14 July 2005

London bombing updates

Word has it that the London bombings from last week were the work of a band of suicide bombers, most of them Pakistanis who had naturalized as British citizens. This gives me several thoughts.

First, Pakistan, with its primitive and cruel legal system (especially against women and gays), is not a suitable ally for the civilized world. In particular, I have been hearing about a women's rights activist who was gang-raped two years ago for speaking out, and whose attempt to travel to the US to talk about her experience has been thwarted by the Musharraf government. This is unacceptable. Moreover, there even are rumors that Osama bin Laden is hiding somewhere in Pakistan as the US-led coalition concentrates its attacks on Afghanistan; if true, Pakistan is actually an enemy of the civilized world.

Second, we must closely monitor ethnic religious groups for any signs of extremist behavior, instead of wrapping them in a cloak of political correctness. I am seeing extremist behavior right here in Los Angeles, in the churches located in the barrios and other ethnic areas. They are also the reason why Los Angeles does not have the tolerant reputation that San Francisco has. You may tell me that suicide bombings are an Islamic phenomenon; however, I will tell you that killing non-believers is a justifiable action in the Old Testament of the Bible as well, and that the Old Testament is a sacred text shared by Judeo-Christians and Muslims. In extremist Christianity, as practiced by white supremacists in rural America and these ethnic groups in urban America, it is perfectly acceptable to dole out punishments commonly seen in the Muslim world, such as cutting off one's hands or stoning.

In college, I have seen this extremist Christianity in action. The campus Campus Crusade for Christ, or CCC (it used to be KCCC, K standing for Korean, then later dropped the K when non-Koreans started showing in large numbers, but it remained mostly Asian, with a few white supremacist leaders), taught that evolution does not exist, and that women, by virtue of Eve's sin, were to forever submit to men without reason. They were launching guerrila/terrorist warfare against progressive groups on campus, and against me as well - for daring to leave their group and come out of the closet - sabotaging my Internet connection as well. They also urged people not to vote for Bob Dole in the '96 Republican presidential primaries, saying that hard-line conservatives such as Steve Forbes and Pat Buchanan were the only ones fit for the job. Yes, the same Buchanan who denies the existence of Holocaust, and calls AIDS God's retribution for homosexuality. (That comment cost many lives, gay and straight, during the Reagan presidency. So much for the Republican culture of life.)

Religious extremism kills. We've seen it in London. We've seen it in New York in 2001. And America's own religious extremism is killing both within the American borders and outside. We must stop this madness before it becomes a new trend, like communism in the 20th century. That's why I have renounced the Christian view of a mean, judgmental, patriarchal God in favor of a nurturing, loving, matriarchal Goddess.

I'll be more than happy to elaborate more on the CCC/KCCC experience in the future.