Dhimmitude in America?

You may not know what dhimmitude is and hopefully you never experience it.

But you’ve probably heard of ISIS (the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria) and you’re almost surely aware of what Christians are.

Dhimmitude is an Islamic system that governs non-Muslims who have been conquered through Jihad by folks like ISIS.

If you surrender to Muslim control – though not Muslim – you are referred to as dhimmi.

Sounds fun, right?

If ISIS took over the town you live in, they might move door to door and give you three options: “convert to Islam, pay the jizya, or die.”

The jizya is a tax for not being Muslim.

It doesn’t apply to everyone, but paying it is seen as proof of your subjection to the Jihadist state and its laws. In return, non-Muslim subjects are permitted to practice their faith, to enjoy a measure of communal autonomy, to be entitled to the Muslim state’s protection from outside aggression.

Acknowledging the difference, there are parallels between the way Jihadists treat those who are in dhimmitude and the way the new sexual revolution in America seeks to treat those who disagree with their (religious?) beliefs about sexuality and marriage.

Once they have political power, they are giving businesses three options “convert, pay a fine, or die” (economically, not physically).

After Arlene’s Flowers was sued for declining to decorate for a same-sex wedding, Attorney General Bob Ferguson offered to settle (demanded the jizya) for $2,000 on the condition that she would “convert,” or agree to make business decisions according to the state’s new values.

Only a few days ago, a judge in Oregon fined a bakery $135,000 because they attempted to run their business according to their Christian beliefs about sexuality rather than the government’s. When they rejected the government’s demands that they convert or pay the jizya, the government opted for what amounts to the economic death penalty.

“Nonsense,” you argue. “They broke the law. Having penalties for breaking the law isn’t exactly innovative. Nor is it jihadist.”

Fair enough.

But the left’s new found impulse to be sticklers for the letter of the law misses the larger point.

The left is proposing a regime change that fundamentally alters freedoms that have been taken for granted for in America for centuries.

Christians, Jews, Muslims and others have been not participating in same-sex “weddings” for millennia.

But under the new regime, doing what has always been done is illegal.

Your choice. Convert, pay a fine if you refuse to convert and then convert, or experience economic death.

Like the jizya, the non-discrimination law discriminates.  It protects one person’s right to decline to participate in an activity they disagree with, but denies that right to others. 

The good news is that if you accept the terms of the new regime, you will still be allowed a measure of communal autonomy, and be entitled to other benefits from the state.

Imagine a new law compelling church attendance or pork consumption on the grounds that refusing to participate is discriminatory. (Which, of course, it is. But that’s the kind of discrimination lefties still like.)

Being indignant with the atheist who objects to compulsory church attendance would be stupid since he’s simply doing what atheists have always done.

“But it’s the law,” you say, self-righteously.

“But it shouldn’t be the law, and you should know better,” he says in response.

And of course he’s right.

The way non-discrimination laws are being interpreted right now is not a modification to the building code that frustrates some builders or a change in the speed law that catches unsuspecting drivers.

It is a regime change that seeks to fundamentally alter the way Americans have always lived. It seeks to create the kind of conformity that America was created in opposition to.

America doesn’t and shouldn’t have conquered peoples. We make room for the atheists, Christians, Muslims, or Jew to be who they are, not just in their preferred place of worship, but in the rest of their life as well. We respect the right for people to be who they are, even if we think they’re silly and ignorant. We understand that we’re different and we make room for that.

Dhimmitude is for jihadists, not for Americans.

38 replies
  1. Dahn Carey
    Dahn Carey says:

    I think the point that fellow citizens who don’t see the significance of religious convictions concerning participating in ceremonies which one believes to be immoral (business owner or not) is the real crux of this whole discussion. These business owners were all happy to serve anyone coming in to their business, but when it came to participating in a “marriage ceremony”, their conscience would not allow that. No where in the Bible do you see the “Jim Crow” practices having any validity when it comes to the Truth shared in scriptures. In fact, Christians with a strong sense of their faith’s beliefs felt slavery and the Jim Crow practices to be abhorrent and fought along side the African American community for equal right. In the eyes of a believing Christian, homosexuality is a practice labeling the downfall and brokenness of a culture. This does not mean the homosexual is not worthy of love and care, it simply means redefining a marriage ceremony to fit this practice goes against the conscience of many Christians. There is no malice in my heart concerning anyone practicing homosexuality. I have to mail cousins who have practiced this life style all of their adult years. My love and care for them is real, my consciences ability to participate in a so called “same sex marriage” is not possible. It goes against my conscience. The big question is should Americans, even if they own a business, be forced to go against their conscience in a ceremony they feel is not according to the truth in The Bible, or their faith. I think the Hobby Lobby case was ruled in favor of the Christian Faith community and I’m thankful for it. We can all extend respect for one another’s beliefs in this country without being forced to do something against our conscience. (Skin color was never a conscience issue…neither was the genocide of the Jewish people in Hitler’s Germany nor is the genocide of Christians in some predominantly Muslim nations.) The practicing lesbian and gay community have a right in our country to live as they wish, unlike many other countries in the world. We are called as Christians to respect and extend love to all but that should not mean we have to give up our right to not participate in something we believe to go against our faith. It’s really not complicated and I hope and pray our nation stands firm for religious liberty. I think the point being made in this well written article by Joseph is that there is severe punishment for living out your Christian Faith in certain Muslim countries. We, as a nation that have stood for religious freedom for over 200 years, don’t want to go there! I hope and pray the Supreme Court is able to draw a line in the sand, at this face off, and support the practice of many Christian’s sincerely held religious beliefs concerning the issue of marriage ceremonies.. (Even if we own a business)

    Reply
  2. K
    K says:

    I compare them to another group… that is why I call them the GAYstapo. Don’t agree with us, we will destroy you, your family, your livlihood, your business, your reputation. Seems the gay community is the new bullies.

    Reply
  3. Saint John the Baptist
    Saint John the Baptist says:

    Zach: Sorry, but there is not a shred of legitimate scientific evidence that a person is ‘born’ homosexual. Your pride won’t get you into heaven, by the way. And you CAN change, as thousands of ex-homosexuals can attest.

    Reply
  4. Louise Christensen Zak
    Louise Christensen Zak says:

    Thanks again, Joseph, for another thoughtful article.

    Normalizing the abnormal demonizes the normal. If you have to legally cudgel a Christian (or anyone else) in order to validate your position, there’s something wrong with your position. The idea that people’s sexual orientations needing to be vociferously ‘civilly’ protected is an interesting one–where does that stop? People can sexually orientate themselves to kids, one or more people, one gender or another, screen images, shoes, lingerie, animals, fat people, skinny people, Asians, blonds, etc.

    Reply
    • Zachary Connors
      Zachary Connors says:

      Being gay is not a choice and homosexuality has been around since the dawn of time. Comparing us to zoophiles and pedophiles is insulting, ignorant and just down right disgusting!. I am a proud gay man and would not change that for anything, nor could I.

      Reply
  5. Saint John the Baptist
    Saint John the Baptist says:

    Um, the florist in Richland DID sell flowers to homosexuals. She rightly refused to PARTICIPATE in a homosexual ‘wedding’ based on her Christian beliefs. Just as a photographer has every right to refuse to PARTICIPATE in documenting a nude wedding or an obstetrician has the right to refuse to PARTICIPATE in an abortion based upon his beliefs. It is pathetic how ‘tolerant liberals’ want to force Christians to violate their beliefs merely because they are Christians.

    Reply
  6. Terri
    Terri says:

    Businesses aren’t people. When you open a business to the public- let’s say it is a bakery- you can’t do like they did in the Jim Crow South and say “We don’t bake cakes for blacks.” You also cannot say you will not bake a cake for a woman, a man, an Atheist, a Buddhist, a Hindu, a Jew, a Wiccan, or a gay/lesbian. You are open to the public and you are not a church. What does the Jesus who said to love your enemy as you love yourself, to do good to them, to walk not one but two miles with the enemy, to not judge since you have fallen short of the glory of god yourself, and who walked with, made friends with and ate with prostitutes and other sinners think of this demand to be able to discriminate? Be ashamed! If someone walks in to order a wedding cake, show the designs and make the one of their choice. Would you stop customers who are heterosexual from buying a cake by demanding to know if they are divorced, if they have had sex outside marriage, if they have ever been horny and felt lust for someone they are not married to (Jesus said the impure thoughts were the same as carrying them out in god;s eyes). If you only baked or served those who were perfect, you couldn’t even serve yourself. As for Sharia law, Christians continue to try to force everyone to obey laws based on their own religious beliefs in America each day.

    Reply
  7. Carvaka
    Carvaka says:

    How does a cultural norm in practice for centuries automatically become a moral standard. Case in point – slavery. I think we can all agree that owning another human is immoral (even though the Bible has rules on how to own and treat slaves). As I recall slavery did not go away without a wee bit of government intervention. Sometimes it’s just necessary

    Reply
    • Joseph backholm
      Joseph backholm says:

      This is an ironic response, since the very thing the left is now fighting so hard for is the right to force people to do things they prefer not to do.

      Reply
    • Eric T
      Eric T says:

      Interestingly, it’s just fifty years since the Roman Catholic Church officially corrected its teaching on the morality of slavery by a decision of the Second Vatican Council in 1965. [See ‘Gaudium et Spes’, paras. 27, 29]

      Reply
      • Joseph backholm
        Joseph backholm says:

        So everyone agrees that slavery is bad. Do you agree we shouldn’t force people to participate in activities or events they object to?

        Reply
        • Rachel Smith
          Rachel Smith says:

          If you have a public business you can’t refuse service to someone because of “deeply held religious beliefs”. Someone could claim it’s against their beliefs to arrange flowers for an interracial wedding. Or, to bake a cake for a divorced person getting remarried. People could refuse service for any number of absurd reasons as long as they can claim it’s because of religious beliefs. If you operate your businesses in the public square, you have no right to discriminate.

          Reply
  8. john not mccain
    john not mccain says:

    What weird thinking. ISIS actually gets to live out the wettest of conservative wet dreams by killing gay people and getting away with it. They are far more like you. Fortunately, the 2nd Amendment helps me protect my family and myself from all religious conservative filth.

    Reply
    • Kerry
      Kerry says:

      Holy COW! You are such a bigot. I know NO Christian or Conservative that wants to kill homosexuals. That would be the teachings of Islam. Joseph is 100% correct. You need to go back to reading your propaganda from The Stranger or MSNBC

      Reply
  9. Earl H.
    Earl H. says:

    Along the same line, but to a lesser extent, is compulsory unionism. Shut up and pay, or lose your job.

    Reply
  10. Jerome M
    Jerome M says:

    While odds are good this post will be deleted, because opposing views on Christian rightwing blogs are usually deleted, this comparison is absurd. That is like saying Dr. King was ISIS, because he opposed segregation laws that refused service based on a criteria. Someone paying you for a cake (that you sell to everyone else) is not like getting beheaded! By the way, gays are targeted for killing by ISIS so this analogy is really awful.

    Reply
    • Joseph Backholm
      Joseph Backholm says:

      No analogy is perfect. But your comments (perhaps intentionally) ignore the point. The point is not that the gay lobby is like ISIS in every respect, but that their attempts to fundamentally alter the way people have lived for centuries or longer (and like it) is similar. Both are equally intolerant in different ways for different purposes. You may think one is justified and the other is not. But that does not change the fact that the implication for those they are attempting to “conquer” are similar. From the classical liberal perspective, good motives do not excuse the destructive of other people’s liberty.

      And your comments will always be welcome here provided they continue to be respectful. Thank you for your contribution.

      Reply
      • CrashOverride64
        CrashOverride64 says:

        So by definition, the civil rights protesters were trying to fundamentally alter the way people were living for centuries (and liking it). Were they facist conquerers as well?

        Jerome was speaking directly to the point, not ignoring it. I wish the same could be said for you.

        Reply
        • Joseph Backholm
          Joseph Backholm says:

          No. The civil rights movement was in opposition to government compelled segregation. They were fighting for more freedom from government control. The LGBT lobby is fighting for the right to use the force of government to compel people to do things they prefer not to do. This movement is the opposite of what the civil rights movement was fighting for.

          Reply
          • smrnda
            smrnda says:

            So, are you suggesting that a white business owner, once Jim Crow was struck down, is not being forced to do something they do not want to do by opening their business to African Americans? Jim Crow was not necessarily always a legal matter – the idea was that a private business could choose to exclude particular people under the idea of property rights.

            Or, are you just opposed to *government* discrimination? So if someone wants to hang a sign that says ‘no gays, no Jews, no Blacks’ that’s fine, as long as it’s not the government?

      • Amor DeCosmos
        Amor DeCosmos says:

        Joseph – kudos to you for not deleting dissenting views. Too many people with a weak idea just delete anything that challenges that idea. I appreciate that you are willing to stand behind your ideas.

        ISIS is against liberalism and modernization. ISIS wants to force people into a universal belief system where the people are submissive to the One True God and His divinely appointed representatives. ISIS is against homosexuality and women’s equality. ISIS wants to have a law system that is completely inspired by belief in the divine and has no regard for individual beliefs.

        I am sorry, I see no parallel between ISIS and the “gay lobby”. I see many parallels between ISIS and the far right conservative Christian Republican lobby.

        Reply
  11. Tionico
    Tionico says:

    Here is a far simpler definition, and comes straight from Marx: FASCISM defined is government control of private means of production. Arlene makes floral arrangements, Melissa makes cakes, the Storman family operate a store selling pharmaceuticals. All have conducted those private means of production according to their consciences for years, decades, even. Now come government and TELL them, under the threat that comes from the barrel of a gun, to conduct these businesses according to the dictates of the State. If this is not fascism, then fascism does not exist. Yes, folks, it is here, right now.

    Reply
  12. Steve`
    Steve` says:

    Joseph,
    Keen example delineating the reason why atheists should have to go to church or pay tax. And be happy about it!

    Reply
    • CrashOverride64
      CrashOverride64 says:

      Ahem.

      Unlike your churches, we pay our taxes. That means we subsidize your “sincerely-held beliefs” with our tax dollars, while your churches get to enjoy the fruits of our labors (i.e., government services such as police and fire protection, infrastructure, etc) gratis. Did not your lord and savior exhort unto you and your churches to “render unto Ceasar what is Ceasar’s,” i.e., taxes? Until you pay your fair share, you have no business dictating anything to us.

      Thank you.

      Reply
    • Amor DeCosmos
      Amor DeCosmos says:

      Atheists should what… I should HAVE to go to church? You see no irony in this at all? That is completely what ISIS is doing – forced religious conversions at gunpoint. What the US government is trying to do is to lawfully create equality of all Americans – regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation, or supernatural beliefs. What ISIS is doing is enforcing belief in the supernatural… are you saying that you AGREE with ISIS that some people should be forced to be Christian? Do you think your god likes insincere followers?

      Reply
  13. Panion
    Panion says:

    Here’s a dictionary definition of FASCISM: Any program for setting up a centralized autocratic national regime, with severe policies, exercising regimentation of industry, commerce, and finance, with rigid censorship, and forcible suppression of opposition.
    So what we are seeing now could be called Homo-Fascism, where the LGBT elite (and the media) are telling the rest of us that “you will believe what we believe, you will endorse what we endorse, or we will use the power of the state to punish you.”

    Reply
    • CrashOverride64
      CrashOverride64 says:

      Sorry, that is not what is being done at all. The government is simply saying that if you are in a business that caters to the public, you must serve ALL the public equally, without exception. Period. If you have a problem with that, then you should not be in business.

      Reply
      • Joseph Backholm
        Joseph Backholm says:

        There are literally thousands of exceptions. No business has to serve everyone for any reason just because someone asks them to. The government is simply creating a short list of disapproved beliefs that, if acted upon, will incur the wrath of the state. And their list of disapproved beliefs happens to include beliefs that are fundamental to thousands of years of understanding about sexuality.

        Reply
        • smrnda
          smrnda says:

          Legislation regulating a business is not state ownership.

          There are board of health regulations you must follow to open a restaurant. That’s certainly not the government owning your restaurant – aside from taxes, you take what you make.

          Reply

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