Hat-tip to Blazing Cat Fur for this story. Scaramouche! posted on Abubaker Kasim’s letter to Sophia Aggelonitis, the Minister of Consumer Services at the Ministry of Consumer Services in Toronto. According to Kasim, shopping malls should have to “multi-faith chapels” to “meet the spiritual needs of consumers.” Suffice to say, I agree with Scaramouche! on this one, that this is an attempt to push Islam through the guise of “multi-faith harmony.”
…As hospitals and airports have multi-faith centres to meet the needs of people, shopping centres have failed to pay attention to this vital and important area.
People who are responsible of running these places ought to be reminded about the countless benefits of having multi-faith chapels at shopping centers.
This initiative will generate more revenue by making these places more user-friendly and the atmosphere welcoming to people of diverse ethnic, religious and cultural backgrounds. We live in a multicultural society after all where the entire world has come together to form a country we all call home.
Having basic prayer areas will allow the faithful consumer to stay little longer in the mall and shop in peace without having to leave early in order to find a chapel, a mosque or synagogue.
A large percentage of consumers who frequently shop at these places are Muslims whose religious requirement is to pray five times a day. Having a larger Muslim population in the GTAA that is rapidly growing is something that shopping mall executives should keep in mind.
Other faithful communities also have to commit to their daily rituals such as the Orthodox Jews who have to pray 3 times a day.
Having a multi-faith center which would consist of a quite room will revolutionize the shopping mall industry. It does not even require a lot of money to organize such places. Just a basic room in the middle of the room will do the job.
Multi faith centres will certainly increase the clientele at shopping centers with people who would otherwise have not come to shop or would come in a hasty and quick manner so that they would not miss their prayers…
After reading the letter, I tried to post my own. As of now, it hasn’t been posted. I am pretty sure a coward like Kasim wouldn’t post it as he didn’t even have the courage to be honest about what he was asking for.
Dear Abubakar Kasim,
I found your letter through a link on Scaramouche’s website. He wrote a short post you should read.
So, in response to your call for “Multi-Faith Chapels” (MFCs), I have one word for you…
Simply put, you have no right to demand that private owners install such facilities in the shopping malls. Mall space is costly and I highly doubt any of these owners would sacrifice revenue in these hard economic times to fulfill your spiritual demands. And that is what they will be doing, sacrifice revenue.
You try to present an financial reason for these MFCs, but your logic is significantly flawed, but I assume you already know that. Take for example your reference to Orthodox Jews. Not only are they a very small percentage of the population, but due to their religious beliefs, don’t have a desire for a majority of the products sold in Canadian shopping malls. Same goes for other orthodox faiths which consider these products “sinful.” Catering to their needs would be a considerable waste of resources, but you knew that didn’t you? Matter of fact, I find this part of your argument rather disingenuous.
The truth is that your call is not for MFC, but a Muslim prayer room. Why else would you have made a reference to “a larger Muslim population in the GTAA that is rapidly growing”? It is so transparent so why bother pretending otherwise? I can only assume it is because you know that forcing mall owners to have space dedicated for a Muslim prayer room will be met with the same response I gave you earlier. No government body, be it federal or provincial would even dare proposing such legislation knowing that not only mall owners but the majority of Canadian would reject it outright. You don’t do yourself any service being dishonest.
So, once again, no. You have no right to force mall owners to meet your demands. No reasonable politician would support such a demand and no reason judge would enforce it.
No, no, and no again.
Northern Thoughts and Reflections
P.S. Mutliculturalism doesn’t give you the right to force your beliefs onto others. Be it in a shopping mall or in the public square.
I would have preferred to say that multiculturalism, as German Chancellor Angela Merkel pointed out, has failed and that Canada will not surrender its culture to appease his demands, but I am sure such a statement would have branded me an “Islamophobe.” The funny thing is that the concept of “Islamophobia,” an irrational fear of Islam, is ridiculous. How could one’s fear of such a hateful and violent religion be irrational? It doesn’t make sense.
In any event, shopping malls, unlike airports and hospitals, are privately owned. Kasim has no right to demand (you aren’t asking when you send a letter a like this one to a government office) that shopping mall owners have “multi-faith chapels” (which is the popular euphemism for Muslim prayer rooms). Would it surprise anyone that such policy is found in Saudi Arabia, where store owners must, by law, close up shop for daily prayers? Scaramouche! is right to call this what it is, a blatant attempt to impose Islam.
Abubaker Kasim is “testing the waters” with this letter. He is trying to see whether or not, as of now, government ministers will entertain such ideas. Hopefully Sophia Aggelontis will reply and say, as politely as she can, to quote Blazing Cat Fur, “Go F$%K Yourself.” Canada isn’t Saudi Arabia and it isn’t ruled by Sharia Law, so this nonsense will not be tolerated in this country. If you can’t accept that, then you obviously don’t belong here.