Sunday, 28 July 2013

Debates: That Islam is a Religion of Peace

This morning here in Hong Kong, Bloomberg TV replayed the 2010 Intelligence Squared Debate on Islam: the motion being that "Islam is a Religion of Peace".
The debate was won by those opposing the motion: Ayyan Hirsi Ali and Douglas Murray. They won handily. (Their opponents: Zeba Kahn and Maajid Nawaz).
The full YouTube video of the debate is above, or click here.
About the time of this debate, the King's School in Canterbury -- my son tells me --  had the same debate. That was also won by the opposition, namely winning the proposition that Islam is NOT a religion of peace.
Recently another debate on the proposition, at the Oxford Union.  This one was won by the supporters of the proposition that Islam is a Religion of Peace.
The case for the anti proposition -- that Islam is NOT a religion of peace -- is so strong in my view and on the reading of the evidence -- The Islamic Trinity, and the actions of Muslims themselves -- that it hardly seems credible that one could take the opposing side.  And indeed, it seems that whenever the debate is held, even in nice liberal places like New York, the conclusion is the obvious one: Islam is NOT a religion of peace.
Yet the fine folk at the Oxford Union managed to find that it was....
As Robert Fulford says:
At the recent Oxford Union debate, the resolution “This House Believes Islam Is a Religion of Peace” won the day by 286 to 168 votes. That seems an odd conclusion to embrace in 2013.
As Fulford says, perhaps the Oxford Union was sub-consciously thinking "This House wants to believe ...".  Douglas Murray makes a similar point in the earlier Intelligence Squared debate -- that if the proposition were "Islam may one day become a religion of peace".  In that case, perhaps the house (or at least he) could agree with the proposition....