Saturday, February 09, 2008

Rowan Williams Steps in It Again

While there seems an awfully intense and mad response to the Archbishop of Canterbury's rather mild proposals, I have found more insightful this simple editorial from the Economist, and two posts by Eugene Volokh, the latter mischievously titled "Sharia Law Enforced in Texas".

To quote his first:

And at the very least the harsh condemnation of the Archbishop -- who seems to be endorsing a system much like that which is already available as a matter of course to those Americans who choose it -- strikes me as excessive given the relative modesty and good sense of his proposal. And I say this as someone who has criticized the Archbishop on other matters in the past.

The Economist rightly points to the one key point:

The entitlement of sub-cultures to exist can easily become inimical to freedom if vulnerable individuals (such as women and children) are in effect trapped inside them because of massive pressure not to “betray” the community. The Archbishop would have drawn a much less hostile reaction if he had remembered to make that point more firmly.


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