Fatwa-endorsing singer featured at “Restoring Sanity” rally?

posted at 4:52 pm on October 30, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

I tuned in to the “Restoring Sanity” rally on the National Mall today during the prep time before the NARN broadcast this afternoon, just in time to see “Peace Train” performed live — and I said to my radio partner Mitch Berg, “Did I just see Cat Stevens on stage for a rally claiming to restore sanity?”  As Aaron Worthing at Patterico and Ed Driscoll confirm, indeed I did, as did everyone else.  Mediate has the video of Yusuf Islam’s appearance, as well as a bit of his background:

The inclusion of Yusuf Islam in the Rally to Restore Sanity is sure to raise a number of eyebrows, given the controversy surrounding his alleged support of the fundamentalist Islamic fatwa against author Salman Rushdie. As Andy Levy tweeted “Rally To Restore Fatwas?” Yusuf has since asserted that he was simply joking and his comments were taken out of context. In the years that has followed, he has repeatedly denied ever calling for the death of Rushdie or supporting the fatwa.

You be the judge. In 1989, here’s Islam speaking on a panel discussing the fatwa issued against Salman Rushdie issued by Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. Does this sound like an episode of a Bill Maher-type show?

Robertson: You don’t think that this man deserves to die?
Y. Islam: Who, Salman Rushdie?
Robertson: Yes.
Y. Islam: Yes, yes.
Robertson: And do you have a duty to be his executioner?
Y. Islam: Uh, no, not necessarily, unless we were in an Islamic state and I was ordered by a judge or by the authority to carry out such an act – perhaps, yes. ….

Robertson: Would you be part of that protest, Yusuf Islam, would you go to a demonstration where you knew that an effigy was going to be burned?
Y. Islam: I would have hoped that it’d be the real thing.

Later, the New York Times reported that Islam stood by those remarks (emphasis mine):

The musician known as Cat Stevens said in a British television program to be broadcast next week that rather than go to a demonstration to burn an effigy of the author Salman Rushdie, ”I would have hoped that it’d be the real thing.”

The singer, who adopted the name Yusuf Islam when he converted to Islam, made the remark during a panel discussion of British reactions to Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini’s call for Mr. Rushdie to be killed for allegedly blaspheming Islam in his best-selling novel ”The Satanic Verses.” He also said that if Mr. Rushdie turned up at his doorstep looking for help, ”I might ring somebody who might do more damage to him than he would like.”

”I’d try to phone the Ayatollah Khomeini and tell him exactly where this man is,” said Mr. Islam, who watched a preview of the program today and said in an interview that he stood by his comments.

In other words, he wasn’t joking at all — which he himself later confirmed. When confronted with a choice between freedom of speech and homicidal religious zealotry, Cat Stevens chose the latter.

What I find amazing about this is that two stars from Comedy Central would share the stage with a man who supported the idea of murdering an artist for his remarks on Islam. The producers of South Park got death threats from radical Muslims for attempting to depict an image of Muhammed in one of their recent episodes, and the executive management of Viacom forced them to censor the show in fear of Muslim reaction. Now, two of Viacom’s most recognizable television stars have linked themselves to a man who publicly endorsed that exact kind of threat — as a way to “restore sanity.”

Earlier, I guessed that the rally would just be a waste of time. Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert managed to turn it into a despicable, offensive embarrassment. Isn’t that … ironic?

Update: Salman Rushdie wasn’t fooled:

Cat Stevens wanted me dead

However much Cat Stevens/Yusuf Islam may wish to rewrite his past, he was neither misunderstood nor misquoted over his views on the Khomeini fatwa against The Satanic Verses (Seven, April 29). In an article in The New York Times on May 22, 1989, Craig R Whitney reported Stevens/Islam saying on a British television programme “that rather than go to a demonstration to burn an effigy of the author Salman Rushdie, ‘I would have hoped that it’d be the real thing’.”

He added that “if Mr Rushdie turned up at his doorstep looking for help, ‘I might ring somebody who might do more damage to him than he would like. I’d try to phone the Ayatollah Khomeini and tell him exactly where this man is’.”

In a subsequent interview with The New York Times, Mr Whitney added, Stevens/Islam, who had seen a preview of the programme, said that he “stood by his comments”.

Let’s have no more rubbish about how “green” and innocent this man was.

Salman Rushdie, New York


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It feels like I live in an alternate universe. Something straight from the Twilight Zone.

I haven’t figured out a better way to say it, but in my opinion Liberalism is simply an evil philosophy.

Yeah yeah, not the people who believe in it, just what they do and the results of it.

scotash on October 30, 2010 at 6:22 PM

Although they thought they were successfully (and desperately) rallying their base, they failed to recognize the damage that this fiasco would do to their already dismal reputation with the always critical center.

ontherocks on October 30, 2010 at 6:09 PM

Exactly….

I can’t imagine anybody watching this clown fest and coming away saying….”yea…..maybe they are right…the Health Care Bill and Stimulus were a great idea.”

Baxter Greene on October 30, 2010 at 6:22 PM

True. I’ll take insanity, thanks.

ddrintn on October 30, 2010 at 6:00 PM

Heh!!!

Baxter Greene on October 30, 2010 at 6:25 PM

Hey, you got pot in my falafel

Kini on October 30, 2010 at 6:26 PM

I watched the whole d*mn thing. I think they should be most ashamed because it was so boring. Maybe if you were there, smoked a lot of weed….I dunno. It just felt weird and forced with no continuity. And with Stewart supposedly being so “influential” it was odd to see so many “olds” performing. I wished I could have seen the faces of the kids there and read their lips when they announced Father Guido Sarducci, Cat Stevens, Tony Bennett, etc. I know they were colectively mouthing, “WTF?”

di butler on October 30, 2010 at 6:28 PM

I can’t imagine anybody watching this clown fest and coming away saying….”yea…..maybe they are right…the Health Care Bill and Stimulus were a great idea.”

Baxter Greene on October 30, 2010 at 6:22 PM

Your comment reminded me that I omitted TOTAL LACK OF SELF AWARENESS to the list of their critical weaknesses.

ontherocks on October 30, 2010 at 6:29 PM

Well, there was a big crowd there for the Stewart thing, bigger than I expected. But the message of the whole thing was to goof on Beck. Pretty much a waste.

ddrintn on October 30, 2010 at 6:11 PM

We agree that Beck was the primary target. Stewart seems most sharply critical of those just on the other side of the politics/entertainment line.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 6:30 PM

Drudge is tearing this clown fest apart!!!!….

…..it’s like they have our comment section on the front page.

Baxter Greene on October 30, 2010 at 6:30 PM

A little trivia: lefty Natalie Merchant and her old band 10,000 Maniacs removed their cover of ‘Peace Train’ from subsequent pressings of In My Tribe (great CD, FYI) because of Stevens’ support of the fatwa. So I guess they weren’t in on the joke, either…

rcpjr on October 30, 2010 at 6:30 PM

Your comment reminded me that I omitted TOTAL LACK OF SELF AWARENESS to the list of their critical weaknesses.

ontherocks on October 30, 2010 at 6:29 PM

No problem…

Post was right on target…..

………I got the point.

Baxter Greene on October 30, 2010 at 6:31 PM

Yusuf Islam, AKA Cat Stevens…

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/01/07/magazine/07WWLN_Q4.t.html?ref=yusuf_islam

Interview by DEBORAH SOLOMON
New York Times,
07 Jan, 2007

[Q:] “So would you say you have contempt for a terrorist group like Hamas?”

[YI:] “I wouldn’t put those words in my mouth. I wouldn’t say anything on that issue. I’m here to talk about peace. I’m a man who does want peace for this world, and I don’t think you will achieve that by putting people into corners and asking them very, very difficult questions about very contentious issues.”

sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 6:33 PM

So what, exactly, was the point of the “rally,” anyway? Other than PR for Stewart and Colbert?

Say, is it my imagination, or were the only black people at the rally the OJays?

Meryl Yourish on October 30, 2010 at 6:38 PM

sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 6:33 PM

How brave…..

………reminds me of when Eric Holder would not say “radical Islam”……

We know they support the jihadist…quit being such pu$$y’s and just say it.

Baxter Greene on October 30, 2010 at 6:38 PM

Say, is it my imagination, or were the only black people at the rally the OJays?

Meryl Yourish on October 30, 2010 at 6:38 PM

No…they had black people working behind the scenes out of view….you know…just like at MSNBC.

Baxter Greene on October 30, 2010 at 6:40 PM

“I would hope that it would be the real thing” is getting your thoughts jumbled? It was a verbal stumble? He didn’t wish that an author who criticized his religion would be burned to death?

I’m rather shocked that you would actually propose such candid dismissal.

MadisonConservative on October 30, 2010 at 6:19 PM

Religious fundamentalism can lead to the expression heinous ideas by those who wrestle sincerely with literal interpretation of scripture. Without giving too much weight to the theological musings of a pop musician, I’d make this observation: it will take more Muslims like Yusuf who publicly try to reconcile their faith with modern culture to bridge the gap between the West and the billion plus Muslims. It is a process that will take decades though.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 6:40 PM

If his regrettable statements were 20 years in the past, I might listen to one of his 3-minute songs. Does he sing?

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 6:06 PM

I don’t listen to him because I hate his music. “Cat’s in the Cradle” is a damn stupid song.

ladyingray on October 30, 2010 at 6:43 PM

I wouldn’t put those words in my mouth. I wouldn’t say anything on that issue. I’m here to talk about peace. I’m a man who does want peace for this world, and I don’t think you will achieve that by putting people into corners and asking them very, very difficult questions about very contentious issues.”

sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 6:33 PM

It wouldn’t have been difficult to get a similar quote from an Irish Catholic over the years if asked about the IRA, especially in the Boston area.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 6:44 PM

Religious fundamentalism can lead to the expression heinous ideas by those who wrestle sincerely with literal interpretation of scripture. Without giving too much weight to the theological musings of a pop musician, I’d make this observation: it will take more Muslims like Yusuf who publicly try to reconcile their faith with modern culture to bridge the gap between the West and the billion plus Muslims. It is a process that will take decades though.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 6:40 PM

You’re delusional.

the_nile on October 30, 2010 at 6:45 PM

I don’t listen to him because I hate his music. “Cat’s in the Cradle” is a damn stupid song.

ladyingray on October 30, 2010 at 6:43 PM

That’s Harry Chapin.

ButterflyDragon on October 30, 2010 at 6:46 PM

We know they support the jihadist…quit being such pu$$y’s and just say it.

Baxter Greene on October 30, 2010 at 6:38 PM

They want to back the terrorist groups and not be held accountable for it. Not surprising really and the sad part is that we as a society in general let them get away with it.

He is still the nutjob he was 20 years ago and in 1998 when he was the guest of a Canadian front for Hamas.

sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 6:46 PM

It wouldn’t have been difficult to get a similar quote from an Irish Catholic over the years if asked about the IRA, especially in the Boston area.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 6:44 PM

If so then I would call them a supporter of terrorism as well!

sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 6:48 PM

Religious fundamentalism can lead to the expression heinous ideas by those who wrestle sincerely with literal interpretation of scripture.

Struggle to reconcile societal values with religion can be a challenge if you’re talking about homosexuality or intoxication. This is the issue, though…this is a Western musician who apparently did very little wrestling before determining that it was desirable that a critic of his religion be murdered.

Sane, rational people in the Western world, or people who are not psychopaths amenable to murderous paradigms, do not have to “wrestle” with whether blasphemy should be a offense punishable by execution.

Without giving too much weight to the theological musings of a pop musician, I’d make this observation: it will take more Muslims like Yusuf who publicly try to reconcile their faith with modern culture to bridge the gap between the West and the billion plus Muslims. It is a process that will take decades though.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 6:40 PM

Um…as I linked at the top of this page, he refuses to say anything about those past statements. He also sued YouTube to get the videos taken down. Does this sound like contrition to you, or hiding his comments once they became publicized?

MadisonConservative on October 30, 2010 at 6:48 PM

It wouldn’t have been difficult to get a similar quote from an Irish Catholic over the years if asked about the IRA, especially in the Boston area.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 6:44 PM

The Troubles ended, and achieved nothing on the scale of what Islamic fundamentalism has in recent years.

MadisonConservative on October 30, 2010 at 6:50 PM

So what, exactly, was the point of the “rally,” anyway? Other than PR for Stewart and Colbert?

Meryl Yourish on October 30, 2010 at 6:38 PM

To make fun of Glenn Beck and the people who showed up for his rally. Vacuous smart-ass stuff.

It wouldn’t have been difficult to get a similar quote from an Irish Catholic over the years if asked about the IRA, especially in the Boston area.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 6:44 PM

If they had had Gerry Adams up there, I’d have said the same thing. Why the double standard? If Ian Paisley had been flown in for Beck’s rally…

ddrintn on October 30, 2010 at 6:51 PM

You’re delusional.

the_nile on October 30, 2010 at 6:45 PM

I don’t claim optimism, but the dialogs in the US about Islam need to involve more Muslims who can speak critically about the relationship of their faith with peace.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 6:54 PM

I don’t claim optimism, but the dialogs in the US about Islam need to involve more Muslims who can speak critically about the relationship of their faith with peace.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 6:54 PM

That would require criticism of their own religion. If they accept that their religion is above criticism, and that blasphemy is punishable by death, dialogue is not an option.

MadisonConservative on October 30, 2010 at 6:55 PM

but the dialogs in the US about Islam need to involve more Muslims who can speak critically about the relationship of their faith with peace.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 6:54 PM

That would be someone more like Fouad Ajami than Yusuf Islam.

ddrintn on October 30, 2010 at 6:56 PM

I don’t claim optimism, but the dialogs in the US about Islam need to involve more Muslims who can speak critically about the relationship of their faith with peace.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 6:54 PM

When has Cat Stevens done that? How can someone speak critically about Islam in any regard when, as Stevens history in relation to Salman Rushdie makes clear, any such criticism is met with threats of murder?

sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 7:00 PM

That’s Harry Chapin.

ButterflyDragon on October 30, 2010 at 6:46 PM

The song still sucks

Kini on October 30, 2010 at 7:00 PM

Uh-huh. And his presence on the stage at Beck’s rally jamming to “Peace Train” wouldn’t have tarnished the event at all.

Face it, the libs just can’t do ANYthing right.
ddrintn on October 30, 2010 at 6:08 PM

So, so true. I wonder who did the vetting for The Artist Formerly Known As Cat Stevens? What a bunch of geniuses.

Remember all of the Lefties who feared this rally would tend to hurt Democrats in the upcoming election? Well, they sure were proven to be prescient, weren’t they? Too bad this rally didn’t happen a week or two ago so that it could have hurt them even more.

Bizarro No. 1 on October 30, 2010 at 7:03 PM

Yeah yeah, not the people who believe in it, just what they do and the results of it.

scotash on October 30, 2010 at 6:22 PM

Enough of giving these people the benefit of doubt. My granny used to say the “Road to hell is paved with good intentions.” How do you rationalize good people holding ideologies that lead to evil. Evil is as evil does.

chemman on October 30, 2010 at 7:04 PM

That would require criticism of their own religion. If they accept that their religion is above criticism, and that blasphemy is punishable by death, dialogue is not an option.

MadisonConservative on October 30, 2010 at 6:55 PM

That’s an unacknowledged and extremely inconvenient connundrum for the Left and covered by Taqqqiya for the muzzies.

And by the way, NPR is currently checking their roster to see if they can fire you.

ontherocks on October 30, 2010 at 7:10 PM

Were there any women on stage? I heard Yosef Islam does not perform if women are on stage…any truth to that?

d1carter on October 30, 2010 at 7:10 PM

To be fair, it was the Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear. Maybe Mr. Islam was representing the fear portion.

Mark Jaquith on October 30, 2010 at 7:12 PM

That’s Harry Chapin.

ButterflyDragon on October 30, 2010 at 6:46 PM

The song still sucks

Kini on October 30, 2010 at 7:00 PM

Nah, that song has a good message. My favorite Harry Chapin song though is “I am the morning DJ/ at WOL Dee Dee dee deeeee…”

ddrintn on October 30, 2010 at 7:14 PM

This is the issue, though…this is a Western musician who apparently did very little wrestling before determining that it was desirable that a critic of his religion be murdered.

MadisonConservative on October 30, 2010 at 6:48 PM

What logical conclusion can be drawn by a believer when a theocratic death sentence is issued? How would a Christian have responded about an order to kill Servetus or Bruno?

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 7:14 PM

Maybe Mr. Islam was representing the fear portion.

Mark Jaquith on October 30, 2010 at 7:12 PM

Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear and Submit or Die

Kini on October 30, 2010 at 7:15 PM

Finally at the end, the fat lady sang.

dragondrop on October 30, 2010 at 7:17 PM

Taqqqiya
ontherocks on October 30, 2010 at 7:10 PM

That’s a little known and far more dastardly version of Taqiyya./

ontherocks on October 30, 2010 at 7:17 PM

My favorite Harry Chapin song though is “I am the morning DJ/ at WOL Dee Dee dee deeeee…”

ddrintn on October 30, 2010 at 7:14 PM

Wasn’t that WKRP?

Kini on October 30, 2010 at 7:19 PM

What I find amazing about this is that two stars from Comedy Central would share the stage with a man who supported the idea of murdering an artist for his remarks on Islam.

Nothing these ignorant narcissistic tools do surprises me. They think the media will cover for them the way it covers for their hero.

Basilsbest on October 30, 2010 at 7:21 PM

How would a Christian have responded about an order to kill Servetus or Bruno?

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 7:14 PM

You’re judging Cat Stevens by standards prevailing in Europe in 1600? Manning’s Corollary to Godwin’s Law.

ddrintn on October 30, 2010 at 7:22 PM

Remember all of the Lefties who feared this rally would tend to hurt Democrats in the upcoming election? Well, they sure were proven to be prescient, weren’t they? Too bad this rally didn’t happen a week or two ago so that it could have hurt them even more.

Bizarro No. 1 on October 30, 2010 at 7:03 PM

I think it would take a lot to hurt or help them this late in the game. A turnout of Beck’s proportions MIGHT have helped, whereas a riot or something completely despicable might have hurt. This clown show? Not gonna matter one way or the other, IMO.

Grace_is_sufficient on October 30, 2010 at 7:25 PM

You’re judging Cat Stevens by standards prevailing in Europe in 1600? Manning’s Corollary to Godwin’s Law.

ddrintn on October 30, 2010 at 7:22 PM

Are you contending that Islamic culture is more advanced than 16th century Europe? They seem a few hundred years short of that.

“You go to battle with the adversary you have, not the one you wish you had” /Rumsfeldia

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 7:25 PM

Yusuf Islam is just a misunderstood free thinking moderate. Just ask Bill Ayers.

csdeven on October 30, 2010 at 7:26 PM

What logical conclusion can be drawn by a believer when a theocratic death sentence is issued? How would a Christian have responded about an order to kill Servetus or Bruno?

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 7:14 PM

…now I’m really worried about you. You’re comparing edicts to slaughter authors in the end of the 20th century to 16th century philosophers being targeted by Christians. Execution or murder for all kinds of trifling reasons was not that frowned upon. The Vatican was still a world power.

I repeat: Cat Stevens is a Western musician who suddenly decided killing authors for criticism of your religion was not only acceptable, but something to expedite. He wasn’t raised in Indonesia, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Syria, or any countries where he had this s**t ingrained into him. He was brought up in London. He just up and switched his religion, and came to this conclusion. Society didn’t egg him on into this conclusion.

MadisonConservative on October 30, 2010 at 7:27 PM

Are you contending that Islamic culture is more advanced than 16th century Europe? They seem a few hundred years short of that.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 7:25 PM

So what exactly are you trying to convince us of here?

sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 7:28 PM

Are you contending that Islamic culture is more advanced than 16th century Europe? They seem a few hundred years short of that.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 7:25 PM

And so we’re supposed to accommodate that backwardness by saying, “oh well, we were just as bad 400 years ago…”

ddrintn on October 30, 2010 at 7:28 PM

Are you contending that Islamic culture is more advanced than 16th century Europe?

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 7:25 PM

Are you contending that Stevens was raised in Islamic culture? You’d be wrong.

MadisonConservative on October 30, 2010 at 7:28 PM

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 7:25 PM

So what exactly are you trying to convince us of here?

sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 7:28 PM

I don’t think it even knows.

CWforFreedom on October 30, 2010 at 7:29 PM

Hitler got the foundation for his hatred of Jews from Muhammad. Yusuf Islam got his foundation for hating Jews from Hitler.

csdeven on October 30, 2010 at 7:30 PM

I don’t think it even knows.

CWforFreedom on October 30, 2010 at 7:29 PM

I believe you. Just words to cover up his unease with the facts as they are. At least he doesn’t try to pretend that Islam is just as enlightened as Christianity as a lot of them do.

sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 7:31 PM

When has Cat Stevens done that?
sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 7:00 PM

This seemed one of the better Muslim comments after 9-11, or at least pretty good for a pop singer.

Today, I am aghast at the horror of recent events and feel it a duty to speak out. Not only did terrorists hijack planes and destroy life, they also hijacked the beautiful religion of Islam and split the brother-and-sisterhood of mankind, many of whom are still sorrowfully ignorant and unaware of each other. The targeting of unsuspecting civilians going about their daily work was energised by nothing but blind irreligious hatred.

Minimally, it is better than the reports of some cheering as the towers fell.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 7:34 PM

OMG! I missed Jeff Tweedy and Mavis Staples together at the same event (from the screen crawl)? I coulda, woulda, shoulda been there!

ya2daup on October 30, 2010 at 7:35 PM

Lighten up guys. This was pretty funny.

MarkT on October 30, 2010 at 7:36 PM

And so we’re supposed to accommodate that backwardness by saying, “oh well, we were just as bad 400 years ago…”

ddrintn on October 30, 2010 at 7:28 PM

No, but it is a national security interest to find a way to get them up-to-speed quickly. 400 years is a lot of ground to make up, and most of the 1 billion plus are less earnest about peace than Yusuf Cat Islam.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 7:42 PM

Minimally, it is better than the reports of some cheering as the towers fell.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 7:34 PM

The full paragraph…

Today, I am aghast at the horror of recent events and feel it a duty to speak out. Not only did terrorists hijack planes and destroy life, they also hijacked the beautiful religion of Islam and split the brother-and-sisterhood of mankind, many of whom are still sorrowfully ignorant and unaware of each other. The targeting of unsuspecting civilians going about their daily work was energised by nothing but blind irreligious hatred. Yet we should remember that this kind of atrocity has been a common occurrence, year on year, in many lands. My personal experience of the prolonged suffering and death inflicted on Bosnia at the end of the last century is something that I will not easily forget.

And in the same article…

Suddenly the media tried linking me to supporting the latest fatwa issued from Iran. The fact is that I never supported the fatwa. Such is the irony. You wouldn’t ask a Christian to deny one of the Ten Commandments; equally, as a new Muslim, I couldn’t deny that the Koran – just like Leviticus in the Bible – forbade blasphemy and stated that if there is no repentance, it is a capital offence.

So we have him lying about his support for Salman Rushdie’s death.

We have him supporting the idea that the death penalty for blasphemy is fine. That was in 2001.

Not too impressed here.

sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 7:45 PM

No, but it is a national security interest to find a way to get them up-to-speed quickly. 400 years is a lot of ground to make up, and most of the 1 billion plus are less earnest about peace than Yusuf Cat Islam.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 7:42 PM

Red herring. The issue is the appropriateness of having a guy who supported a fatwa against Salman Rushdie and who hasn’t really recanted that position appearing onstage at a rally allegedly to “restore sanity”.

ddrintn on October 30, 2010 at 7:47 PM

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 7:34 PM

I disagree, but I still respect your opinion, more than trolls who would refer to you as an “it”.

MadisonConservative on October 30, 2010 at 7:48 PM

Are you contending that Stevens was raised in Islamic culture? You’d be wrong.

MadisonConservative on October 30, 2010 at 7:28 PM

No, I owned his records before he converted–I’m old enough to have bought vinyl. The guy had seemingly everything one could want–money, fame, women. He chucked it for a religious belief about which he was so sincere that it even required him to stop playing guitar.

He wasn’t raised in the culture but he embraced with passion. Seems crazy to me. There are few, if any, examples of someone with that much celebrity walking away from it all for spiritual pursuits.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 7:48 PM

Maher on islam… Damn man… It’s getting real all the sudden. And listen to the applause at the end… Very tentative.

Please book him on he View ASAP! I’ll watch. Damn…

RalphyBoy on October 30, 2010 at 7:49 PM

The fact is that I never supported the fatwa. Such is the irony.

sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 7:45 PM

LOL…good grief.

ddrintn on October 30, 2010 at 7:49 PM

Maher on islam… Damn man… It’s getting real all the sudden. And listen to the applause at the end… Very tentative.

Please book him on he View ASAP! I’ll watch. Damn…

RalphyBoy on October 30, 2010 at 7:49 PM

Or the corrupt lizard could be wanting the juicy payoff Juan Williams got for the same spiel.

sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 7:52 PM

LOL…good grief.

ddrintn on October 30, 2010 at 7:49 PM

He lies at the drop of a hat and this guy is being put forth as one of the ‘good Muslims’.

He also said that if Mr. Rushdie turned up at his doorstep looking for help, ”I might ring somebody who might do more damage to him than he would like.”

I’d try to phone the Ayatollah Khomeini and tell him exactly where this man is,” said Mr. Islam

But he didn’t support the Fatwa! /

sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 7:55 PM

I disagree, but I still respect your opinion, more than trolls who would refer to you as an “it”.

MadisonConservative on October 30, 2010 at 7:48 PM

Continue on idi it.

Smug pompous ass holes like you pretending you are above the fray are truly laughable.

CWforFreedom on October 30, 2010 at 7:56 PM

Not too impressed here.

sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 7:45 PM

I guess that is where we differ. How do you account for the Bible’s treatment of blasphemers? I tend to read it very metaphorically, question the source of inspiration, and dismiss the applicability of literal readings. However, most here believe the Bible more literally than I do.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 7:57 PM

idi it.

CWforFreedom on October 30, 2010 at 7:56 PM

Wow.

MadisonConservative on October 30, 2010 at 7:58 PM

Moron is easily impressed.

Now continue being so classy as you always are. /

CWforFreedom on October 30, 2010 at 8:00 PM

The West has its own form of non-homicidal homegrown fatwa.

It’s called shunning.

A reward for fanatics who have drifted over of the moral horizon and whose “faith” encourages them to endorse Terror.

Cat Stevens cum Yusuf Islam joined this cadre of vicious cowards and lickspittles for despots by siding with the Ayatollah Khomeini.

And against freedom of thought and against Rushie’s life.

Murder for Islam was cheered on by this weasel [al-dikbag in Arabic].

Stevens/Islam became, and remains, an endorser of homicidal Terror.

Steven/Islam should be shunned by decent people.

Obviously, those at this Faux~Fest in D.C. -who did not boo Stevens/Islam- gutlessly absolve his truly fascistic religious methods AND AIMS, and bow to the unexamined sanctifcation of de facto mob hits [the real meaning of Fatwa in Arabic].

As long as the murder is for Don Mohammad’s gang.

Islam is as much a normal faith as Jim Jones of Guyana was a regular minister or Pol Pot was a run-of-the-mill urban planner.

Islam is a deathcult at heart.

(You try to leave, they try to kill you.)

Those who sings its praises, like the ex-Cat (who must know that music was forbidden by Mohammad as a corrupting distraction from devotion, thus Yusuf himself is a heretic and deserves Islamic death according to his own super-Koranic-logic), deserve to catwaul to empty seats.

Shunned.

As scum.

profitsbeard on October 30, 2010 at 8:03 PM

How do you account for the Bible’s treatment of blasphemers? I tend to read it very metaphorically, question the source of inspiration, and dismiss the applicability of literal readings. However, most here believe the Bible more literally than I do.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 7:57 PM

Well as a non-believer I don’t really have to account for what the bible says. It’s enough that Christians don’t try to kill me or others because we might say mean things about them. That isn’t the case with Muslims.

sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 8:04 PM

Ed might enjoy this, if he reviews posts:
My family has made a trek to Ely, MN for the last 22 years, and Echo the Lab and Chewy the Lab were born and bred there by a very reputable breeder.

In September of 2002 (um on the 11th day of that month, I was on my way into town for supplies, and local WELY was doing a Cat Stevens Marathon. I was soooo offended, I drove to the station to voice my outrage. They acted like they had no idea why I was so upset.
I absolutely knew, they knew what they were doing, but it totally fried my cheese that they acted so innocent.
I adored Cat Steven’s music back in the day, but I’ll give him not one red cent more of my money, and will change channels and call to complain if I hear one of his songs on the radio.

Chewy the Lab on October 30, 2010 at 8:08 PM

Well as a non-believer I don’t really have to account for what the bible says. It’s enough that Christians don’t try to kill me or others because we might say mean things about them. That isn’t the case with Muslims.

sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 8:04 PM

Then we both find theocratic justice abhorent, and the comments by Yusuf worthy of condemnation.

To me the rest of his career in music and pursuing peace causes balances out enough that it doesn’t bother me to see him in a comedy skit with Ozzy. Especially, when the bit required a guy with a famous song involving a train.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 8:10 PM

To me the rest of his career in music and pursuing peace causes balances out enough that it doesn’t bother me to see him in a comedy skit with Ozzy. Especially, when the bit required a guy with a famous song involving a train.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 8:10 PM

Sorry, but no. You don’t get to call for the murder of people for writing a book and get a pass cause we want a funny man for the skit.

Robertson: Would you be part of that protest, Yusuf Islam, would you go to a demonstration where you knew that an effigy was going to be burned?
Y. Islam: I would have hoped that it’d be the real thing.

This is Stevens hoping that someone will be burned alive.

He can rot in hell.

sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 8:15 PM

So what, exactly, was the point of the “rally,” anyway? Other than PR for Stewart and Colbert?

Say, is it my imagination, or were the only black people at the rally the OJays?

Meryl Yourish on October 30, 2010 at 6:38 PM

To drumbeat for the “bombing-terror” scare! That’s it.

They think the alleged bombs are for the tea partiers ONLY, after all they are friends and/or apologists of Radical Islam. /sarc

They’re like “thousands” of Nero fiddling while Rome was burning.

So there.

TheAlamos on October 30, 2010 at 8:22 PM

I tuned in to the “Restoring Sanity” rally on the National Mall today during the prep time before the NARN broadcast this afternoon, just in time to see “Peace Train” performed live —

Wasn’t that song retitled ‘Train Pieces’ after he converted to Islam?

James on October 30, 2010 at 8:24 PM

He can rot in hell.

sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 8:15 PM

Fair enough. Though how long are professional athletes shunned for more serious offenses? Likely a ball player would find fans (at least in one city) cheering for him.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 8:27 PM

Were there any women on stage? I heard Yosef Islam does not perform if women are on stage…any truth to that?

d1carter on October 30, 2010 at 7:10 PM

Yes there was, but she was covered from top to bottom in a burka that you could not see her next to the curtain.

bayview on October 30, 2010 at 8:27 PM

They called it a “Rally to Restore Sanity” but they featured a man who wanted to kill another human being for writing a book, and another man who bit the head off of a bat.

Yeah, that’s Sanity, alright.

john1schn on October 30, 2010 at 8:35 PM

Though how long are professional athletes shunned for more serious offenses? Likely a ball player would find fans (at least in one city) cheering for him.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 8:27 PM

I don’t follow sports so could you refresh my memory as to what professional athletes have called for someone to be murdered and burned to death?

In my opinion those athletes who have committed crimes should be dealt with harshly and haven’t been. That doesn’t mean the pedophiles are being mistreated, or that the Guantanamo inmates should now be embraced as good friends.

Roman Polanski is human scum and he is being treated as a hero by far too many. That doesn’t excuse anyone else’s conduct.

sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 8:38 PM

Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear and Submit or Die
Kini on October 30, 2010 at 7:15 PM

And then there’s Vote or Die.

sharrukin

Thank you for taking Deadalus on. He lost me about 20 comments ago, but that athlete analogy was totally mind-boggling.

Buy Danish on October 30, 2010 at 8:57 PM

“RESTORING SANITY” ????

W T F ??

“Sanity” is the culture where you, and a group of like minded degenerate psychopaths acting in accordance with sharia law STONE your own daughter to death for “being seen witn a man” ?!?!

Stewart … YOU ARE THE TEXTBOOK DEFINITION OF A DHIMMI!

bannedbyhuffpo on October 30, 2010 at 8:58 PM

Thank you for taking Deadalus on. He lost me about 20 comments ago, but that athlete analogy was totally mind-boggling.

Buy Danish on October 30, 2010 at 8:57 PM

I am sitting here getting over a much too persistent flu so I really don’t have anything better to do.

Moral equivalence and conflation seems to be the entirety of his argument. That’s pretty much standard these days as far as Islam goes.

sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 9:04 PM

Moral equivalence and conflation seems to be the entirety of his argument. That’s pretty much standard these days as far as Islam goes
sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 9:04 PM

Exactly. Feel better! I think I’m going to get my flu shot on Monday. It seems to have hit very early this year, and when I’m sick if I even manage to stay awake long enough to read I’m not as articulate (or patient!) as you have been.

Buy Danish on October 30, 2010 at 9:10 PM

I don’t follow sports so could you refresh my memory as to what professional athletes have called for someone to be murdered and burned to death?

sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 8:38 PM

Ray Lewis is one athlete who was directly involved in a homicide, yet receives accolades and endorsements.

Yusuf embraced a religion that has a severe justice system for blasphemy. His mind wasn’t nimble enough remove the fatwa authority of the faith without the entire theological structure tumbling down like a game of Jenga. The comments were during a short period 20 years ago and should be balanced against his decades of humanitarian efforts.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 9:28 PM

Yusuf embraced a religion that has a severe justice system for blasphemy. His mind wasn’t nimble enough remove the fatwa authority of the faith without the entire theological structure tumbling down like a game of Jenga.

No Muslim has managed that because violence is part and parcel of what Islam is. It’s moral precepts, unlike that of Christianity, are based on violence. It is a warlike religion whose primary purpose is conquest by the sword, or by infiltration when that fails. This has been going on for 1,400 years and the behavior of Muslims in Nigeria, in Afghanistan, in Algeria, and in the Sudan is very similar to what happened in the distant past.

Nothing has changed! The Janjaweed of Sudan may have AK-47′s now, but they are no different than the Ghazi of many centuries ago.

The comments were during a short period 20 years ago and should be balanced against his decades of humanitarian efforts.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 9:28 PM

This is from 2001. Not 20 years ago.

You wouldn’t ask a Christian to deny one of the Ten Commandments; equally, as a new Muslim, I couldn’t deny that the Koran – just like Leviticus in the Bible – forbade blasphemy and stated that if there is no repentance, it is a capital offence.

if there is no repentance, it is a capital offence

sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 9:40 PM

Moral equivalence and conflation

sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 9:04 PM

My argument is more one of compartmentalization and perspective. Where comparisons have been needed, there hasn’t been an argument for equivalence. The US is better than other countries; Christianity is better than Islam; modern secular states are better than theocracies.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 9:46 PM

Nothing has changed! The Janjaweed of Sudan may have AK-47′s now, but they are no different than the Ghazi of many centuries ago.
sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 9:40 PM

There’s a billion of them. We can’t occupy all their countries and convert them. Yusuf’s humanitarian work provides the type of common ground that can be profitably cultivated.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 9:59 PM

I grew up with the music of Black Sabbath and Cat Stevens. Not big fan but am of the same generation. What a fricken joke it was when they came on the stage. Not necessarily because of their politics but because they are embarrassing. That stupid bit where Ozzie came on was like a grade school play. I imagine anyone in the audience was thinking who are these burnt out relics. Not impressed Stewart, keep your day job.

Hummer53 on October 30, 2010 at 10:09 PM

There’s a billion of them. We can’t occupy all their countries and convert them.

If I had to lay a bet between western military capability and Muslim, I would bet on the west. The willpower is lacking in the west, not the means.

Yusuf’s humanitarian work provides the type of common ground that can be profitably cultivated.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 9:59 PM

There is no common ground with Islam.

They will take and you will give. Compromise will mean you surrendering something substantial, and their voicing meaningless platitudes. We have seen this time and time again.

We have been at war with Islam for centuries. In 711 they invaded Spain and continued attacking without pause. They attacked southern Italy and France and occupied them for some time. The Crusades saw a western counter-attack that ended in 1291.

The Ottomans continued the attacks in the Balkans as well conquering the Barbary states. The United States navy was formed to fight Muslim raiders attacking infidel shipping from these same Barbary strongholds. It stopped only when the west occupied their land starting in the 1,800′s and it restarted following western withdrawal from empire.

There has been no compromise by Islam with the African animists.
There has been no compromise by Islam with the Hindu’s of India.
There has been no compromise by Islam with the Buddhists of Central Asia.
There has been no compromise by Islam with the Jews of Israel.

What do you think that you bring to the table that is going to change all this?

sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 10:15 PM

Can we declare a pseudo-fatwa on Trolls? As in, the ban-hammer? This is becoming tedious, and is a distraction from our conversation.

Who is John Galt on October 30, 2010 at 10:25 PM

Yusef said in that 1989 interview that he was wishing Salman Rushdie death by being ran down by the Peace Train.

And after the Insanity Rally, Yusef will take his act to Iran and sing the Peace Train to Ahmadinejad.

bayview on October 30, 2010 at 10:49 PM

If I had to lay a bet between western military capability and Muslim, I would bet on the west. The willpower is lacking in the west, not the means.
sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 10:15 PM

The means appear to depend on our Chinese lenders. A few trillion have gone into Iraq & Afghanistan with the countries still Islamic and anti-American. Even within military efforts Petraeus sees moderate Muslims as essential.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 10:53 PM

Dr. Strangelove redux.

“It’s part of NASA’s new understanding and loving the terrorists for peace and sanity program mein Fuehrer Mr. President.” (struggles to keep raising back of his hand to his chest)

viking01 on October 30, 2010 at 10:57 PM

A few trillion have gone into Iraq & Afghanistan with the countries still Islamic and anti-American.

They aren’t going to stop being anti-American. Ever. Muslims are anti-non-Muslims and that includes Americans. Not a thing we do is going to change that.

Even within military efforts Petraeus sees moderate Muslims as essential.

dedalus on October 30, 2010 at 10:53 PM

Petraeus is a fool who thinks Muslims can be modernized. He doesn’t seem to grasp that Islam is not just a mean form of Christianity. Not all religions are the same any more than all ideologies are the same.

This is a common misunderstanding among those in the west who have been raised in an environment where religious belief is a quaint, but not terribly important part of life. Islam is more like communist in that it is a totality of beliefs that encompasses most aspects of a persons life.

Nation building is pointless with Muslims because they aren’t nationalists. The Ummah is a more significant concept with Muslims. They are Muslims first and citizens second.

War with Islam is possible, but it will be on their terms not ours. We are not going to convert them to liberal western ideology.

sharrukin on October 30, 2010 at 11:08 PM

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