McCarthyism, Muslims and Ex Muslims

The conference at the University of Bath continues. Professor Kumar, writer on islamophobia:


How is that for dissuading ex Muslims going public? You are a McCarthyite, a native informant collaborating with colonialist oppressors. You are on a par with white supremacist Christian groups. You are with the Zionism that encourages human rights violations of the Palestinians, which is supported world wide because of islamophobia.

This narrative is as naive as suggesting people become ex Muslim to get drunk and eat a bacon sandwich in the morning to nurse their hang over. The academic discourse here is more disconcerting, for it suggests not just turning your back on a religious heritage and cultural identity, but becoming a turncoat.

It is the old idea of apostasy as treason – this time to the Muslim community. That becoming an ex Muslim is to become an agent in the oppression of other Muslims. Rather than suggesting dialogue, understanding and acceptance of difference of opinion that religious freedom advocates.

In fighting colonialism and racism, Islamism has asserted itself by promoting a particular Muslim identity to slay these monsters. When people leave the faith, and talk about why, they are seen not just as opponents. But enemies. Hence their demonisation. 


Which is what happens of course, in you are either with me or against me narrative where monsters are to be slayed. When ex Muslims recount their experiences they are told to shut up. They are dismissed as troubled individuals. They are informants. They are McCarthyites. They are an industry.

A minority is turned on, just as it is with racism and colonialism. I hope that realisation comes soon enough in the discourse against ex Muslims. 



More background here.

Update: 7:55PM

Taken from this tweet here.

Article written by John Sargeant on Homo economicus’ Weblog

Follow @JPSargeant78

My Huffington Post Blog



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14 responses to “McCarthyism, Muslims and Ex Muslims

  1. Al

    I disagree with Kumar’s writing on issues; for example, her Danish Cartoons piece. But there is a great degree of spin going on here. To take a single line from a single slide and distort it to argue that she thinks all ex-Muslims are McCarthyites is not particularly honest and a knee jerk approach. A more honest approach would be to read her work and listen to the talk. She is not saying that leaving Islam makes you ‘a McCarthyite, a native informant collaborating with colonialist oppressors’.

    She is talking about specific ex-Muslims who have campaigned to not only demonize Muslims but curb Muslim freedoms. Examples in her work include individuals such as Wafa Sultan, Walid Shoebat, Walid Phares and Ibn Warraq.

  2. Al

    If I was going to write a critique of a person or a presentation they gave, I would read their work and listen to the actual presentation, rather than work off a single line on one slide. Just a thought

    • I’m criticising a bullet point, how it is worded, how a photo of which from that conference will be read and used against ex Muslims. The narrative that it plays to, the problem and issues ex Muslims face.

      Words matter, and if she meant far right ex Muslim activists then it just might help to say it in the bullet point. Like far right Christian was clarified in bullet points to indicate not all Christians.

      Will you concede that is the point being made here?

  3. Ah, so when you realize John’s argument is coherent and inarguable, instead of addressing that you abandon the previous arguments you were making and immediately switch to whataboutery.

    Thanks for clearing that up

    • The whataboutery gets stranger when you consider what I said about Ayaan Hirsi Ali’s atheist critique in my piece:

      “Needless to say, I find such a view horrid, misleading and willfully inaccurate of how most Muslims I meet articulate what Islam means.”

      Something tells me what I did write is incidental to them.

    • Al

      The article has little relation to reality, as he well knows. Stick to fiction, Duns.

  4. Cain

    These muslims are afraid of ex-muslims because they know many more muslims will start to leave islam once they realize there’s many others like them. So these muslim extremists pretending to be academics do character assassination and try to sell it as science. I am a scientist myself and find this not just revealing, but also disgusting. I have no doubt apostasy will only accelerate in the future and there’s nothing that can stop it. The Koran is corrupted and islam has no merit. No pseudo-academic will ever be able to change that.

  5. SecularTexan

    There are enough studies through surveys, in the Islamic world vast majorities often veto proof majorities subscribe to some of the vilest of the Islamic memes. Such as the right penalties for Apostasy is death, proper punishment for adultery is stoning, so on. The true implication of such attitudes is not that vast majority are peace loving as any of the guilt ridden western liberal. It means, although large majority of these people with 7th century attitudes, would not take it upon themselves to embark on those assignments, very few of them would intervene if some hardcore extremist were to undertake such action in their presence. The fact of the matter is people try to live by what they profess their values are, as much as possible. At the same time there is indeed social pressure also reigning on them to conform to that pressure, be that be illegality of their values or just human zeitgeist or just plain conscience over and beyond value. The least possible sustenance that they deem they ought to give to their values is not obstruct carrying out of their values, by the extremists. When you have 60 – 70% majorities subscribing to those savage barbarics memes, you do not need a large percentage within it to be danger to the greater populace.

    For Dr. Kumar to say in a facile manner that ex-muslims are native informants and other derisive characterizations is ridiculous. Does she imagine that these ex-muslims are intrinsically evil & vile people that, wilfully and without compunctions are betraying their people? For someone who seems to make excuses for the muslim community, such as they are the downtrodden, marginalized, etc., etc., couldn’t she countenance extending the same reasoning to the ex-muslims. Perhaps they are too marginalized, and are downtrodden vis-a-vis the muslim community. I feel her analysis betrays very poor scholarship on her part.

    • It is worthwhile pointing out the issues with the wording of the bullet point, and how ex Muslims are treated as native informants on, and traitors t,o other Muslims.

      If it was only briefly mentioned, yet was a significant part of a series of bullet points, that makes the criticism more significant of how it was worded. Not less.

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