Friday, September 22, 2006

A How-to on civilized conversation

Do muslims have a right to be annoyed with Pope Benedict's remarks not violent, just annoyed)? The Anchoress has an answer:
In our house, we have a rule: You have the right to disagree with and be annoyed by anything someone else says, just as soon as you can accurately repeat back to your opponent the thing they said.

I would say that holds true for these fundamentalist Muslims, too. Can they first repeat Benedict’s arguement back to him, accurately? It means reading the speech though, with an honest attempt to comprehend his meaning, and then saying, “this is what you said, Benedict - do we have the right of it?”

If they can do that, then yes..they have a right to be annoyed, if they like. Annoyed. Just like Catholics get “annoyed” when they feel they have been treated obnoxiously at the hands of, say, Hollywood. Annoyed does not mean killing, burning, calling for blood and death or converting people under a sword.
Of course, few will take her suggestion. For many people, outrage seems to be a pleasurable emotion.

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