How Can I Keep From Singing?*

Rebecca Loanita, Etty Pangesti,Ratna Mala BangunHere we go again. Ten thousandth verse same as the first, a little bit louder and a little bit worse (anybody hoarse yet?) Three women are going to jail in Indonesia. They were found guilty of trying to convert Muslim children to Christianity.

Here’s what they did: they had a “Happy Weekend” event for their Christian children. Sounds like bible camp, maybe? Evidently, some Muslim children attended and so the women were charged with breaking the law enacted in 2002, a law entitled The Child Protection Act. Under its statutes, it is unlawful to use “deception, lies and incitement” to convert a child to another religion. Ummm…isn’t that taqiyya? Oh. Right. Only when it’s in the cause of Allah. Otherwise it’s a criminal offense.

Evidently the trial has been a big event. For four months Rebecca Loanita, Etty Pangesti and Ratna Mala Bangun were in the dock, defending themselves against charges brought by (tah dah. Drum roll please) The Indonesian Council of Mullahs.

     The three women had organised a week-end of songs, games and outings for Christian children alone, an element that their attorneys had stressed but that the court in Indramavu (West Java) chose to disregard it on the grounds that non-Christian children were present.

Now there’s a conundrum for you: arrange a time for fun and games for the Christian children and if any little Muslim kids show up, drop kick them into the nearest mosque. Now that would be real Christian behavior, wouldn’t it?

It goes without saying that the Mullahs used the trial as an entertainment for themselves. They brought a casket into court and said they would bury the women should they be acquitted. They demanded the death penalty, etc, etc, ad tedium, ad Allahu akbar, ad eternitatum.

Here’s a thought for any Christian Arabs: take a page from the Jewish book: avoid other religions. Keep your children where they can’t be exposed to other sects. Don’t allow the Muslim children in. You’ll be safer and so will the children. The Jews didn’t survive all these years by acting like the Salvation Army.

These women are fortunate. Three years in jail is better than being stoned to death, a fate ardently desired for them by the Mullahs. Of course, the case is on appeal so it could get worse.

Someone ought to at least put on the table the notion of quitting while you’re behind. There is such a thing, surely even for lawyers, as knowing when to fold ’em.

Hat tip, Nathan in The Belmont Club comments.

*Hymn, How Can I Keep From Singing? here. The words were adapted by Pete Seeger and any mention of Christ was removed. An extra verse about tyrants was added to make the song more political. It was this second version that Enya recorded.

One thought on “How Can I Keep From Singing?*

  1. Three years in jail is better than being stoned to death, a fate ardently desired for them by the Mullahs

    Just terrific. Three years for a Sunday school sing-song, and less then two years for planning and organising the Bali massacre.

    I’m now more certain then ever, that I was right in not donating money to any charity that would spend my money in Indonesia. I knew that it would not be received gratefully – it would be regarded as their just due, as allah made us open our wallets. In addition, the moneys will be used as a lever against Christians in Aceh and other places in Indonesia.

    If you donate in future for such catastrophes, please consider the Barnabus Fund as well. Then atleast some funds gets to the most marginalised and victimised people on earth – Christians in muslim nations.


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