02 December 2009

Swiss ban mosque minarets

Swiss ban mosque minarets in surprise vote:
Swiss voters overwhelmingly approved a constitutional ban on minarets on Sunday, barring construction of the iconic mosque towers in a surprise vote that put Switzerland at the forefront of a European backlash against a growing Muslim population.

Muslim groups in Switzerland and abroad condemned the vote as biased and anti-Islamic. Business groups said the decision hurt Switzerland’s international standing and could damage relations with Muslim nations and wealthy investors who bank, travel and shop there.

When I read the first paragraph I thought it was rather sad that the Swiss should be seen to be suppressing religious freedom like that.

But when I read the second paragraph I was even more saddened by the hypocrisy of it all.

Perhaps the Muslim groups who objected should have a look at the restrictions on building and repairing Christian churches in countries like Egypt and Saudi Arabia and do something about those before complaining about the restrictions of others.

Sauce, goose, gander and all that.

As for the response of the business groups, well, it reminded me of Tom Lehrer's saying, "Christmas, with its spirit of giving, reminds us of what we all most deeply and sincerely believe in. I refer, of course, to money."


cube said...

This measure strikes me as closing the well after the child has drowned. Probably too little, too late. I hope I'm wrong.

Steve Hayes said...

Too little of what? Too late for what? Do you wish Enver Hoxha would make a come-back?

Yewtree said...

I also thought the ban was a bit draconian until the article pointed out the ban on church-building in Muslim countries. Though two wrongs don't make a right, of course. The West should be leading the way in religious tolerance.

Modern minaret architecture isn't that great, frankly, either. Of course there are some very beautiful old mosques.


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