Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Pleasure island

According to the BBC, police in a majority- Muslim city in Nigeria are attempting to impose Sharia law even on the non- Muslim minorities within their jurisdiction. The enclave of Sabon Gari within the city of Kano has been dubbed a "pleasure island" by some for its offerings of alcohol, dancing, cannabis, and sex.

I know you are all reading this description of Sabon Gari and thinking, "damn! what's not to like?" Well, I agree. But the Islamic puritans don't, and the reason why we should care about this is that Nigeria is not even an officially Muslim country; instead, it's a nation almost evenly split between Christianity and Islam, but with areas where local governments have attempted to implement and enforce Islamic law. It's not inconceivable that such a future awaits those regions of Europe where in fifty or a hundred years' time Islam will predominate by the same force of demographics. As the Dutch Justice Minister Piet Hein Donner recently stated, "if two thirds of all Netherlanders tomorrow would want to introduce Sharia, then this possibility must exist." In other words, if you want to visit those hash caf├ęs in Amsterdam, do it now. They won't be there forever.

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