Swiss vote to ban Muslim minarets in sharpest challenge to Islam in Europe yet

If you thought the Danish cartoon controversy caused a ruckus, get ready for this. Reports out of Switzerland suggest that voters have today approved a referendum to ban the construction of new minarets — spires situated next to Mosques for the Muslim call to prayer — across the country. News agencies say that the legally binding decision was backed by an astounding 57.5 percent of the population. A week ago, opinion polls put support for the move at just 37 percent.

To view dictionary popup window put your cursor on the blue scripture words.

“…upon the earth distressStrongs 4928: sunoche, soon-okh-ay´; from 4912; restraint, i.e. (figuratively) anxiety: — anguish, distress. of nations, with perplexityStrongs 640: aporia, ap-or-ee´-a; from the same as 639; a (state of) quandary:—perplexity.
Strongs 639: aporeo, ap-or-eh´-o; from a compound of 1 (as a negative particle) and the base of 4198; to have no way out, i.e. be at a loss (mentally):— (stand in) doubt, be perplexed
—Luke 21:25

The move is likely to provoke the kind of mass confrontation that followed the publication of a series of cartoons in Denmark in 2005 which linked the Prophet Mohammed to terrorism. In the months that followed, more than 100 people died in unrest across the Muslim world, Danish embassies and shops were burned to the ground and protests erupted by Muslim groups in Europe calling for the censorship of opinions considered insulting to Islam.

The referendum was backed by the nationalist Swiss People’s Party. According to the Associated Press:

“The People’s Party has campaigned mainly unsuccessfully in previous years against immigrants with campaign posters showing white sheep kicking a black sheep off the Swiss flag and another with brown hands grabbing eagerly for Swiss passports.”

Local Muslim leaders say that minarets in Switzerland are not actually used for the call to prayer. In other words, they do not threaten to “take over the public space”. There are approximately 450,000 Muslims in Switzerland, about 5 percent of the population.

It is far too early to draw conclusions about today’s unfolding events in Switzerland and I will comment later when the situation becomes clearer. But it looks as though a backlash against Islam in Europe by nationalist forces energised by the failures of multiculturalist orthodoxies is now really starting to take hold.

It is just such an implosion of the centre-ground in favour of polarising groups on either side that has long been predicted by critics of politically correct, multiculturalist ideology. In other words, if mainstream parties refused to deal with the problem of intolerance and bigotry inside Muslim groups in a civilised manner, it was inevitable that fringe groups would deal with the problem in an uncivilised manner, all the while garnering ever greater support from a wider public disillusioned by the way things have been going. There’s more of this to come. You can rely on it.

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