March 6, 2008

We're not banning you.

We're accommodating someone else.


Pogo said...

Welcome to your future dhimmitude.

Richard said...

Not surprising at all. This is what the future looks like. The West is in decline. Expect it to continue.

George said...

The second page of the linked Boston Herald article references MEMRI, an organization that monitors Arab TV networks, including one owned by the Harvard donor.

If you've never visited MEMRI, it is a must. If I owned a cable TV news network, I would broadcast its clips every day so Americans could see the loathsome anti-Semitism that's commonplace in the Arab world, not to mention the glacial bleakness of Islamic thought.

Here is the heroic Wafa Sultan in a blistering debate with a neatly attired Egyptist Islamist who starts by defending North Korea. Watching her is what it must have been like to listen to Patrick Henry. How she speaks of liberty!

TROBlog said...

I'm pretty sure this is illegal under state law there. So I guess it is up to some Harvard man to grow a pair and sue.

F15C said...

I think this action may technically be legal since the pertinent discrimination law (to my knowledge) covers only those areas that accommodate the general public which the facility at Harvard does not do. But, even if legal, the discrimination is morally reprehensible and smacks of caving to a religion that is exemplified in today's world by a dangerous mixture of violence toward those who disagree with it and handing money out to those it wants to buy off into dhimmitude.

paul a'barge said...

Harvard == filth

TMink said...

Hmmm, our culture fears Muslim anger and so caters to their demands.

How long before Christians start blowing things up? I mean, rewarding bad behavior leads to more bad behavior right?

I am Christian, fear me roar.



Middle Class Guy said...

This Saudi sheik stroked a check for $20 million to promote the study of Islam. Harvard took the check, no questions asked.

$20 Millon bucks buys a lot of accomodation these days.

AllenS said...

What does Barack H. Obama have to say about this?

ron st.amant said...

They're 'only accomodating' huh?

Would they be equally as accomodating to say, men who don't want to workout in front of homosexual men based on 'religious' beliefs? Of course not.

Middle Class Guy said...

I wonder, if Tom Monahan gave twnety million bucks to study Catholicism, would they ban- oops- accomodate Catholics six times a week in a building otherwise open to all?

If some wealthy Jewish person were to do the same for a study of Judiaism, would they shut down a building six times a week?

Better yet, some mega-buck Evangelical donates twenty mil, would they shut down the campus for rallies?

MadisonMan said...

Are there any men only hours? That's what the reporter should have asked.

There are probably people of both sexes who, for whatever insanely hare-brained notion, are uncomfortable exercising in front of the opposite sex. If they can ban men for some hours, why aren't they also banning women for the same number of hours per week?

That would be fair.

Of course, fair doesn't mean it's not stupid.

Chip Ahoy said...

Separating men and women this way promotes homosexuality. Watch for the uproar when perfectly ordinary photographs appear of Muslim women swimming fully clothed.

As far as foot baths go, I'm for 'em. At airports, makes a trip more tolerable when one removes their shoes during flight. Bidets too, for that matter.

It's all good. Oh yes, they're all soooo special. Let them go on then, marginalize themselves even further. See if I care. It can't last. Eventually the 21st century will drag them kicking and screaming from the 7th.

Megan said...

Couple of thoughts:
1. Harvard is a private institution and can do what it wants.

2. There are probably a lot of other women that like the idea of female-only gym time. If men wanted some guy-only gym time, they could ask for it. But let's face it, the straight guys want to see the ladies in their tight workout clothes, and the gay guys probably would be too embarrassed to ask.

3. It seems like there's a difference between allowing gender discrimination and allowing, say, discrimination against a racial minority or gay people or something. That is, if some religious group said they couldn't be in the same room as black people, I doubt Harvard would be cool with that. Even if Muslim women wanted all-female classes, I doubt Harvard would allow that.

4. As a liberal myself, I agree with this writer that liberals are pretty hypocritical when it comes to Islam. But I think that has to do with this inherent desire we liberals have to help the trodden on, and I guess at this time in this country, liberals don't see Muslims as being particularly well-liked. Go figure.

Pogo said...

liberals don't see Muslims as being particularly well-liked.

And these actions will serve to increase rather than decrease the animosity.

Smilin' Jack said...

You know, I bet these Harvard Muslim chicks have already violated about a billion tenets of Sharia law, just by being there--starting with going out in public without a male relative escort. If they really want to get straight with Allah, let's send 'em back to Sandlandistan so they can be righteously stoned to death.

TROBlog said...

Harvard is a private institution and can do what it wants.

Is Harvard private? I believe they accept public funding, don't they? Solomon Act at all that stuff?

TMink said...

Megan, good post, well said.

As a Christian, I do not feel very well liked by some liberals. Now some people who identify themselves as Christians have made choices and statements that are reprehensible to me and all reasonable folk, people like Phelps and the God Hates Fags freaks come to mind, but it seems that Muslims catch a lot of slack and understanding when the idiots of their faith are doing worse every day. Far worse.

I do not get how that religious minority evokes concern and support while my religious minority seems to get disdain and mistrust.

Another aspect of this that I do not get is the feminist angle. The women are segregated during workout so that they do not distract the men. It is about the men, not the women. Even a cursory perusal of the Arabic literature in translation shows this to be true. So how do well intentioned, thinking feminists stomach that kind of sexism?

I hope the tone of my remarks comes across as respectful, because I am interested in your thoughts.


TROBlog said...

There are probably a lot of other women that like the idea of female-only gym time. If men wanted some guy-only gym time, they could ask for it. But let's face it, the straight guys want to see the ladies in their tight workout clothes, and the gay guys probably would be too embarrassed to ask.

Most men don't go to the gym to look at women. They go to work out.

Besides, not all of you gals look as good sweating in spandex as you do after a few beers at the local pub. So give up the illusions.

JohnAnnArbor said...

This Saudi sheik stroked a check for $20 million to promote the study of Islam. Harvard took the check, no questions asked.

That sheik was once asked in an interview whether he was giving similar amounts of money to Saudi universities to study Christianity.

He did not react well. Apparently, infidels are infidels, and that's that (he said something like "Look, there are no Christians in Saudi Arabia." No kidding.). Hypocrisy, thy name is wahhabiism.

Megan said...

Tmink, are you suggesting you, as a Christian, are a member of a religious minority?! I thought this was a "Christian nation"!

But that said, I agree that no one -- liberal or conservative -- should tolerate crazy, hate-mongering religious nuts just because they want to be tolerant! I do think liberals can be too tolerant of the Free Exercise of Religion. Some things are just wrong and evil and bad and need to be called out as such.

And I'm not really trying to defend Harvard at all, but at least as it regards the women-only gym time, I think you could argue that's relatively harmless and might appeal to non-Muslim women students as well.

Of course, you could also argue, as you did, that it's NOT harmless and is in fact completely sexist. But again, I think some women would like the idea for non-sexist, non-religious reasons, though I have no idea if Harvard in any way considered that. I personally have no problem working out in front of men and I don't give a crap what I look like while doing it (I know I look awful, so what). But I also don't care if some woman wants to work out in front of just other women. It's too bad that she cares that much what men think of her, but it doesn't affect me (unless that particular time is the only time I can go work out, and then I'd be pissed).

Also, I'm sorry you feel persecuted by liberals. We could go into a huge long thing about religion and politics, which I don't have time for right now. Personally, I think if Jesus were alive today he'd be a bigtime liberal. And I'm sure there are a lot of Christians that believe that and are liberals themselves because of their beliefs. I suspect you feel the way you do because there are certainly a large number of liberals (be they atheists or evangelicals) who believe in the Establishment Clause and want to keep religion out of government (and vice versa). But I shouldn't presume. This is getting too long anyway.


Roger said...

Volokh discusses this case on their blog and there seems to be some consensus that Harvard's actions are legally tenuous.

On an unrelated note re going to the gym to ogle the women: An interesting thesis but I am curious as to why I went to the gym nearly every day except Sunday for 20 years when there were no women in the gym? If you can show me some evidence to back up that assertion, great. I should also note that its possible to see far more exposed female flesh for far less than the cost of a gym membership.

SGT Ted said...

"Accomadation" is a red herring. This is about getting Harvard to impose Sharia-like rules over the rest of Harvard, to the exclusion of anyone else's wishes. Muslims allow no such "accomodation" towards Christians or anyone not Muslim where they run things.

Kirk Parker said...


"I do not get how that religious minority evokes concern and support while my religious minority seems to get disdain and mistrust."

That's a rhetorical question, right? If it really isn't, then I think Theo Van Gogh could clarify it for you. Or, if an explanation from a fellow American would be better, perhaps Cyd Mizell would do.

MadisonMan said...

On an unrelated note re going to the gym to ogle the women: An interesting thesis but I am curious as to why I went to the gym nearly every day except Sunday for 20 years when there were no women in the gym?

Hello!?!? Isn't it obvious? You're Gay!

Roger said...

roger<----------slaps head! of course thats it, Downtown Lad even told me that several threads down!

ricpic said...

Hey Megan, will you "understand" when Harvard decrees that women will have to cover themselves when crossing the Yard in order not to discommode Muslim male students?
Christ, the suicidal stupidity of liberals!

tituspirouette said...

I go to the doctor at Beth Israel Deaconness in Boston because it is fabulous and I have had the same doc forever.

He is a fabulous jew.

He told me when one of the rich shieks from Saudi Arabia gets sick they fly in to Boston and rent out an entire floor at the hospital and do not let anyone else on that floor other than medical professionals and they have to be men.

Also, I mentioned in the past on this blog, while traveling in Lexington Kentucky, I was on a tour, and the tour guide said they specifically expanded a runway at the Airport for some Saudi so he can fly in on his huge jet for the horse races. The tour guide said 1/2 of the horse farms in Lexington are now owned by Saudis.

Lastly, I am surprised Harvard did this. The number of Saudis going there is minimal. Obviously one is enough though if he writes the biggest check.

Harvard also let in George W. Bush's personal assistant, the one who carried his wet wipes and Barney the dog to their business school. even though he didn't have an undergrad degree.

tituspirouette said...

Its a coed gym.

The moral of the story, as in life, is money talks.

tituspirouette said...

Every gym I have been to, including that one, is 90% men.

And no, they are not all gay gyms. I actually don't go to a gay gym now because it would be too distracting and I wouldn't actually work out.

The gym is probably 70-30% straight/gay with maybe 2% women.

My sense is that women in general, and I am not talking about the Saudis, are intimidated to work out in a gym where it is predominately men. As a result in NYC there are many female only gyms.

I see quite more females at bikram yoga class though. But generally those women and in amazing shape and I sense that they are pretty confident about their bodies. The room is wicked hot and everyone strips down to shorts for guys and shorts and running bras for women. We are like a bunch of seals, with about an inch between each person. Someone always farts in those classes.

tituspirouette said...

My yoga instructor always tells me I have a great downward facing dog.

tituspirouette said...

And by the way, the guy that wrote that editorial is absolutely awful.

He is from South Carolina and recently moved up to Boston to be a talk show host. They move his timeslot around all the time because no one listens to him. He's also admitted to being fired from most all of his radio jobs.

He knows shit about the area and has no street cred and hello he is from the south.

People in Boston laugh at him.

Also he is butt ugly...of course.

Beth said...

From some of these comments, and from other news stories I've read recently, I have the impression that it's not ideological weakness on our part, nor even excessive political correctness, but the amazing amount of money the Middle East oil barons have to spend that fuels our willingness to accomodate "dhimmitude."

Michael_H said...

Harvard has demonstrated that $20 million is its price to cancel the rights of any group the donor dislikes.

Name the group, name the right you don't want them to have, write the check, done deal.

After all the tearing of hair and gnashing of teeth over the Larry Summers matter, one can't help but wonder over the silence of feminist faculty members. Perhaps they are disinterested in their feminist students.

Or their silence is tacit approval of the $20 million price. After all, they aren't the ones being evicted from the gym, just those pesty coeds.

Pogo said...

Indeed. Summers was pilloried for saying that women commonly do not work the necessary 80-hour weeks to succeed in law, business, or science, and for saying that innate differences between men and women might be one reason fewer women excel in science and math careers.

It is now clear that, despite their protests, the women on faculty there would have remained silent and properly compliant had there simply been enough money on the table.

I wonder which Harvard women faculty will first don the scarf?

The Drill SGT said...

2 questions:

1. why doesn't Title IX apply: Title IX, is a United States law enacted on June 23, 1972 that states: "No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance."[1] Although the most prominent "public face" of Title IX is its impact on high school and collegiate athletics, the original statute made no reference to athletics[2]. The legislation covers all educational activities, and complaints under Title IX alleging discrimination in fields such as science or math education, or in other aspects of academic life such as access to health care and dormitory facilities, are not unheard of. It also applies to non-sport activities such as school bands, cheerleaders, and clubs; however, fraternities and sororities, gender-specific youth clubs such as Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts, and Girls State and Boys State are specifically exempt from Title IX requirements.

2. why can't Harvard "accommodate" the larger number of men that want to play sports by adding men's teams and cutting female teams? what is the difference in teams versus pool hours?

Seven Machos said...

Megan -- If Jesus were alive today, and if He took federal grant money, He would be within the jurisdiction of the federal government.

Blake said...

But let's face it, the straight guys want to see the ladies in their tight workout clothes,

Sexism is so cute when women do it.

Aw, crap, broke my irony meter.

Revenant said...

1. Harvard is a private institution and can do what it wants.

Private institutions in America haven't been legally allowed to "do what they want" since at least the 1960s. I think private institutions SHOULD be allowed to discriminate, but it should be all or none.

Michael_H said...

Just wondering here.....can Muslim women swim in water where Christians, Jews, gays, lesbians and other infidels recently swam? Isn't there some sort of "unclean" issue that the Muslims would be uncomfy with?

Jennifer said...

According to the current issue of Time magazine, 0.6% of this country is Muslim. Is that number significantly higher at Harvard? Or have they actually established "accomodation" 6 days a week for half of 0.6% of their student body...?

Hoosier Daddy said...

Well if no one likes it then they're all Islamophobes, racists, bigots and simply intolerant of the rich vibrant culture of Muslims peoples.

Multiculturalism, ain't it great!

Michael_H said...

Now, now. I'm sure all those nice people in the middle eastern countries are making arrangements so American women can safely enjoy celebrating St. Patrick's Day in the same way they customarily do when in America.