Culture or religion?

When discussing honor murder and blood feuds people like to stress that this is a cultural issue and not a religious one. For example, the following quote is from the EUMC's recent report "Muslim in the European Union: Discrimination and Islamophobia".

Recently, the 2006 Austrian Presidency of the European Council, stressing that "harmful traditional practices" affecting women are not necessarily linked to a specific religion, but rather to certain cultures , took the initiative35 to develop the 'Network Against Harmful Traditions' proposing legal measures as well as protection of victims and awareness campaigns.
To me it's just semantics. I don't really see why saying "Islam is bad" is worse than saying "Pakistani culture is bad", "Afghani culture is bad" and "Moroccan culture is bad". Especially as it shows lack of comprehension of what culture means in those countries.

Today I ran across this quote from an article talking about the Palestinian in-fighting. Explaining why the battle has turned personal due to the issue of blood revenge.

The grieving father, Anan Bakr, a member of the Fatah-linked Preventive Security Service, said the battle is personal. " In our tradition, in our religion, whoever kills must be killed, even after time passes," he said.
Europe can continue debating whether it's an issue of culture or tradition. At least for the Palestinians, it's quite clear.

Sources: EUMC report (English), The Gazette (English)


Anonymous said...

The following article is essential reading for anyone worried about the Islamic threat. It demonstrates very clearly why we must either destroy Islam or be destroyed by it:

Yankee Doodle said...

Religion, like language, is an aspect of culture. Culture is defined in part based on religion.

Islam is more than a religion. It is a complete ideology, with a political agenda of world conquest, and a legal agenda to institutionalize the teachings of Allah's Apostle as the law of the land.

To say that Christianity is a religion, and thus is separate from culture is, at best, a fine distinction.

To say that Islam is separate from culture is hardly credible. Islam is a culture and a way of life; Islam means "submission"; Islam is cultural imperialism.