Monday, August 22, 2011

Debate Transcript: "Islam Guarantees Women Equality of Rights with Men"

Transcriber's Note: I did my best to accurately transcribe the debate with the time that I could put in for this work. I enclosed words and phrases that I wasn't sure of in brackets and indicated in parenthesis where they can be found on the video. I would appreciate your help with corrections.

Robert Spencer vs. Moustafa Zayed: Islam Guarantees Women Equality of Rights with Men

The issue of whether women have rights and equality in Islam is a matter being debated around the country today. Some scholars say that women do have equality of rights while other scholars say the contrary. Which should we accept?

Thank for joining us this evening on Debate Night on ABN Live. I'm Chris Conway, your moderator of the evening.

We have two experts debating this motion: Islam Guarantees Women Equality of Rights with Men. I'm honored to introduce Mustafa Zayed, who argue on the affirmative of the motion. Mustafa Zayed is a member of the Scientific Board of Qur'an and Sunnah Research in Cairo. He speaks widely in interfaith settings with devotion to bridging peace between major religions and in communities. Zayed is the author of several books, including The Lies About Muhammad.

I'm also honored to introduce Robert Spencer, who argue on the negative of the motion. Robert Spencer is the director of Jihad Watch, an organization dedicated to bringing public attention to the role that jihad theology and ideology play in the modern world and to correcting popular misconceptions about the role of jihad in religion in modern-day context. He is the author of ten books, including the New York Times bestsellers, The Truth About Muhammad and The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam and the Crusades.

We'll hear from each of the debaters an opening statement, rebuttals, crossfire, and a closing statement.I'll notify each debater when there are only 30 seconds left on the clock. We will then conclude the formal part of the debate and open the phone lines for you, the audience, to call in. The number here at the studio is 248.416.1300. Again, the motion of tonight's debate is, Islam Guarantees Women Equality of Rights with Men.

At this time, I'd like to turn over to you, Mustafa, for your opening statement. You have seven minutes.

Thank you for having me.

Before we speak about the specificity of the topic of women rights in Islam, in generality, dealing with any human being in Islam is included in Islamic Law or Shari'a Law. Shari'a Law is not a law that is made by the limited comprehension of men at a certain period of time in a certain geographical area and then trying to impose that upon all humans worldwide in any time. This is the law of God, and God is just and He forbid injustice upon himself in any topic and forbid it for his worshipers and creations. So when we say "women rights in Islam," we need to understand that it is the law of God, protecting and making sure that women and men are having the [prospective in (3:18)] equal rights.

Two things before we get into the rights of women in Islam and their position in Islam: The first thing is that in Islam, men and women are not in competition. They're not roommates competing for who pays a bigger or smaller portion of the bill or, you know, splitting whatever cost somewhere. They are to complement each other. They are different in physiology. They are different in emotional structure, and Islamic Law [came (3:41)] that they enjoy the best of their life according to their own structure and needing each other and depending on each other and completing each other--complementing each other. That's number one.

Number two, specifically when it comes to the rights of women, a woman, the female in Islam, is your potential mother. And it's not that females are half of, you know, humanity and then they deserve rights, and so on and so forth. No, females are the mothers of the next generation who are to shape and sculpture the character of all men and women, the entire next generation to come. So Islam and Islamic Law made sure to guarantee their protection, their financial sustenance, their stability, so they can perform the best and the most decent job that a human being can do, which is again raising the next generation.

When you took a position, I would say, hopefully objective position, in looking at the condition of women and the rights and obligations before Islam and after Islam, the difference couldn't be more stark. It's the difference between a day and a nightmare. Before Islam, for example, in parts of India, according to Hinduism, a woman was to be burned alive if her husband passed away. She's just there for me. He dies, there's no need for existence. A matter of fact, in other places when they got some progression, she's not even supposed to get married again. Little newborn babies were burned alive. The horrendous mistranslation in the Bible about the concept of Original Sin, that it is through our mother, Eve [that] our father, Adam, was deceived out of Paradise into earth. When Islam comes in, all that was rectified. And our mothers, our daughters, our sisters were relieved when Allah (Subhan'Allah) in the Qur'an said, [speaks in Arabic]. It is the devil that deceived them both out of Paradise into earth. Women had now inheritance rights that in America today, women do not have--guaranteed inheritance rights.

Women have equal pay rights. They have the right to own, to speak their mind, to debate, to run businesses. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) only wife for a quarter century, Khadija, may Allah (Subhan'Allah) be pleased with her, was a businesswoman. In England, 'til 1882, the end of the 19th century, a woman did not have any right to own a property in her own name. It has to be the brother, the husband, or the son. She could not even stand in court as a legal entity. At the end of 19th century, that right was mandated to, given to Muslim women in the 7the century. So it's not even equal to or similar to or better to. No, that was better rights in the 7th century.

Islam mandated the education of women in the middle of 7th century. In a a correct hadith in Sahih Al-Bukhari, even for a war captive that is now entrusted to a Muslim man that he, even though, she's not a Muslim, he needs to treat her well and educate her. And the authentic hadith says there, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) would release a war combatant that might turn around and come and kill Muslims, if he taught Muslims how to read and write, and the similar thing for Muslim women, how to read and write.

A woman is not an object of desire anymore, is not a vessel for procreation. She is judged for her character and her mannerism. And the word "religion" in Islam in the language of the Prophet means character. So you can pursue a woman for marriage for her beauty, for her money, for her social status. The Prophet said, no pursue the one with the character, the only thing that she is actually in control of. She has no control if she was born beautiful or rich or from a good family, but she is in control of her character. She is not an object of desire anymore.

A woman, in Islam, is someone who is equal in so many things that you cannot begin to imagine or even available in the 19th century. She have the right of futya; she can give legal opinions, and many women had that legal opinion. The first commerce secretary that is a female in the history in all of mankind was [Ashafat --- (7:37)] who was the commerce secretary at the time of [Omar --- Al-Khatab (7:43)]. He gave her [--- (7:43)], and she used to rule in the matters of the market between men and women. The first political party that is [led] by a feminist, well I would say a feminist party, that is led by a woman was Asma bint Yazzid Al-Ansari when she came to Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), she said, I represent so many women that have the same opinion that I have and saying what I'm saying and here's what we want, here's what we're asking. And Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) responded to her, The only holy scripture in the world, that when it speaks to the believers, speak to them in female and male terms, is the Qur'an, not the Bible, not any other holy scripture. Believing men, believing women, righteous men, righteous women, and so on and so forth. [Reads a verse in Arabic] Whoever do a righteous deed, male or female, we would [--- (8:30)] well and so on and so forth. The only chapter in any holy scripture, the gospels in the Bible or gospels that are outside of the Bible, that is named after a woman is in the Qur'an and which woman she might be. She's the greatest woman that ever lived and will ever live, that's Virgin Mary (PBUH). And in Islam, she is such a pious woman, that's why she was blessed to be the mother of a great, mighty prophet of God. The only chapter in all holy scriptures, that is Chapter An-Nisa (The Women), that is almost a manifesto of unprecedented women's rights now and then.

Islam is not defending the rights of women. Islam, and I represent that position, shows the rights of women that is unprecedented today. That is in Islam. Watch Robert Spencer now coming to you with extreme examples of rural areas of ten villages somewhere and try to generalize them over the entire population of 1.6 billion. Watch him bring in twisted and, you know, misinterpreted and total omissions and mistranslation of books that only God knows where he got their translations from. Watch the circus.

Thank you.

I think that I'm not going argue this point. I'm going to let the Qur'an do it, and the Qur'an says, "Men have authority over women, because God has made the one superior to the other, and because they spend their wealth to maintain them." Now I would ask the learned imam, Mustafa Zayed, if that's a mistranslation or taking out of context... What is the context that would justify such a statement. "Men have authority over women, because God has made the one superior to the other." The question before us is, "Islam guarantees equality of men and women." Obviously, that flatly contradicts the Qur'an, and so I assume the Imam Mustafa, as a believer in the Qur'an, believes that God has made men superior to women.

The passage goes on, "Good women are obedient. They guard their unseen parts, because God has guarded them. As for those from whom you fear disobedience, admonish them, forsake them in beds apart, and beat them." And beat them. The learned Imam was very eloquent in saying that the Qur'an is the only scripture, which addresses believers as both male and female. That, of course, is flatly false, but we are not here, I would remind him, to discuss the Bible or Christianity. We are here to discuss Islam and whether Islam mandates equality of rights for women and men. And so, the fact is that the Qur'an does indeed tell believers that they should be distinguished, male and female. They should understand that as being a fundamentally important distinction and does address them as such. And it does not say that women can beat a disobedient man. It says that men can beat disobedient women.

The Qur'an also has this distinction of being the only scripture that mandates spousal abuse. The reality of the spousal abuse is such that in the Islamic world, it is relatively frequent and is taken for granted. And there is a very common hadith, which I'm sure the Imam will be able to refresh us about, in which some Muslims approached Muhammad and asked him what they should beat their wives with. And as it happens, he's brushing his teeth at the time, so he holds up his miswak, his toothbrush, and says, With this, which has been interpreted as meaning that the Muslim should only beat his wife in a symbolic way, and so as not to cause her any pain or cause her any harm. And that's a beautiful thing, I suppose relatively. A symbolic wife-beating seems to me to be perhaps less painful but still rather an odd concept. But, unfortunately, it's contradicted by other hadith.

For example, when Aisha, Muhammad's favorite wife, whom he married when she was six and consummated the marriage when she was nine and he was fifty-four, she recalls a time when Muhammad "struck me on the chest which caused me pain." That's Sahih Muslim #2127. And so it appears that he, himself, did not just use his toothbrush to beat his disobedient wife. And, of course, Muhammad, being the excellent example of conduct, that is, unfortunately, the behavior that is sanctioned, as having the example of the prophet behind it, as something that Muslims can and should, with profit, imitate. And so we see on Saudi television, from the kingdom of the two holy places, a place where it's very self-consciously dedicated to being obedient to every aspect of Islam. Actual television programs discussing the proper implements for wife-beating.

Now the problem here is not just wife-beating. The question before us again is about the equality of rights of women with men. In the Judeo-Christian, Western civilization, of course, while this has been a long battle and something that has many vicissitudes as the Imam pointed out, there is the fundamental idea that women and men are equal in dignity before God, and thus, should have equality of rights before the law. But in the Qur'an, it's very different. The Imam Mustafa pointed out that women could testify in court, but he did not bother to tell you about Qur'an's chapter 2:282, which says that "You should 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 forgets, the other can remind her." And on this basis, Muhammad himself, in a famous hadith told women that he had seen a vision of hell, and there were many more women in hell than men; and the reason why, he said, when the women indignantly asked him why that was, he responded that it's because women were deficient in religion and in intellect. And they asked him again, How is that? And he pointed to this verse in the Qur'an and said you're deficient in intellect, obviously, because your testimony is devalued; and deficient in religion because when menstruating, you're not allowed to pray in the mosque.

And so this was an inequality of intellect and an inequality of spirituality and inequality of rights before the law resulting from it. And so here again, the question before us is, does Islam guarantee equality of rights to women? Obviously, by the testimony of the Qur'an itself and Islamic Law and Muhammad, the prophet of Islam, it manifestly does not.

Chapter 4:11 of the Qur'an.says, "Allah direct you as regards to your children's inheritance. To the male, apportion equal to that of two females." Let me repeat that, "To the male, apportion equal to that of two females." How is that equality of rights? Now, I would remind you once again that I'm quoting from the Qur'an, and the Imam Mustafa may say that this is all out of context, but he cannot--at least if he has any interest in the truth, which, of course, not at all established--but if he does, then he cannot deny that these things are elements of Islamic Law to this day. And that in Islamic Law, as is the consensus, the ijma, of all the Madh'hab of the Sunnis, the schools of jurisprudence, it is agreed upon by them that a man should have greater inheritance rights than a woman, that a woman should not have the same value in her testimony as a man, and indeed is barred from testifying at all in cases of zena or sexual indiscretion, even if she is the victim. [Her] testimony is devalued altogether, and there is this mandate for inequality that manifests itself in many ways, which I am sure we will discuss. But the record of Islamic Law is clear, and so this is not the matter of some obscure village or out-of-context citations. This is a matter of the Qur'an itself as interpreted by mainstream Islamic authorities.

Thank you.

Mr. Spencer quoted a verse in the Qur'an, that is chapter 4:34, and obviously, exactly as I predicted, the verse say [reads in Arabic (17:04)]. The verb that Mr. Spencer conveniently, totally obliterated [Arabic word (17:10)] means "to attend to". The building superintendent is not the owner of the building or the boss of all the tenants. "Attend to"--the responsibly of the man to be the man-in-the-house as in our American culture stems from what the verse says after that, by them providing for the family and carrying the responsibility of the family. So men are no way better than women in Islam. So easy, I can go to the Qur'an and when the word says "white", I can translate it conveniently to the word "black" as per Mr. Spencer and what he does all the time.

Mr. Spencer will never tell you the other verse in the Qur'an that says [reads in Arabic (17:49)]. They have the same rights and obligations, as men have rights and obligations. And the only degree that a man by default has, which is that he would be responsible for the family, is condition--if he qualifies by when he supports the family, when he feeds and provides for the family. So there's nowhere in the Qur'an or the hadith of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) that men are better than women. And I would challenge him with any dictionary that qawwamun means "superior"--only in the language of Mr. Spencer.

And I'm shocked, actually, that Mr. Spencer, in the myriad of the nonsense that he brought, he brought verse 2:82 that I caught him, and I put in nationwide press release that the verse speaks about financial transactions, how to record them. When Mr. Spencer removed that in his book, The Truth About Muhammad, and claim that the verse is about rape victims, just show you the man who's, you know, talking about, well, if I know my Qur'an or not. And he dares to bring it back in again. Read his book, and read my press release, and I'm going to put it on my blog tomorrow.

The second thing, Mr. Spencer speaks about the same verse 4:34 when it says, well, if they commit nushuz it say that, well, he can go ahead and beat them for any, you know, situation. The verse specifically [quotes in Arabic], and the word nushuz is repeated only two times in the Qur'an. One time, when it pertains to the nushuz of a wife, and one time in 4:128 where it pertains to the nushuz of a man. So it's not obedience or disobedience. Nushuz is when I go onto a higher ground to look further. In the case of marriage, is to look further for another man or another woman. A man, when he looks for another woman, in Islam with restrictions and guidelines, he can go ahead and get married publicly with, if the, you know, meets the guidelines. When a woman looks for another man, that's an abomination.

And then you do not need to Imam Mustafa Zayed or any interpreter or anyone or any hadith. Let's go to the Prophet himself, talking about the case, you know, the exceptional case of when a wife to be beaten. Rule number one, [quotes in Arabic (19:47)]. You cannot beat up the girls of Allah, as per the hadith. That's the general rule. The extreme exception is when Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said, in the greatest day in human history, when he said the religion now is perfect and complete, he said [quotes in Arabic (20:01)]. Deal with women righteously and equitably and that's the general rule. [Quotes in Arabic (20:07)] Unless they come and commit apparent abomination, then [quotes in Arabic (20:14)], beat them lightly, a slap on the wrist. In our legal courts, when somebody gets a judgment that is a slap of the wrist, that means that he got the lightest judgment ever. So when the wife commits a crime, that is apparent abomination, two things: you wanna give her to the cop; you gonna give her to the correctional facility officer, you gonna give her to the judge, or within her household, the husband will give her a psychological punishment, that is a slap on the wrist. Which way you prefer. The rule is [quotes in Arabic (20:43)]. But, as I said, he goes to the extreme situation of a crime and try to make it the general rule.

The thing about the inheritance, there's 34 cases of potential inheritance: four cases, a woman inherits half of the man; 30 cases, the other 30 cases, a woman inherits more, inherits the same, and in some cases, about six cases, she inherits and the man does not inherit whatsoever. So Mr. Spencer, quotes you the four cases and does not quote you the remainder of the 30 cases.

When he said that Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said that a majority of hellfire might be of women, and when they asked him, he put in another hadith totally different about, that you use emotions more than you use reason, and you have lesser ritual duties than men, he mixed two hadiths together in his way, if you don't know, if you don't read to confuse you. And I'll post on my blog both hadith and you will see how Mr. Spencer is trying to outright deceive you.

Thank you.

The deceiver here is the Imam Mustafa. As is clear from anybody who looks at the actual translations of the first part of verse 4:34, which he was disputing. He's saying that I made it up that it says that it makes men are superior to women. That's actually... I was reading from the translation of N.J. Dawood, who is a native speaker of Arabic from Iraq. I guess he got it wrong, that I told him that he ought to mistranslate it in that way. But we can also go to the Muslim translators, Abdullah Yusef Ali, very common, mainstream translation. And he says, Men are the protectors and maintainers of women because Allah has given the one more than the other. And Muhammad Marmaduke Pickthall, a celebrated English convert to Islam who wrote another very common translation, Men are in charge of women because Allah has made the one of them to excel the other. And M.J. Shakir, Men are the maintainers of women because Allah has made some of the to excel others. And so apparently, with my deceiving black arts, I had misled all of these translators, who wrote before I was born, into mistranslating this verse in exactly the same way to say that men excel women or superior to women, and obviously not that they are equal women.

And so its clear that the Imam Mustafa, while self-righteously claiming that I am deceiving, is actually trying to deceive on a grand scale. He's actually written a book-length treatment that is full of deceit, called The Lies About Muhammad, which is very aptly named, because that's all it is.

And another one, regards chapter 2:82, which he's saying he caught me out on. Actually the Qur'an itself, it says, as I quoted before, that you should get a male witness and if you cannot get a male witness, then you get, if there are not two men, then a man and two women, such as you choose for witness, so that if the other one errs, the other one can remind her. That is the translation of Abdullah Yusef Ali. It has nothing to do with the context of rape in the context of the Qur'an, and I never said it did; but it does come into questions of rape, when women's testimony is disallowed altogether as is something that comes from Islamic law.

Now, as far as the beating of the wife, it's interesting to note that this learned Imam is actually granting that a husband does have the responsibility to beat a disobedient woman in Islam, but he's trying to convince us that it is a matter of only beating her lightly or giving her a tap on the wrist. Once again, I refer to the translations of the Qur'an. These are all translations of the Qur'an made either by Muslims or by Islamic scholars. They are not my translations of the word in question, waidriboohunna, and it says in Pickthall, "...and scourge them". Or [Sher Ali] "...and chastise them". Rodwell, also, "...scourge them". Khalifa, Rashad Khalifa, "...beat them" Also Shakir, "...beat them". Al-Hilali and Khan say, "...beat them lightly", as does Yusef Ali, but that "lightly" is not in the Arabic as I'm sure that the Imam Mustafa, were he truthful, would have to admit.

And that since I quoted as I quoted the hadith, which is from Bukhari... No, I'm sorry, from Muslim, that says that he hit Aisha and caused her pain, it's hard to understand how if Muhammad is the supreme example of conduct that his example would not be exemplary in this one particular. And I wonder what the authorities at Al-Azhar would think of Mustafa Zayed if they heard him contradicting Muhammad on this point.

And as for the other hadith in which women predominate in hell, that is easily be found online; and if he is going to post his lies about it, I will post the truth about it at Jihad Watch tomorrow and give you the hadiths in question.

There's also a great deal more, of course, that we were not able to address for reasons of time. For example, Muhammad saying--and this is a Bukhari hadith--that if a husband calls his wife to his bed to have sexual relations and she refuses and causes him to sleep in anger, the angels will curse her 'til morning. And this is the foundation of the Islamic law that a woman has no right to refuse sexual intercourse to her husband for any reason at any time. That reduces her, essentially, to the status of an object for procreation or sexual pleasure. It's kind of ironic that the Imam Mustafa said in his initial statement that the woman is not the object of desire because that's, essentially, all that she is in Islam, is a plaything for sexual relations, and [a cook, of course, (mark :24)] and so on, but that's about it.

There's another hadith in the same way: By him in Whose Hands lies my life, a woman cannot carry out the right of her Lord 'til 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 saddle. Now, this is plainly just another species of slavery and it has nothing to do with equality of rights whatever smoke this learned and highly deceitful Imam chooses to blow tonight.

Alright. I just hope for the people who does see this online recorded to go back to the translation picked, the word qawwamun, he chose "superior to", which what I told him, it does not mean--and Arabic, believe it or not, is my native language. He said, well other people said it, too. Look, Yusef Ali said "protector and provider". I ask any second grader, does "protector" mean "superior to"? Does "provider" mean "superior to"?

And then he went to another translation, "in charge of". If I am in charge of a diamond, that means it's mine, that I'm superior to it? I'm in charge of a hundred children, that my life is better than them or I'm superior to them? It's again the twisted translation, and the only one that he picks. N.J. Dawood, I never heard of his translation, couldn't care less if he is native Arabic or not. "Attend" means to be a protector, to be in charge of. There has to be a leader for the family. By default, that leader is chosen by Allah to be a man, like any other culture, predominantly, and only when he qualifies. That's number one.

The second thing, when he goes to the witnessing, he chooses again the exception and financial transactions. You know, if you don't have one man, bring two women because women, by nature... Go to Wall Street and tell me how many women as a percentage of all the work in men. Be he totally forgo all the other cases where a testimony of a woman is exactly the same as a man. In all kind of cases in Islamic Law except her witnessing a crime of zena or armed robbery, where there's gonna be a penal code. I mean, he should be ashamed when he says that if she was the rape victim, her word would not be taken. How could it be a case that is to be prosecuted if the victim did not even complain to begin with. And that's her testimony. Totally wrong. When she's an outside witness to the event of the hurt that happened, then Islam avoids and protects the woman nature from getting into violent crimes.

Testimonies. A husband. Again, it's [his] wife when it comes to infidelity, in Surat An-Nur, chapter 24:6-9, her testimony is exactly the same. In the case of Al-Sayyida Aisha, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) pushed her. And Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) was a powerful man, and he was not beating her whatsoever. He never beat anyone, not even his servants. And I will post the same hadith that he's talking about.

When I caught him mixing two hadiths together, when they asked him why are some women are majority of hellfire, he brought an answer from a different hadith. I didn't say that one of them is not authentic. I said that you mixed two authentic hadiths together. Out of ignorance or not, even if you knew, I would not trust that you would tell the truth.

The third thing, we're not talking about disobedience. We're talking about the beating of a wife. It's a wife who committed a crime, and that remote, exceptional situation, should we hand her to the law or should be dealt with a slap on the wrist within the household? And I'm not justifying that for disobedient wife, a wife who committed an apparent crime as per the hadith of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). Apparent abomination.

The other thing is, the refusal of having intercourse. The hadith is apparently clear, and you need to be a genius to look at interpretation or foundation of Islamic Law. The hadith said that the angels will be cursing her 'til the morning comes. It did not say the husband should force her into sex. That is a despicable, that is something that is resentful in Islam, that a law-abiding, [chaste] man wanna have his normal intercourse with his wife and his would wife refuse for no reason. Mr. Spencer, as usual would [slip you in (33:30)], and for "any reason" that...what if she has her period? Totally forbidden to come near the wife. What if she's ill? What if she's sick? But Mr. Spencer will tell you for "any reason". He is in Spencer Land. He's creating his own law and he's making new things. Again, look at the translation that he used, and look at what he's talking about.

And again, in witnessing, he does not wanna say that he totally mutilated a verse in the Qur'an, from the case of financial witnessing to a case of rape victims. And when I caught him, he said, Oh, look at Surat An-Nur, it says they have to be men. And I caught him, and I'll post it again that it means--shuhud--means "witnesses". It didn't specify men or didn't specify women.

So again, take the extreme case, generalize it, incite hatred against Muslims, anything Muslims, confuse hadiths together, a word that means "white", translated as "black", and tell me names of people that nobody had ever heard of. The only people that are reputable translators, and even though I say that they have some mistakes in translation by nature, Yuself Ali said "protector", did not say "superior". The other, Shakir, said "in charge of". He did not say "superior". Who's saying "superior"? Mr. Spencer. Because the job is to incite hatred and demonize all Muslims with the simple-minded people who cannot read for themselves and cannot even understand English. "Superior" does not mean "protector". A woman who's looking for a major abomination or the crime of apparent abomination is not a disobedient wife. That's someone who committed a crime, and the best punishment you give her, a slap on the wrist.

Again, typical Spencer.

The elaborateness and sophistication and persistence of the Imam Mustafa's deceptions is truly breathtaking; and as a liar, I think he is truly unsurpassed today. Really, it's extraordinary what he's doing here--the sleight-of-hand in regard to this passage in chapter 4:34 of the Qur'an. He's arguing about the word that is translated by Ali as "men are the protectors and maintainers of women"--the word being "the protectors and maintainers" part. Or by Pickthall as "men are in charge of women". Or by Dawood as "men have authority over women". But that part is not in dispute. The part that he is taking issue with is in Dawood's translation as "God has made the one superior to the other", which is the next part of the verse, so he's actually getting all upset about the Arabic word that I'm not disputing the meaning of, because that is not the problem. Ali says, "men are the protectors and maintainers of women". That part is not in dispute. And then he goes on to say, "because Allah has given the one more than the other," but he doesn't want you to notice that part, because it shows the inequality of the women. Or as Pickthall, another Muslim, has it: "Men are in charge of women because Allah has made the one of them to excel the other." He does not tell you at all about the Arabic word for "in charge"...the God giving "more than the other" or "excel the other" or "superior to the other" in the Dawood translation, because that of course would not serve his argument. And instead, he's trying to fool the listener into thinking that the argument is really about the part that is translated as "man are the protectors and sustainers of women" or "has authority over women" which is not the issue at all.

It's the same thing with zena. It's a matter of established fact in Islamic Law that women's testimony is not allowed in crimes of zena. And as far as the mixing the two hadiths together, you notice that he said--he's very excited and speaking quickly--but go back and listen to it again, and you will hear that he says that he's not saying on'es authentic and one's inauthentic. So you see, I'm speaking from memory here, and I'm talking about hadiths which I will produce on the website, Jihad Watch, tomorrow or tonight if I get the chance. The reality is, there are hadiths that are considered authentic by Muslims in which Muhammad says the most of the people in hell are women, and in which Muhammad says that women are deficient in religion and in intellect. And he doesn't even dispute the inauthenticity... the authenticity of those. Instead, he's trying to make a big deal about my putting them together a conversational presentation. Well, that's ridiculous. One hadith, two hadiths...fine. The question is, is it part of Islamic doctrine that Muhammad says these things? Yes, these hadiths are considered authentic, and so the question is, do Muslims believe that there're mostly women in hell? If they believe Muhammad, yes. Do Muslims believe that women are deficient in religion and in intellect? If they believe Muhammad, yes. Do Muslims believe that they have the right to beat their wives, and not just as a symbolic tap on the wrist, as he ridiculously claims.

Well, let me just note that the Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences--which is not, as far as I know, an enterprise that I'm in charge of or that I've created, and probably is predominantly made up of Muslims--they have determined that over 90% of women in Pakistan, over 90%, have been struck, beaten, or sexually abused often for trivial offenses. The problem is one man's tap and slap on the wrist is another man's brutal beating. These things can [--- (38:45)] all to often in the eye of the beholder. Once you've given the sanction to the behavior, that's where the trouble begins. And Islam does sanction wife-beating and Muslims beat their wives. The Imam Muhammad Kamal Mustafa, an imam in Spain in 2004, was found guilty by the Spanish court for inciting violence on the basis of gender. Because in his book, Women in Islam, he discussed the methods of administering physical punishment of women. So this was something that was clear, was real, was taken very seriously. And so this is a problem all around the Islamic world.

He can pretend and deceive foolish and ignorant people into thinking that it's something that I'm making up, but that is just another part of the sophistication of his deception. This man is a very good liar, but the text say what they say. And all the Islamic translations of the Qur'an, they say in the beginning part of chapter 4:34, that in some way that men are superior to or excel or are greater than or have more than women. And they say that men should beat his disobedient wife, and Muhammad did that to Aisha (which you notice he did not address at all) and caused her pain. And he being the exemplary pattern of conduct as per chapter 33:21 of the Qur'an. That is a very dangerous passage in the hadith.

Please, whoever's gonna watch this recorded after that, please watch from the beginning, and watch Robert Spencer retrace what he says. Quickly. First of all, it was that the victim of rape cannot testify for herself, and now he's saying, 'Oh women cannot testify in that case', which is the second part is the correct part. In the beginning, he wasn't saying that 'til I expposed him.

The second thing, the part that he says, Oh, that's the part that means superior. It says [quotes in Arabic (40:48)]: By what Allah (Subhan'Allah) preferred some over the other. Allah (Subhan'Allah) in the verse did not specify men or women, who's better than each one. As I said, they compliment each other. It could be the woman that has a better aspect than the man or the man has a better aspect. If [quotes in Arabic (40:48)]: By what Allah (Subhan'Allah) preferred some of the other, can you extract for me which is man and which is woman? I'll give you the Nobel Peace Prize, but I'm not gonna give it to you.

The second thing, Robert totally ignores--and he'll ever tell you that, and you should ask yourself--[quotes in Arabic (41:20)]: They have the same rights and obligations, as men do, women do.

In Surat Al-Baqra 2:28. The other one, he keeps saying that you beat a disobedient wife. I explained so many times that the verb in the two verses is nushuz, which is "committing an abomination" or "about to commit abomination". And I brought the explanation of the prophet of Islam, himself, saying, You never beat a woman. You treat them righteously and equitably unless they commit an apparent crime. They become a criminal. And then there has to be a punishment. And then there's degrees. It's not beating right away. You give them advice. You abstain from them a bit. And them after that, you go and you give them a slap on the wrist, which is the lightest punishment, after they commit a crime. So he makes the crime or the criminal the major case.

Again, watch how he retracts. When Muhammad, the women asked him why the majority of women are in hellfire are gonna be that way, and he said that the answer is that they are deficient mind and so on and so forth. The answer is a totally different hadith and a totally different thing. In the second hadith, Muhammad (PBUH), was praising women. He said, I never see more people that they have their emotions supersedes their reason that they can take away the mind of the firm and intellectual man. It's a praise.

And the lack of sexual duties is by the license of God. When they are pregnant, when they have their period, and--subhan'Allah, when they get pregnant, that's how I came to life and so does Mr. Spencer. That's a license from God. That is not something to be ashamed or make him a [list (42:54)] of worshipers. In all aspects of Islam, let us see, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said, Your best are your best to the women and I am the best to my women. He used to clean his house. He used to do house chores. When his wife was sick, he used to do house chores for her. He would get groceries for her. He would milk his sheep. He would do everything for his wife. And he said, [quotes in Arabic (43:14)]: Serve your wife, and you will be given a reward as if you gave a generous charity. That is the prophet of Islam.

And that is Robert Spencer.

Actually, there is no difference in what I said from one part to the other about the testimony of women. Actually, women's testimony is not allowed in crimes of zena even if she is the victim. He exposed nothing except his own lies, because, as a matter of fact, it has been established even by Muslim women's rights groups, like the wonderful group in Malaysia, Sisters in Islam, that most of the women who are in prison in countries like Pakistan and others where zena has traditionally understood as being in the realm of hudud punishments, in the realm of Islamic Law, rather than in the civic law, most of the women in prison are there, because they were victims of rape. Their testimonies are inadmissible, and they don't have the witnesses to prove that they were raped, because Islamic Law stipulates in chapter 24:4 and 24:13 of the Qur'an that in such crimes, there has to be four male, Muslim witnesses, who saw the act. And that is, obviously, something that is essentially impossible to establish.

And as for wife beating, you notice once again that he is admitting that a man can legitimately and lawfully beat his disobedient wife, and that's really all I'm interested in establishing, because that is a howling inequality. And what we have before us here is the question of whether women are treated equally as men in Islam or not. But anything that can be beaten like a pack animal when disobedient is not equal. And here again, he does not treat the hadith that I have brought forward that is from Sahih Muslim and is thus, considered to be authentic by Muslims, in which Aisha said Muhammad, and I quote, "struck me on the chest which caused me pain" and that is not something that is symbolic or light thing. When it involves pain, it involves pain. And, obviously, beating a wife or scourging or chastising, as these various Muslim translations have it, is something that's gonna cause pain. It's not something that is some sort of a love tap. And that's a ridiculous apologetic notion that's designed to fool Westerners into thinking that there's no problem here, but unfortunately there is.

And we haven't even dealt with so much more that renders women unequal, like polygamy--that a man can have four wives and as many sexual slaves as he wishes out of the captives his right hand possesses. That is something that, unfortunately for Mr. Zayed, has been recently reaffirmed by certain Islamic clerics: There ought to be a revival of sexual slavery of non-believing women who were captured and made into prostitutes or sexual slaves by their Muslim captors. This has been recently reaffirmed, actually, by a female legislator in Kuwait and by another Islamic cleric.

So he's pulling the wool over our eyes, but I am not going to allow it to happen.

Alright. Again, look at the progression of Mr. Spencer withdrawing from the false claims that he used in the beginning. It was "superior" in one part of the verse, and then the other verse was supposed to now mean "superior", and I proved that neither speak about men or women. So that's ended.

What I mentioned is not the authenticity of the two quotations that he did, but a part of his deceptions that when the women asked him why the majority are of women from hellfire, he talked about because they're ungrateful to their husbands who gave them everything and just for one mistake that they made, they claim that 'he gave us nothing.' Ungratefulness.

The other hadith is a totally different hadith, and a totally different incident.The incident with Al-Sayyida Aisha, I challenge him to bring me the incident of by which she was supposed to be disobedient and the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) beating her. Al-Sayyida Aisha was the greatest, probably, wife of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). She was never disobedient to him, and she said [quotes in Arabic (47:44)]: He pushed me. She didn't say "struck me", and she was not disobedient. And I'm gonna publish that hadith tomorrow. Again, "pushed me" is not "struck me". And she was never disobedient.

Again, please Mr. Spencer, read my lips: I never said beat a disobedient wife. I said, per the hadith of the Prophet of Islam, not some Pakistani or Malaysian rural areas and something village, that if she commits an apparent crime. Can you read my lips, if you cannot hear me please. I never said "disobedient." I said the crime of nushuz, an apparent crime. If you can't understand English anymore.

The other thing is, when we go to the witnesses again. That sandbox of Mr. Spencer when he tries to take the poorest countries, the most worst stricken countries and try to generalize them over Islam--his favorite sandbox, maybe Afghanistan--he bring me an enterprise in Pakistan where somebody said this or some female or some cleric in Spain said something... Well, it violates what is in the Qur'an and the model behavior of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), then these people have committed a crime and violated Islamic Law. And for the hundredth time, you cannot judge Islam by the criminal of the few. You can judge people by Islamic Law.

And again, what matters here and what I want to explain to the viewers, it's not the "what", it's the "why". Why Mr. Spencer is doing this? Why Mr. Spencer and his lies are constant inciters of hatred between Americans? Because that's what he get paid for. If you look at what was published recently in the past three years, $920,000, the majority of them, through the Freedom organization... the Freedom Center Organization, was funneled to him through a Zionist extremist, Joyce Chernick. And that is not published in a Muslim magazine, it is published in the Jerusalem Post of his friends, Israel. It's a business. He makes a lot of money out of that. The same way that Walid Shoebat was exposed in CNN.

And the biggest problem with that is not how much money he makes, it's the hatred that he incites in people. Look at what happened in Norway. The terrorist in Norway who killed a hundred innocent people and injured more. That person quoted Robert Spencer in his manifesto over 64 times and referenced over 130 times. And I couldn't care less of the authenticity of what he says. It's not freedom of speech. It's fabrications. It's lies. It's inciting hatred. And to the simple-minded people, like the insane terrorist in Norway, the result can be innocent people killed, mostly young kids in a summer camp. And we will be mistaken if we allow that venom to spread, of the lies and fabrications, and the discrimination against Muslims.

In America, we can buy a machine gun that he can kill a dinosaur with just by showing your photo ID in some states. So Mr. Spencer makes a living inciting hatred amongst people. And if I was any of the people of Norway, I would have sued Mr. Spencer as an instigator of that crime of hatred, because that's the ideology that he makes. The followers of Mr. Spencer are not people who read for themselves or can look at translations and objectively understand what is being thrown at them. It's the simple-minded, hatred and [attention]-seekers. People who wanna polarize and hate something just to give a meaning of their life or just bring resentment against someone out there. And if we help that, then one of us or someone who is related to us, Muslim or non-Muslim, any American of any creed will be the victim soon. The blood of these innocent people in Norway is in Mr. Spencer's hand. And God forbid, there will gonna be other crimes of that hatred and incitement.

Why is Mr. Spencer telling us all that, and he is supposed to enlighten us about Islam, and he has no proper education in Islam. He does not speak the language. He does not mention references. As a matter of fact, I quoted him in his book saying something in one page that [all (51:28)] Muhammad evidently believed the rumors of his wife. The following page, he says he brings up authentic hadith, that Muhammad says, I never believed anything like that. It's copy and paste, things that are laughable. He claims that dhimmi in Arabic means "ugly". [Menzel (51:43), where the stopping] location is now a house. All these laughable things. But the problem is his followers are simple-minded. They don't understand. And the hatred is like spilling gasoline above our population waiting for the next spark of the next terrorist to hurt us all. Why the hatred? The blood is on your hand Mr. Spencer.

Drug dealers? No drugs killed, but the money is good. And the money that you make is good from the worst enemies of Islam, the extreme right-wing Zionists of Israel, as published in Jerusalem Post. I don't think the money's worth it, and any decent American, Muslim or non-Muslim, should be alert to the venom and the hatred that is being spread all over the world about Muslims, and specifically in America. Muslims make 3% of the population. Maybe 24% of the doctors that heal Americans are Muslims. Over 25% of the hate crimes against Americans are committed against American Muslims and the instigator is right there.

Mr. Spencer incites hatred for a living. His lies are exposed, and I put them in the book, The Lies about Muhammad. Most of the women that accept Islam in my class, most of the people are from the women gender--highly-educated women. And Islam is the fastest growing religion in the world.

Okay, I'm gonna have to respond to some of this. Although, you'll note that the topic is not The Evils of Robert Spencer. The topic is, Does Islam treat women equally and consider them equal, and that has been amply established that they do not, even by Mustafa Zayed.

But the character assassination and viciousness of this man is clear now. It's really breathtaking how he will stoop to this kind of defamation and demonization. And it's interesting, because he is claiming that I engage in hate speech, but he is obviously trying to get people to hate me. And so I wonder if he thinks that those of Muslims, who give me daily death threats, if those Muslims actually succeed in killing me, will he consider that he, himself, has blood on his hands for trying to demonize me and trying to get people to hate me tonight? That would be very interesting thing. But whether they kill me or not, I'm gonna keep telling the truth up until I die.

And the fact is, I had nothing to do with the Norway killing, anymore than The Beatles had to do with Charles Manson's killings. The man cited me. He cited Barrack Obama. He cited John Locke, Thomas Jeffereson, Charles Darwin. He plagiarized the Unabomber, but nobody is saying that radical environmentalists are to be blamed for this. He started plotting violence in the 1990s, before I had published anything about Islam, except in a college setting, which he never...could not have seen. He was already plotting violence long before I was ever doing anything publicly in this line.

And in regard to incitement, I would challenge the Imam Mustafa and anyone to actually produce a single, genuine example of my telling anybody to commit violence against anyone or to hate anyone. Obviously, he wants you to hate me. But all I'm doing here is telling the truth. And so it's very interesting that he, once again, is proving the adage as St. Paul said, If I become your enemy by telling you the truth... He cannot stand the truth. He keeps lying about chapter 4:34, which I explained that he was taking issue with the part of the verse that is acknowledged to mean that men are the protectors and sustainers of women, then completely ignoring and obfuscating the following part, which is translated by Muslims as 'but because Allah as made the one to excel the other' or in Dawood's translation, 'to be superior to the other'.

He keeps trying to make a big deal out these hadiths that I quoted being different, but the fact is, they are both considered authentic, all are considered authentic. He outright lies about this hadith in which Muhammad which Aisha says and I quote, "He struck me on the chest which caused me pain." And then said, Did you think that Allah and his apostle would deal unjustly with you? That's Muhammad saying...Muhammad striking her on the chest and Aisha saying that Muhammad "struck me on the chest which caused me pain." That is the translation of Sahih Muslim #2127 by Abdul Hamid Saduiqqi, who himself is a Muslim. And so I wonder if Mr. Zayed thinks that I somehow got in the ear of Abdul Hamid Saddiqui and deceived him into mistranslating this passage, which he is now lying about.

But the fact is, all the lies and hate are not coming from me. They're coming from Mustafa Zayed and people like him. And that is because they cannot stand to have the truth about Islam told. The fact is that Islam institutionalizes discrimination against women, it institutionalizes the commodification of women. And anything he says about me is not gonna change that, because I did not originate it.

The fact is that polygamy is mandated in the Qur'an. He never mentioned anything about that, because he can't deny it. The fact is that the Qur'an also stipulates that a man can divorce his wife by saying talaq--I divorce you--three times, and when if he does it the third time, then she is divorced definitively, has to marry another man and consummate that marriage and be divorced by hime before she can go back to her first husband, if he chooses to have her back. That's a kind of a monstrous and barbaric law, but that is part of Islamic Law. And it certainly has nothing to do with equality of rights for women. He didn't say anything about the sex slaves, because he cannot deny.

As I said, that Islamic imams, not Spencer, but Islamic imams themselves have said...have called for the revival of this practice, which is Qur'anic--the Qur'an in 4:3 says that a man can marry up to four wives and then have captives that his right hand possesses, that is, sex slaves. And there is a traditional legal category for sexual slavery in Islam; while the women has to cover everything except her face and hands, according to Muhammad in the hadith. And in Islamic Law, the sex slaves are actually always to be naked from the waist up and accessible to their owner whenever he wishes. And this is obviously something else that is monstrous and barbaric, but that Mustafa Zayed will pass over in silence and then spend all his time smearing and defaming me, and trying to incite violence against me in order to divert attention away from that.

Well, you know something, I don't care. It's not as if I'm not gonna die if I don't do this work. And his...the idea that I have been getting $900,000 is fanciful. I wish I had gotten $900,000, because I could certainly use it to expose his lies and the lies of other people like him and be able to greatly expand my operations, but actually I've got nothing like that. And even if I had, it's irrelevant. Even if I'm the richest man in the world and the most evil man in the world, the question before us is, Does Islam allow for the equality of rights of women with men, and it manifestly does not. And I think it's just shameful that he would spend his time spreading hatred against people who tell the truth about Islam. So desperate is he to deceive unbelievers about this agenda.

One must ask, Why? What's the overall point of deceiving us in this way?

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1 comment:

  1. Sort of like 1 against 0. Next up: Is islam a relgion of peace? Is islam tolerant? And a short piece for background info: Inventions by moslems, which is a bit longer than notable muslem Noble Prize winners.