Friday, June 18, 2010

Civil Uncivility

This is interesting.

America has a well-developed system for getting companies to pay for the damage they do; and BP long ago accepted that it would pay in full. But that was never going to satisfy the country’s corporate bloodlust. An outfit called Seize BP has organised demonstrations in favour of the expropriation of BP’s assets in 50 cities. Over 600,000 people have supported a boycott of the firm on Facebook. Several of BP’s gas (petrol) stations have been vandalised. (Link)

What would you call this act of people? Natural reaction? Compare the same reaction with muslim protests around the globe on Prophet Muhammad issue. Any similarities? or nothing at all?

When muslims protest, call for ban on FaceBook (or to ban facebook), arrange protests or vandalize... they are bigoted and uncivil. Why?

You might argue, and logically too, that the issue involved is different. That what BP did is material and tangible in form of damaging the coastal and sea life of Gulf of Mexico. On the other hand, muslim's protest of Prophet Muhammad issue was just an exaggeration of sentiment. How can one quantify a sentiment. Muslims take their religion way too seriously and since muslim societies do not believe in freedom of opinion, they cant take a opposite opinion. Hence the two issues just do not compare.

I agree.

But wait. What matters most do you think? The issue or the reaction to that issue? Suppose an act X results in reaction Y. Does your analysis rest on ferocity of Y or sensitivity of X?

Taking the case of BP. Since the act is sensitive thats why we accept a harsh and ferociuos reaction against them. Agree.

Taking the case of Prophet Muhammad issue, regardless of the sensitivity of the issue (since its subjective) the opposition camp would have agreed to 'just a protest by muslims' instead of 'muslims vandalizing property'. This should show that the reaction is more of a problem than the sensitivity of issue.

Since when muslims protest and they are called bigoted, ignorant and uncivil, should not everyone who protests be called bigoted, ignorant and uncivil? Or is it concerned with religion only?

Why am I writing this post?


The Chef said...

Excellent and valid argument. The issue is once your track record is type casted, everything coming from you is also pre-judged. Muslims need a PR agency for image makeover.

kona berwalla said...

I found your reasoning clean and valid... even though I was somewhat of the opinion that the reaction to the Facebook event (in Pakistan) could have been handled in a different way. Nice work.

a fan said...

Firstly, i consider this whole BP bashing as a true negative to the US Economy recovery...and these bashing people will only suffer at the end.

I agree that the damage done by the spill is immense and we are yet to understand the tremendous impact. But this kind of bashing and people's reaction is just not right. And i am quite surprised that you are referring in the post as the reaction accepted by fellows.

I wonder who accepts these kind of violent reactions?!

Regarding the comparison of two incidents, the rootcause and target are different in either case, but the intention is the same. As per me, it's the intention that is not acceptable in either case.

PostMan said...

Who can agree to people vandalizing the property? No one can. Its the 'natural reaction' to events we are talking about - not rationality.

I never agreed nor am agreeing to way muslims behaved during cartoon controversy for example. I am just stating the 'coverage' to the reactions. No one has yet called americans bigoted and ignorant.