We read the Quran so you don’t have to.

7 years ago today.

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Seven years ago today, I sat in a cold, windowless classroom, staring at a puddle of tears on my desk. I should have skipped class today, I repeated in my head. Today would have been the best day to skip class. Some of the other kids, boys mostly, were yelling back and forth about how we should just nuke them.  We. Them. On an ordinary day, I’d be included in the we. But I was one of them that day, and the 20 pairs of eyes burning holes through my skin reminded me of that more and more with every passing second.

It wouldn’t have done much good to tell them that I wasn’t really a Muslim. I was an agnostic. Or a cultural Muslim. Or an I-dunno-what, but I certainly wasn’t a Muslim. I didn’t know what to say, so I sat there in silence, watching the puddle ripple as it grew bigger and bigger until it finally spilled over the edge of the desk and left dark spots on my jeans. For some reason, that was my breaking point. I grabbed my bag and walked out.

The grad student / teacher came running out in the hall after me and asked if I was OK. I’m not sure what I said to him — incoherent mumbles, I’m sure — but the next thing I knew, he was giving me a hug and apologizing. He said he thought asking the class to share their thoughts and feelings would help them cope. And he was sorry for what it turned into.

I wasn’t particularly close to this grad student, but I liked him. He was smart and witty, and he wore a corduroy coat with leather patches on the elbows the way cartoon professors do. When I pulled back, I realized I’d snotted all over the shoulder of that coat. And every time I saw him wear it after that, I had to bite my lip to keep from laughing.

That day, seven years ago, I walked out to the parking lot and found my tires slashed. All four of them. I used a payphone to call AAA. I was one of those people who adamantly refused to get a cellphone and only got one at my parents’ insistence when, at the age of 23, I moved to a different state. So I used a payphone to call for a towtruck and I turned down the driver’s offer to give me a ride. I decided to walk there instead.

“Thanks, but I have some stuff to work out. I’ll see you over there.” The guy must have thought I was nuts. It was freezing and the sidewalks were icy. My fingernails turned blue by the time I got there — I left in such a hurry that I forgot to grab my gloves from underneath my seat. I remember thinking it must be what your fingernails will look like when you’re dead, and that just brought on another outburst of tears.

It was a 3 mile walk, at least, and I had plenty to think about on my way over. Somewhere along the way, I realized that I’d been hiding behind the word agnostic for 2 years. The word atheist, at that point, just seemed so final. If I used the word atheist, it would mean having to give up my back door, my Plan B, my escape route. There was no way out. I realized that I was tired — really, genuinely tired — of lying to myself. I knew with every fiber of my being that I could never just go back to being a Muslim again. I’d crossed the line, embraced logic, reason & reality. And there was no looking back.

I’m an atheist, I thought to myself. An atheist. And then I whispered it out loud, just to hear myself say it: I’m an atheist.

I’m an atheist.
And there is no looking back.


Written by kafirgirl

September 11, 2008 at 12:38 am

Posted in 9/11, depressed, religion

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117 Responses

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  1. I’m an avid reader of this blog, but this is the first time I feel I must post a comment. This post really made me think of my sister, who has struggled her whole life with trying to keep her atheism a secret from our Muslim parents. They’re what people call “moderate” Muslims. I hate that term because it’s so misleading, suggesting that moderate means good, flexible, etc. In reality, they are the ones who just crumble to pieces at the thought of their children being anything other than Muslims. The ones who just doesn’t dare allow their faith to even be questioned, even if there are jarring discrepancies in the Quran that they themselves can’t explain away. Anyway, my sister was madly in love with a fellow atheist from a strict Protestant family. He made her so happy, but she couldn’t bring herself to “officially” leave Islam in order to marry him. She felt it would be a betrayal to our parents. I think you might be familiar with such dynamics, kafirgirl. You know how us Pakistanis are with feelings of OBLIGED loyalty to the family. Meanwhile, the guy wouldn’t convert (he shouldn’t have had to anyway) because HE couldn’t “officially” leave HIS family’s religion. They had to separate and they both haven’t seen other people since. Religion is such a load of horse shit, and it destroys lives in so many, many ways. I know I’ve lost my baby sis. She changed totally after losing the love of her life. Hardly talks now, even though she used to be so happy. Reading this post makes me glad to know that things went differently for you. What a beautiful, inspirational piece this post is. I wish I could give you a big hug.


    September 11, 2008 at 1:10 am

  2. Hatred! is all religion teaches. In modern context, this hatred is becoming more virulent and targeted. You say were cultural muslim before this episode. Is cultural muslim not same as Sufi? I am just asking. Not sure..so just asking. Listening to Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan’s sufi qawwalis gives me goose bumps. On the other hand, i heard some Naats. These were horrendous. Trying to recreate atmosphere of catacombs and using only vocals is scary, to say the least. To an islamic zealot, however, it can sound greatly inspiring.

    This went little off tangent, but i thought of writing what came in mind after reading your experience. :)


    September 11, 2008 at 1:31 am

  3. I’m just sorry you had to go through such an experience. {hug}


    September 11, 2008 at 2:24 am

  4. I am so sorry.

    Totally choked up and weepy. Thank you for your post.


    September 11, 2008 at 2:37 am

  5. I was reading on another blog that we should remember that 9/11 was a day that brought us all together. And i started to laugh, helplessly, angrily, because, well, what you went through. I had just read this entry, and then I read that, and then I got to thinking about what I remembered. I remember Muslim friends of mine being afraid to go out. I remember Sikhs getting attacked on Long Island. I remember one of my cousins sending out a bullshit email about how we should boycott Dunkin Donuts because evil Muslim owners of Dunkin Donuts franchises had been celebrating (it was an ugly urban legend, easily proven false, and she did apologize, fwiw).

    It’s a day that doesn’t just remind me of the evils of religion. It reminds me of the evils of nationalism, too.


    September 11, 2008 at 3:58 am

  6. @ Gregory –
    Indeed. I was having a discussion with a friend of mine in Canada the other day with political aspirations and he was talking about creating a Canadian pride sort of party and I was aghast. He is an ardent atheist but doesn’t seem to realize that nationalism is just another foolish dogma that leads to the exact same ends as religion. We should not be arbitrarily proud of our country because it’s where we happen to live. We should be proud of what our country does when it does the right thing, and criticize it harshly and unceasingly when it does the wrong thing. It really bothers me when people eat up this crap about dissent being unpatriotic. It is truly the only patriotic thing to do when your country fucks up. Anyway, sorry to rant on, I just despise the nationalistic tendencies people tend to display in this country lately.


    September 11, 2008 at 5:46 am

  7. Wow, thanks for sharing that.
    I just cannot understand what goes through the minds of people who seem to need to do something like slash someone’s tires because they think the owner of the car belongs to the same out-group to me it just makes no sense whatsoever!


    September 11, 2008 at 7:10 am

  8. KK, cultural Muslim was just another label I hid behind when I was afraid of the word atheist. It’s like being Jewish but not being religious.


    They’re what people call “moderate” Muslims. I hate that term because it’s so misleading, suggesting that moderate means good, flexible, etc.

    Thank you for saying that. It’s exactly the point I was trying to get across in the last post. Moderate implies that it’s in the center, but it’s so not.

    Your sister’s story is so sad. It breaks my heart that she had to go through that, and I do know how it feels. I’ve been there. The Catholics think they have issues with guilt — the church ain’t got jack on a disappointed Pakistani mother. I hope things change for your sis (and for you, and for me, and for every fucking ex-Muslim out there). I hope there comes a day when we won’t have to hide who we are at the risk of losing our families and friends. It gives me warm fuzzies every single time I hear from an ex-Muslim because there are more than I had ever imagined. And we’re working on making that day come just a little bit faster.

    watercat, I’m not sorry. What happened that day made me realize that I was holding on to stupidity and trying to polish turds. I’m a much happier person now, when I don’t have to make myself fit some mold, when i can just be myself and be open and unapologetic about my non-belief. It made me realize that you’re always going to be the other to someone, so what’s the use in hiding?

    Christie, thank you for reading it =)

    Gregory, I remember those things all too well. Winter 2001 was probably some of the toughest shit I’ve experienced. The car tires were just the entree. September 11 did bring people together in the sense that we all grieved together — I’ll never forget how my teacher hugged me. It would have looked so wildly inappropriate on any other day but that day? Nobody cared. I think the part that people forget is how that feeling of solidarity not only included us brown folk, but also quickly turned into mob mentality. Sad, sad, sad.


    It really bothers me when people eat up this crap about dissent being unpatriotic.

    Me too. Blind faith and unquestioning loyalty? It’s like religion all over again.

    Hugo, I don’t get it either. But looking back on it, I highly doubt it was a non-religious person who did such a thing. Know what I mean?


    September 11, 2008 at 8:20 am

  9. Religion is the facade of Money and Power. We all know that whoever has the money can control the world. I live in a region in the eastern part of the world where the religious are obsessed about money. Religion was the reason of conflict among different groups – at least that’s how the media puts. However, the same leaders of religious groups use their ‘divinity’ and ‘holiness’ to protect their interests and businesses. Very sad.

    David R.

    September 11, 2008 at 8:54 am

  10. Kafirgirl, I’m certain there are many ex-Muslims like us out there, but most choose to keep it under wraps because when you leave Islam, you almost always lose the entire community you’re otherwise comfortable in! Not everyone is willing to put up with the stress of losing all your family and friends in a split second.

    That’s what I hate most about many modern Muslims. With all the progress civilization has made in general, you’d expect them to have evolved too by now and learned to think for themselves. You’d expect them to question things that have been blindly shoved up their asses, make their own choices and then allow that same privillege to their children and other people. But no! We get vicious cycles of “You shall do all these because the book says you must”. I’ve lost count of the number of times I hear the so-called argument: “Umm…because the Quran says so.” Anyone who disagrees with them, they ostracize in a big way. Couple that with the timeless Pakistani mumy lament of “Oh, I have suffered so much to bring you up. How could you do this to me? Better for me to die than bear with this” and it’s a whole lotta hell for the wannabe apostate. I actually have it easier because I live away from my family. It must be very painful for those who have to pretend to be someone they’re not everyday of their lives.

    That’s why I felt so encouraged when I found your blog months ago. It comforted me to know there are more people like me out there because I don’t meet them in real life. I hope even after you finish with the Quran, you will keep this blog alive as a means for ex-Muslims, whether they’re open with it or are hiding the matter, to reach out to one another. Meanwhile, I go on hoping for a day when being born Muslim doesn’t mean you’re condemned to be one for the rest of your life.


    September 11, 2008 at 9:11 am

  11. The planes was flying seven years back as I write this. American persons, please do not think all Muslims and all Pakistanis is ure enemy, no way, cos we are not. Another, what u are seeing on TV every day, people burning ure flag and shouting bad stuff in the streets of Pakistan- this is also just one slice of reality. Another, please don’t think also we got no minds as Pakistani girls even and are just pre programmed to hate u, no way, cos we KNOW what’s going on. So we don’t hate no one in america, no way, people are using Islam to make that, but it’s not working out, cos we don’t believe it. Another, most of what we learned from America was from tv, like “STAR TREK,” maybe this is very sad to u, but we got a very POSITIVE message actually.
    Another, Kashmir, Palestine, Chechnya, Bosniyaa- this is just a game Jamiaat Islami and PK Taliban are using, we know this. Another, if we tell like this openly- of course, it’s impossible, cos extremists have got control in most communities, but they don’t represent the people of Pakistan.
    Another, some things that u are doing, it’s maybe good in ure eyes, but actually, it is helping the extremists, like to kill small children in Afghanistan, this helps extremists in Pakistan, so u sometimes (not all the time- sometimes i am telling), make terrible mistakes and this is working against us- AND YOU. Another, if u know where OBL is- he is in WANA of course, why don’t u just finish it? This is what is worrying Pakistani people, cos we want a end to it now, we had 7 years of HELL in Pakistan and we had enough, enough is enough, cos since last year- thousands have got killed in Pakistan by suicide bombers, please American people, we want to end it, cos Pakistan is at breaking point now.
    American people, nearly 3,000 persons got killed by Arabi extremists, this is cos of Islamism, and the only way out is to empower women, this is better than bombs and missiles. What is the ideaolgy that motivates such persons, it is not the same as the little Muslim old man walking to work in detroit or the muslim guy at the gas station, cos 99.999% of all Pakistani immigrants in the west see today as a day of sadness, like me, me and me friend, we was just total anger and sadness when 911 happened, and we’re Pakistani and got raised in Saudi Arab, and it bever even occured to us that it was anything other than total attack on us also, cos we are support for u in all ways, but don’t want more bombs and missiles from you also. So please do not think that ALL Muslim immigrants are against u, no way.
    And if u want the truth also, me and me girlfriend was both in tears on Sept 11th, but we knew also that some people would blame us also, but we done nothing wrong even.


    September 11, 2008 at 9:15 am

  12. Archaneus

    “….once you are married to an ideology, or worst still, if you married the ideology in a marriage that allows no adultery or divorce, you are no longer free to think…..the great disease of our times is called ideology and the bearers of its infection are the stupid intellectuals, the lay high priests not prepared to admit that life (they call it history) furnishes its own way of reshuffling their mental masturbations, and thus prove the artificiality of the dogma. Its fragility, its unreality…..It is time to denounce the disease (dogma) without timidity, without embarrassment, without fear. And to do so we have to go right back to the Christian (religious) ideology. That is the ideology that conceived of the unnatural division, the licit on one side and the illicit on the other, paradise on one side and hell on the other…..”

    Alexander Panagoulis.


    September 11, 2008 at 9:56 am

  13. Seven years ago I was getting ready to go to work and was listening to National Public Radio. They announced a plane had hit the World Trade Center. At first, I thought it was a Cesna or other small plane because they didn’t say more. The event was just happening and they didn’t have a lot of details. On the way to work, NPR announced a second plane had hit the other tower. I knew then it was terrorism, but I didn’t know the extent. After I got to work and hit the web sites (which were crashing under the stress of so much traffic), I learned just how badly it was. The towers were burning having been hit by huge airliners. The Pentagon was burning. The plane over PA crashed before getting to the Capitol. The towers collapsed. Thousands murdered. Millions, if not billions, in shock.

    I was useless at work that day and left early. I was working in Maryland at the time, just north of DC. When I merged onto the interstate heading south, I ended up right behind a large crane with a police escort. No one was in front of it and there was a lot of traffic behind it. We all knew it was going to the Pentagon. DC-area drivers are always in a hurry to get places, but no one passed this crane. We followed at a slow pace knowing our world had forever been changed.

    A few days later, George Bush went to a mosque in DC and declared “Islam is peace.” I applaud him for trying to prevent violence and hostility toward innocent Muslims in our country, but he also missed an amazing opportunity to shed some light on the source of the problem. Most Americans, myself included, knew very little about Islam at the time. Hopefully we know a little more now.

    Peace, everyone.


    September 11, 2008 at 10:28 am

  14. To the Christians who left me comments:

    I appreciate all of your well wishes, pats on the back and virtual hugs. I chose not to publish your comments because I can’t stand the Godspeak. This is not the right blog if you’re trying to push your “My God is the God of love” stuff. I get it. You believe religion is not the problem. Which makes you no different than the Muslim moderates I railed on a couple of posts ago. Religion is the problem. We can agree to disagree.

    Thank you for the thoughts, but not for the prayers.

    – KG


    September 11, 2008 at 10:49 am

  15. Karfirgirl,

    Your post touched me. I am a blue eyed blonde Texan, and not familiar with Muslim traditions and philosophies at all – other than what I hear – which is dangerous in itself. I consider myself a deeply “Spiritual Person” with a strong faith in God, but I have had an instinctive distrust of “Religion” all my life. “Religion” is man made. Faith is God made and the two have very little to do with each other. And it appears to me that in recent history, that “Religion” is actually forcing more people away from God then it is attracting. People are confused and lost.

    “Organized Religion” on all sides, has done so much harm. When I first heard the story of Andrea Yates – the Houston woman who drowned her 5 children – the first thing I said was, just watch…. we are going to find out that this all happened because she was involved in some fundamentalist religion and she drowned those children to save them from some illusionary devil or because she felt God had told her too.

    As it turns out. I was exactly right. She drowned those children because she had been following a fundamentalist preacher who kept screaming how they were all sinners and going to hell. (This concept still blows my mind!) And she did what she thought was best for her children. She made the ultimate sacrifice and killed them before they had a chance to become sinners and be taken over by the devil.

    Christians can be just as guilty of following their infatuation with religion way beyond the bounds of reason. Thank you for your post. It really did touch me.
    Your post made me want to give you a hug!


    September 11, 2008 at 11:14 am

  16. As an ex-jw, I completely understand the whole “losing your family, friends, and everything/one you’ve ever known” when you leave (or get kicked out of) the religion. We’re survivors, though, and for most of us, it brings out strengths we never knew we had.

    I’m so ashamed of the way white people in this country treat anyone who is different than them, be it in skin color or sexual preference. And it’s ALL done in the name of God.

    hugs to you, kafirgirl.


    September 11, 2008 at 11:29 am

  17. kafir girl, thank u for not publishing me demands to Zardari government cos i think i was not very ok when i done that and maybe it was not a good idea also.
    u angry and stuff?


    September 11, 2008 at 11:32 am

  18. No Micheal, President Bush done the right thing, u have to understand that if u claim Islam is not a religion of peace then u are ennabling the tiny minority of Muslims who want Jihad, it’s like saying, “America is really the confederacy, it’s a racist state, the flag of the confederacy is the way things really are.”
    What would be the point in scoring a propaganda own goal for OBL, Zaywahiri and the Taliban? U got to understand that the number of suicide bombers and Jihadists is tiny compared to the number of Muslims. So why elevate the extremists to a leadership role Muslims themselves deny them?
    And maybe it is true that Islam is violent, i personally think it is, in fact i fucking well know so, i got no doubts, but proclaiming that at the expense of ordinary muslim immigrants in the west (which u realize ureself) would not have helped no one- except the enemy.


    September 11, 2008 at 11:38 am

  19. Nope, not at all. I was more concerned about you including your last name in the thing. Anonymity is your friend.


    September 11, 2008 at 11:44 am

  20. Kg, I know, i screwed up, it’s a very common surname in Pakistan, but even so……


    September 11, 2008 at 11:46 am

  21. Thank you LightInADream.

    “We’re survivors, though, and for most of us, it brings out strengths we never knew we had.” Exactly, Janet. What doesn’t kill us makes us stronger. And maybe just a bit pissed off, too ;)

    Jasmine, it’s OK, really. I wasn’t at all angry. I was just concerned about putting your real name up there. No worries.


    September 11, 2008 at 11:54 am

  22. I had come to the US just about a month prior to 9/11. Some of us on this blog can identify the feeling about coming to the US from Indian Subcontinent.. the only US we know are from the Hollywood movies and everything looks rosy and cool. A month later 9/11 happened which changed everything. brown skin and u are targeted. i mean at first i could not understand why people were reacting soo much, it took me a while to realize that this was the first (and only) act of terrorism US has ever seen on the homefront.
    7 yrs later all Bush has done is to give a thousand reasons for Jihadis. Instead of treating the disease we treated the symptom. fuck.


    September 11, 2008 at 12:41 pm

  23. Yes, Shashi, that’s the point i made, the image we have of america in Pakistan and India is mostly from TV and movies, and it’s very positive. We wasn’t brought up to hate America, they’re telling its a war of civilization, but we just wasn’t brought up to hate america, not even in me own case.


    September 11, 2008 at 12:52 pm

  24. I been thinking, see, if Jesus was a man- his story is still cool, i mean, he was like good.
    Mo was a man and no more, but his story is rubbish. He didn’t even fast in Ramazan.
    Jesus is morally superior to Mo in all ways, man compared to man, religion not coming into it.
    This is what I think.


    September 11, 2008 at 1:26 pm

  25. I was really moved by your post, KG.

    People group (herd mentality), just like other animals, by religion, nation, culture, race, gender etc., right or wrong, they are hard habits to break and what holds humanity down.

    When 9/11 happened I lived in the SF bay area, 8 out of 10 of my coworkers and people in my community came from, or their families were from, somewhere else, India, Pakistan, China, Afghanistan, Vietnam; and while hate burned in my heart that day it was only for the terrorist and those who supported their actions, never once did I ever think anything other then to share the sadness of that day with my coworkers and community. The SF bay is great that way, but your story made me realize that I hadn’t thought to about what was happening elsewhere.


    September 11, 2008 at 1:32 pm

  26. I hope even after you finish with the Quran, you will keep this blog alive as a means for ex-Muslims, whether they’re open with it or are hiding the matter, to reach out to one another.

    I plan on it =)

    Meanwhile, I go on hoping for a day when being born Muslim doesn’t mean you’re condemned to be one for the rest of your life.

    Well fucking said. Me, too. High five.


    September 11, 2008 at 1:51 pm

  27. Thanks for sharing that, Kafirgirl. Beautifully written and very telling of your strength. We could all definitely benefit from you sharing more of this type of posts with us. Keep it up!


    September 11, 2008 at 3:03 pm

  28. I generally avoid shows of patriotism, remembrance etc on days like this because it almost always takes on a cheap, crass quality a la flag pins to prove someone is a patriot or some shit. This post is not crass or cheap.

    May I post a link back to your site with this picture? Yours is not the only story, but there are qualities here that should be heard. Thanks.


    September 11, 2008 at 3:08 pm

  29. Thanks for sharing. I have been reading your blog for the last few weeks after finding the Non Prophets show who have mentioned your blog several times. I can’t understand why people are lame and assume “if one group of people are bad, all are bad.” Its stupid and irrational. And I think, as been pointed out by many, that not only does religion promote stupid ideas but if your willing to believe one irrational belief than its possible if not likely that they would be willing to buy into many irrational beliefs.

    The more atheists write stuff like what you wrote (as well as in the past) the more that perhaps we can help prevent the same insanity in the future. Keep up the great work.


    September 11, 2008 at 4:01 pm

  30. Like the first commentator, I feel obliged to comment for the first time, even though you cracked me up before, and made me think.

    I was raised an atheist, went through a civil war caused by religion, and in general been through a lot. My grandmother is a Muslim, though. I think my mother is a Christian. I went through a period of wanting to believe in another world, after a family tragedy, but couldn’t bring my brain to believe. I suppose I just thought too much for belief.

    I just love what you wrote. I remember that day vividly, I lived in the US at the time and was away – I remember being sick to my stomach at the pointless fucking carnage. I remember being stuck away from my wife while waiting for my papers to come back.

    You know what – the day I saw my wife again, we conceived a child. A beautiful girl that I hope will be as free minded as you. I teach her to question, above all things.

    As a parent that has to deal with the pressure of society, as a man who decides for himself what is right, I love this one life we have. I love my children, I love my wife, my family and my friends. But every day, more and more, I am sick of the people behaving like children and beieving in ghosts.

    I will work for that world your photo mentions. For the sake of the dead victims of all the freaking lunatics believing in heaven and hell, whatever shade of rose and red they happen to see. Goodness comes from your brain, not your heart.


    September 11, 2008 at 4:06 pm

  31. Hi KG,

    I have been following this blog although not leaving comments because I had nothing valuable to offer. But this one simply made me arrange my thoughts and bring them to expression. So here goes…

    Eight years ago on this day (9/11/00) I got married and seven years ago on our first wedding anniversary, any naivete we may have nursed about this world evaporated. One could have been somewhat un-affected by embassy bombings in Kenya and Tanzania. But 9/11 , WTC??? No way!

    Of course, everyone took their own approaches to understand / cope. Pundits blamed, American foreign policy, Israel-Palestine impasse, lack-of-democracy….. blah blah blah… but no one had a pair-of-you-know-what to say that RELIGION & RELIGIOSITY is a large contributing factor if not the primary cause.

    The only ones that blamed “ISLAM” were the Christian nutjobs. Alll others wanted to be “tolerant” and “moderate” and hence mis-represented the truth even though they knew intuitively. It was (and is) more sophisticated to blame “errant” individuals for “mis-reading” the injunctions of a benign holy-book rather than to lay bare just how benign and holy the freaking thing is (that’s why I love KG ’cause she’s got more balls than most).

    We segregate this world of “believers” as moderate and “fundamentalists”. We elevate the moderates and confer upon them a medal of “higher consciousness”. BUT THIS IS LIES!

    Moderates are well-meaning but they either “intellectually dis-honest” or “intellectually feeble”. These are good people people who understand that the holy-book is full of shit and yet rally around it in a show of quasi-tribal solidarity. This is a case of “Lower consciousness” and not higher. They extract a few pearls of wisdom and marvel at the book that offers such wisdom, plainly ignoring that the same wisdom is practiced by millions of people outside their faith and without having read that book.

    It is these moderates who are always trying to tell us “Blame bin-Laden not Islam”. These are the guys who are telling us “Islam is a religion of peace which has been ‘hijacked’ by bin-Laden and his cohorts.” BULLSHIT!


    The mayhem in the aftermath of the Danish cartoons was not a case of mis-interpretation but because of a specific and un-ambiguous injuction in the Koran forbidding and proscribing graven imagery. This is “religious outrage” from a bunch of retards who carry portraits of the Ayatollah and draw umbrage at caricatures.

    The moderates are the ones who have decided to put a spin on what the religion says. And the commentators are playing to this audience by playing back their exact sentiments in the hope of striking a chord.

    But this is a self-delusion and the fact that it is well-meaning does not make it any better.

    There should be no special sanctity to the word “moderately religious”. Will anyone accept a term like “moderately Atheistic”? What *exactly* does that mean in terms of belief systems?

    So my point is this:
    Moderates do no realize this and society does not call them on it – but they are the ones that are providing a firewall to the religious nut-jobs. Islam / Koran / Bible /…. can easily be dis-credited but we seek to not give offense to the “moderates” and hence the arguments are not made – especially in the MSM.

    We see the moderates as “nice folk” with strange views (like Adam-n-Eve or Noah’s Ark) . Strange but not bad and it just seems wicked to challenge the biblical assertions and cause distress to these “good folks”…. so we let things lie and in the meanwhile the Jerry Falwells and Pat Robertsons are busy supplanting biology with “creationism”.

    If we need to confront religidiocy then we need to be brutally honest with the “moderates”.


    September 11, 2008 at 4:07 pm

  32. Your story is moving and reminds me of my own experience on this day 7 years ago. It was a turning point as I realized I wasn’t an agnostic Muslim, but rather an atheist. I avoided going outside and when I did there was no escaping the staring eyes. I was lucky in not encountering physical harm, but not so lucky with the verbal ones. I was angry at the attacks, yet afraid of reprisal.

    I also remember classmates offering to escort me to my car, and the teachers who showed concern for my well-being. I remember a stranger in a restaurant who apologized for another patrons’ verbal attack. These were not isolated events. It was heartwarming and assuring to see kindness in the worst of times.


    September 11, 2008 at 4:33 pm

  33. Fine then, so there are no moderates in Islam, and Bin Laden is the natural leader of the Muslims who are all following a hateful creed. Now you got 1 billion angry Muslims whose spiritual guide is OBL.
    So now what?
    There are no moderates any more (which u seem to be happy about)
    So u got no allies.
    No one to reason with.
    No one to reform, democratize or have a dialogue of civilizations with.
    No need for any liberal stuff now of course.
    Seriously, now what are u going to do?
    U going to fight this newly radicalized 1 billion people?
    How? Where?
    America can’t even deal with 4,000 casualties in Iraq which is nothing, really, it’s nothing. But hey, u just labelled the whole umma as ure enemy based on their following of what the religion says.
    U are writing the script for the Muslims now- in black and white.
    Islam is rubbish, so is all religion, that doesn’t mean ALL Muslims are following a hateful creed. But yes, if they have hate, there’s PLENTY of stuff in the Qu’ran to justify it.


    September 11, 2008 at 5:00 pm

  34. See, i sort of split me intelligence when it comes to moderates on social and gender issues like when they say the Qu’ran is ‘feminist’, and moderates on whether Muslims should be waging Jihad.


    September 11, 2008 at 5:02 pm

  35. er, this is why i attack moderate Muslims on the one hand (gender issues), and sort of reach out to them on the other (all Muslims aren’t out to wage Jihad on the west).
    I ADMIT it must seem very contradictory, but it’s a direct reflection of me experience that Pakistanis are misogonyst and male supremacist- but not out to attack the west.


    September 11, 2008 at 5:04 pm

  36. But it’s not as if i disagree overall on what Rahul says, yes, the moderates have ‘put a spin on what the Qu’ran says’, and the Jihadis are closest to the Qu’ranic truth. Yet…… people see in the Holy Qu’ran what they will, not all Muslims view it in that way, cos it’s not like Mein Kampf where only one reading is possible.
    Who is the most reliable authority on the Holy Qu’ran?
    The Saudis and the Salafis.


    September 11, 2008 at 5:21 pm

  37. jasminefrompakistan, are you really arguing which interpretation of the magic sky gods magic book is the best or right one. Even if Muslims acted like Jains it wouldn’t justify god or the Quran. Living your life based on a magic book is absurd and you just can’t polish that turd!


    September 11, 2008 at 5:38 pm

  38. Jasmine,

    You said “OK…There are no moderates any more (which u seem to be happy about)
    So u got no allies. No one to reason with…..”

    Where did I say that there are no moderates? What I said is that the presumption that you can “win-over” to moderates and marginalize fanatics is false. The reason is :

    To “win-over” moderates you have to accept a minimum concession that “Your Religion is beautiful and saintly and the extremist is the wicked one”. This is where reason-based argument falls apart. If you concede that the religion is saintly then on what basis can you condemn the guy who follows the exact injunction of that religion?

    Let me take a specific example: Second-class citizenship for women.

    How are you going to say that Islam is great but mis-treatment of women is bad if the basis for that mis-treatment is coming from Islam itself?

    The central point in my earlier post is that: You can and should be kind, polite and civil – but you do not need to dilute our arguments to “win-over” moderates. And if we did, these moderates have little or no influence on the extremists.

    The truth needs to be stated politely but firmly. And stating that truth does not mean waging war with a billion people….. I don’t know where you got that idea from.



    September 11, 2008 at 7:41 pm

  39. Meh, I’m with Rahul on this one. Jasmine, it sounds like you’re cherry picking issues. Which I can totally understand because, obviously, some things are more important to some people than others. But — big but — that does make it make sense.


    September 11, 2008 at 8:03 pm

  40. It’s horrible that no matter what, ignorance in the time of rage and confusion is always prevalent. Even those Americans of Middle-Eastern descent that were born, raised and believed in this country were discriminated against or looked upon with suspicion, as some today still suffer the stigma of what happened then. Personally, i have not heard many stories like this, and even as a minority in America, i can empathize with what people like you have gone through, but i cannot fully comprehend what it would be like. No one on the outside can or ever will, for that matter. Thankfully you’ve liberated yourself from religion, but the ignorance from the outside that don’t know or don’t give a fuck is still prevalent. We have our work cut out for us enlightening both the uneducated and the religious zealots.

    All in all i am glad you were able to walk away from this a stronger person [and hopefully a better person]. Keep up the great work. BigFuckingHug!!


    September 11, 2008 at 8:14 pm

  41. Great post, KG, I was touched.

    I’ve been listening to NPR all day and was sick about all the 9/11 stuff going on. Actually I was sick at the way that it is being used to further political gain and to keep the “us versus them” mentality alive (like in, “don’t forget what THEY did to us”).


    September 11, 2008 at 8:16 pm

  42. Thanks Leandro. I’ve been sticking pretty closely to the Quran, but I’ll try to branch out now and then. I had no idea people would be interested in my lameass life.

    Madmonq, I emailed you already, but thanks for linking. I’m not a fan of posts that commemorate days like this either because it always comes off as a little disingenuous. I couldn’t sleep last night so I sat down and banged it out. Maybe it doesn’t come off as insincere because I didn’t plan on posting anything. It just came together on its own. Anyway, thanks for the feedback.

    Gizmo, we’re working on it =) Thanks for reading and I hope you’ll come back for more!

    Tabooze, that was a really lovely story. Kudos to you for teaching your daughter to question everything. I think if my parents had taught me that rather than unquestioning obedience, we wouldn’t have fought so much while I was growing up. Teehee!

    Ned, another ex-Muslim, huh? High five. I totally know what you mean about two sides to the way people treated you. On the one hand I had the name-calling and tire-slashing kind of experiences, and on the other, I had some very genuine, kind and warm experiences with people. I’ll never forget the jerks, but I always remember the nice people.


    September 11, 2008 at 8:17 pm

  43. Priest, I have no doubt in my mind that I walked away a stronger person. I learned so much about myself in the months that followed 9/11. I changed and grew as a person, and I learned to stick up for myself. Something good came out of all the bad. What more could I have asked for?

    Mauro, yeah, I stayed away from the news today. No TV, no radio, no websites. A woman at work wore — I shit you not — an American flag sweater vest today. I had to bite my tongue every time I saw her.


    September 11, 2008 at 8:22 pm

  44. Hi, I’m a new reader to your blog.

    I’m sorry for what happened to you on that day. And I respect you for your decisions to leave Islam. It’s your choice.

    What I really don’t understand or rather know is if you really think that the rest of the Muslims lack “logic, reason & reality.”

    Not trying to hate, just trying to understand.


    September 11, 2008 at 9:39 pm

  45. KG, I thought this was an exceptionally well-written post. The first paragraph was incredibly poignant and horrific to imagine. Well done.


    September 11, 2008 at 9:41 pm

  46. Hi Safia, yep. I would go so far as to say religion and logic / reason / reality are on opposite ends of the spectrum.

    Helper, thank you. I’m glad you, erm, enjoyed(?) it. For such an incredibly personal and painful memory, it was surprisingly easy to write.


    September 11, 2008 at 9:44 pm

  47. […] I didn’t know what I was going to post for 9/11 anaversery. But noe I think kafirgirl has the right […]

  48. […] trip, a rare thing. Don’t have much to say about 9/11 myself right now, but… Go read Kafirgirl’s post. She has something to […]

  49. “jasminefrompakistan, are you really arguing which interpretation of the magic sky gods magic book is the best or right one.”

    Right only in the sense as accurate. See moderates are telling the Qu’ran is lovely, pro queer, feminist, anti racist, liberal and I am saying no, I believe the best authority on the Qu’ran are the shayuukh, the Saudi ulema. Moderates are embarrassed by this for obvious reasons, cos they are desperate to, as Rahul says, and i agree with him here, put on ‘spin on it’. If u want to see what the Qu’ran means to society, go to Saudi Arab or Pakistan. This is not what moderate Muslims want to here… they want u to think that the Saudis got it all wrong and the Qu’ran is lovely.
    Sorry, i think they and people like them got it right.

    Kafirgirl, i just KNOW that most muslims aren’t anti western, people like me mum, on 7-7 in London a Muslim girl was killed, we have had Muslim boys killed in Afghanistan in our army (the british one i mean), and so many things our community done after 9-11 and 7-7 was to show UNITY AND SOLIDARITY against fascism of all sides. So moderate Muslims believe that there is nothing in the Holy Qu’ran that justifies terror and they are sincere in that belief.
    Another, take me older brother, he’s a Islamic studies graduate of Umm Al Qura University in Saudi Arab, while he totally is in disagreement with US-UK foreign policy, he also ran a youth club in East London to teach young Muslim teenage boys to understand that Islam means peace inside and in society and not to be losers who can get manipulated by nefarious rascals who just use our young people to promote terror.
    And me brother would sit with these guys and dispel all their ideas that their anger was justified in the Holy Qu’ran, he knows it in Arabi to doctorate level almost, and that’s the only way to get through to some people in our community. People shouldn’t trash that kind of work, no way, this is just me opinion, all i can say is i lived in the Muslim world all me life, up to u if anyone wants to listen or no……


    September 12, 2008 at 12:31 am

  50. Jasmine,

    What your brother is doing is noble and well-intentioned. But to say that that nobility is derived from the Koran or Islam is plain untrue. These are the people who are noble ‘despite’ Koranic teachings and not because of it.

    It seems nice that your brother is preaching that “Islam means peace inside and in society and not to be losers who can get manipulated by nefarious rascals…”. But is that really what Islam teaches? Or is this your brother’s well-intentioned but factually incorrect attempt to dress Islam up?

    It is tempting to think that he and other caring people like him can re-invent Islam – but frankly he is trying to fight one lie with another lie. Unfortunately the Islamic world-view that he is fighting has documentary evidence against his position (i.e. the Koran).

    I think it would be much more honest to say to him that his “moderation” is only an outcome of reason trumping dogma and his nobility is not derived from the Koran but from within his self-awareness. The more he respects his own intellectual faculties the less he needs to rely on 7th century fairy-tale.

    Is this going to make him renounce Islam (or any religion)? Of course not! But it will begin an honest separation of personal ethics and religious doctrine. And ths is a victory on its own because the next time he will not feel compelled to defend a doctrine but denounce the practitioner of the same doctrine. How liberating would that be?

    I think if you read KG’s post you will know that from the harrowing hardship of 9/11 arose a kind of personal liberation.



    September 12, 2008 at 1:59 am

  51. Rahul, I made it clear that it’s the Saudis who have interpreted the Qu’ran properly-not moderates. However, even within that very conservative interpreation is a strain of thought that is not automatically Jihadist. Is it liberal? No, no, of course not, is it something elements within our communities in the west have to seize upon to show that following the sunnah does not mean planting bombs on trains and buses, then yes.
    What is the Holy Qu’ran?
    To the minds of many many many Muslims it is peaceful in all ways. Now there is objective reality and subjective reality, fine, but the most pressing need is TO PRESERVE LIFE.
    Sorry, we will stand united against terror- from all sides.
    Yes, me motivation in saying this is a ‘cynical’ attempt to preserve community relations in the UK, to deny the extremists legitimacy and to most of all- create a environment where Islam in our communities does not isolate our people from mainstream society.
    What the Qu’ran may or may not say, that’s for theologians, me own position is one of apostacy, but i don’t matter. I will follow politically any interpretation of the Qu’ran which preserves life, limb and racial harmony in the United Kingdom.


    September 12, 2008 at 8:34 am

  52. +1 to Rahul’s comment.

    Honest critique is needed to bring about real reform, if possible. That ultimately needs to be done by moderate Muslims who want to live peaceful and modern lives. I don’t mind people having faith and believing in higher powers/forces, as long as they are peaceful and honest and not harming others (including those within their own belief system — especially women).


    September 12, 2008 at 8:44 am

  53. Michael, u got it, cool. There’s no point in raising the tool bar so high, look at Sara Palin, she’s always talking about religion, and our people yes, live in the UK, but in Europe, as Ayaan herself says, ‘have travelled hundreds of miles to their new homes, but more importantly, have crossed centuries.’ Me brother was raised in Saudi with me…. but he was working with the local community policing council to try to make sure that our brothers aren’t corrupted by takfiri ideaolgy. Most Americans believe, Obama believes, so does McCain, so why set such high standards for Muslim immigrants?
    The Holy Qu’ran is based on unreality, but so long as it is REAL to vulnerable young people who need guidance, it makes sense to call it something other than simply a book of hate and violence- in the community i mean.
    And what i say with personages of me own style and background like Kafir Girl etc, well, that’s another.


    September 12, 2008 at 8:53 am

  54. Sara Palin, Sara Palin, Sara Palin, Sara Palin, can’t catch me breath, Sara Palin, Sara Palin.
    I been like this for days,Sara Palin, Sara Palin, Sara Palin, Sara Palin, like it’s jadoo or something. I can’t stop thinking about her, non stop, Sara Palin, Sara Palin, Sara Palin, Sara Palin.


    September 12, 2008 at 10:35 am

  55. @kafirgirl: “I had no idea people would be interested in my lameass life.”

    I think most of us live what we ourselves would consider “lameass lives”, but when you get lameasses with different backgrounds sharing what, to them, is “ordinary”, you get an interesting picture of how one’s background shapes their perception of normalcy, and you can really learn to appreciate the diversity in people with whom you feel you have something in common.


    September 12, 2008 at 10:38 am

  56. Kafirgirl,
    You stated earlier how much you had grown as a person after 9/11. I’m curious in the months following if you had become more vocal about your personal disbelief in the doctrines of the Quaran. Did you tell people you were actually an atheist. If so, what was the response as opposed to them taking you at “face” value?
    I too am tired of the over-the-top displays of patriotism. I certainly wish we had never gone to Iraq. It seems we’ll never get out now. If McCain/Palin win, which appears to now be a good possibility our religious wars are just beginning. Palin is a zealot and potentially dangerous.
    I recently read in the news about how the NY Yankees play “God Bless America” during the 7th inning stretch. It is not our national anthem. People are pretty much required to stand and pay homage. Movement during the song is not permitted. A man was physically ejected from the stadium by two NYPD officers because he attempted to go to the bathroom during the song and upon being stopped by the police responded that he neither believed in God or in mandated patriotism and besides – he had to go to the bathroom. Like I said they physically removed him from the stadium.
    I am fearful for the future of this country. Politicians seem to be ignorant of the tenets of the Constitution and Bill of Rights. They truly believe this is a “Christian Nation” and that the founding fathers chose to put “In God We Trust” on our money and “Under God” in the pledge. If we cannot depend on our elected officials to defend the Constitution, we are lost. Currently, banks and financial institutions are failing (just the beginning), foreclosures are reaching record numbers, we’re quagmired in two wars, depend on foreign oil that helps bankroll the very nations that harbor terrorism, have no energy policy and our candidates are mudslinging over lipstick metaphors.
    Well, my “soul” is just in a state of tears over our prognosis. Your website stands as a source of reassurance to me that there are others out there – of all cultural backgrounds, of all colors, all religions – people who are not clouded by evil doctrine. I was with you through the first 7 or 8 chapters and love the way you are able to interpret what seems like perfect drivel into something at least resembling coherency but I’m losing heart. It’s just so depressing. You have my undying gratitude for your efforts. I too, would like to give you a hug.


    September 12, 2008 at 11:36 am

  57. BF, sorry to interject, ure also, tragically and in a way that’s really hard for me to understand headed for some sort of totally unneccesary showdown with the Russian Federation. Yes, it is like totally scary now, ure right.
    U go to allow Georgia into Nato, Russia allies with Iran, Israel attacks Iran, Iran hits back, u bomb Iran, Russia moves in on Georgia+Ukraine to forestall NATO membership, Iran tries to seize Kuwait to deny the US oil, u bomb Iran a bit more- then clash with Russia in Georgia, Venezuela and the Arab Gulf. Russia shuts down oil and gas suplies to Europe while moving in on US ally Azerbaijan.
    On and on, but i guess the picture is clear.


    September 12, 2008 at 1:57 pm

  58. KG.. this one is for you and you alone. Enjoy


    September 12, 2008 at 4:53 pm

  59. KG, about that chick that was wearing that flag sweater – that’s not even patriotism, it’s flat out fucking JINGOISM. It’s a manifestation of that ‘we vs them’ bullshit. Patriotism is more than wearing colors and standing in a parade and you don’t have to wait for a somber day to show patriotism if it’s what you feel.

    Alas, you can’t fix ing’nant…


    September 12, 2008 at 5:53 pm

  60. So KafirGirl,

    Does this mean that ANY person who follows a religion has no logic, or just Muslims?


    September 12, 2008 at 8:42 pm

  61. BF, I did get more vocal about it. I came out as an atheist to a few close friends and had the nice surprise of them coming out to me, too. I wouldn’t say it turned me into an atheist activist or anything — it just made me come out of hiding.

    Shashi, bahahaha! Thanks for that. Gag me with a spoon. I do enjoy watching him squirm.

    Safia, I think all religions are fucking stupid and I think people who believe in the invisible man in the sky possess neither logic nor reason. That goes for all religions.


    September 13, 2008 at 1:07 am

  62. hi everyone


    September 13, 2008 at 2:24 am

  63. Hey kafirgirl, I appreciate you answering my questions.

    So do you have a lot of friends that are religious? Do you tell them that you don’t think they don’t have any logic or any reason? Like do they know that you feel this way? Or do you just not have religious friends? Have you told your parents of your views?


    September 13, 2008 at 9:15 am

  64. Safia, there are millions of girls who was Muslim and rose up out of the lies but still live with-near-in punching distance of Muslims….. do u really think all those people can be honest and tell the TRUTH that Islam is lies, false, a con to keep women under tight control and otherwise simply childish nonesense done by a lying sex obsessed dirty old Arab called Muhammad, cos that’s what we REALLY think?
    Er, we would be beaten seneless (at best), hacked apart in the street (at worst), or silently beheaded (moderately bad).
    Islam is TRASH. Is that good enough for u?
    The best bit is that personages like Kafir Girl lead normal lives, have freedom, don’t depend on no one and can say what they want, cos they live with decent and RATIONAL people.
    I am really sorry that u are still Muslima Safiya, that’s no good, one day, maybe you will wake up and realize u just got conned?


    September 13, 2008 at 11:20 am

  65. Safia, I have many friends who are religious — Christians, Muslims, Jews, Diests, Hindus, and even a Buddhist or two. My parents are Muslims, although in the past few weeks I’ve gone from thinking they’re moderate Muslims to realizing they’re more like liberal Muslims. I joke about religion with my mom all the time and I tease her for some of the dumb shit she believes. Same with my sister. My father isn’t much of the joking type and we’re not terribly close, so we don’t really discuss religion. My mother-in-law is a church-going Methodist, and she reads my Myspace blog, which constantly makes fun of religious people. She even comments and laughs.

    At one point or another, I’ve called every single one of them illogical and irrational, even brainwashed. It’s no secret to the folks in my life that I think religious people are dumbasses. The company I keep tend to be the kind who don’t give a fuck what someone else thinks about them and don’t try to justify their beliefs to anyone or anything. They don’t have the godstick shoved so far up their asses that they can’t laugh at themselves.

    Now that doesn’t mean they’re irrational or illogical about literally everything. I would say most of them are plenty rational and logical when it comes to other stuff. In fact, most religious people are smart enough to point out the flaws in some other religion. They’re just indoctrinated and brainwashed enough not to be able to do that for their own religion. So, I suppose you can add hypocritical to the list of qualities I see in religious people.

    Are you trying to make me feel bad for thinking religious people are morons? News for you: not gonna happen.


    September 13, 2008 at 11:34 am

  66. see everyone, one thing about Kafir Girl is she never explodes into just vicious anger, that’s cos she doesn’tlive in fear and can express herself and even get rewarded for that. Us, no, it’s another, we can’t say nothing and all the anger builds up and this is why even though i am always defending me community from racists and stuff, underneath, there’s terrible anger against Islam.
    One day i was standing in the street with a stick, this was in London, and just smacking it over and over against a tree and a woman came up and said, “Why are u doing that?”
    Anger, frustration, oppressions, fear, u just got to switch it off somehow or u just become like u are feeling crazy, and this is why if u know ure right but even so everyone around is telling ure wrong-no good-a downclass and a kufr girl, then if u do drugs, maybe they should think to blame themselves, cos it’s the only way OUT, except u know, just ending it. even if i had just one ounce of what Pakistani girls who escaped from Islam have- that would be enough for me.


    September 13, 2008 at 11:47 am

  67. the only time i am ever going to escape this nightmare is if i am dead, u are talking about a system where 75 year old men can marry 8 year old girls, that’s how messed up it is, so persons like me, u think i got any chance under this?
    Only chance i have of being left alone and not forced into marriage is to appear so messed up no one will want me.
    Another, me community in UK disowns me, i am not welcome back and can’t live there no more and everyone insults me even if i just walk down the street. But, and this is what liars Muslims are, I also get propositoned from everyone from punk Jihadis to old aged community leaders, offered money for sex even, that’s me reality, that’s Pakistani morality.
    I CAN’T deal with this no more.


    September 13, 2008 at 11:54 am

  68. even if i had just one ounce of what Pakistani girls who escaped from Islam have- that would be enough for me.

    Jasmine, I wish there was some way we could figure out how to give that to you.

    I do get mad about things — I just don’t explode into a fit of rage. I’ve never punched a wall or a person, and I’ve never been in a physical fight. Aside from some protests and screaming at some jerks on the street in Pakistan, I’m not even really a yeller. I tend to roll right into sarcastic commentary and jerk humor.


    September 13, 2008 at 12:24 pm

  69. See, it’s ok cos imagine if i didn’t have blog sites, then i would have nothing, and what ure doing is really great, it’s more than enough even. I get support from this and apostate’s blog, cos ure Pakistani girls, same like me, that’s what counts, u got no idea, really.
    I think the sort of rage i got, it’s no good, sometimes i just feel it’s hurting me more than anyone else, and even after all that gone done to me, even then i spend a lot of me time trying to defend muslims from racists and stuff, it’s pretty amazing under the circumstances.
    So all the hate it’s not from me, it’s from me community, it’s not from me own side, i just want to live normally, make me own decisions and if i made mistakes then so what, no one is perfect and stuff.
    but cos i am a Pakistani girl, no, i can not make mistakes, cos they are never going to forgive, even if me family suddenly changed and became nice, i still got to live in that community. All what i am suffering is cos of Islam, and it’s not only me, it’s so many others. One day they will silence me.
    but they can’t get us all so in the end, even if i am drugged on the PIA flight, just zonked out, it doesn’t matter, i still win.


    September 13, 2008 at 12:59 pm

  70. jasmine, aren’t you old enough to just leave and go make your own way in the world?


    September 13, 2008 at 1:19 pm

  71. I am 27, but i can’t look after meself very well without me friend cos she used to do everything for me, i don’t do stuff on me own, it’s not me place even.
    And i can’t even look after meself very well from a health point of view even, and cos i am not in any immediate danger and don’t have a child the government in UK will not assist me immediately, and what they give, it’s to put me in a one room place in a area that’s not safe for me on me own.
    It’s very very hard, Gad, and cos i got raised in the prison camp in Al Hassa i haven’t even got any skills, i only ever worked in two jobs, one at the chemist’s at Heathrow and the other in Kwik Save, it’s not enough in London even to eat, never mind live alone.


    September 13, 2008 at 1:32 pm

  72. if me friend comes back from NWFP then i will have all what i need and can survive and she can do everything, this is normal also for me, cos i am Pakistani, it’s not really me place to do stuff, she does it.
    only she’s not here


    September 13, 2008 at 1:33 pm

  73. Sitting around waiting for someone to come make you happy isn’t a good strategy for survival. Why do you have to live in London, go somewhere else. Make your way to the US and go sing your love song to Sarah Palin, who knows your Alaska dream might come true. You could sure save the US a lot of grief if you could get Sarah Palin to run off with you and play with the bears.

    jasmine, you seem pretty intelligent and your life story pretty interesting, but if you have the power to change it and you don’t it just become wining…..


    September 13, 2008 at 2:04 pm

  74. i want to come to america and am desperate, but i got nothing, no more than $200 to me name, but i want want want.
    About me stuff with Sarah Palin, of course, if someone like that arranges for me and will organize everything and bring me to America, then i will jump at the chance.
    I got no power to change it, i am on meds and in rehab and i can’t look after meself, i told u. And another, it’s not me place even.
    How do u know all about me Sarah Palin stuff also?


    September 13, 2008 at 2:21 pm

  75. ok, i don’t support palin, i got to make that clear


    September 14, 2008 at 1:12 am

  76. That’s strange to read, because I was starting a freshman year in college on 9/11. I’d forgotten, but there was a Muslim exhange student in my English 101 class who sat right next to me and it never even occurred to me to hate him. He was a nice polite guy and he wasn’t one of the hijackers. But then, I was less upset over the towers and the people and the hijackers and more upset about how people were reacting and how I could see this situation falling neatly into the wrong hands. As it did, in perfect accordance with my prophecy, ha ha. I spent all that time hating the fact that I was an American, even as the rest of the country and world banded together in praise of America. Emotionally distraught people caught in a loop of us-agains-them hysteria are easy prey for the Hitlers of the world. It was so obvious–to a small percentage of the population–that it seemed amazing to me how easily and uncritically the whole country was getting lassoed into becoming war-pawns for someone else’s evil political, religious, and financial plans. In short–I was too busy being ashamed of my fellow countrymen to be hateful toward individual Muslims. I had good priorities.

    This guy didn’t seem very upset (as in upset because of constant attacks of random hatred), and the campus seemed fairly quiet compared to the stories of other people at other campuses (like yours), but I don’t think he was getting attacked. The teacher led a discussion about it, which remained fairly civil (I would have remembered if it had gotten as hateful as your class had, or if there was a hateful tension in the room), and as we all gathered our things at the end of class, she asked him, in concerned and sympathetic tones, if was getting any shit from anyone out there, particularly on campus, and he said he wasn’t. This guy even wore the little skullcap (sorry, I don’t know what the proper term is) that they wear.

    My point is, I never fully realized exactly how fortunate that guy was or how proud I should have been with my fellow students that day. I’m sorry your fellow students treated you in such a disgusting way. I truly wish I could have been in your class that day. Stupid frightened fucking cavemen.

    Fuck, I wish my brother had been there too! He’s also the kind of guy who’d probably chase down the fuckers who slashed your tires! :)

    (I like this blog! I have a mouth like a trucker too, and it’s nice not to have to censor my language!)

    BTW, I’m an alumni of Ashland U in Ohio, in case you’re curious about this unusually tolerant school. Before you get excited, realize that this is also a school that tried to pull a fast one a couple years ago by creating a hiring policy that required that potential hires must be adherents of “Judeo-Christianity” and that adherents of anything else would not be considered for hire. Got shot down pretty fast, especially by public opinion and they stood to lose a number of excellent teachers and opportunities over the next couple years over this facade. They still have great teachers though, and the fact that such a move could cause such a ruckus among the teachers gives you some idea of how great they were. I was really glad that their little fast-one didn’t last, because I would have hated to see Ashland go the way of Liberty or Regent. Then my degree would be nothing more than expensive toilet paper. Rest assured, at Ashland educational quality continues to be held in higher regard than religious affiliation, and may it forever remain so!

    Of course, I was an open atheist throughout, though, and I didn’t have any trouble. Plus, the school paper featured a piece on the number of atheists that attended AU and they expressed pride that they had such a cosmopolitan student population despite being a Brethren-church founded university.


    September 14, 2008 at 2:39 am

  77. Kafir Girl, thanks for the response.

    I’m not trying to make you feel bad, in any way. I just like asking questions about things I’m not sure about. I’m sorry if I’m coming off as that.

    So you married outside of Islam? How did your dad take it? If I’m being too personal, you obviously don’t have to asnwer.


    September 14, 2008 at 9:15 am

  78. “Does this mean that ANY person who follows a religion has no logic, or just Muslims?”

    As Muslims are the least secular people on the planet, they are particularly illogical and particularly STUPID.
    The most stupid are Muslim men who come onto our blogs to annoy us.


    September 14, 2008 at 9:37 am

  79. Hey DemonHype, wow, that sounds much nicer than my day! I think there were two potential reasons why my class turned so ugly that day. First off, at 20, I was the oldest person in the class. It was literally a class full of 18 year old boys (and one 18 year old girl). I’m not saying that being 18 makes you particularly stupid or mean or something — just that they’d been living on their own for all of 3 weeks and the class definitely had a kegger atmosphere at time. I remember another time when we discussed Israel and Palestine, one guy suggested nuking the Palestinians, several other boys hooted and hollered. Ack.

    And secondly, everyone was (by their own admission when the teacher asked why we were taking the religious studies course) either Christian or Jewish. With the exception of that one Jewish girl who once said in class that she was losing faith in God because of the way his followers behaved. Weird, right?

    Safia, my marriage is a long, long story. One that might require another blog. I was financially and emotionally independent when I met the boy, so they really have no say in the matter. Suffice it to say that my parents were not exactly happy about it. But a few years have passed and they realize now that my life does not “belong” to them. My dad recently said, “We cannot tell you what to do, and we’re happy when you’re happy.” That’s all I ask for.

    I find it funny that you ask how my dad took it, but not my mom. The dynamic within my mom’s side of the family is a little unique to Pakistanis, I think. The women in the family absolutely wear the pants. My mom and all of her sisters, their brother married, my cousins, my sister and, yes, me.

    Every single one of my female cousins has chosen her own spouse — and not necessarily always Sunni spouses either. A cousin of mine married an Ahmedi guy. And another cousin is dating a Christian Arab. And another cousin got engaged to a white girl who was raised Baptist. Incidentally, three out of the four of the above have recently confessed to me that they are agnostic, so I am no longer the only godless heathen in the family (more details on that coming after Thanksgiving!). Only two out of the 8 people in committed relationships ended up with a Pakistani.

    I guess what I’m saying is, if they didn’t see it coming, they probably should have. And if they didn’t want it happening, they should probably have stayed in the old country.


    September 14, 2008 at 9:54 am

  80. Dating an Arab?
    Arabs are Arabs, Christians are still Arabs, they are the same. I think i am going to puke.


    September 14, 2008 at 10:45 am

  81. yes, it’s not right, i know it’s not right, but i hate them so much.


    September 14, 2008 at 10:46 am

  82. hell, i wish i hadn’t read that


    September 14, 2008 at 10:47 am

  83. fi ayyi waheda hina aladhi tikillam bi arabi?
    Ana zehgana. Ana uriid an akaaalim.
    Yes, i know their language.
    I had enough time to learn it in the labor camp in al hassa


    September 14, 2008 at 11:14 am

  84. Desmond Morris, in “The Human Zoo”, on stereotyping and racial hatred:

    “Let me illustrate what happens, using an imaginary example. These are the stages:

    1. Look at that green-haired man hitting a child.
    2. That green-haired man is vicious.
    3. All green-haired men are vicious.
    4. Green-haired men will attack anyone.
    5. There’s another green-haired man – hit him before he hits you. (The green-haired man, who has done nothing to provoke aggression, hits back to defend himself.)
    6. There you are – that proves it: green-haired men are vicious.
    7. Hit all green-haired men.”

    Replace green-haired man with nationality/religion/race of your choice – and you have the modern mindset.


    September 14, 2008 at 11:59 am

  85. Mmmm Jasmine I think you’re dead wrong on that one. I’ve got nothing against Arabs. I think their religion is bullshit — but that doesn’t mean I hate them.


    September 14, 2008 at 12:04 pm

  86. i have everything against them.
    but i don’t like feeling like that
    and i don’t know how to change it
    but i want to
    and then the anger just takes over

    ok, kg, cos i am going to tell the truth, i just lied to me psychologists and tricked them. I just lie, like this…..
    Pscyhologist: “Jaz, ure on a train and a arab man sits down opposite you and offers you a piece of applie pie, what do you do?”
    Me: Just say no thanks.
    Psychologist: “Ok, that’s very good, Jasmine. Now i want to ask u a serious question and i want u to think about it.”
    Me: OK then
    Psychologist: “You see a Arab man let’s say in the que in the bank. What does he look like?”
    Me: Normal. Just like a man in a line.
    Psychologist: “U sure.”
    Me: Yes.
    Psychologist: “So he looks like a human to you?”
    Me: “Yeah, like i told. They’re human in all ways and i don’t see them like I used to when I had me crack up.”
    Psychologist: “Thank u Jasmine. We’ll see u in three months time.”
    Me: “Ok, then, bye bye.”

    See, what i do is just lie and just pretend i see them as normal people, but i don’t, not since i was 15 and had me crack up. I saw them as like insects then, and i still do now. Human insects, that’s the level of mental damage i got.
    BUt i can cheat me psychologists everytime. In fac, i am totally unreconstucted.


    September 14, 2008 at 12:31 pm

  87. Kafir Girl, u ok and stuff?


    September 14, 2008 at 12:45 pm

  88. Some people reading this may think that atheism is a choice. It is not. Believing in God is a choice. So is deciding which God to believe in.
    Atheism is not a belief system. Ask any atheist, and most if not all will say they have no choice when it comes to being an atheist.

    The Atheist Jew

    September 16, 2008 at 7:28 am

  89. Agreed. I hope that’s not what people took away from this. My choice was just to let go of the excuses — to stop making excuses about Islam and to stop being scared of a word. You can’t *choose* to not believe in God any more than you can *choose* not to believe in Santa Claus.


    September 16, 2008 at 9:42 am

  90. Atheism is not a belief system. Ask any atheist, and most if not all will say they have no choice when it comes to being an atheist.

    OK, I’m any atheist. Your in good company, that’s the popular view/chant. But per this view children, the mentally challenged and people who have never heard of god are atheists. That’s convenient but I disagree with that view, atheism is the denial of gods, fairyism, hobbitism etc. not “lack of belief”, knowledge or understanding of them. Denial of gods based on “lack of belief” is no different then acceptance of god based on faith. I “lack of belief” therefore gods do not exist is no more sensible then I “lack of belief” therefore UFOs do not exist. You can no more prove that gods and alien anal probes don’t exist then those who believe can prove they do. I deny gods and anal probes not because I can disprove them but because the evidence and arguments for them failed to meet the criteria of my belief system, be it reason, logic, faith or something else.

    You say you have no choice when it comes to being an atheist, have you ever considered that the same thing may hold true for theists?


    September 16, 2008 at 12:42 pm

  91. Hmm, I have a hard time reading this post and the subsequent posts that show such a hatred for religion. I would humbly ask that we blame the persons responsible for doing evil things, and not the entirety of the followers of the same religion. I have seen people do great and wonderful things in the name of religion. Building homes for the poor, constructing hospitals, feeding the homeless, rebuilding communities are just a couple off of the top of my head. In the original picture I would love to see the words replaced with imagine no hatred, but there is no catchy Beatles song that says that. The amount of bad caused by religion is not proportional to the amount of good.


    September 16, 2008 at 11:50 pm

  92. Love — not gonna happen. Feel free to stop reading.


    September 17, 2008 at 7:42 am

  93. “The amount of bad caused by religion is not proportional to the amount of good.”

    That statement is just not right…It’s almost like asking us to gloss over one rape victim being convicted for BEING raped just because a hundred religious folks elsewhere are building homes for orphans and feeding the poor. This isn’t about balancing the good and the bad, and believe me, there’s an unimaginable amount of bad being committed in the name of religion right this second.


    September 17, 2008 at 7:57 am

  94. Sarah you hit the nail on the head. What this person is saying is that because people do good things in the name of religion, the religion must be good. And people who do bad things are just bad. (I’m going to take a wild guess and say this person is a Christian, because this is kinda standard churchie rhetoric). And on the flipside, I could run around doing good deeds WITHOUT religion — and I do. I suppose that means atheism is good and wonderful and everyone should deconvert pronto?


    September 17, 2008 at 8:03 am

  95. That’s just the thing. You shouldn’t need religion to do good. I’m not sure how to feel about people who do good in the name of religion. On one hand, I admit their deeds are probably really saving people. On the other, the whole thing is so insincere. Common sense says that if there are people in need and it’s within your means to help, it wouldn’t hurt to give them aid. You shouldn’t do it because you expect to be rewarded by some invisible guy in the sky.


    September 17, 2008 at 8:20 am

  96. If you’re doing something just to score brownie points with the big guy and to try to get into heaven, your good deeds are just ass-kissing. Meh.


    September 17, 2008 at 10:24 am

  97. Atheism isn’t a belief system?
    Yes it is, for me.
    I believe in the sanctity of the human being and her-his innate capacity for reason, logic and rationalism which will win in the end.
    One reason the Muslims will inherit civilization within the next 200 years and retard human development for perhaps a thousand years (don’t worry-it’s a temporary glitch, no worse than what the German barbarians did- note- whites retarded mediterranean ‘brown’ civilization so please not misuse me stuff for racist ideas), is that people refuse to state values and beliefs which means atheism offers nothing and is just another western gap for the most wretched and bankrupt, people who are almost subhuman in fact (in their beliefs)- to exploit.
    Thus atheism condmens itself.


    September 17, 2008 at 11:18 am

  98. Sarah, and where are rape victims likely to be convicted of being raped? Pakistan under Hudood and Gulf Sharia’ states. In Pakistan even people who attempt to report rape are threatened with death by Islamic qazi courts.
    That’s Islam.


    September 17, 2008 at 11:21 am

  99. The UN has like a index on quality of life and they found in religious countries, there’s like a inverse relationship between religion and quality of living, in other words, the more religious a country is- the MORE bad stuff there is.


    September 17, 2008 at 11:23 am

  100. Atheism isn’t a belief system?
    Yes it is, for me.

    Good for you, Captain Jaz! Deny religion for a reason, not lack of reason!


    September 17, 2008 at 11:54 am

  101. I think ure a starship trooper Gad, welcome to the fleet, SOLDIER!
    Do u want to know more?


    September 17, 2008 at 12:27 pm

  102. I will give u a example of religion and doing ‘good’, Islamic charities in Pakistan, thye are just feeding off of poor personages and terrible stuff like the earthquake and there was little kids freezing in the snow, just terrible it was, i cried for hours after seeing it on the news, cos they was just haveing nothing, no tents, no blankets, mum and dad was under the rubble also in many cases, then along came the bearded ones with their hand outs.The price….. must attend Qu’ranic classes in the camp if u want to get a free tent or daal, this is what we are meaning actually by EXPLOIATION- and when religion persons are doing good, so often they have a alterior motive u can say, case in point, exploitations of victims of the Pakistani winter earthquake by outside Islamic charities.


    September 17, 2008 at 12:48 pm

  103. huh, me comment is on mod, no way, it’s not fair, it’s TRUE what i am telling, this is what they done during the Pakistani earthquake.


    September 17, 2008 at 12:50 pm

  104. Jasmine, same thing keeps happening with Watercat and GAD. I have no idea why. Didn’t we just fix this same problem 3 weeks ago?? Yiish. What’s weirder is that there doesn’t seem to be any reason for which comments end up in mod and which don’t.

    Other WordPressers — help??


    September 17, 2008 at 1:02 pm

  105. Kafir Girl, it’s bad, but u know who can maybe give u some answers, Barefoot Bum, cos he is seriously computer aware, like he explained how ‘scripts’ kept locking me computer and he knows all all all about wordpress also


    September 17, 2008 at 1:26 pm

  106. Believing or not believing in God is a choice. So is the God they believe in. Sadly, many don’t realise it…


    September 17, 2008 at 1:29 pm

  107. Nandu, i don’t feel being murtad (a apostate) is a choice, i was just standing outside the prophet’s mosque in medina with a broken arm, just standing there outside gate 15 for ladies, when there was like a explosion in me head and i realized it’s all lies.
    Did i make a choice?
    No, i was minding me own business, just standing there in the sun, waiting for me dad and two brothers, me mum was inside the rowdah to make du’aa right infront of where prophet muhammad is buried (but in secret in her head so police don’t freak out), and i was just outside cos of me broken arm cos all the pushing and showing, i can’t go inside, then it just happened, but i didn’t ask for it, and i was doing nothing wrong also, just standing there.


    September 17, 2008 at 2:02 pm

  108. i just can’t accept Islam, it’s not i even choose not to, if i had a choice, u think i would volunteer to become a apostate at age 15 in Saudi Arab with no support network or nothing?


    September 17, 2008 at 2:03 pm

  109. i hope any girls who is in a similar situation will find their way to Kafir Girl and another safe Pakistani Girl’s blog that is number 1 in all ways. Internet is the only way we can communicate, even so, it’s got limits of course and dangers also.
    So many Pakistani girls are coming to this blog anyhow, for one girl who posts, hundreds more will come and look and read and just look in amazement.
    One day they will post and shout out also, like me, it took me 3 years to make me first post on the internet…..


    September 17, 2008 at 2:13 pm

  110. Jasmine,

    What you have described is the beginning of the search. You have started your spiritual journey… and it begins with negation. Mine also started like that. We cannot start to build till we demolish the old structures.

    Talk to me when you start your search. I’ll be interested in knowing the route of your spiritual journey.


    September 18, 2008 at 7:36 am

  111. Spiritual journey? Oh puh-lease.


    September 18, 2008 at 7:44 am

  112. Nandu, i am searching for a normal life, i want just to go to university to study history or maybe law, i want to live alone and not be bullied and i want to earn money and depend on no one. I am british and i want to live in UK where i was born, but i can’t go back cos religion has destoyed me relationship with me family, but i want to see me mum now, in fact i am desperate.
    Is what i want too much?
    I don’t think about spiritual stuff, it’s for happy people, i just want to survive, and i am asking no more than the basics that non muslim girls get….


    September 18, 2008 at 8:00 am

  113. kafir girl, me comment just disappeared, but when i try to repost its saying duplicate, but i can’t see it.


    September 18, 2008 at 8:09 am

  114. If you lived close to me I would love to invite you to my church. It is actually a great place and we do very good things for a lot of people.


    September 23, 2008 at 11:09 am

  115. And I would politely refuse. I’ve been to plenty of churches, thanks.


    September 23, 2008 at 12:09 pm

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