Conflicting Stories About an African Country Banning Islam
FINDING: There’s a bit of an uproar and skepticism around a story that the sub Saharan country of Angola may ban — or at least not legalize — Islam.
IMPLICATIONS: We’ll have to wait and see what facts emerge and even then, given how public opinion causes officials to give a “new spin” to actions taken and things said, we may never know the intentions behind comments allegedly made by public officials from Angola. But what if some African country banned Islam? Would that country make itself a target for the more radical elements within Islam? Or, would it become a safe haven for those who favor greater connection to the west? Might this political posture spread to other nations? Or, would it vilify the nation that assumes this posture?
It is interesting to note that some westerners may make more “noise” about an African country banning Islam than they would about an African country banning Christianity. One implication might be the loss of the unifying factor a religion can bring. In order to progress, Africa may need a strictly religious phase to bring tribes together around one banner and to help eradicate the superstitions and behaviors that allow an epidemic like AIDS to spread. But which religion can best accomplish this? Islam, Christianity, Western Secularism, Buddhism, or some other religion with the capacities to transform behavior and bring tribes and people together under one umbrella?
It is difficult at this point to determine which quotes may be accurate. Having said that, here’s an alleged statement from the minister of Culture, Rosa Cruz: “The process of legalization of Islam has not been approved by the Ministry of Justice and Human Rights. Their mosques would be closed until further notice.”