Friday, August 31, 2007

That’s One Small Step for Allah

I’m sort of fascinated by contemporaryArab culture. On the one hand you have state-of-the-art electronic broadcasting equipment and competent direction from the control room . . . yet the content of the broadcast is bizarre medieval superstition.

How can it be that complex technology can so effortlessly coexist with such irrational rubbish? “The radiation from Mecca is infinite.” Jeez, I’m embarrassed for these guys.

One clue, Arabs are ignorant. I don't mean that in a bad way. They can't help but be ignorant. They have very few opportunities to be informed.

According to the UNDP Arab Human Development Report of 2003, the total number of books translated into Arabic during the past 1,000 years is less than those translated in Spain in one year.

I’m all for greater understanding between cultures, but the Arab world has a long way to go before it has even a hazy understanding of western culture and values . . . or even science.

The day some American billionaire writes a check to establish an institute for the study of Judeo/Christian culture in Saudi Arabia will be the day we begin to make some progress toward mutual understanding.

The first big lesson will be the reaction of our Saudi friends.

And yet, there is still hope that rational people can rise up and prevail against ignorance.

To believe otherwise is simple bigotry.

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