abdel

Sharia don’t like it, rock the casbah, Part II

Apparently, criticising or arguing with a woman who thinks that Islam is the most feminist religion is sexist:

Business and community leaders have been urged to support controversial Islamic activist Yassmin Abdel-Magied who has faced a storm of criticism for promoting sharia law…

However, Julie McKay, gender adviser to the chief of the defence force and partner at PwC, believes that the criticism of Abdel-Magied is motivated by sexism.“Last week, we saw a telling example of what happens to women who stand up for gender equality and dare to voice their opinions with conviction,” Ms McKay wrote.“They become front-page news, their personal lives are attacked, death threats are made towards them, petitions are created to undermine their confidence and credibility.“As business and community leaders, all of whom have benefited from the advice and insights of Yassmin Abdel-Magied, we could not remain silent while this occurred yet again.”

Dear Ms McKay,

1.Ms Abdel-Magied was not standing up for “gender equity”, she was standing up for sharia law and Islam more broadly. If you think that these are all the same thing then I worry about both the ADF and PwC.

2.If PwC has benefited from Ms Abdel-Magied’s advice and insight, I hope it was in her engineering area of expertise, not in history or religion, or for that matter in gender equity. Then again, since at PwC you “foster an inclusive culture which embraces differences” and since you do seem to equate the support for sharia law with “gender equity”, I won’t be surprised if your firm starts separating male and female employees, encouraging your female employees to wear a headscarf, cover up and otherwise dress modestly, or allow men not to shake women’s hands.

3. After last year’s presidential election, PwC “has offered to counsel its staff in Australia who are worried by Donald Trump’s US election win. In an extraordinary move… PwC implied that Mr Trump held values contrary to the company’s and that all staff should take solace in PwC’s culture of ‘care’ in the wake of the election result.” Maybe, just maybe, there is something slightly askew if you find Donald Trump’s values offensive but think that Islam is feminist and sharia in line with your corporate vision.

4. I don’t support personal attacks or threats of any kind being made against Ms Abdel-Magied, but being a woman, a public figure, and an advocate for her religion does not make her immune from criticism or debate. Particularly when she’s voicing opinions on contentious issues; opinions I and many others find ill-informed and bordering on deluded.

5. If criticising a woman who promotes sharia law is sexist, then I assume that criticising a woman who thinks that criticising a woman who promotes sharia law is sexist is sexist too. In which case you have my deep and profound apology. If it makes any difference, I criticise any men who promote sharia law and make ridiculous claims about it too. Though that probably just makes me a racist, a bigot, and a xenophobe. So I better shut up now, lest my exercise of freedom of speech undermines even more people’s confidence and credibility.

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