Saturday 16 June 2007

'Enlightenment fundamentalism' and moral equivalence

There's a nice piece by Julie Szego in The Age about Ayaan Hirsi Ali's recent visit to Australia, which deftly skewers the hypocrisy of many on the left in their reaction to Ali's critique of Islam. Szego is especially critical of Timothy Garton Ash's dismissal of Ali as ' a brave, outspoken, slightly simplistic Enlightenment fundamentalist'. I like Szego's response:

The term 'enlightenment fundamentalist' has a chilling quality. It makes everything — reason, tolerance, the entire 18th-century legacy — seem negotiable. The logic seemed to imply that Ali, who pursues her cause through reason alone, is the moral equivalent of those who seek to kill her.

I came across this article on another blog, but unfortunately I've forgotten which one, so can't give credit. Apologies for this lapse in blogging manners.

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