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October 9, 2007

Another Cause of Islam's Image Problem

David Thompson offered a few thoughts on a Times article a couple of days ago that you don't want to miss. Apparently Muslim medical students are demanding qualifications they haven't earned and Muslim checkout staff are refusing to handle alcohol:

"Some Muslim medical students are refusing to attend lectures or answer exam questions on alcohol-related or sexually transmitted diseases because they claim it offends their religious beliefs. Some trainee doctors say learning to treat the diseases conflicts with their faith, which states that Muslims should not drink alcohol and rejects sexual promiscuity. A small number of Muslim medical students have even refused to treat patients of the opposite sex. One male student was prepared to fail his final exams rather than carry out a basic examination of a female patient. The religious objections by students have been confirmed by the British Medical Association (BMA) and General Medical Council (GMC), which both stressed that they did not approve of such actions.

It will intensify the debate sparked last week by the disclosure that Sainsbury's is permitting Muslim checkout operators to refuse to handle customers' alcohol purchases on religious grounds. It means other members of staff have to be called over to scan in wine and beer for them at the till."

It isn't clear who is to foot the bill for the additional staffing and training required to accommodate this latest sensitivity, and customers will no doubt be expected to quietly accept the inconvenience - and the implied insult regarding their choice of beverage. Signs of customer impatience at this unfolding farce risk being construed as 'Islamophobic' and thus indicating unspeakable wickedness.
Catch it all, along with the link to the Times article, at Arrogance and Knowledge ...

Cross posted from Hyscience

Posted by Richard at October 9, 2007 10:32 PM

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