Thursday, September 25, 2008

Ahmadinejad Honors Rev Sinkford

UUA writes,
The UU delegation left the meeting convinced that President Ahmadinejad was sincere in pursuing a relationship with the American people and the U.S. government. Rev. Sinkford remarked, “I could not imagine the current U.S. president taking the time to honor questions about his actions the way Ahmadinejad did today.”
I can only think Ahmadinejad honored Sinkford's questions because Sinkford disgracefully failed to speak a word of solidarity for someone like Ayatollah Boroujerdi below during his arrest (see the YouTube), or the Sufis, or Bahais, or all the Iranian people suffering Ahmadinejad's oppressions. Sinkfords words will be thrown in their faces, in their cells, as their guards mock how we've abandoned them.
…Tell the world that Boroujerdi did not fear death…. He defended an Islam which promotes love and kindness not the Islam that these lot advocate which has brought poverty, corruption, prostitution, addiction ….I don’t want you to risk your lives for me, I just want you to tell the world what happened here,.
What a sad moment for Unitarian Universalism.

5 comments:

Robin Edgar said...

Thanks for posting this Bill. I got the heads up about UUA President Bill Sinkford's meeting with Iranian President Ahmadinejad via a Google Alert yesterday. It brought to mind this eerily "prophetic" parody of U*Uism titled 'Ahmadinejad Preaches at Unitarian Church' that was posted on the appropriately titled Moonbattery blog exactly a year to the day prior to President Ahmadinejad's "preaching" at President Sinkford. . . ;-)

I find it interesting, and quite revealing, that UUA President Bill Sinkford said -

"I could not imagine the current U.S. president taking the time to honor questions about his actions the way Ahmadinejad did today."

Doesn't President George W. Bush take the time to honor much harder questions about his actions in a much more forthright way than Ahmadinejad did on September 24th on an almost daily basis?

"The reports we receive about the treatment of women and political dissidents in Iran raise questions and concerns for us. Is Iran moving towards allowing its citizens more freedom of choice and affiliation? Is the government working towards equality for women in public life? Are protections being created for citizens who identify with different political parties, religious beliefs, and sexual orientations?

After saying,

"The reports we receive about the treatment of women and political dissidents in Iran raise questions and concerns for us."

UUA President Bill Sinkford asked three specific questions -

1. Is Iran moving towards allowing its citizens more freedom of choice and affiliation?

2. Is the government working towards equality for women in public life?

3. Are protections being created for citizens who identify with different political parties, religious beliefs, and sexual orientations?

He then concluded by saying, "Our governments and our cultures are very different. Given those basic differences, I would like to hear from you how the U.S. and Iran can best work together to find non-violent resolutions to our differences."

It seems to me that Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad deftly sidestepped almost all of those questions and *concerns* that President Sinfkord shared with him. At least the UUA article acknowledges this fact by saying -

Bruce Knotts recognized that President Sinkford’s question went largely unaddressed, "As a fairly new UU, Rev. Sinkford’s question makes me proud. I regret that Ahmadinejad only addressed the gender issue and avoided the more uncomfortable subjects."

I am really not sure what "fairly new UU" Bruce Knotts has to be proud about with respect to President Bill Sinkford's questions given the fact that President Ahmadinejad "avoided" aka totally evaded the more uncomfortable subjects such as the treatment of women and political dissidents in Iran, Iran moving towards allowing its citizens more freedom of choice and affiliation, and protections for citizens of different political ideologies, religious beliefs, and sexual orientations.

I dare say that President Sinkford's words will soon be thrown back in his face. . . Thanks again for helping me to get started as it were. ;-)

Bill Baar said...

I forgot about the parody...which isn't very funny now (if it every was)..

...it's a sad moment for UUism for sure..

thanks Robin

Anonymous said...

To follow up on Robin's comment, isn't UUA President Bill Sinkford's comment there about the current administration a blatant slap at the first principle? Whatever happened to the inherent worth and dignity of everyone?

If this were Mr. Bill Sinkford saying this, I wouldn't have a huge problem with it. If it were Rev. Bill Sinkford saying it, well, I'd probably wonder about such things coming from the pulpit. But UUA President Bill Sinkford, a democratically elected representative of our faith, saying such things? It's not just embarassing, but also hypocritical.

Here's a question: will Sinkford's comments alienate more moderate and right-leaning UUs and force them to find other spiritual outlets? Aren't they the people that this faith tradition is supposed to be looking to include, rather than exclude?

Robin Edgar said...

You might want to put in your common sense worth here Bill -

http://forpeace.net/blog/more-reflections-ahmadinejad-meetings

Robin Edgar said...

BTW Since President Ahmadinejad did not deign to answer most of President Sinkford's questions and concerns during the FOR meetings I have gone to the trouble of providing some pretty obvious answers here and here.

It only just occurs to me now that I have quite literally made President Sinkford face the music with the latter blog post.