Maryam Namazie, a prolific secular activist specializing in calling out the evils of Islam (she’s the spokesperson for the Council of Ex-Muslims), has now become the most recent victim of the Offended Students Movement—a mindset that has apparently spread to Ireland. According to The Journal ie., which relied on posts from Namazie’s own website (see also here), she was supposed to speak on Monday at Trinity College Dublin (TCD) on “Apostasy and the Rise of Islamicism.” The appeasers and cowards among students and administrators, as well as the Potentially Offended, suddenly realized what they had got themselves into: a critic of Islam was going to speak! Unopposed! They then laid two new restrictions on Namazie’s talk (reported by The Journal i.e):
- All attendants of the event must be 1) Trinity students and 2) members of the society hosting the talk.
- For “balance”, they require that a moderator host the event.
In a blog post on Friday, [Namazie” said she had been informed that “college security (why security?) has claimed that the event would show the college is ‘one-sided’ and would be ‘antagonising’ to ‘Muslim students’”.
These conditions were not specified in advance, nor were they imposed on another extremist Muslim speaker who, talking at an earlier time, advocated the death penalty for apostasy.
In light of the information above, the new conditions imposed on her presence, and the clear signal that her talk would offend Muslim students, Namazie refused to give her talk. But she still is adamant about wanting to speak at TCD, and is looking for some organization to host her. Good luck to her. She said this on her website (see also here; my emphasis):
“… It is crucial that I be able to speak against Islamist fascism and honour our dissenters deemed apostates, blasphemers, heretics… whether ex-Muslims, Muslims or non-Muslims.
I particularly insist on being able to do so in light of the fact that only last month – 25 February – Kamal El Mekki who advocates the death penalty for apostasy was given space to speak at an event hosted by the “Muslim” Student Association. No conditions were placed on his talk and security did not threaten to cancel the event nor inform the Association that the speakers’ position on death for apostates would “antagonise” ex-Muslim and Muslim students who do not support apostasy laws…”
… “What is packaged as “offence” is really Islamism’s imposition of blasphemy laws and theocracy under the pretext of respect for “Muslim sensibilities”. Only in Europe does this far-Right fascist movement use “offence” or Islamophobia to silence and censor. In countries where they have state power, there is no need for such niceties. In Saudi Arabia, Iran, Pakistan, Iraq and Syria, the “offenders” are called what they are – apostates, blasphemers, enemies against god, the corrupt of the earth, heretics – and legally murdered in broad daylight in the same way Charlie Hebdo’s journalists were “executed”.
It’s time to stop caving in to those who wish to avoid criticism of their faith by pretending to be offended, or using actual offense as a club to bash other people’s speech. Namazie has sensible things to say about Islam, and is being prevented from saying them by religious fanatics. Shame on Trinity College, its administration, and its students.