Archive for the ‘Indonesia’ Category

Religious freedom for minorities is a complicated matter. After all, we still have Muslim-bashing in the States, anti-Semitic attacks in Europe, etc. But the myth of religious tolerance in moderate Muslim-majority countries (e.g. Turkey, Malaysia, Indonesia), periodically comes into conflict with hard fact on the ground.

Latest case in point, from Indonesia Matters, about the recent spate of anti-church-building demonstrations in Bekasi:

The clerics said that if we didn’t sign (a petition against building a Batak church), they wouldn’t recite prayers at our funerals. I insisted on not signing it, but most of my neighbors were cowed by the threat.
Rudi, 38, a moderate Muslim

At night, their singing disturbs the locals’ sleep
Murhali, Bekasi FPI leader

For more about FPI, the Islamic Defender Front, look up Wikipedia. Your humble author does not wish to go through Indonesian libel law by stating it out in print. Suffice it to say that Murhali’s claim is rather preposterous, given that Christians do late-night services at most twice a year (Christmas Eve and Easter Eve), whereas, as Indonesia Matters’ Ross pointed out, local mosques blare out calls to prayer before dawn each morning.

Read the rest, and weep. We are all God’s creations, but some of us clearly have not gotten the memo yet.


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