants of our lizard brains, then there's at least a little hope that we can get beyond these kinds of unfathomably brutal nightmares. It may take a long, long time, though.

The only reason this is even news is because it got on YouTube. - In a just world, every time it happened it would be news, and there would be arrest and trials, and punishment. When it comes to this utterly nonsensical lunatic behavior, there would be punishment.
posted by smallerdemon at 8:57 AM on May 5, 2007


The problem is that in today's PC world you can't call this what it is.

This is the barbaric act of primitives. Primitives who learned how to use technology like cell phones, but still can't come to terms with the sun-god in the sky.

These people are backwards, primitive, savages. And woe be unto anyone who says otherwise. These people have no place in modern civilization. Mankind has outgrown this sort of thing.

Every man on that video should be rounded up, and executed by the state. One at a time. Publicly, on television. And after each one is killed, they should read a proclamation saying "this is what happens to those who participate in honor killings".

Repeat 100-200 times. It would take most of a day.

That would make an impact. If these primitives are capable of understanding anything.

And for those of you who say state-administered justice is the same as lynchings by mobs, you are intellectual midgets who have no place in any serious adult discussion. Administering justice of any kind, be it executions, incarcerations, or garnishments of property is incredibly unpleasant business. That's why it is one of the functions of the state. I am endlessly amused by people who believe locking someone in a concrete box for 45 years and removing all autonomy and dignity is "better" than executing them.

Also, while I have disdain for Christianity, every time something like this comes up and someone mentions the Crusades or the Inquisition, I like to remind them that Christianity, by and large, gave that up several HUNDRED years ago. (Abortion clinic shootings/bombings notwithstanding).

This is not a historic film, a remnant from a very long time ago. It just happened. While you were trying to decide whether to get a hybrid automobile or if you should upgrade your laptop, there are people in another country, probably again today, crushing a young girl to death with rocks via mob rule.

I agree with autodidact, and I don't think you should apologize at all.

Believing in a magic imaginary man in the sky, regardless of what name you use for him, predisposes you to doing crazy, ridiculous shit in his name.

If you are an adult of reasonable intelligence, and you *REALLY* believe there is some ethereal being watching and participating you your daily life, you have a mental deficiency, and you cannot be trusted to act rationally.

Fucking barbaric primitive savages. I hope they all die a cruel, painful, excruciating death. You know, like the one they inflicted on an innocent girl.
posted by Ynoxas at 9:03 AM on May 5, 2007 [7 favorites]


23 people killed in retaliation for killing this girl for converting to Islam ...

And what if the boy converted to be with his love, what's the penalty for apostasy from Islam?

Oh, that's right, it's death. So it's killing those who have the same values as you do, but just believe different things. Great. It's not about values, it's not about being "more faithful" or any bullshit like that.

Killing those who believe different things is okay. That's it. No golden rule.
posted by cotterpin at 9:12 AM on May 5, 2007


am endlessly amused by people who believe locking someone in a concrete box for 45 years and removing all autonomy and dignity is "better" than executing them.

Because you belong to the society of the easily amused, like Fark , midgets and whatnot. But that's another story...

...what you clearly don't understand is this SIMPLE difference

1. I can cage Joe Innocent and make him suffer for a lot of time..but also can cage him for a while, notice I was wrong and repair somehow. I know, I can't give back the time spent in prison, but I can make the remaining time a lot better ..in a form of attempt to compensate.

2. If I kill Joe Innocent ...I can't do shit for him.

How difficult is that ? What part of "not being able to resurrect" don't you understand ?

Every man on that video should be rounded up, and executed by the state. One at a time. Publicly, on television. And after each one is killed, they should read a proclamation saying "this is what happens to those who participate in honor killings".

That is exactly what you don't understand. They killed the girl in a twisted attempt to make an example of her , give her a spectacular punishment , a lesson for all the other girls..that if you don't behave, you will die like her.

Now you want State to do the same to her killers, make an example of them, give them a spectacular punishment, a lesson for all the people, that if you don't behave, you will die like them.

Can you reason by analogy, make parallels ? I am not fucking asking for no fucking rocket science.
posted by elpapacito at 9:15 AM on May 5, 2007 [1 favorite]


Dear angry athiests:

We get it, we get it. You hate religions. You think people who believe in gods are dumb. You think that anyone who believes in god and does something awful somehow shows a causal link between believing in god and doing awful things. You want to remind everyone of all these things at every opportunity.

We get it. You can shut up now.

Sincerely,
People who are generally cool with most people
posted by 23skidoo at 9:17 AM on May 5, 2007 [12 favorites]


23 people killed in retaliation for killing this girl for converting to Islam ...

shhh ... there's no video and those deaths don't help people ride their political and cultural hobbyhorses as well as the girl's death does ... they're just not as sensational or useful

(and before anyone gets angry, the deafening silence about those 23 people speaks for itself ... no excuses accepted)
posted by pyramid termite at 9:25 AM on May 5, 2007 [1 favorite]


When we gather in a group in the street and kill someone for an affront to our collective sense of rightness, it's considered injustice and murder.

When we get together and agree to draft a law to codify our sense of rightness, and appoint other people to kill someone for breaking that law, it's considered justice and not "murder".

Seems to me to be a distinction without an effective difference. The former is more immediate and visceral while the latter is more deliberative, but the cause and effect are pretty much the same.

The only thing that gives the latter the cover of "legitimacy" is that a larger number of people have formally agreed on the circumstances under which the killing will take place, and a more deliberative system has been established to handle it. It's murder by proxy, where the proxy is a formally appointed agent of the people assigned the role of handling such things.

We may consider this to be a more "civilized" approach to killing people that violate our social norms, but to the person being killed, there's precious little difference.

Of course, if we're GOING to have majority-driven killings as a mode of exacting "justice", then I'd rather have a deliberative process than a mob process. But that's just picking the least of two evils, in my opinion. Seems like we really ought to be beyond havng to make this choice as a species, though...
posted by darkstar at 9:47 AM on May 5, 2007


When we get together and agree to draft a law to codify our sense of rightness, and appoint other people to kill someone for breaking that law, it's considered justice and not "murder".

Only in the US.
In most other parts of the world, it's still considered murder.
posted by sour cream at 9:54 AM on May 5, 2007


LOL OMG WTF MUSLIMS
posted by fandango_matt at 9:56 AM on May 5, 2007


Can we drop the "OMG this video is gratuitous and some day in the future my children will be totally desensitized to violence and then everything will be horrible" bit?

In the past, people lived with and accepted much more violence than in today's western societies. In fact, people in the west lived in societies more similar to the one depicted in the video. Cruelty to both people and animals was common and accepted, even seen as entertainment, and violent death was a common part of life.

Modern culture, mass media, etc., isn't desensitizing you, at least not much compared to the attitudes of more traditional societies. The video is there. Choose if you're going to watch it or not, then react appropriately. I watched it, and it actually doesn't contain any violence, but it's quite enlightening in seeing the attitudes of the people who committed the act.

Also, I think it's good to get a visceral feel for what's going on once in a while, even if it's an intensely negative thing. Get too removed from it, and people are numbers on a page. That disconnect is, IMO, much more a danger of modern society than desensitizing through exposure.
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 9:58 AM on May 5, 2007 [2 favorites]


State-sponsored capital punishment is not "murder" any more than imprisonment is kidnapping or fines are theft. It may be bad public policy, and it may be an immoral form of killing, but "murder" it ain't.
posted by brain_drain at 10:04 AM on May 5, 2007


the deafening silence about those 23 people speaks for itself ... no excuses accepted

not my fucking responsibility pal. I had to speak against all the violence in this fallen world I'd never be able to put anything else to page.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 10:08 AM on May 5, 2007


posted by brain_drain State-sponsored capital punishment is not "murder" any more than imprisonment is kidnapping or fines are theft. It may be bad public policy, and it may be an immoral form of killing, but "murder" it ain't.

Sure it is. It's the longest, most drawn-out form of premeditated murder there is. The state gives the condemmed a last meal, a last phone call, a last statement, and then executes them. If that's not premeditated murder, I don't know what is.
posted by fandango_matt at 10:10 AM on May 5, 2007


It may be bad public policy, and it may be an immoral form of killing, but "murder" it ain't.

In the end, "Murder" is what is in our hearts. If you regret doing it but see no other option, killing someone is not murder.

I came across the angle of analysis when considering the atomic bombings of Japan. If the pilots, people on those missions, and people here at home wanted to wipe out cities full of people, accomplishing the deed with hatred in our hearts, then it was a form of murder. To the extent it was the least shitty option available to us at that time, it was not.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 10:11 AM on May 5, 2007


this community has other standards
See, the thing is the "community" deciding the standards is not comprised of all of the people upon whom the standards will be imposed. To wit: it's largely men deciding what will be done to women.

It's this kind of patronizing, myopic thinking that makes people dislike liberals . . .


way to selectively misquote me, buddy. My full quote:

Of course this event was murder by our standards, and by human standards we liberals would like to see advanced in the world, but this community has other standards.

And as for men deciding moral standards, may I present this and this.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 10:24 AM on May 5, 2007


I am confused. What does the stoning of a young woman that fell in love have anything to do with someone who probably committed a crime and is sentenced of capital punishment?

I'm sorry, but I have no turkey.
posted by YoBananaBoy at 10:26 AM on May 5, 2007 [2 favorites]


.
posted by cell divide at 10:29 AM on May 5, 2007


Ynoxas, you're an asshole.

What I'm wondering about is how a religion that, according to the Metafilter post, "has rejected dualism and, therefore, the ideas of sin and evil," can possibly countenance something like this.
posted by nasreddin at 10:29 AM on May 5, 2007


1. I can cage Joe Innocent and make him suffer for a lot of time..but also can cage him for a while, notice I was wrong and repair somehow. I know, I can't give back the time spent in prison, but I can make the remaining time a lot better ..in a form of attempt to compensate.

2. If I kill Joe Innocent ...I can't do shit for him.


I am so glad that in our society, once people have served their time, they get accepted readily back into the fold, given all their legal rights, and are able to get a job easily and start living a full life again--a better life, even!
posted by nasreddin at 10:32 AM on May 5, 2007 [1 favorite]


You know, I don't care what those standards are. Either the people responsible are intrinsically sick and twisted, or their culture is - regardless, they are a detriment to humanity, and need to be put down. Having your culture be an excuse for your inhuman behavior went out with the Nazis, and with good reason.

er, the Nazis were basing their actions fully on your above, word for fucking word, at that.

You won't see me defending this bronze-age morality, or the typical islamic extremist reaction to it; I only think you've got to be very careful when one starts bringing violence into the situation.

These fuckers have got cell phones now, so they are becoming increasingly acculturated to norms outside & obviously above their own.

I used to have great faith in the superiority of social democratic liberalism to work as a force of global good, but I have to admit that Tien An Men, google kowtowing to the Central Party, the Bush Doctrine, 9/11 itself, have weakened this faith a bit.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 10:35 AM on May 5, 2007


2sheets: "There is no place in the 21st century for this shit."

Hell. This shit didn't belong in the first century. There's no place for this at all, and yet we humans found a way. We made room.

There's predators and there is prey. Organized religion, be it jewish or christian or muslim or what have you, turns individuals into a church body - a predator hellbent on survival. This can be a powerful beast. It can heal communities or it can destroy them.

Be it witch burnings or stonings, the intent is to detect an individual amongst the flock which does not belong, and expunge it as if it were a kidney stone. One can argue that led by the wrong 'shepherd', a church is nothing more than organized mob rule. A stampede of cows... or really big sheep.

We sit here most of us in non-third world countries. We feel ourselves above the fray. Imagine if the entire North American continent suddenly had to go without electricity, running water, and telephony simultaneously for a month. Imagine if for some unexplained reason, no car engines or generators or machines worked anymore. How long would we retain our sense of well-being in the face of that? How many days before society broke down to Lord Of The Flies time? And what would most human beings turn to for answers? Even some aetheists?

Take away your crutches and your comforts and your toys; a belief in some force greater than you is all you'd have left to make sense of it all. Well.. that and sex. ...and killing one another with blunt objects, I guess we'd still have that going for us.
posted by ZachsMind at 10:37 AM on May 5, 2007 [1 favorite]


What does the stoning of a young woman that fell in love have anything to do with someone who probably committed a crime and is sentenced of capital punishment?

I think I responded to this here. . .

This woman was murdered by a community still living under Old Testament-like moral standards.

To the extent we "put down" people because we hate them I think we have a moral failing, too.

The degree of failing is different, but the end is the same. One more life extinguished unnecessarily.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 10:41 AM on May 5, 2007


Capital punishment is barbaric. There is no place for it on this planet.

What is MORE barbaric in this case is what is viewed as THE CRIME and WHY (and WHO) they view as a criminal.

It's exclusively about how they view women. And they view women as sub-human and disposable. Women have no rights in these societies. And it is often LEGALLY codified as so. That is cold calculated barbarism at it's worst — not mere mob rule.

These people, yes that's right I said THESE PEOPLE, who still believe in bullshit 13th century values are fucking barbarians. It is not to be tolerated or compared to anything else.

Comparing THIS to the hypocrisies of western jurisprudence is idiotic and the worst form apologia.
posted by tkchrist at 10:49 AM on May 5, 2007 [3 favorites]


she's still alive at the beginning, struggling on the ground and trying to shield her head. Until it gets hit with a big fuckin' cinder block.

She is still a she when hit with the cinder block. Sad to think a quicker death with the use of a cinder block may have been the only compassion expressed by a mob participant in this sadistic public murder/scapegoating.

The rationale, as it was expressed to me years go by a Kuwaiti woman, is that the males in a Muslim community feel entitled to kill a female who commits adultery or has relations with a forbidden male because her actions may contaminate the behavior of all the other women in the family or community. It usually would be the males of the girl's/woman's family who would be obliged by those rules to commit the murder

Presumably, this public stoning was a kind of warning to both Muslim males and females not to have relations with the Yezidi.

The girl's death reportedly led to the reprisal massacre of more than 20 Yazidi factory workers a couple of weeks later...she was stoned in the street by nearly two-thousand people, as confirmed by eyewitnesses, while police and army forces cordoned off the area and denied access to journalists.

This crime being made public and discussed, her being murdered publicly and the murder of other Yezidis, may save other Yezidi lives later.

I agree with the statement in the article quoted: Dua’s death and the subsequent retaliation against the Yezidi community are a reminder to all of us, as individuals and as a society, that we have to continue to fight against the violent and archaic mindset that sadly persists today...

That "archaic mindset" exists all over the world today in various styles and places.
posted by nickyskye at 10:50 AM on May 5, 2007


Obviously, this is really horrible. It's horrible in Iraq. It's horrible in India. It's horrible in Germany. It's horrible in Turkey. It's horrible in Jordan. It's horrible in Denmark. It's horrible in Pakistan. It's horrible in Canada. But not all honor killings are are Islamic, and they are not rooted in any religious text.

"Honor crimes" originated in customary law that pre-dates Islam and Christianity. They span communities, religions, and countries, including Argentina, Bangladesh, Brazil, Ecuador, Egypt, Guatemala, India, Iran, Jordan, Lebanon, Pakistan, Palestine, Peru, Syria, Turkey, and Venezuela.

It's the way our propoganda teaches us to see things (if this was the 1950s, we'd be all LOLRUSSIANS), but I have to say I do get tired of LOLMUSLIMZ. Whether people are actually saying it, being sarcastic, or complaining about it like I am right now.

Religion is a scapegoat here, as deep misogyny is the first & foremost problem. Women around the world do not have the same value. Do the Muslim hate dance all you want, but the GENDER ATTITUDES of MEN is what is wrong. Men in many cultures do not respect the lives of women to be as valid as the lives of men. Their use of religion as an excuse to murder is a side issue.
posted by miss lynnster at 11:00 AM on May 5, 2007 [22 favorites]


As usual, YMMV.
posted by miss lynnster at 11:01 AM on May 5, 2007


She is still a she when hit with the cinder block.

When I said "it" up there, nickyskye, I was referring to her head. As in, "...trying to shield her head, until [her head] got hit with," etc.

posted by Gator at 11:03 AM on May 5, 2007


pyramid termite writes "shhh ... there's no video and those deaths don't help people ride their political and cultural hobbyhorses as well as the girl's death does ... they're just not as sensational or useful"

Could you please be explicit about your meaning here? I don't understand what you've written here.
posted by mr_roboto at 11:05 AM on May 5, 2007


OUTRAGEFILTER

Well, to be fair, there's outrage, and then there's this. This is a few orders of magnitude above mere outrage.

I have nothing further to add over and above what miss lynster has (again) so eloquently written.
posted by psmealey at 11:11 AM on May 5, 2007


Pathetic laws! Based on nothing but a thought of [sic] belief.

Find me something, anything, that is not based on a thought or belief.
posted by quonsar at 11:16 AM on May 5, 2007


miss lynnster: you are right, except you are ignoring the elephant in the room that misogyny is codified by their religious law, as I would like to point out, also is the case for Judaism and Christianity.

If you want to have a chicken-and-egg argument that's fine, but it is also irrelevant. There was surely a belief system of some kind in place in those regions before Islam or Christianity, and it of course is likely misogyny was a "feature" of those as well.

The point is that these backwards cultures have made this legitimate through, at the least, their religious law, and often in their civil law (of which there is often little difference).

So, you can strain at gnats and say "this isn't about religion!". That doesn't change jack squat about the actual circumstances.

Put another way, consider if the entire region were taken over by a profoundly charismatic Mormon evangelist. Do you think this would still be an issue? How many public stonings would occur if their belief system were totally replaced?

So, it's not about religion... it is about simple, primitive people that base the great majority of their entire existence around their religion.

I fail to see the difference except in a semantic sense.
posted by Ynoxas at 11:18 AM on May 5, 2007


nickyskye: "the males in a Muslim community feel entitled to kill a female who commits adultery or has relations with a forbidden male because her actions may contaminate the behavior of all the other women in the family or community."

As I said before, the intent of a stoning is to detect an individual amongst the flock which does not belong, and expunge it as if it were a kidney stone. That's it. The church body sees itself as one thing and anything that doesn't support its worldview must be removed, lest the other parts of the Body become foreign invaders as well. How is this different from nationalism? It's a survival instinct.

I'm not condoning it by any means but until you understand why this sort of thing still happens, you have no way of stopping it. Until we can learn why there are still people, muslim or otherwise, who condone such behavior, we will never be able to communicate to them on a level they can understand, and this behavior WILL continue.

tkchrist: "Comparing THIS to the hypocrisies of western jurisprudence is idiotic and the worst form apologia."

Yeah. THAT attitude will get you REAL far with the extremist muslim communities. Good luck with that.

We compare it to what we understand. That's ONE step on a REAL LONG ROAD towards spreading civility the CORRECT way throughout the world. Then we try to understand what they understand, find common ground, and seek compromise and educational progress. There are things in their culture that we can learn from too.

You don't force democracy upon people with guns and violence. You SHOW them real democracy at work and why it's a more viable alternative. Then maybe they'll do the stoning thing a little less often over time.

Baby steps on a real fucking long road. That's what we have before us. It starts with understanding shit like this. Why it happens. Then we'll have a foothold from where we can climb.
posted by ZachsMind at 11:21 AM on May 5, 2007 [2 favorites]


Metafilter: monkeys in pants.
posted by lumensimus at 11:21 AM on May 5, 2007 [2 favorites]


The only reason this is even news is because it got on YouTube.

Then perhaps it's a good thing that it got on YouTube.
posted by Mikey-San at 11:23 AM on May 5, 2007 [2 favorites]


(I'd + the above 3 comments like a lab rat in a crack experiment if I could)
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 11:38 AM on May 5, 2007


She is still a she when hit with the cinder block.

I believe the "it" in Gator's remark was referring to her head - not her status as a human being.
posted by katillathehun at 11:40 AM on May 5, 2007


Religion is a scapegoat here, as deep misogyny is the first & foremost problem.

Each and every link you posted about honor killings involved people who are Muslim. I've never heard of a Christian, 20th century "honor" killing, though I wouldn't be surprised if some backwater Born-Again sects engaged in the practice at one time or another. But I've never seen any mention of "honor killing" where it didn't involve some religious fanaticism.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 11:40 AM on May 5, 2007


posted by Civil_Disobedient I've never heard of a Christian, 20th century "honor" killing

In this country it's called "Domestic Violence", "Spousal Abuse", and "Abortion Doctor Assassination."
posted by fandango_matt at 11:44 AM on May 5, 2007


What reasons did YouTube give for taking it down? They seem to have an interesting track record of taking down anything that could be seen as negative to Muslims these days.
posted by drstein at 11:48 AM on May 5, 2007


miss lynnster: you are right, except you are ignoring the elephant in the room that misogyny is codified by their religious law, as I would like to point out, also is the case for Judaism and Christianity.

Actually, no, I'm not ignoring that in the slightest. You will find that "Muslim law" is different in every country, in every community. In Saudi Arabia, women aren't allowed to drive. In Cairo & Turkey, women drive everywhere. In Egypt, 97% of women are circumcised at age 8 or so. In Saudi Arabia, that isn't the custom. In each case, it is "Muslim law" that has been told to the community by their MALE leaders for generations. There are NO WOMEN involved in these decisions.

The people believe their leaders when they say that the Quran believes in something. They do not believe that their leaders would wish any ill upon them, but that these powerful and holy MEN are just trying to guide everyone in the community to do what is right. Many people just assume that whatever their leaders say to do... must be supported by the Quran. However, many people are illiterate & their communicaction solely oral... so they have no idea what is in the Quran & what isn't. Sad fact is, even though I'm only a beginner with Arabic & my skills are super limited, I probably read the script better than many people in the middle east do.

So in the case of female circumcision in Egypt for example... it's not a new problem. They've tried to curb it. But the people are confused. They have been TRAINED to think that if they do not make their daughters "clean" that no man will want to marry them. And in Egypt, their daughters aren't exactly going to go out and run a corporation somewhere & make their own money. They are trying to do what they've been trained for generations is the right thing. Then when foreign people come in to tell people that your leaders are wrong, well... we've all seen how well that goes.

It isn't until the MEN IN THE COMMUNITIES declare women's right to be the same, until they change their edicts (For example: "Women should be allowed to feel sex, if they stray from you maybe it's because you're not a worthy husband.") that anything will change. It will take baby steps, unfortunately. But fortunately there are little victories and some people seem to be changing.

But I stand by my point. Misogyny is the problem here. Not religion in & of itself. It's what people USE religion, ANY RELIGION, to make excuses for. If the misogyny didn't exist, the excuses wouldn't be necessary.
posted by miss lynnster at 11:57 AM on May 5, 2007 [1 favorite]


Point I'm making... when it comes to the chicken & the egg, since people say they've based "Muslim law" on things that aren't actually IN the Quran, it's a farce to blame the religion when obviously misogyny is what is fueling this. 30 years ago women in Egypt weren't even WEARING headscarves... none of this stuff was an ISSUE. Nobody rewrote the Quran since then.
posted by miss lynnster at 12:00 PM on May 5, 2007


(this stuff = the headscarf thing, not honor killings).

Ok, off to lunch now. Must stop posting.
posted by miss lynnster at 12:01 PM on May 5, 2007


In this country it's called "Domestic Violence", "Spousal Abuse", and "Abortion Doctor Assassination.".

Do you really think that?
posted by MarshallPoe at 12:16 PM on May 5, 2007


What reasons did YouTube give for taking it down? They seem to have an interesting track record of taking down anything that could be seen as negative to Muslims these days.
posted by drstein at 1:48 PM on May 5


The entire western world does drstein.

The reason being that we are AFRAID of Muslims. So we bend over backwards not to offend them.

Comedy Central has no problem showing Jesus in any number of ridiculous absurd situations, but yet could not face the fear of reprisal by Muslims for just SHOWING a depiction of Mohammad. Note Fox also chickened out of showing a mere cartoon depiction of Mohammad.

And that's because there is good reason to be afraid.

If you offend Baptists, they might stage a boycott of your product (see Disney in the 80's and 90's).

If you offend Muslims, they will get on Al-Jazeera, and speak openly of holy jihad and how the streets will run red with the blood of the infidels. They also have a disturbingly frightening record of actually following through with these threats.

Even on MeFi, you can LOLXIANS all day, but once you say something disparaging about Muslims, defenders come out of the woodwork complaining about how "not all" Muslims are one way, and how it is "culture, not religion" and blah blah blah fucking blah.

The truth is in the west we are afraid of Muslims as a whole, and afraid of many Muslims as individuals, and probably for damn good reason.

Seriously, when was the last time the Catholic church beheaded someone?

And for the record, I do not dislike Muslims any more than I dislike any other religious devotee. I think Methodists and Mormons are just as goofy as Muslims. However, it's been a long time since there has been a Mormon suicide bombing.

And see, at least 80% of people just winced or got annoyed when I said that last line, because for all their protestations to the contrary, it is demonstrably clear that Islam is fundamentally different from practically every other established religion in the world.

As C_D alluded to, there are no "Honor Killings" for Presbyterians or Jews... and even if there were crazies who DID believe this, you certainly would never find an entire town standing around participating.

It's absurd, it's lunacy, it's barbaric, it's embarrassingly primitive.

I hate these people in the video. There is not a single good person among them. I wish them all gone from the planet. They are a blight. A plague. A rot.

And anyone, Muslim or not, anywhere in the world who approves of their actions, the same goes for them.

There is no way to approve of this in any way. There is no justification. I DO NOT CARE IF THIS IS THEIR CULTURE OR THEIR RELIGION OR THEIR HOBBY. Whatever it is, defending it, even in the slightest way, is unforgivable.
posted by Ynoxas at 12:22 PM on May 5, 2007 [3 favorites]


.
I have nothing else
posted by LMGM at 12:29 PM on May 5, 2007


peacey wrote: Morelike 8 men and no stripping.

Looking at the fuller video, it's clear that the crowd has at least a hundred people in it. Not all of them get to hit her at once but at least two dozen people do hit, kick, or throw rocks at her in the course of the very short (5 minute) segment that you can find online.
posted by lupus_yonderboy at 12:35 PM on May 5, 2007


ms lynnster, LOLMUSLIMZ is the jingo-rightwing gift that keeps on giving, people will never get tired of it. the Muslims are the new Soviets, plus they're brown and dress funny and worship a strange god and wear, like, turbans or something.

and they drive camels. that's comedy gold too.
posted by matteo at 12:40 PM on May 5, 2007


Ynoxas: "What reasons did YouTube give for taking it down? They seem to have an interesting track record of taking down anything that could be seen as negative to Muslims these days.
posted by drstein at 1:48 PM on May 5


The entire western world does drstein.

The reason being that we are AFRAID of Muslims. So we bend over backwards not to offend them.
....
"
Wow wow calm down dude, just start by making your country stop bombing and killing thousands of people, stop backing up apartheid in Palestine and dictatorial regimes in arab and muslim countries and ban death penalty. Then you can be outraged by all those bastard.

First this is has nothing to do with Islam, the same thing as lynching black people by KKK has nothing to do with christianity. So you can be outraged by these barbarian acts but don't jump on conclusion so fast, you americans should start use brain instead of your guts (thanks to Colbert).

have a nice day
posted by zouhair at 12:41 PM on May 5, 2007 [2 favorites]


but once you say something disparaging about Muslims

bullshit. I attack the failings of the modern-day Muslim culture when I see it, when it is called for.

The truth is in the west we are afraid of Muslims as a whole, and afraid of many Muslims as individuals, and probably for damn good reason.

I'm more afraid of us making the FUBAR'd situation with them worse through our own idiocies and shit-stirring.

Ynoxas: you know that the people in this video aren't muslim, right? That islamic radicals slaughtered 23 of these people like you desire.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 12:42 PM on May 5, 2007


Ynoxas, it is FUNDAMENTALISM that is the problem. It is EXTREMISM that is the problem. It is not all muslims.

I wish that differentiation could be made by people, but that would mean that things would have to be seen in a complex gray instead of black & white. And then it would be harder to just hate a whole group of people, it'd be a lot more work to figure out who's good & who's bad. It's easier to just lump them all together. Takes less work. Less education. More convenient sorting this way.

I have learned that violent Fundamentalist Muslims represent the average person in the much of the Middle East (& the average Muslim anywhere for that matter) just as accurately as I am represented by my Fundamentalist Christian siblings or George Bush. ie, not at all.

I've said this to people who then said, "Yes, but fundamentalist muslims kill people in the name of the religion so they're still responsible, they're not doing anything to stop it." Well, George Bush has killed a bunch of people in my name, but I'll be damned if he's listened to me much. And I've been somewhat vocal. But whatever.
posted by miss lynnster at 12:46 PM on May 5, 2007


Might I add... people get so outraged in saying how violent these Muslims are. They ignore that most of the people killed by Muslim fundamentalists? ARE INNOCENT MUSLIMS. Who are NOT terrorists. And who aren't particularly fond of seeing their families blown apart.
posted by miss lynnster at 12:54 PM on May 5, 2007


Ynoxas, drstein, the people doing this honor killing are Yezedi, not Muslims. Very different. Not to say there aren't honor killings in the name of Islam, but it's kind of like taking an article about the death of James Byrd and turning it into a discussion complaining about about how soft the Western media is on Robert Mugabe, or something.
posted by schroedinger at 1:21 PM on May 5, 2007 [1 favorite]


Heywood Mogroot: Yes, I am aware of that, but due to my anger I'm not being very clear. I'm railing against religious barbarianism of any form in one breath and then railing against Islam in another. I apologize for that.

In my first post I was very careful not to mention Islam because although I know practically nothing about Yezidi/Yazidi, it does not appear to be Islam, although it has some of the same source materials and some influences.

My point is, if these people are Yezidi or Muslim or Christian or Zoroastrians or Greek Orthodox, they are barbaric, savages, primitives. They deserve scorn, not any modicum of accommodation or understanding. They are dirty, foul creatures, an abomination in any god's eye.

Again I stress, the particular religious banner they hold themselves under is completely irrelevant to me. They could claim to be Zen Buddhists or Pentecostal Church of God, and my reaction would be precisely the same.

miss lynster: I'm trying to say that as loud as I can. I don't hate only certain flavors of religious zealots, I hate all religious zealots.
posted by Ynoxas at 1:24 PM on May 5, 2007


schroedinger: Yes, I'm with you (see above).

The thread changed directions a bit ago.

"I hate religious shitheads that do stuff like this"
"It's not about religion!"
"Yes it is, it's just like when Muslims ..."
"Hey all Muslims aren't shitheads"
"All religions of all kinds are shitheads"
"These people weren't Muslim"

I admit, as I did before, that I've been less than clear due to being perhaps irrationally upset.

But yes, you are correct, this particular honor killing was done by Yezidi/Yazidi followers, although I have no idea whether to classify them as "extremists" or just as typical followers. It appeared to be "a lot" of participants in the full video.
posted by Ynoxas at 1:31 PM on May 5, 2007


S'cool Ynoxas. I get my girdle in a twist myself on occasion. Obviously. And if I wore a girdle.
posted by miss lynnster at 1:35 PM on May 5, 2007


She's everybody's sister
She's symbolic of our failure
She's the one in fifty million
Who can help us to be free
Because she died on TV
(And I grieve for my sister)
                      -- Roger Waters, Watching TV
posted by BaxterG4 at 1:39 PM on May 5, 2007 [1 favorite]


My point is, if these people are Yezidi or Muslim or Christian or Zoroastrians or Greek Orthodox, they are barbaric, savages, primitives. They deserve scorn, not any modicum of accommodation or understanding. They are dirty, foul creatures, an abomination in any god's eye.

What would you do with these "primitives," these "dirty, foul creatures," that would be fundamentally different from what they did to Du’a Khalil Aswad?
posted by taosbat at 2:00 PM on May 5, 2007


Believing in a magic imaginary man in the sky, regardless of what name you use for him, predisposes you to doing crazy, ridiculous shit in his name.

Really? Sorry, can you please point out the "crazy, ridiculous shit" that I do in his name? I'll be waiting.

If you are an adult of reasonable intelligence, and you *REALLY* believe there is some ethereal being watching and participating you your daily life, you have a mental deficiency, and you cannot be trusted to act rationally.

Really? It's so refreshing to meet someone who knows, without evidence, how I behave on a daily basis.

Get the fuck over your bigotry, Ynoxas. Religion is not a problem. Extremist, fundamentalist beliefs--whether generated in a religious or a secular manner--are the issue.

Which, frankly, includes your bigotry.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 2:02 PM on May 5, 2007


Previous Yezidi posts.
posted by taosbat at 2:06 PM on May 5, 2007


Her name "D'ua Khalil" translates into something like prayer/promise of a friend. May she be united with the True Friend.

This is awful, be it committed by Yezidi or Muslim or whatever. I usually stay out of these threads supposedly about Muslims or outrage over religion unless I can offer a point of clarification about a definition, concept or historical point related to Islam. The ignorance about these matters is quite strong here.
posted by Burhanistan at 2:07 PM on May 5, 2007 [2 favorites]


23skidoo says to "angry atheists," with a small applause of favorites, "you think that anyone who believes in god and does something awful somehow shows a causal link between believing in god and doing awful things."

Do you really think that this would have been no more likely to happen if the perpetrators' religion didn't hold that leaving or marrying outside of the faith is punishable by death? It seems a pretty big strain to say there is no causal link between their religious moral code and their actions here, bordering on the inconceivable. Is it that you think there is a certain quota of people who will inevitably find a reason to do this sort of thing, and religion is just their chosen excuse?

You could say that it's not their belief in a god that made them do that, but the particulars of it, but, for a narrower case, it's a bit like saying that there's no causal relationship between being an Opus Dei and mortification because only a minority do that. One can argue that it's incorrect to place any of the blame with religion itself, but it's strange to deny that religion sometimes causes violence. Believing things just because they ring true in your heart, bring you closer to your community, or any other reason than because they're actually true makes a great pretense to believe the most awful things.
posted by abcde at 2:28 PM on May 5, 2007


The ignorance about these matters is quite strong here.

willful ignorance tends to be like that

The only reason this is even news is because it got on YouTube.

it was mentioned on juan cole's site on apr 23, which is when i'd heard of it

he links to this story
posted by pyramid termite at 2:28 PM on May 5, 2007


It's not really, at heart, about Islam or religious fanaticism of any kind. It's about the world-wide, cross cultural oppression and control of women. Arguing about religion here kind of misses the point: religion's the vehicle, but not the true reason.

You couldn't pay me enough to watch the video; my imgination does quite well without it.
posted by jokeefe at 2:35 PM on May 5, 2007 [3 favorites]


So that's how you know you're a second-class citizen. I see a people scared of change. Tragic shit.

And impossible to dispassionately debate after watching.
posted by Busithoth at 2:41 PM on May 5, 2007


You're right dirtynumbangelboy, there's never been any atrocities done in the name of religion.

What was I thinking?

Thanks for setting me straight.

Also, as I recall, aren't you gay? I'm curious as to if you subscribe to some form of Christianity, as it is expressly forbidden in the Bible.

The fact that some "progressive" denominations take no particular issue with it does not change the source material. It just means that they can't even be bothered to be devout and adhere to their own religious documents.

The fact that *YOU*, as an individual, are not a religious extremist does not prove that they do not exist.
posted by Ynoxas at 2:41 PM on May 5, 2007


It just means that they can't even be bothered to be devout and adhere to their own religious documents.

if you don't share the belief, you don't get to dictate to others how they interpret it
posted by pyramid termite at 2:54 PM on May 5, 2007


....or, in other words, what miss lynnster said.
posted by jokeefe at 2:58 PM on May 5, 2007


Rereading the articles about this event I realised that the people who committed the stoning were not Muslims. The men who killed this young woman, were Yezidi. "They said she had shamed herself and her family when she failed to return home one night. Some reports suggested she had converted to Islam to be closer to her boyfriend."

However, according to the articles I read, Muslims did murder 23 Yezidi men in retaliation: "Last week 23 Yezidi workmen were forced off a bus travelling from Mosulto Bashika by a group of Sunni gunmen and summarily shot dead."

But I'm wondering what the rational was for the mass murder retaliation? That the girl's family punished the girl for a relationship with a Sunni?

You're right Gator, I misread your statement. Sorry about that.

"as individuals and as a society, that we have to continue to fight against the violent and archaic mindset that sadly persists today"

That archaic mindset, imo, includes misogyny but at core I think it also includes basic misanthropy, an inability to be empathic, especially to those who are vulnerable, or at some distance, also fear of differences, fear of feeling one's feelings, disrespect of others' feelings and an inability to talk about differences of opinion or perspective without rage or contempt.
posted by nickyskye at 3:06 PM on May 5, 2007


Ugh. I don't know what we should do about atrocities like this. Should we fight them to stop it? Colonial oppression and collateral damage is hardly an improvement. Refuse to deal with them? Then there will be even more suffering in these places, due to famine and disease. Do the realpolitik thing, force a smile, and forge trade and alliances with them no matter how they treat each other? Probably the best in terms of material rewards on both sides, but it feels dirtier than fighting them or giving them the cold shoulder, if you ask me.
posted by Mitrovarr at 3:07 PM on May 5, 2007


Rereading the articles about this event I realised that the people who committed the stoning were not Muslims. The men who killed this young woman were Yezidi. "They said she had shamed herself and her family when she failed to return home one night. Some reports suggested she had converted to Islam to be closer to her boyfriend."

However, according to the articles I read, Muslims did murder 23 Yezidi men in retaliation: "Last week 23 Yezidi workmen were forced off a bus travelling from Mosulto Bashika by a group of Sunni gunmen and summarily shot dead."

But I'm wondering what the rational was for the mass murder retaliation? That the girl's family punished the girl for a relationship with a Sunni?

You're right Gator, I misread your statement. Sorry about that.

"as individuals and as a society, that we have to continue to fight against the violent and archaic mindset that sadly persists today"

That archaic mindset, imo, includes misogyny but at core I think it also includes basic misanthropy, an inability to be empathic, especially to those who are vulnerable, or at some distance, also fear of differences, fear of feeling one's feelings, disrespect of others' feelings and an inability to talk about differences of opinion or perspective without rage or contempt.
posted by nickyskye at 3:19 PM on May 5, 2007


jokeefe: A near-universal misogynistic streak among humans may be the original impulse, but religion is one of the main things that can give it staying power. It's one of a very few reasons why someone could single out a population as innately inferior and worthy of subjugation despite real-world information in favor of the idea that women have no innate inferiority to men. The main way a person of moderate cognitive faculty can remain unphased by that information is if they have a book which they think says infallibly that it is morally imperative to subjugate women, in an essential way that doesn't require evidence.

So I ask: in cases where fundamentalism is clearly being used to justify hateful treatment of women, does it make more sense to blame our sleazier basic tendencies as a species, or to blame encompassing metaphysical ideologies that set so many of these vile, prehistoric ideas in stone and inform people that they will suffer eternally if they should ever do anything else? Clearly egalitarian, secular societies are capable of overcoming this. I think there's a case to be made that the more important factor sustaining the problem in these societies is the absolutist ideologies that foster and amplify unjustifiable hate, not the original cross-cultural slant toward such idiocy, which, in a modern secular society, is thwarted by reason to a shadow of what is seen in fundamentalist ones.
posted by abcde at 3:30 PM on May 5, 2007


You're right dirtynumbangelboy, there's never been any atrocities done in the name of religion.

What was I thinking?

Thanks for setting me straight.


Don't be such an intellectually dishonest fool. I didn't say that, and you know it. Don't put words in my mouth.

Also, as I recall, aren't you gay? I'm curious as to if you subscribe to some form of Christianity, as it is expressly forbidden in the Bible.

I am, I don't, and it isn't. Homosexuality gets talked about in Leviticus. As Old Testament, it's not actually applicable to Christianity--the whole point of Jesus was that he fulfilled those laws, and they were no longer applicable. See: keeping kosher.

But that's not really the point, since you don't actually get to dictate how someone else follows their own belief.

The fact that some "progressive" denominations take no particular issue with it does not change the source material. It just means that they can't even be bothered to be devout and adhere to their own religious documents.

No, it means that they can retain the spirit of the faith, while interpreting the letter in light of social developments.

The fact that *YOU*, as an individual, are not a religious extremist does not prove that they do not exist.

If you're unable to make your point without lying, I suggest that you give up with what little dignity you have left. At no point did I say that religious extremism doesn't exist. In fact, if you had bothered to actually read what I wrote, I said that the very fucking problem is religious (and secular) extremism.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 3:49 PM on May 5, 2007 [1 favorite]


Rereading the articles about this event I realised that the people who committed the stoning were not Muslims. The men who killed this young woman were Yezidi... Muslims did murder 23 Yezidi men in retaliation

I should have made that clearer in the FPP. Sorry about that.
posted by homunculus at 4:06 PM on May 5, 2007


In a sense, it's good you didn't homunculus, because it shows the bankruptcy of the arguments presented by the Islam-bashers and anti-religious axe-grinders who leaped to fit their prejudgements onto a situation when they couldn't even be bothered to avail themselves of the fact you presented.
posted by Abiezer at 4:30 PM on May 5, 2007


So I ask: in cases where fundamentalism is clearly being used to justify hateful treatment of women, does it make more sense to blame our sleazier basic tendencies as a species, or to blame encompassing metaphysical ideologies that set so many of these vile, prehistoric ideas in stone and inform people that they will suffer eternally if they should ever do anything else?

abcde, just quickly as I have to run: it's not just religion here which the mechanism which justifies the oppression of women. A huge part of it is economic, and political. It's about power and ownership, particularly when it comes to children and inheritance. It's the mindset that women are property, and require controlling. That's reflected in religion, the same way that it is reflected in law, politics, and other cultural strictures and punishments. I don't actually believe that misogyny is part of our basic tendencies as a species-- I'm more optimistic than that. The fact is that societies and cultures can change; even in my own lifetime I've seen demonstrable cultural shifts in the status of women. But it requires political will, and laws, and most importantly the enforcement of those laws. Honour killings are allowed to continue because they are tacitly approved of-- in other words, there is no official sanction or punishment for those who commit them. They are not treated like other murders.

As far as religion goes, it's not inherently evil, anymore than any other human institution is. It can be a force for great good-- much of the impetus to end the slave trade came from religious groups, as did the American civil rights movement in the 60s-- or a force of great evil. It's only a good as the people involved in it. Where the Spanish brutal because they were religious? Or because they were plundering the resources of a conquered empire? The stories justifying war and social control and punishment and what constitutes trangressive behaviour change-- could be religion, could be capitalism or communism, could be nationalism, but the results don't. It's the same human narrative, really: and it usually comes down to resources. Women's bodies and fertility are resources for maintaining tribal identity and paternal bloodlines... as we see here. See also the fear of miscegenation in the American South, which led to killings just as brutal as the one we are discussing here. But your average lynchers weren't acting that way because of religion, even if they might have tried to use the Bible to justify themselves.
posted by jokeefe at 4:32 PM on May 5, 2007 [3 favorites]


Yeah. THAT attitude will get you REAL far with the extremist muslim communities. Good luck with that.

Which attitude? You mean a civilized attitude? You mean a moral attitude? You mean an attitude that believes in equality and fairness?

Who gives a fuck what extremist people who won't embrace civilized "attitudes" think. Fuck them. They should not be tolerated. I only care what they do.

You will never convert extremists by showing them how fair you are to your own. Saying "Nu-uh we duz so killz people to soz we must be just as bad." That is an infantile argument. Rather not an argument at all. Just some childish round-about way of saying "I AIN'T NO RACISTS!"

And. Where did I mention, specifically, MUSLIMS? Nowhere.

These people were not Muslims. But like many Muslims, Christians, Jews, and other religious lunatics they share an equal obsession with arcane and barbaric 13th century ideas... idiotic ideas that should be driven off the god damned planet.

You don't force democracy upon people with guns and violence.

No shit. How do you get from me talking about our domestic justice system to you talking about us forcing democracy?
Of course that is wrong. But these folks have been honor killing LONG before our idiotic foriegn policy was formed. Long before we had a nation.

People here are trying to compare our use of capitol punishment sfor criminals and murders to these barbarians fucking stoning a woman for essentially JUST being a woman.

One is about a flawed but fixable criminal justice system trying to deal with specific criminals.

The other is about a deeply disturbed misogynist culture oppressing and affixing a fatal criminal status capriciously to an entire GENDER.

There is NO comparison here.

If Americans were still legally able to lynch black people for merely being black THEN you'd have an analogy.
posted by tkchrist at 4:56 PM on May 5, 2007


posted by tkchrist If Americans were still legally able to lynch black people for merely being black THEN you'd have an analogy.

When was lynching legal?
posted by fandango_matt at 5:00 PM on May 5, 2007


One is about a flawed but fixable criminal justice system trying to deal with specific criminals.

The other is about a deeply disturbed misogynist culture oppressing and affixing a fatal criminal status capriciously to an entire GENDER.

There is NO comparison here.


No, they're both about socially-sanctioned murder.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 5:02 PM on May 5, 2007 [1 favorite]


And on re-reading homunculus' post, I see his presentation made it abundantly clear that the murdered girl was Yezidi. Even less excuse for what followed, including me missing what I presume was homunculus' dry wit
posted by Abiezer at 5:08 PM on May 5, 2007


Ynoxas: "I hate these people in the video. There is not a single good person among them. I wish them all gone from the planet. They are a blight. A plague. A rot."

Shall we stone them, then?

Perhaps the only real difference between Muslims, Jews, and Christians is this: Jews are good at telling jokes. Christians are good at laughing at jokes, and Muslims are good at painting the world with the blood of the infidel. I'm sure there must be some common ground here somewhere.
posted by ZachsMind at 5:10 PM on May 5, 2007 [1 favorite]


I was a bit sloppy in saying "basic tendency;" I'm don't particularly think that it's in the genes, but it's basic insofar as it happens virtually everywhere (e.g., being warlike may not be physically basic but it's certainly a basic property of humankind as it actually is). Anyway, I was careful not to say that religion was the only force or even the main one; just that it may be a more important part to worry about than the original predispositions which it encourages. Now that I see you were referring more to cultural and economic factors encouraging prejudice than to "baseline" prejudices, and I'm not nearly as confident that religion exceeds those in importance.

And, to be clear, I, like even the frothiest New Atheists (Hitchens notwithstanding), don't think religion is inherently evil in the ethical sense, just that it's currently contributing more evil than good. And, less relevantly, that even in its (ethically) good forms, which are plentiful, the goodwill toward man that it provides isn't worth the cost of belief without evidence.
posted by abcde at 5:19 PM on May 5, 2007


What the hell is Yezidi??? Don't tell me there is yet another culture that I am to be chastised for being ignorant about, cuz quite frankly if they can't come down off their high horse and come have a burger and fries with me I got better things to do with my time than try to understand every single different belief system out there. Forget what I said before just stone anybody who is even remotely extremist about something.
posted by ZachsMind at 5:27 PM on May 5, 2007


I would like to recommend James DeMeo's work Saharasia for those who would like to understand events like this better.

The full title is SAHARASIA: The 4000 BCE Origins of Child Abuse, Sex-Repression, Warfare and Social Violence, In the Deserts of the Old World
posted by telstar at 5:34 PM on May 5, 2007


When was lynching legal?

Lynching BLACK people in the south was perfectly legal pre-civil war. As black people had no rights.

It went un-punished for a long time post civil war.

The point is not the punishment here. It's what is viewed as the crime. Being FEMALE is not a crime - as in they have no equal recourse to the law.

Being stoned for being a female is not a crime. And that's what we are talking about here.

And comparing it to electrocuting a convicted frigg'n murderer or serial killer, no matter how barbaric that itself may be, is not comparable.

So just stop it.
posted by tkchrist at 5:36 PM on May 5, 2007


This is Islam.
posted by four panels at 5:36 PM on May 5, 2007


Oh, wait, this is Arab.
posted by four panels at 5:38 PM on May 5, 2007


four panels writes "This is Islam."

Or Yezidi or whatever. All those Arabs, or Kurds, or Turks, or Persians, or whatever look alike anyway. And I can't understand what any of them are saying, so fuck it.
posted by mr_roboto at 5:39 PM on May 5, 2007


This is the Third World.
posted by four panels at 5:40 PM on May 5, 2007


Oh yeah, they're not Arab either, fuckface.

Shit. Are we being sarcastic in the same direction, or are we arguing?

I can't even tell anymore.
posted by mr_roboto at 5:41 PM on May 5, 2007


Bombs away.
posted by four panels at 5:43 PM on May 5, 2007


I say we take off and nuke the entire site from orbit. It's the only way to be sure.
posted by mr_roboto at 5:45 PM on May 5, 2007


Being stoned for being a female is not a crime. And that's what we are talking about here.

And comparing it to electrocuting a convicted frigg'n murderer or serial killer, no matter how barbaric that itself may be, is not comparable.

So just stop it.
posted by tkchrist


How are they not? Merely stating over and over again that they're not isn't actually, y'know, a terribly compelling argument.

Exhibit A: A young woman is murdered by having stones thrown at her, in a socially-sanctioned 'punishment'.

Exhibit B: A young man is murdered by electrocution, in a socially-sanctioned 'punishment'.

The only difference is that in your eyes and in mine the young woman did not commit a crime. According to her society, she did. And in both cases, society has decreed a certain punishment.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 6:06 PM on May 5, 2007


posted by tkchrist Lynching BLACK people in the south was perfectly legal pre-civil war. As black people had no rights.

No, it wasn't legal. It was overlooked and tacitly sanctioned by local law enforcement, but it sure as hell wasn't legal. (Please, if I'm wrong, show us all where lynching was legal.)
posted by fandango_matt at 6:08 PM on May 5, 2007


This is Islam
Oh, wait, this is Arab
This is the Third World.

keep searchin' for the right label there four panels, you'll find one that sticks eventually.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 6:10 PM on May 5, 2007


and, dirty, the civilized half of the planet considers our justice system an embarrassment.

1. CHINA (At least 1,770 Executions)
2. IRAN (At least 94)
3. SAUDI ARABIA (At least 86)
4. UNITED STATES (60)
5. Pakistan (31)
6. Yemen (24)
7. Vietnam (21)
8. Jordan (11)
9. Mongolia (8)
9. Singapore (6)


USA!
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 6:15 PM on May 5, 2007


Yeah, but we have Texas, so that totally skews the count.
posted by YoBananaBoy at 6:25 PM on May 5, 2007


Please, if I'm wrong, show us all where lynching was legal.

Uh. You kill your slaves if you wanted to. They were PROPERTY not people.

The only difference is that in your eyes and in mine the young woman did not commit a crime.

Oh. Gawd. And THAT is the defining and most important difference to a thinking moral person.

WE no longer view IDENTITY as a crime. Weather they jail her. Cut off her thumbs or stone her to death. It doesn't matter.

She has no rights.

A criminal in our system has rights. He has recourse. His punishment may or may NOT be capital. Capital punishment itself is barbaric. But the process that takes him there is in no way comparable to the process that led this woman getting stoned to death except in the most superficial specious reasoning.

What is so hard to understand?

That you refuse to see it doesn't make YOUR relativistic argument stick any better, my friend.

Dirty, no offense, but you realize you do this in nearly every argument?

Your a mass of frigg'n contradictions and relativisms. You don't pose a position or counter a position really... you just tend obfuscate with a "we can't judge" non-position position.

So I'm just going to ignore you from here on out.
posted by tkchrist at 6:44 PM on May 5, 2007


tkchrist : I councour , being a female isn't a crime, behaving like a serial killer is a crime. Let's not stop to reason why we concour on that, instead let's focus on the punishment of a crime.

Stoning, hanging, impaling, injecting ..you name your method , some less painful then others, but all producing the same irreversible change -- end of life.

Now we may employ the most sophisticated , rational ,impartial judgement methods ; we may developed the most human-friendly, right attributing, life protecting set of laws that ever existed and coinceive advanced punishment methods to discourage, even coinceive re-enabling methods.

All this would be light years away from the decision of an handful of extremely excited, self righteous, psycologically derailed people.

We may also find some very very specific circumstances in which the danger posed by a person to a society is so grave, imminent that no precautionary measure , such as confinement underground, would be sufficient to reduce the risk to values extremely close to zero.

BUT in many circumstances when one decides to kill one person a trade off happens: we make a person pay a certain, irreversible cost while being NOT absolutely certain that the person is guilty or that the person will repeat any bad behavior.

Similarly, the girl was probably stoned to set an example...if she got away with it , she could have repeated her actions and become a living example that YES , there is a chance to win mysoginism and disobey rules. Maybe there was no such reasoning and she was stoned just because she dared disobey, which is even more appaling. Her being a girl is secondary, NOT behaving (misbehaving) as expected from her is the "crime"

Same logic would apply to serial killer ; it would be idiotic to let one go , but there is no reason to kill one either. That wouldn't resurrect anybody, that wouldn't give back loved ones to anybody..that would just "satiate" the bloodlust of some victim ; it doesn't set an example either. It only leaves a door open to making another innocent victim.
posted by elpapacito at 6:45 PM on May 5, 2007


In a lot of these cultures, the police work for the government, the do not protect people the way they do here. I was talking to a friend in Egypt about "stalkers" one day. He asked me what the word meant. I explained it to him. He said, "Yes, here it is the custom if a man stalks the woman and follows her around? The men of her neighborhood grab him and shave his head."

I asked why not tell the police. He said, "Why would the police do anything? They only work for the government. They don't get involved in personal problems. It is always safer to avoid the police."
posted by miss lynnster at 6:50 PM on May 5, 2007


But the process that takes him there is in no way comparable to the process that led this woman getting stoned to death except in the most superficial specious reasoning.

I'm not talking about the process, I'm talking about the result. And please note that at no point did I say that what happened to this poor girl isn't barbaric, isn't disgusting, shouldn't be stopped.

What I did say was that capital 'punishment' is just as barbaric. Seriously, stop picking and choosing.

Dirty, no offense, but you realize you do this in nearly every argument?

I love how people say 'no offence' right before saying something offensive.

your a mass of frigg'n contradictions and relativisms. You don't pose a position or counter a position really... you just tend obfuscate with a "we can't judge" non-position position.

Sorry, I said that when?

Oh, right, I didn't. Stop being so dishonest.

So I'm just going to ignore you from here on out.

Yes, the last refuge of someone who doesn't have a leg to stand on.

Try this on for size: Actually pay some fucking attention to what I fucking wrote you intellectually dishonest turd.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 6:52 PM on May 5, 2007


All of the people in this thread trying to justify this killing because it is just "their culture" make me sick. Can political correctness go any further wrong? The people who killed that girl are evil fucking animals, nothing more, nothing less.

"Oh, oh, we need to be culturally sensitive and see their point of view." Fuck that shit. Just find the killers, lock them up, and throw away the key. You people justifying their violence have lost your minds.
posted by caddis at 7:00 PM on May 5, 2007


caddis, I don't see anyone justifying the violence. Could you please show me who is doing so?
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 7:01 PM on May 5, 2007


you intellectually dishonest turd

Good thing I'm ignoring you, huh? Otherwise that might seem to be an outright direct and baseless insult.

Er. Now. Which is the "last refuge? again"

Buh-bye.
posted by tkchrist at 7:04 PM on May 5, 2007


It's not a baseless insult--you're being intellectually dishonest, cherrypicking what I have to say.

Typical Libertarian.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 7:05 PM on May 5, 2007


Jesus Christ, people, so basically, if you're religious you must be crazy, because extremist religious people exist and therefore your brief ties to them through your identification with the same god means you're crazy too? Or endorsing their craziness? Or your belief system is fundamentally flawed, because it couldn't possibly be that it's the extremists with the flawed interpretations, not the moderates?

So does that mean we ought to condemn geneticists? Because you know those eugenics people, think of all the horrible shit they've done! Think of what they've advocated! Clearly, all those who believe inheritable traits exist at all should be painted with the same brush as those who believe some people are just lesser beings by virtue of their genetic background. Because there is no middle ground.

Look, ultimately, where do your ethics come from? What are it's roots? You say "I believe murder is wrong"--OK, so it's not because a dude in the sky told you so, but then why? The inherent rights of man? Where did those come from? You keep digging and digging, and eventually you will have to admit that there is a point where for some situations you must draw some arbitrary assumptions on what "feels" right and build your system from there. Let's face it: science hasn't provided the "right" answers for everything yet and at some point we gotta use our own intuition to get through day-to-day situations. Which at heart is as illogical as using the dictates of spirits living in trees or whatever you believe in.

Also: Christianity and Judaism are far closer to Islam in doctrine and texts than Yezidi. Like, way the hell closer. The Yezedi worship a freakin' peacock god--that embodiment exists nowhere in Abrahamic religions (and furthermore choosing such an embodiment, or any, would be heretical). Calling Yezedi an offshoot of Islam because of tangential similarities is like calling Islamic the animistic religious in southern Africa that adopted one or two Islamic practices gleaned from interactions with Arab traders.
posted by schroedinger at 7:09 PM on May 5, 2007


Sorry if this has been posted upthread, but too many comments to read them all.

Obviously it's horrible.

But photography at lynchings was de rigeur as the Musarium site demonstrates.

As far as I can see lynchings were North American 'honour killings' except the guy bought it instead of the chick. But the power relation remains the same since it was white guy on black guy instead of guy on chick.

More here. The last biggie was Emmet Till in 1955.
posted by unSane at 7:13 PM on May 5, 2007


Who the hell said that caddis? You clearly haven't read the thread AT ALL.

So... yeah... whatever dude. You're macho & angry, we get it. Good for you.
posted by miss lynnster at 7:13 PM on May 5, 2007


Similarly, the girl was probably stoned to set an example...if she got away with it , she could have repeated her actions and become a living example that YES , there is a chance to win mysoginism and disobey rules. Maybe there was no such reasoning and she was stoned just because she dared disobey, which is even more appaling. Her being a girl is secondary, NOT behaving (misbehaving) as expected from her is the "crime"

Okay. I see what your saying. But the standard ONLY applies to the female. And she has NO recourse to appeal this standard. The "verdict" is a forgone conclusion. The punishment is a forgone conclusion.

In Washington State we have a Serial Killer named Gary Ridgway, more popularly known as the Green River Killer. He killed 40+ women. He did NOT get the death sentence. The punishment is not a religious edict.

In this case the punishment is an edict and the defendant has no right to counter either the accusation of the crime or the ability to mount a defense - thus the OBLIGATTION of the proceeding is kill her.

This is WAAAAAY different. The end results may be the same but we must look at how each society views identity and what it defines as crime. These are much more important markers of civilized behavior. Could we in America stand on higher moral ground if we did not have capital punishment? Yes. Absolutely.
I think capitol punishment is abhorrent.

However we are looking two different phenomena here. Comparing them is just to score cheap PC rhetorical points.

The fact is these 13th century societies need to FIRST change how they view women. Not how they view punishment.
posted by tkchrist at 7:16 PM on May 5, 2007


Oh I meant to say:

"Okay. I see what your saying. But the standard ONLY applies to the female. And she has NO recourse to appeal this standard. Thus the crime in this case is BEING female."
posted by tkchrist at 7:20 PM on May 5, 2007


so basically, if you're religious you must be crazy

Yes.
posted by four panels at 7:21 PM on May 5, 2007


so basically, if you're religious you must be crazy

NO. But. I think they are more willing to consciously accept cognitive dissonance than the non-religious. And thus ignore contradicting facts. This is not exclusive to the religious but I think more prevalent.
posted by tkchrist at 7:28 PM on May 5, 2007


And again... religion? Side issue. Women being considered as worthless beings without rights in comparison to men in certain cultures? Main issue.
posted by miss lynnster at 7:29 PM on May 5, 2007


Please justify that response, four panels. Do you mean "crazy" in "holding irrational beliefs"? Because you pretty much described the entire human population. I have an irrational hatred for jellyfish. I'm crazy! A friend of mine doesn't like flying, despite knowing it is less risky than taking a car. I bet he's crazy, too! There is nobody, nobody on this planet who doesn't have an element of irrationality to their decisions or beliefs somewhere.

The only other definition you could possibly mean is "holding irrational beliefs that prevent them from functioning normally within society". If this is the case, I would like to point you towards dirtyangelboy, a number of my friends, my father and mother, me at one point of my life . . . Actually, given that probably somewhere around 80-90%, if not more, of humans hold some form of religious belief, you're pretty much arguing the vast majority of the population is batshit insane and you belong to the elite few. But at that point, aren't you the crazy one?
posted by schroedinger at 7:33 PM on May 5, 2007


Miss lynster, I would say religion does factor into this. As long as people are content to chalk up religious people as crazy and therefore everything religious people do, including stoning young women, as the work of crazy people, they will never address the underlying issues of misogyny.
posted by schroedinger at 7:35 PM on May 5, 2007


Please justify that response, four panels.

What I'm saying is religion typically, if not always, legitimatizes crazy beliefs/behavior.

-I'm going to blow myself up because of some fake bullshit

-Im going to kamikaze because of some non-real bullshit

Let me give you something a little more abstract. When you are not bound be the iron shackles of religion, morality tends to be on a horizontal level, one that is measured in relation to other human beings. I'm not going to kill that person because the act is measured against myself and other humans who are all inhabiting the same horizontal plane as myself. Morality is level.

Religion skews this and creates an environment where morality is horizontal, as it is attached to a Sky Daddy. What I do on Earth then is meaningless in terms of that mother fucker over there, because what I'm doing is measured against the sky.

The link between said person in our example and the sky is the crazy bullshit of which I am referring. Religions essentially moves morality from something human and distorts it like a fun house mirror.

Example: It is moral to kill someone I have never met because of something that is completely made up.

You can see this applies to nationalism as well.

So, yes, if you are religious, you are crazy. A cute, "irrational" fear of flying or of jellyfish is a ridiculous argument to present against the insanity of religious belief.
posted by four panels at 7:45 PM on May 5, 2007 [2 favorites]


And, typically, the "I'm an atheist therefore I am superior to you" bullshit gets spewed and spewed and spewed.

Fuck the fuck off, ok?
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 8:02 PM on May 5, 2007


Religion skews this and creates an environment where morality is horizontal, as it is attached to a Sky Daddy.

all you've done here is show your utter ignorance of christian and jewish morality, which has many references to how one should treat one's fellow human beings and even says that if we aren't treating our fellow human beings well, then our attachment to sky daddy counts for nothing

there is not only a horizontal element, but it is a critical one

So, yes, if you are religious, you are crazy.

and of course, it's perfectly sane to make uninformed arguments and claim they are the truth
posted by pyramid termite at 8:03 PM on May 5, 2007


What I'm saying is religion typically, if not always, legitimatizes crazy beliefs/behavior.

How simplistic a way to demonize other.
posted by caddis at 8:06 PM on May 5, 2007


And, typically, the "I'm an atheist therefore I am superior to you" bullshit gets spewed and spewed and spewed.

In reality (aka atheism) no one goes to hell for not agreeing with you.

We all live on the same planet. And we all die together.

posted by four panels at 8:14 PM on May 5, 2007


In reality (aka atheism) no one goes to hell for not agreeing with you.

Huh, funny, in my world nobody goes to hell for not agreeing with me either.

Get the fuck over yourself.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 8:16 PM on May 5, 2007


Imagine, for just a brief moment, how much more life there would be if there were no religion.

What a wonderful world it could be.
posted by four panels at 8:16 PM on May 5, 2007


I love how you smug little atheist types sit there pontificating about how! much! better! you are.

Yes, the history of institutionalized religion is littered with blood. Wait, hold on, so's the history of almost every human institution, religious or not.

And you all so very conveniently ignore anything good that has come out of religion or religious thought because the facts clash with your already made up minds.

The thing that you utterly fail to realize is that we know how much pain has been caused by religious institutions. We also recognize that doing barbaric things is base human nature. Do you really think, for example, that the Troubles in Ireland were really about religion? Of course they weren't; they just happened to break down along religious lines. The problems were really nationalism, imperialism, and the right to self-determination.

Similarly, 'honour killings' are never about religion, and always about control of women. This is a recurrent theme amongst theists and atheists alike.

Human nature is what it is. And it can get better--we've seen that it can get better over time. What needs to be removed is justification for doing awful things; whether that justification comes from religion or from law is immaterial.

You are not better than me because you're an atheist. You're just different. Try getting that through your skull.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 8:23 PM on May 5, 2007 [1 favorite]


yeah, because people never kill each other over politics, or money, or love or being a sheer asshole ... by the way, you should review a list of history's greatest wars according to body count ... you might learn something that will change your ridiculous prejudices
posted by pyramid termite at 8:25 PM on May 5, 2007


I'm not talking about the process, I'm talking about the result. ... capital 'punishment' is just as barbaric.

By this logic, imprisoning someone who is a brutal murderer and imprisoning someone for not praying to the right god are equally "barbaric", supposing the societies in question condemn them equally. What matters is the "result," right?
posted by shivohum at 8:40 PM on May 5, 2007


No, four panels, you still have not proved why religious belief is crazier than an irrational fear of jellyfish. "Religion legitimizes crazy behavior"--given that flying is objectively safer, would not the decision to drive instead of fly simply because of your fear of flying be crazy? And what if you take your family along in the car? Now you're increasing the risk to their lives with your behavior! Irresponsible madness! The fact that more people suicide-bomb market places in the name of religion than airports in the name of banning flying does not make religious belief more fundamentally irrational than a fear of flying or jellyfish. Religion just represents a more complex belief system than a fear of flying, and therefore probabilistically there is a far greater likelihood of various methods of enacting this belief system. This, of course, ignores all the other societal variables that have nothing to do with religion itself that lead to suicide bombing.

I'm not going to kill that person because the act is measured against myself and other humans who are all inhabiting the same horizontal plane as myself.

I will assume, then, that you do not believe in the concepts of honor, duty, or integrity, or at least consider them as crazy as religious beliefs. And as you seem to describe "rational" morality to be based on societal norms, then does that mean if I establish my own system of ethical standard that may be contrary to societal norms I am crazy? In which case, are you arguing that, say, someone who believed in the 1800s that it was OK for a black person and a white person to get married was crazy?

This bears repeating:
all you've done here is show your utter ignorance of christian and jewish morality, which has many references to how one should treat one's fellow human beings and even says that if we aren't treating our fellow human beings well, then our attachment to sky daddy counts for nothing

Also, four panels, this is beside the point of rationality versus irrationality, but it is absolutely crucial that you understand in many of these cases of religious violence practicioners are not actually following their religious texts. For example, consider the words of Christ, Luke 6:27-31.

"But I tell you who hear me: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. If someone strikes you on one cheek, turn to him the other also. If someone takes your cloak, do not stop him from taking your tunic. Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. Do to others as you would have them do to you."
posted by schroedinger at 8:43 PM on May 5, 2007


Yazidi girl's murder sparks widespread condemnation
posted by homunculus at 9:58 PM on May 5, 2007


This- this is just fucking murder.

THIS IS SPARTA
posted by 29 at 10:14 PM on May 5, 2007


Imagine, for just a brief moment, how much more life there would be if there were no religion.

What a wonderful world it could be.


Excuse me while I laugh myself silly. The Khmer Rouge didn't need religion. Stalin didn't either. The US Army, when they swept the Native Americans off their lands? They weren't acting in the name of religion. Neither was Hitler, or Mussolini. Human beings have never needed much excuse to group together and brutalize those weaker.

Of course you could redefine religion to mean "any overarching ideology by which society is organized and mobilized to attack other societies or its own lesser-status members". In which case you pretty much write off the whole human species, because if there's one glitch in our software, it's the stubborn worldview, which we insist on clinging to and glorifying, that divides us into "our people" and "their people". And then all that comes from that.

Sometimes religion is part of the bad stuff. Sometimes people choose to live by certain religious principles-- and many of these also cross cultures; you'd be surpised-- which have inspired them to risk their own lives to, for example, hide Jews, or help slaves escape, or devote their lives caring for others, or work to establish schools and hospitals. Sometimes religion can allow us to see each other as we should: not as a bunch of opposed and antagonistic disparate groups, but as members of one single human race. So don't go on and on about invisible sky gods or otherwise expressing your contempt for those who hold on to some form of belief, unless you acknowledge that there is good and bad in both the religious and the aetheist worldview. Otherwise, you're just reiterating the whole divisive rhetoric used by the same people you claim to disagree with. [/sermon]

And really, Ynoxas. Asking dnab a question as unsophisticated as "but you have teh ghey, how can you call yourself a believer" is just crass and insulting, and shows how little you know of contemporary religious thought.
posted by jokeefe at 10:32 PM on May 5, 2007 [3 favorites]


Woman is the Nigger of the World
John & Yoko

Woman is the nigger of the world
Yes she is...think about it
Woman is the nigger of the world
Think about it...do something about it...

We make her paint her face and dance
If she won’t be a slave and say that she don’t love
If she’s real, we say she’s trying to be a man
While putting her down we pretend that she's above us.

Woman is the nigger of the world...yes she is
If you don’t belive me take a look to the one you’re with
Woman is the slave of the slaves
Oh yeah...better scream about it...Yeah!

Woman is the nigger of the world...yes she is
If you don’t belive me take a look at the one you’re with
Oh Woman is the slave to the slaves
Yeah...all right...hit it...

We insult her everyday on TV
And wonder why she has no guts and confidence
When she’s young we kill her will to be free
While telling her not to be so smart we put her down for being so dumb...

Oh well, Woman is the nigger of the world...
Yes she is...
If you don’t belive me take a look to the one you’re with
Woman is the slave to the slaves
Yes she is...if you belive me, you better scream about it.

We make her paint her face and dance
We make her paint her face and dance
We make her paint her face and dance
We make her paint her face and dance
We make her paint her face and dance
We make her paint her face and dance

Shaved Fish 1972
posted by taosbat at 10:41 PM on May 5, 2007


Or...we stone her to death.
posted by taosbat at 10:42 PM on May 5, 2007


I'm going to quit Metafilter after 1000 comments, but I think reading this thread has helped me see the light a bit early. Adios.
posted by Burhanistan at 11:12 PM on May 5, 2007


Hand? What?
posted by taosbat at 11:16 PM on May 5, 2007


I mean there are better things to do in life than prattle on on this link aggregator.
posted by Burhanistan at 11:19 PM on May 5, 2007


No body parts?
posted by taosbat at 11:22 PM on May 5, 2007


They will all remain attached, insha'allah.
posted by Burhanistan at 11:24 PM on May 5, 2007


Adios.

Now that was a tepid flame out. I prefer them with more drama.

posted by caddis at 11:27 PM on May 5, 2007


"'Bye, 'Bye, Baby, 'Bye 'Bye...

Whatever gets your cookies, hon...
posted by taosbat at 11:27 PM on May 5, 2007


By this logic, imprisoning someone who is a brutal murderer and imprisoning someone for not praying to the right god are equally "barbaric", supposing the societies in question condemn them equally. What matters is the "result," right?
posted by shivohum


Don't be so wilfully obtuse. Killing people is wrong, except in extremes of self-defence.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 11:28 PM on May 5, 2007


Caddis: how about "Assalaamu alaikum" ?
posted by Burhanistan at 11:29 PM on May 5, 2007


Wa Alaikum As-Salaam
posted by caddis at 11:32 PM on May 5, 2007


"2000 [6000?] years of your goddamned glory..." you don't understand , ms. slick...it's just the bad religionists who are doing the weird things...just because bush is into the end times prophecy thing doesn't really worry me! i'm sure he sees the middle east very rationally.

so, see, we gotta throw the girl in the volcano cause. like, it'll make the crops grow really nice...

we gotta sew a big red "A" on her dress cause she, you know, fucked him...

trust me, god told me...it just has to be done. and i'm, you know, god's mouthpiece.

save us, IPU (pbuh)
posted by aiq at 6:35 AM on May 6, 2007


I'm going to quit Metafilter

sigh ... some people just can't handle our liberal tolerance, well-informed commentary and love of diversity*

*brooklyn bridge and swampland in florida extra
posted by pyramid termite at 6:36 AM on May 6, 2007


Killing people is wrong, except in extremes of self-defence.

Oh wait, why is it ok in extremes of self-defense? The person who you're defending yourself against ends up just as dead. "The only difference" is that in "your" eyes this person seemed to be doing something deserving of death.
posted by shivohum at 6:41 AM on May 6, 2007


Hello ! Are you the brain specialist ? HELLO ? NUUUUUURSEEE !
posted by elpapacito at 7:07 AM on May 6, 2007


Because I feel that people have a right to defend themselves against assault. And once in a while that defence means that the person attacking you dies.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 7:17 AM on May 6, 2007


I had stuff to do last night and wow, I'm glad I didn't pop back in here.

It is kind of disturbing how people just come round to the same defensive points of belittlement over & over, without first listening to eachother, having any education on the issue, thinking about how they are coming across, or even showing the courtesy of reading the (many) comments above them. With that kind of dialogue in here, how is it possible to imagine that the world will ever agree on a damn thing either? People, even smart people like those on Mefi, are too busy calling other people names and needing to be more "correct" than anyone else.

And that too, seems pretty horrible.
AU,YMMV.
posted by miss lynnster at 7:19 AM on May 6, 2007


Because I feel that people have a right to defend themselves against assault.

OH! Of course, silly me! It was all about what you "felt," nevermind any need for consistency or justification! No wonder you've had so much disagreement. People weren't thinking about what you felt. Consider my "willfull[] obtuse[ness]" vanquished.
posted by shivohum at 7:24 AM on May 6, 2007 [1 favorite]


I don't see any inconsistency.

If you are attacking me, I have the right to defend myself. Sometimes that boils down to your life or mine--and I have the absolute right to defend mine. That being said, I absolutely agree that one should only ever use the minimum necessary force to defend oneself. Thus, the extremes, and only the extremes, justify taking another life.

Should a John Wayne Gacy or a Jeffrey Dahmer or the Green River Killer--or, indeed, those who stoned this poor young woman--be put to death? Possibly. But neither you nor I have the right to decide when someone's life ends, if that person has not directly attacked us and death is the only way to end that attack.

Also, you can drop the patronizing fucking tone right now, kiddo.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 7:58 AM on May 6, 2007


Oh, "don't be such an intellectually dishonest fool."

I don't see any inconsistency.

"The only difference is that in your eyes and in mine the young woman did not commit a crime. According to her society, she did."

The only difference is that in your eyes someone killing in self-defense is just dandy, because in YOUR eyes, saving your life is an ok rationale for killing someone else.

All the rationales for death are the same, right? Equally barbaric, no?

Also, you can drop the patronizing fucking tone right now, kiddo.

"I suggest that you give up with what little dignity you have left"
posted by shivohum at 8:15 AM on May 6, 2007


"I suggest that you give up with what little dignity you have left"

And I suggest that you attend a remedial writing course. Your bizarre use of quotation marks is giving me a headache. Besides this, I can't really figure out if you really have a point to make or if you're just trolling dirtynumbangelboy with pointless rhetorical wranglings as well as causing pain to those of us who have an appreciation for clear communication.
posted by Flem Snopes at 8:27 AM on May 6, 2007


'm just having fun poking fun at the incredible position that the process by which and the substantive reasons for which a society imposes a death sentence don't bear on the justice of that sentence, that death is death is death.
posted by shivohum at 8:30 AM on May 6, 2007


The only difference is that in your eyes someone killing in self-defense is just dandy, because in YOUR eyes, saving your life is an ok rationale for killing someone else.

Yes, yes it is. Sorry if you have a problem with that.

All the rationales for death are the same, right? Equally barbaric, no?

The point has sailed right over your head. So sad.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 8:30 AM on May 6, 2007


'm just having fun poking fun at the incredible position that the process by which and the substantive reasons for which a society imposes a death sentence don't bear on the justice of that sentence, that death is death is death.

No, you're being a dick. There's a difference.

Let me try again, in smaller words. Maybe you'll understand:

1) Nobody has the right to take the life of another,
2) Except when your own life is directly and immediately threatened.

That means that, no, sorry, the process doesn't much matter. How many innocent people are in jail? How many innocents are on Death Row? How many people have been exonerated in the past couple of decades due to new evidence, suppressed evidence coming to light, DNA evidence? I'm talking about murder cases, here. None of those people, who were innocent, would be alive today if the death 'penalty' had been applied to them. Execution for crime is retributive, does not serve as a deterrent (clearly), and is utterly barbaric.

But you go on with your trolling. I'm done with you now.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 8:34 AM on May 6, 2007


Cultural universalism vs. cultural relativism has been done to death and I long ago decided that some actions and beliefs should be universal and not dependent on the cultural milieu in which they are practiced. The death penalty, including stonings, is one of them.

Both are equally wrong in that they result in humans, whether through individuals or the state, deciding they have the right to kill another human in punishment. The next level of moral inquiry would be in what manner is that penalty carried out and that is where the death penalty, as carried out in countries like the United States, is morally superior. In the US, there are procedural and substantive safeguards and the death penalty is limited to only a few very serious crimes, namely murder. A stoning as carried out by these Yezidi, is mob vigilantism.

Again, both types of punishments are wholly wrong and should be eliminated, but just because two things are wrong does not mean that they are intrinsically the same.
posted by Falconetti at 9:44 AM on May 6, 2007 [1 favorite]


More videos here, via BB.
posted by homunculus at 9:53 AM on May 6, 2007


It's amazing how some folks in this thread insist on misreading others' comments, so they can hop up on their high horse and joust with the straw man they've created.

The righteous indignation, for example, of those who feverishly imagine that some commenters have seriously implied that "being a woman" is the moral equivalent of "committing a murder" is simply fascinating.

It's as if some folks just come on MeFi to argue, and when there's not an opportunity for vituperation, they'll brew one up out of their own pugnaciousness. Makes for nice Umbrage Theatre in small doses, but eventually is just embarrassing.

We must truly live in a fat age when so much energy is willingly expended fighting against imagined heresies.
posted by darkstar at 10:57 AM on May 6, 2007


Falconetti wins.

Falconetti we must also examine what societies constitute as crimes, who they consider criminal, and why. Not just the punishments. That is what is missing in the relativistic discussion about societies.

In our own society we can see that our most extreme sentences are distributed most frequently on minorities who are least equipped to defined themselves in our court systems. This is not to always imply that the system itself is inherently racist, but it gives a tool to examine the fairness of the system. The "crimes" are usually drug related and from this we can see it how we criminalize the use of certain substances as the root. We essentially are creating criminals where perhaps there need not be any. It is useful discussion.

In these societies of The Old Testament and other orthodox cultures you see crimes being defined by identity (women). This is to deliberately control a class of people (women). This control is done by removing recourse to redress the status of the "criminal" (women) - they can't vote, or they have no right to address an accuser (except through a MALE family member).

This women was innocent of any crime. She committed no crime. And she was murdered.

You see punishments for those crimes applied publicly, capriciously, and harshly (stoning). In fact in many places it the OBLIGATION (read: people are punished for NOT attending) to publicly attend these ritual executions.

The starting point for comparing cultures is the supposed crime that leads to the punishment.

The most telling thing about this "argument" is the people have stated again and again that capital punishment is barbaric across the board. No one has denied that. Yet the "argument" continues?

Classifying the ritual practice of public stoning an innocent person with the execution of a serial killer as "equally" barbaric is pointless, empty relativism, and adds nothing to the discussion at all.
posted by tkchrist at 11:12 AM on May 6, 2007


Falconetti:

Again, both types of punishments are wholly wrong and should be eliminated, but just because two things are wrong does not mean that they are intrinsically the same.

My point precisely.

--
dirtynumbangelboy:

the process doesn't much matter.

How about the substantive reasons the person is killed? This is the question you've consistently evaded, chalking it up to society's beliefs--as if one society's belief that insulting God is a capital crime and another society's belief is that killing someone is a capital crime are morally on the same plane.

Let me try to put it in smaller words for you: these are NOT the same. The death penalty might well STILL be unacceptable (in fact, I think it is), but these are simply not remotely equivalent systems in moral terms.

By the way, the question of innocents won't save you: what if someone believes they kill in self-defense but they are MISTAKEN, either as to the attacker or to the attacker's intent or to the danger the attacker really posed? I'm sure it's happened and will continue to happen.

No, you're being a dick.

Physician, heal thyself.

But you go on with your trolling. I'm done with you now.

Ah yes, the last refuge of someone who doesn't have a leg to stand on.
posted by shivohum at 11:16 AM on May 6, 2007


dnab:

How about this: Killing people is always grievously wrong. There is not excuse for it.

Sometimes circumstances dictate that people who would wish very strongly to avoid doing such things must, nevertheless, do them. This does not make those things less wrong, but that they need to be done is a fundamental human tragedy (the tragedy of Judas, no less).

This (the topic of this thread) is not one of those necessary cases, but rather a situation where the grievously wrong gets somehow redefined as justice. This happens more frequently than it is comfortable to imagine, though usually in ways that are not so grossly vile.
posted by Grangousier at 11:25 AM on May 6, 2007


This thread was about the tragic killing of innocent women by men. Seems to me it ended up as a bunch of men vehemently pissing on eachother.

Yeah, I suppose I shouldn't have expected any better. But I had hoped for it.
posted by miss lynnster at 11:28 AM on May 6, 2007 [1 favorite]


Yeah, I suppose I shouldn't have expected any better. But I had hoped for it.

You are exhibiting the very attitude you decry: you're just "pissing on" people with your comment, not engaging in rational discourse, no?
posted by shivohum at 11:32 AM on May 6, 2007


it's true ... troll piss does smell worse than cat piss
posted by pyramid termite at 11:47 AM on May 6, 2007


I've put a lot of discourse in here if you look. So go back to pissing on eachother. I'm not a troll.
posted by miss lynnster at 11:53 AM on May 6, 2007


miss lynster, where is the mass disagreement with your assertion that the kind of laws that led to this girl's stoning has its roots in misogyny? The discussion is continuing on different lines because people have found something they don't agree on and want to discuss it. Just because there are not a hundred comments devoted to your pet interpretation of the situation does not mean you are being snubbed or we're all misogynists.
posted by schroedinger at 12:01 PM on May 6, 2007


I honestly don't care if people agree with me schroedinger. That's what discourse is for. It's a big world filled with many opinions, that's why I love Mefi.

I simply found it horrible the way posters have turned this thread into a forum for incredibly nasty personal attacks on eachother. So I said so. Period.
posted by miss lynnster at 12:24 PM on May 6, 2007


I'm not a troll.

i didn't mention any names ... if the shoe fits ...
posted by pyramid termite at 12:31 PM on May 6, 2007


Ok well, I just assumed that you were going to focus on me now since I opened my mouth & posted my heartfelt opinion. But hey, I'll happily stop posting then & you can have your little troll party all by yourself. Yay for you.
posted by miss lynnster at 12:48 PM on May 6, 2007


Ok well, I just assumed that you were going to focus on me now since I opened my mouth & posted my heartfelt opinion.

Wow. First, people are barely attacking you. Second, you started the attacks first. Third, if people do imply you're a troll, it's not because your opinion is "heartfelt" but because your opinion INSULTED THEM (by the way, you really should look up the definition of "troll").

Oh, is speaking the truth an insult, too? I apologize in advance.
posted by shivohum at 1:06 PM on May 6, 2007


Ok well, I just assumed that you were going to focus on me now

that's an interesting assumption ... did you want me to? ... did you want other people to? ... would have that confirmed your belief that some of us are nasty people?

But hey, I'll happily stop posting then

you disliked the thread, so i don't know why you started up again ... i don't even know why you've singled me out to take offense with

whatever
posted by pyramid termite at 1:14 PM on May 6, 2007


Actually, I was getting into the thread earlier because it's a topic I've done a lot of study on, which is why I expressed my disappointment for the slap fighting tone it ended up with, where people were making personal attacks and calling eachother names. I was not taking offense with you in particular, I actually wasn't even addressing you before you did that whole "shoe fits" thing like a twelve year old.

Hallas, min fadlak. In shallah.
posted by miss lynnster at 1:21 PM on May 6, 2007


How about the substantive reasons the person is killed? This is the question you've consistently evaded, chalking it up to society's beliefs--as if one society's belief that insulting God is a capital crime and another society's belief is that killing someone is a capital crime are morally on the same plane.

No, I haven't evaded it. I don't see any point in discussing it, because as I've already said that killing people for crime is barbaric. There are no circumstances under which it is justified.

And no, I never did say they were on the same moral plane, but keep on trolling, you dishonest fuck.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 3:49 PM on May 6, 2007


I never did say they were on the same moral plane, but keep on trolling, you dishonest fuck.

tkchrist wrote:
Being stoned for being a female is not a crime. And that's what we are talking about here. ... And comparing it to electrocuting a convicted frigg'n murderer or serial killer, no matter how barbaric that itself may be, is not comparable."

dirtynumbangelboy wrote:
How are they not?

Meaning, by common understandings of the English language, how are they not "comparable." Comparable in what respect? In barbarism. Barbaric in this context means crude and immoral.

Thus comparably barbaric means comparably immoral. "Same moral plane" means of comparable morality. Thus you did indeed say that regardless of the substantive crime, capital punishment was on the same moral plane.
posted by shivohum at 4:37 PM on May 6, 2007


Cute semantics, but no. I didn't say that. Are you having fun with this bullshit? Because I'm not. Either stop fucking cherrypicking my words and being a smug little troll, or leave me the hell alone. Your choice.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 4:56 PM on May 6, 2007


When I attended a college in the US for black women, I finally understood that human beings - even people who have intimate awareness with discrimination and hate - will often find a reason to hate others. (In this case, African American women making fun of those born in Africa and/or the Caribbean, and vice versa, straight women against lesbians, and both against bisexuals, lighter black women reviling darker ones, christians judging those of other religions, rinse, wash, repeat.)

The sad thing was many of us behaved with prejudice (we didn't really know each other), but we would all be equally annoyed because we knew we'd have trouble getting a cab in many cities after 9pm, because drivers assumed we were going to bad neighborhoods, or had some other prejudice against us.

My point is that I believe the religion/atheism argument is a bit of a red herring. People will behave cruelly whenever they feel small, or afraid, and/or believe they can get away with it.

My heart goes out to the girl, her family, the young man she loved, those who killed her, and those who stood by and watched. To the metaheads as well, while we're at it.

Somewhere this young woman died, and some of have managed to turn her story into an argument about ourselves and our perspectives, between ourselves. (Myself included, since I shared my own story).
posted by anitanita at 10:12 PM on May 6, 2007 [3 favorites]


Hmm, and while we're on the topic...admittedly, I am not entirely certain why, but as a black women, the song 'Woman is the nigger of the world', actually rubs me every wrong way.

I understand that a number of black leaders have praised the song (Dick Gregory, for example), but I suppose I'm just struck by the fact that a black woman probably wouldn't have written those lyrics.
posted by anitanita at 10:15 PM on May 6, 2007


I'm going to quit Metafilter after 1000 comments, but I think reading this thread has helped me see the light a bit early. Adios.
posted by Burhanistan at 11:12 PM on May 5 [+] [!]


I regret that this thread was the last straw for you. So long and be well.
posted by homunculus at 11:18 PM on May 6, 2007


but as a black women, the song 'Woman is the nigger of the world', actually rubs me every wrong way.

As a white patrician stick in the mud male, it bothers me too, always has. I understand the injustice it's trying to put into relief (how could you not, it hits you over the head with it), but the use of the word and its meaning implies that some forms of discrimination are somehow worse than others. It's insensitive at best, and blind to its own message at worst.
posted by psmealey at 5:18 AM on May 7, 2007


In the spirit of this thread, I offer this for discussion:

What if they had shot her instead of stoning her?

We can now continue this thread into an insulting, back and forth, wheel spinning discussion on gun control.
posted by BozoBurgerBonanza at 8:37 AM on May 7, 2007


I hadn't seen this sort of thing in a while, as outragefilter normally gets deleted before this kind of multithreaded shitfight can happen. It usually follows the same pattern, and this was no exception:posted by psmealey at 8:49 AM on May 7, 2007 [3 favorites]


But look at it from their POV, to them this is justice and right. They see us and see un-religious hate-mongers who are ignorant of their ways.... I think things like this takes special people who can appeal to all sides, understand and explain everything, and bring about change, slowly.


In practice, such rationalizations are just one dogmatic tendency protecting another, but it can't hide from the internal contradictions. If people want to enjoy the freedom of religion, they must honor the concept, or lose such protections and our good will. The rule of law assumes our human rights, even as travelers, and we don't need to make excuses for it.
posted by Brian B. at 4:03 PM on May 7, 2007


outrage at the puppies in such a solemn thread
posted by caddis at 4:48 PM on May 7, 2007 [2 favorites]


...the song 'Woman is the nigger of the world', actually rubs me every wrong way...it bothers me too, always has...

Mea culpa: I wanted to whack this thread upside the head like a Missouri mule but I guess I didn't use a big enough board.
posted by taosbat at 5:15 PM on May 7, 2007


"I wanted to whack this thread upside the head like a Missouri mule but I guess I didn't use a big enough board."


:) No offense taken, Taosbat.

And psmealey, " ...I understand the injustice it's trying to put into relief (how could you not, it hits you over the head with it), but the use of the word and its meaning implies that some forms of discrimination are somehow worse than others. It's insensitive at best, and blind to its own message at worst."

Exactly, that. Thank you.

*picks up puppy, walks out into the sunshine, with thoughts of peace and love.....*
posted by anitanita at 9:40 PM on May 7, 2007


*picks up puppy, walks out into the sunshine, with thoughts of peace and love.....*

For Du’a Khalil Aswad? Who was the subject of this thread? Or for whom?
posted by taosbat at 11:08 PM on May 7, 2007


Half of the people who posted in this thread are still thinking she was a muslim woman who was killed by other muslims. And that the religion of the men who killed her actually makes a difference. And that calling other posters nasty names is actually mature discourse on a topic. So if I could help you build a bigger board to use, I would be happy to. But that's me. YMMV.
posted by miss lynnster at 11:19 PM on May 7, 2007


Feminists Yanar Mohammed of Iraq and Dr. Sima Samar of Afghanistan on the Dire Situation for Women Under U.S. Occupation and Rising Fundamentalism
posted by homunculus at 12:09 PM on May 14, 2007


"Honour Killing" sparks fears of new Iraqi conflict
posted by homunculus at 12:50 AM on May 17, 2007


Four arrested in Iraq 'honor killing'
posted by taosbat at 2:34 PM on May 18, 2007


CNN Airs Portion Of Stoning Death
posted by homunculus at 5:49 PM on May 19, 2007


Get the Story Right
posted by homunculus at 10:30 PM on May 20, 2007


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