ICLA Blasts the Use of the term Islamophobia as Illogical


Home » International Civil Liberties Alliance Blasts the Use of the term Islamophobia as Illogical

On September 26, 2013, Ned May of the International Civil Liberties Alliance (ICLA), blasted the Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) over the use of the term “Islamaphobia” at the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe’s Human Dimension Implementation Meeting, calling it “a violation of logic.” May laid out a succinct argument for why it was undefined and, as a result, invalid.

Mr. May said that other delegates had noted “the use of ill-defined terms can be an impediment to progress.”

“In the worst of cases, such terms can be exploited to effectively undermine human rights,” he added. “For example, the definition of ‘Islamophobia’ presented at the OSCE conference in Toronto in May of this year (2013) fails to meet reasonable standards of logic, coherence and objectivity.”

May went on to point out that the definition “fails solely to inclusion of the word ‘unfounded.’ Thus, well-founded fear, mistrust or hatred of Islam does not constitute Islamophobia.”

To make his case, Ned May pointed to the very real fear of non-Muslims.

“Millions of non-Muslims have very real reasons to fear Islam and Muslim violence, and cannot reasonably be described as ‘Islamaphobes,” he said. “Furthermore, any investigation into the fear of Islam, is denounced as ‘Islamophobia.’ Thus, the definition of Islamophobia is circular, a violation of logic.”

So what was Mr. May’s proposal to the OSCE? Abandon the use of the term.

“ICLSA recommends that OHDIR immediately abandon any use of the term ‘Islamophobia,’ remove it from existing publications and omit it from all future publications,” said May.

The abbreviated version of the long piece, a four-page ICLA statement published at OSCE, which in turn was an executive summary of a much longer paper, “The Problematic Definition of Islamophobia,” published by ICLA on September 20.

The entire sequence was the result of careful preparation by the ICLA Research Group, which did all the advance work during August and September.

I would highly recommend the entire series of what took place, which is posted in a five part series at GatesOfVienna.net. You can read and view each part in the posts titled “Stalking the Mythical Islamophobe”, Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, and Part 5).

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