Benjamin Studebaker

Yet Another Attempt to Make the World a Better Place by Writing Things

Tag: Islam

Islam and Terrorism

The other day, there was a terrorist attack in Woolwich, London. Lee Rigby, a drummer in the army, was attacked and stabbed by two assailants. This has brought up the subjection of the relationship between Islam and terrorism. It has also raised the question of whether or not permitting Muslim immigration leads to terrorism. Today, I’ve decided to weigh in on the whole mess.

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What if God Exists?

When confronted with right wing social conservatism, the left usually adopts one of two strategies. On the one hand, it can argue for tolerance of differing viewpoints, but this argument is only persuasive for those who themselves are not so certain of what they believe as to legislate it. In other words, the tolerance argument only works for people who were already susceptible to accept social progressivism.  Alternatively, the left sometimes approaches this problem by rejecting the existence of god so as to undermine the foundation of the conservative belief system, but in order for social conservatives to exist in the first place, their level of confidence in their belief in a god must be very high. These arguments, in many cases, are doomed to fail. So what else can the left argue? Well perhaps the left can seek common ground with the right by accepting, for the purposes of argument, the existence of god.

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France Goes to War

French President François Hollande has decided that France is going into Mali.  The nation of Mali has, in the last year, descended into civil war. The war in Mali has received relatively little mainstream media coverage and many westerners are, to our collective shame, unaware of what has been going on there and the role their own governments have played in creating the war. Today I would like to examine the Malian Civil War, its causes, the present state of affairs, and the ethics of intervening in it.

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Rape in India: Who is to Blame?

Recently, a girl in India was gang-raped and killed. The incident produced a nationwide dialogue about India’s rape culture and the causes thereof, some of which has spilled over into the wider global conversation about gender roles, feminism, and so on. The blame has been directed a number of different ways with most of the arguments being impassioned, emotional, and defensive. I would like to cut away the passionate recriminations and attempt to come to a reasonable conclusion as to what the source of rape is and how states might go about combating it.

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Mohamed Morsi, Inept Bumbler

In the western press, it is common to perceive Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi’s recent declaration of sweeping authority as a shrewd power grab by the newest regional autocrat. In light of the most recent development–Morsi revoking his despised decree–it occurs to me that perhaps the west has been too quick to assume malevolence on Morsi’s part. What we have here is not a man seizing power through cleverness and guile. Instead we have a bumbling oaf who lacks the political nuance to effectively govern Egypt and who has not made clever moves, but a series of disastrous missteps, the consequences of which could be severe.

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