Eine Kleine Nichtmusik

Witty and pertinent observations on matters of great significance OR Incoherent jottings on total irrelevancies OR Something else altogether OR All of the above

Sunday, April 10, 2011

The Jimmy Challenge - Part One

I was looking through old posts over at Keep Tony Blair For PM as part of the argument Uncle Jimmy and I were having over at Peter Reynolds's blog. I discovered a challenge from Jimmy which I'd missed as I hadn't been back to the particular comment thread since (and of course Jimmy banned me not long afterwards anyway). It seems only fair to take up the gauntlet.

Here is the original exchange of comments:

Extracts from comments under http://keeptonyblairforpm.wordpress.com/2010/11/14/bbc-bias-1-remembrance-day-2010-cenotaph-whitehall-london/

keeptonyblairforpm Says: November 15, 2010 at 1:17 pm

OK, Rob, you’re not entirely evil either – just naive or blinded by your commitment to “liberal” values. The kind of values which drives so-called “liberals” (in the live and let live/die mode) NEVER or at least SELDOM to criticise Muslim cultural/religious niceties imported here such as honour killings, female genital mutilation and multiple marriages.

Rob Says: November 16, 2010 at 4:00 am

Incidentally honour killings, FGM and multiple marriages are in no way Muslim innovations: the USA had all of them until recently and while FGM is more of an African thing we has the others in antiquity here too. Not clever, not modern, and certainly not “liberal” but not Muslim either.

keeptonyblairforpm Says: November 16, 2010 at 11:48 am


I think you are UTTERLY and completely wrong about what the USA had until recently – honour killings, FGM, multiple marriages. Provide a link to prove yourself NOT lying. If present at all in the USA they were brought in by NON-westerners.

All are Muslim. Clearly so. Cease your idle prattle, or provide links to prove your points.

So the challenge is to find examples (not Muslim, and not brought in by non-Westerners) of each of the following (1) in the USA and (b) in Britain or Europe:

  • multiple marriages

  • female genital mutilation

  • honour killings.

In this post I'll start with multiple marriages, because that one's so easy it's like shooting fish in a barrel. Hands up all those of you who know the most famous, and indisputably all-American, practitioners of polygamy in the USA? I'm guessing you mostly got the Mormons, right? Did you know they were still at it?

Overall in Utah today, those living in polygamist families number about 40,000 people, or about 2 percent of the population

And while A very small minority of American Muslims also practice polygamy it's abundantly clear that the Mormons are America's main polygamists, and that they didn't pick up the idea from non-Western immigrants, however much Jimmy might like to pretend otherwise. So - Jimmy caught out in one blatantly absurd lie. STRIKE ONE.

Though he might have got away with it if it hadn't been for those pesky Mormons. It was actually rather harder to find European examples of non-Muslim polygamy. This interesting if quite lengthy article is probably the best source. Clearly there isn't any indigenous European polygamy still going on, and we don't even seem to have been heavily into it in the past:

In Europe obligatory monogamy is a time-honoured institution: it was not first introduced by Christianity. Roman marriage was monogamous. Liaisons between married men and mistresses were not uncommon by the close of the Republic, but a relation of that kind was not considered lawful concubinage in after times; according to Paulus, a man who had a wife (uxor) could not have a concubine (concubina) at the same time.

There can be little doubt that monogamy was the only recognised form of marriage in Greece: a second marriage seems to have presupposed the dissolution of the first, or at all events to have given the first wife the right to dissolve her marriage. Concubinage, however, existed at Athens at all times, and was hardly censured by public opinion. But it was well distinguished from marriage: it conferred no rights on the concubine, and the children were " bastards ".

Polygyny occurred among the ancient Slays, but generally, it seems, only chiefs and nobles were addicted to it.

Among the West Germans, according to Tacitus, only a few persons of noble birth had more than one wife.

Among the Anglo-Saxons there is no direct evidence of polygyny, but it cannot have been entirely unknown among them, as it is prohibited in some of their lawbooks.

The general custom among the ancient Irish was to have one wife, but we sometimes find a king or chief with two.

It has been assumed that polygyny occurred in ancient Gaul; but this assumption is based on a probable misinterpretation of the word uxores in a statement made by Caesar, where this plural seems to be simply due to the plural viri.

The laws of ancient Wales did not permit polygyny.

The trend of marriage in pre-Christian Europe has thus been distinctly monogamous.

Though later on:

In 1650, soon after the Peace of Westphalia, when the population had been greatly reduced by the Thirty Years' War, the Frankish Kreistag at Nuremberg passed the resolution that thenceforth every man should be allowed to marry two women.' Certain Christian sects have even advocated polygyny with much fervour. In 1531 the Anabaptists openly preached at Munster that he who wants to be a true Christian must have several wives.

I suppose Christians were "non-Western" immigrants into Europe......


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