My oh my, the new speech codes of our moral superiors are convoluted. The absurdity of the Left’s new orthodoxy was on full-frontal, ghastly display Tuesday, when a man in New Zealand was questioned on suspicion of “hate speech.”
Writing “Islam is Right about Women” in chalk on the sidewalk outside a mosque. Yes, now apparently the new thought police are so good, they can determine from chalk graffiti whether or not you’re being sarcastic and “hateful.”
How could writing “Islam is Right about Women” possibly be “hate speech”? It seems that the officials who are investigating this case have the concept all wrong. The chalk graffiti would have been “hate speech” if it had said “Islam is WRONG about women,” no? Certainly in the view of the dominant Left today, that would be hate speech. But defending Sharia oppression of women? Why, that’s not “hate speech”! That’s positively woke!
This ridiculous incident illustrates the fact that the very concept of “hate speech,” so beloved and increasingly used by the Left, not just in New Zealand but all over the world, is arbitrary, subjective, and useless. How is the graffiti “hate speech” in any conceivable fashion? If an adherent of Islam put it up, he or she would strenuously object to that label, and maintain that Islam’s treatment of women was divinely-ordained justice. So if this is “hate speech,” then Islam is hateful, which I’m sure no New Zealand police officials meant to imply.
Clearly, the cops immediately thought that the graffiti was written by “Islamophobes,” and quickly nabbed their man. Still, it’s an odd sort of “hate speech” to affirm what one opposes. But since clear thinking has pretty much gone the way of the Model T Ford and sensible Leftists these days are extinct, fear of “Islamophobia” is what led the police to consider this graffiti a provocation.
Meanwhile, lost in the controversy is what is actually the central question: is Islam actually right about women?
The Qur’an teaches that men are superior to women and should beat those from whom they “fear disobedience”: “Men have authority over women because Allah has made the one superior to the other, and because they spend their wealth to maintain them. Good women are obedient. They guard their unseen parts because Allah has guarded them. As for those from whom you fear disobedience, admonish them and send them to beds apart and beat them.” (4:34)
The Qur’an likens a woman to a field (tilth), to be used by a man as he wills: “Your women are a tilth for you, so go to your tilth as you will” (2:223)
It declares that a woman’s testimony is worth half that of a man: “Get two witnesses, out of your own men, and if there are not two men, then a man and two women, such as you choose, for witnesses, so that if one of them errs, the other can remind her” (2:282)
It allows men to marry up to four wives, and have sex with slave girls also: “If you fear that you shall not be able to deal justly with the orphans, marry women of your choice, two or three or four; but if you fear that ye shall not be able to deal justly, then only one, or one that your right hands possess, that will be more suitable, to prevent you from doing injustice” (4:3)
It rules that a son’s inheritance should be twice the size of that of a daughter: “Allah directs you as regards your children’s inheritance: to the male, a portion equal to that of two females” (4:11).
It allows for marriage to prepubescent girls, stipulating that Islamic divorce procedures “shall apply to those who have not yet menstruated” (65:4)
Also, a Muslim wife may not refuse sex. A hadith depicts Muhammad saying: “If a husband calls his wife to his bed [i.e. to have sexual relation] and she refuses and causes him to sleep in anger, the angels will curse her till morning” (Bukhari 4.54.460).
And: “By him in Whose Hand lies my life, a woman can not carry out the right of her Lord, till she carries out the right of her husband. And if he asks her to surrender herself [to him for sexual intercourse] she should not refuse him even if she is on a camel’s saddle” (Ibn Majah 1854).
Islamic law stipulates: “The husband may forbid his wife to leave the home…because of the hadith related by Bayhaqi that the Prophet…said, ‘It is not permissible for a woman who believes in Allah and the Last Day to allow someone into her husband’s house if he is opposed, or to go out of it if he is averse” (Reliance of the Traveller m10.4).
However, not only can none of this be spoken in the mainstream, but even to affirm the opposite is now an offense in New Zealand. Nonetheless, the supposedly obvious fact that this graffiti was sarcastic doesn’t obscure the fact that the intelligentsia all over the Anglosphere want you to ignore all those citations and others like them, and believe in your heart that Islam is indeed right about women. And no one will dare object and speak up in defense of women, for fear of suffering far worse than what this graffiti artist got.
Robert Spencer is the director of Jihad Watch and a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. He is author of 21 books, including the New York Times bestsellers The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades) and The Truth About Muhammad. His latest book is Rating America’s Presidents: An America-First Look at Who Is Best, Who Is Overrated, and Who Was An Absolute Disaster. Follow him on Twitter here. Like him on Facebook here.