June 25, 2013

Islam's Forbidden Dogs: Coming Soon to a Country Near You


Face it, Islam and Iran shouldn't happen to a dog:

Iranian mechanical engineer Azar poses for a picture with her Terrier dog Pony in her bedroom in Tehran, Iran, on May 28, 2013. For decades, pet dogs were rare and thus tolerated in Iran, where the Islamic beliefs cherished by the vast majority of traditional Iranians consider dogs as “najis,” or unclean. But in recent years the soaring number of pet dogs — owned by the middle class scattered across Iran with a keen interest on imitating Western culture — has alarmed the authorities who have now criminalized walking dogs in public, or driving them around the city. The police warning seems to have effectively scared dog lovers, forcing some to walk their dogs in secluded areas and ask for home calls by vets. Via KA-CHING!

"Almost cut my hair, it happened just the other day.
It's getting' kinda long, I coulda said it wasn't in my way.
But I didn't and I wonder why, I feel like letting my freak flag fly"

-- Crosby, Stills, and Nash

Once firmly established it's the small things that determine the frieze of a fascist dictatorship. Long ago, in that brief shining moment of Hippie Camelot, we used to say that one of the reasons for having long hair was "freedom." We used to say that if "the Man" could make you cut your hair, he could buy your soul. We were, of course, determined never to sell out.

In the final analysis, however, we didn't have to sell out. We bought in. And in buying in we never really had to hide our hairstyles or hide our dogs like Azar above. All we had to do was conform our minds and adjust our behavior to march in lock-step with the latest little, teeny-tiny, small, not-so-bad-at-all, very next baby step away from liberty and towards the creation of a really-much-better-you'll-see society of no offense and fine fairness to all. After all, all "nice people" do, so why wouldn't you?

The things we needed to do to be "nice people" were all, we were assured, such small things. They were all such minor adjustments. To your speech. To your thought. To your soul. We would, in trade, have a lot of freedom for sex and a lot of good feelings about always doing the "right thing." We would also be fed, and housed, and healed until it was the right thing to do to starve us and kill us "for the greater good." And with a final free hit of morphine off we'd go, smiling, with the Beatles "Sgt. Pepper" playing through our earbuds. After all, all "nice people" do, so why wouldn't you?

The rusted world of rulers and ruled, of satraps and slaves, we were making, inside our own minds and outside in our communities, would never, ever make us hide our hair and hide our dogs and cower in our rooms. No, we would always be free to let our "freak flag fly."

Wouldn't we?

Posted by gerardvanderleun at June 25, 2013 10:36 AM
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"It is impossible to speak in such a way that you cannot be misunderstood." -- Karl Popper N.B.: Comments are moderated and may not appear immediately. Comments that exceed the obscenity or stupidity limits will be either edited or expunged.

“…Islamic beliefs cherished by the vast majority of traditional Iranians consider dogs as “najis,” or unclean.”


Posted by: tim at June 25, 2013 11:49 AM

Yesterday I put up a quote from Mary Oliver : "I believe in kindness. Also, in mischief." Jewel asked me what kind of mischief. I told her I thought that liberty minded people are just naturally mischievous. We were born before PC, and we got a taste of real liberty.

Posted by: Leslie at June 25, 2013 4:01 PM

Better to be a good person than a nice person.

Posted by: Mikey NTH at June 25, 2013 4:43 PM

I aim to misbehave.

Posted by: Mumblix Grumph at June 25, 2013 7:02 PM

I'm not sure that keeping a dog is merely based on a "middle class scattered across Iran with a keen interest on imitating Western culture." Dogs were very highly esteemed by the ancient Persians, and still hold a very interesting position in Zoroastrian culture (See Mary Boyce's delightful "A Persian Stronghold of Zoroastrianism.") I might also mention the early Arabic-lanugage book by the Persian author Muhammad Ibn Khalaf Ibn Al-Marzuban, "The Book of the Superiority of Dogs Over Many of Those Who Wear Clothes."

Posted by: Punditarian at June 26, 2013 2:22 AM

What the hell are you talking about?
The very same liberal fascists who are now running things are precisely the ones who emphasized letting their freak flag fly, beginning in the 60's. So, yes, in America at least, you will always be free to show your hair and your tattooes and because in the West to be a freak is to be anti-middle class (bourgeois). And we will trade away all our other freedoms just so long as they leave us our right to sex drugs and rock n' roll.

Posted by: anonymous at July 7, 2013 12:20 PM

There's this difficult concept and tone. It is known in the trade as "irony." Study on this concept that you might here the bell when it is sounded.

Posted by: vanderleun at July 7, 2013 12:41 PM

Soylent Green is People!!!!!!

Posted by: Adam at July 15, 2013 5:36 PM