I was surprised at the level of reaction the list garnered. Most of it was positive(scary huh?). I feel though, that I need to clarify a few things, not just for critics but for people who regularly check this blog. I welcome well reasoned critique and defer to those who find the lack of adab on the list unbecoming of proper Muslim etiquette. Fair enough, even though I believe respect has to be earned especially if you claim to represent Muslims in any capacity.
That being said, I believe everyone on the list earned their place there, and I make no apologies for that. The only correction I would possibly make is substituting Mona Eltahaway for Mohja Kahf. Oh well. Some have asked why Fareed Zakaria, Ejaz Mansoor, Irshad Manji werent on the list. Simple really, Zakaria and Mansoor dont claim to represent Muslims and are fairly open about their imperial credentials. Manji is not even a Muslim to begin with, besides I've saved her for a later post.
Think I was being mean? Sure. Immature? Considering the kind of people on the list, no. Or am I simply putting people on a list because I disagree with them? Not at all. There are many people who I disagree with, but I can respect them as well-intentioned individuals who bear no malice or hidden agenda. Take Dr.Hesham Hassaballa, some of whose articles I find wanting. I really wish he would not let MWU post his stuff because it lends them a degree of credibility which they dont deserve. Then theres ardent secularist Hussein Ibish. Kudos to him for leaving the PMNUA, and you have respect a guy who kicked Dan Pipes in the crotch so many times on cable TV.
Unlike many of the clueless supporters of pro-regressivism, I actually went to one of their now-defunct starbucks "meet-ups." I read their material all the time, and let me tell you the level of mendacity and sheer ignorance there is striking. If you're a member of their mailing list you know where I'm coming from.
Oh, but doesnt giving them a dose of their own medicine make me no better then them? I dont think so. You wont find me slandering legitimate Muslim civil rights groups as "conservative." You wont be seeing me on CNN, FOX and MSNBC pandering to neocons. You wont find me gender or race baiting to intellectually blackmail critics into silence as Amina "I am a n*****, so you're going to have put up with my blackness" Wadud did. These are the kinds of "Imams" who want to lead us. If Tarek Fatah and Ali Hasan dont like being spotlighted, they may want to stop acting like a pair of half-drunk frat boys in heat whenever theres a camera around to forment controversy. Try fooling somebody else with your marxist crutches and the accompaying half-baked lefty polemicism. Spare me the fashionable Saudi bashing(wahabi this wahabi that is getting real old, even for a critic of the Saudi GOVERNMENT like me)In the final analysis I think calling charlatans like these "idiots" is a slap on the wrist. Its not the nicest way of getting my point across, but I can live with that.
Seems to me MWU and its goof troop can dish it out but cant take it. Dont worry though, I'll be nicer from now on. Dont bet on it.