There are crowded protests in Bangladesh at the moment against admitted atheists, and those who blog against Islam. The death penalty is demanded for those who deny Islam! But there are other protests at the same time. Secularists are protesting against Islamic extremism (and presumably vice versa) while other protesters, leaving religion on the side for the moment, call for the death penalty for those responsible for crimes against humanity committed years ago when Bangladesh was still East Pakistan! What an incredible boiling point of anger a place like Bangladesh is becoming. Is humanity starting to work its purpose out in this vitally active corner of the world? Is all this morass of conflict - so different from the gentle Occupiers - the beginning of the way in which teeming humanity in a hot and tropical place like Bangladesh, where different cultures and religions, and yes, workers too, all get boiled up together, begin at last to test ideas against each other in a desire to make some sense of the world? It could be. On the news reel I saw, the screaming screeching Islamist didn't make much of an impression on me ( I am of course biased) whereas the marching secularists, including many young women totally unconcealed ( no head scarves!) got my vote. I take a vividly active scene such as this as indication of some movement in people's thought processes, and possible indicative even of some maturation of consciousness among some. The juxtaposition of the image of the shrieking mullah bearded and all in white, with the marching "secularists" including women dressed in modern clothes, was very impressive, and can only strike forcefully those who see it, even if, initially, they are on the mullah's side of the debate. Of course, you could say dismissively that this is all part and parcel of the Spectacle, and Fred's a mug for falling for it, and that really nothing's happening at all. But with so many differing points of view being defended publicly on the streets by so many people... there must be something going on, mustn't there?
7 April, 2013 - 02:56#1
Bangladesh heats up