View Poll Results: Is Islam incompatible with religion?

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  • No, there are other factors

    22 45.83%
  • Yes, because there is no separation between church & state over there

    10 20.83%
  • Yes, because the Koran is their only law, and it is against democracy

    12 25.00%
  • Yes, because it's "foreign" to their culture, democracy is a Western concept

    4 8.33%
  • other

    6 12.50%
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Thread: Is Islam incompatible with democracy?

  1. #1
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    Is Islam incompatible with democracy?

    According to Samuel Huntington, Islam is incompatible with religion because
    - there is no separation with church & state in these countries
    - democracy is not present in their culture
    - the Koran itself is contrary to democracy
    ...

    Do you think he's right or wrong? Why?

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    Re: Is Islam incompatible with democracy?

    Islam, as with the other monotheisms and indeed, all other religions, is not composed of wide-ranging homogeneity and will be compatible or incompatible with democracy to the extent that its more liberal or conservative principles are implemented.

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    Re: Is Islam incompatible with democracy?

    No moreso than any other religion.

    Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Algeria, Tunisia, Senegal, Mali, Turkey, Lebanon, Iraq, Iran, Palestine, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Malaysia, Indonesia...these countries ALL have democracies, or had democracies at some point in the last 100 years. Not many of their democracies look like American democracy...but that's to be expected, as their culture is very different.
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    Re: Is Islam incompatible with democracy?

    Quote Originally Posted by bub View Post
    According to Samuel Huntington, Islam is incompatible with religion because
    - there is no separation with church & state in these countries
    - democracy is not present in their culture
    - the Koran itself is contrary to democracy
    ...

    Do you think he's right or wrong? Why?
    Consider the three reasons you state above:

    • there is no separation with church & state in these countries
      Where there has been no separation between church and state in Christian countries, the result has been something less than a democratic society. Theocracy is never democratic, irrespective of the particular foundational theology.
    • democracy is not present in their culture
      Culture is more than religion. Democracy was not and has not been a cultural characteristic of Russia, for example.
    • the Koran itself is contrary to democracy
      And the Bible commands the slave to obey his master. None of the great religions of the world elucidate or advocate the principles of democracy.

    Democracy is a civic concept, and is neither complimented nor condemned by religion.

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    Re: Is Islam incompatible with democracy?

    Afghanistan and Iraq are examples of nations that were both democracies until their governments suffered coups sponsored by our friends in the West.

    Democracy is something that the West does not want the Middle East to have or maintain so long as the people there are anti-West and have input into which foreign nations get their support. Most of this centers around oil or strategic support.

    If you look at historical examples of countries that wanted to nationalize their oil and restrict trade with the West, such as Iran, you'll find that the West (particularly the U.S.) immediately sponsored coups in those nations. Dictators are much more easily controlled.

    Islam is just the most recent political scapegoat for the above factors. Western nations don't want their people thinking about the truth, after all.

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    Re: Is Islam incompatible with democracy?

    Depends on which branch of Islam you are thinking of.

    In Shi'a Islam, no. Think of the Caliphate. The person to lead all Muslims in Shi'a Islam would be determined by geneology and lineage from Prophet Muhammad. It would be more similar to a monarchy.

    In Sunni Islam, yes. Think of the Caliphate. The person to lead all Muslims in Sunni Islam is determined by the community. Is that not democracy?

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    Re: Is Islam incompatible with democracy?

    I do not understand how it can be an Monotheistic culture and accept alternatives.

    It would be considered a hazard to the health of the individual to not accept Allah. They would treat that person like we treat the mentally ill.
    "I do not underestimate the ability of fanatical groups of terrorists to kill and destroy, but they do not threaten the life of the nation. Whether we would survive Hitler hung in the balance, but there is no doubt that we shall survive al-Qa'ida." -- Lord Hoffmann

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    Re: Is Islam incompatible with democracy?

    Quote Originally Posted by Degreez View Post
    In Shi'a Islam, no. Think of the Caliphate. The person to lead all Muslims in Shi'a Islam would be determined by geneology and lineage from Prophet Muhammad. It would be more similar to a monarchy.
    Iran, Iraq, and Lebanon are all Shiite, and they all have quasi-democracies. Granted, none of those countries are as representative of their people as, say, the United States of America. But they're certainly more representative than many Sunni states. I don't see how you can say that Shia Islam is incompatible with democracy, when there are examples to the contrary that exist right now.
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    Re: Is Islam incompatible with democracy?

    Quote Originally Posted by bub View Post
    According to Samuel Huntington, Islam is incompatible with religion because
    - there is no separation with church & state in these countries
    - democracy is not present in their culture
    - the Koran itself is contrary to democracy
    ...

    Do you think he's right or wrong? Why?
    Islamism is certainly incompatible with democracy as would be a literal understanding of Islam, however, I feel that one can be a secular Muslim and that Muslims can have a separation of Mosque and state so long as Islamist parties are either banned (such as, in Turkey) or do not enjoy large popular support (such as in Yemen).

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    Re: Is Islam incompatible with democracy?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kandahar View Post
    Iran, Iraq, and Lebanon are all Shiite, and they all have quasi-democracies. Granted, none of those countries are as representative of their people as, say, the United States of America. But they're certainly more representative than many Sunni states. I don't see how you can say that Shia Islam is incompatible with democracy, when there are examples to the contrary that exist right now.
    Iran is antithetical to democracy, their system is theocratic at its core and the elections are a farce because it is the theocrats who hold the true power within that country not the elected officials.

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