Welcome to plain Talk. This week, my focus on the debate for Liberia to be declared a Christian state. Read this quote: "Where knowledge ends, religion begins." Benjamin Disraeli
Over the past weeks, we have read and heard our Muslim brothers and sisters expressing their dissatisfaction over making Liberia a Christian sate. Some of the points raised were; the Muslim religion was in Liberia years ago, there would be division if such issue is enacted into law in the constitution.
The entire idea derived from the constitution review committee. This was one of the recommendations from citizens to the review committee. In one of its recommendations, it proposed that Liberia becomes a Christian state. The house decided to invite experts from both Christians and Muslim.
As soon as that was put forward, there was public hearing into it. Both Christians and Muslims were called to give opinion on it. That was indeed good. As soon as that went through, sooner, our Muslim brothers decided to hold press conference to issue various threats. In some, they suspended their membership from the Liberia Council of Churches, decided to form a separate ‘state’.
For me, I think making hasty decision at times, o not help. At times they lead to violent movement; which are unhealthy for any society. Show me one place on planet earth where violent has been applied as the main formula resolve issues?
I have followed with keen interest. Not that I am a Liberian, but as a journalist who loves to follow critical issues at times. From research carried out, almost most all the states which are considered Islamic countries have more Muslims population than Christians.
Take for example, the republic of Gambia with less than two million population president, Yaya Jameh woke up and declared the Gambia as an Islamic state. Even though there was Christianity there from the years of the British rule. Not one Christian held press conference or issued threat. I think the Muslims decided that it should be at that level. Christians and Muslims are worshiping without any problem.
But here, as soon as that was only discussed, series of threats were issued here and there. For me, the plain Talk is there is no need for big noise over these issues.
If the Christians decide to look at the population as is done by most of the Muslim states in Africa and the world, Muslim brothers do not need to make big issues about it.
For Liberia to be declared a Christian state, will not worship in their mosques, will their kids not attend the schools nor will Muslims not be allowed to become representatives or senators, etc? The plain Talk, is no.
Take for instance, almost all the countries in North Africa are Muslim states. There were Christians living there before. Have you seen any form of disturbance there?
Even to West Africa. In Mauritian, the entire country is Islam. In Mali, 95% of the overall population is Muslim. There are Christians Living there. But Christians decided to remain calm.
Their Muslim brothers did not stop them from worshiping or working. Rather, what happens at times in some of these Islamic states is the introduction of Sharia law. This is the body of Islamic law. The term means "way" or " path"; it is the legal framework within which the public and some private aspects of life are regulated for those living in a legal system based on Islam.
The point that I am driving at here is violent or protest does not improve or triumph in any civilized society.
There may be other people that may say the Muslim religion was in Liberia years back. Good. But it is important to know that earlier presence does not give justification for protest or equality. Granted that they were here years ago. What happened that there is not specific region or county for one to point at for them. Also, what has happened to the percentage?
I think we need to sit and look at some of these factors. Is it that they were in Liberia as traders moving from one place to the other and forgot to settle one place? Is it that they were commuting between Liberia and Guinea, or Liberia and other countries -without a clear way forward?
Can anyone question the rational of these countries of being in that category? Niger, Mauritania, Morocco or the Gambia.
The plain Talk for me is to go ahead with the debate and look at all the variables.
After all, we need to respect the values of others taking into consideration of the population of our country.
I leave you with this quote from: Abraham Lincoln
“My concern is not whether God is on our side; my greatest concern is to be on God's side, for God is always right.”