A video on YouTube shows a rough scene in Mönchengladbach, Germany. A large group of peaceful people are praying in the tradition of Islam and a lot of other people surround them and make very loud attempts to disturb the prayer.
The initial thought is to denounce the disturbers and help those peaceful men (as far as I could see, exclusively men), because after all – they are only praying. Give it another couple of seconds and another thought might cross your mind – why do they need to perform this religious act on the street, why not in a proper place of worship – we do know that there are thousands of Mosques in Germany.
This is not the first time, nor the first place, that Islamists try this subtle tactic. Sometimes under the delicate threat of public disturbance in order to get yet another Mosque building permit and sometimes just as a public show of strength the street prayer has been used all over Europe to show the locals who is running things. Run a quick search in YouTube and you will discover many videos of dazzled Parisians trying to figure out how to get from one part of the city to another and Londoners unable to cross the street – let alone drive through a public road. Videos from Moscow show a huge crowd taking over large part of a neighborhood – to the dismay of passers by.
So, with the risk of quickly being labeled “Islamophobe” we really need to conclude that anyone who ignores any idea of the public space and goes to pray at the expanse of others even thought there are plenty of indoors places of worship around is simply a thug who is pursuing a goal that is far beyond his own little piece of salvation. In simple words this is a violent and aggressive way to force a religious system upon a society that generally has no wish to even consider that religion.
Unfortunately it is clear that many of those anti street prayer demonstrators are not champions of liberalism and peace, and it seems evident that some are plain racist and fascist, it is important to resist this act and make sure that these people realize the fine lines that they should respect in Western societies.