Catholic League president Bill Donohue addresses remarks published today by Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury:
The Archbishop of Canterbury says that Shahbaz Bhatti, Pakistan’s Minister for Minorities, who was killed for protesting the nation’s blasphemy laws, died “not simply for his Christian faith, but for a vision shared between Pakistani Christians and Muslims.” Indeed, he says that Bhatti’s “courage and steadfastness of purpose was nourished in the political culture of Pakistan,” and that only a “faction in Pakistan” supports injustice. What is needed, he adds, is “a rational debate in Pakistan” about the blasphemy laws.
Bhatti was murdered for the same reason another Pakistani government official was, Salman Taseer: they protested the invocation of the blasphemy law that sentenced Aasiya Bibi to death. Bhatti’s fight for justice had nothing to do with the “political culture of Pakistan”—it was a reflection of his devout Catholicism.
It is precisely the political culture of Islamism that is the problem, not some faction. Here’s the proof: in a major survey published by the Pew Research Center, over 80 percent of Muslims in Pakistan favor stoning people who commit adultery and say the proper punishment for theft is whipping and cutting off of hands. Most important, 76 percent favor the death penalty for Muslims who convert. Moreover, it is ludicrous to say “a rational debate” about the blasphemy laws should take place: Bhatti and Taseer were murdered for discussing it! And now Sherry Rehman, a member of the ruling party in Pakistan, was forced to withdraw her bill to amend the law. One wonders what planet Williams is from.
Not until Muslims renounce the sharia—the totalitiarian legal system that justifies oppression—will Christians be safe in Muslim-run nations. We’re not talking about a fringe group of fanatics, we’re talking about a large swath of the Muslim population. See the section on our website, “Christian Persecution,” for recent stories of Muslim barbarism.