Persecution And Human Rights

1136 Words 5 Pages
Persecution in the name of religion has occurred throughout history and continues around the globe. Expressions of persecution may be subtle and individual, such as the teasing of an Islamic child for wearing a head covering, to acute and global, such as terrorist attacks and war. The study of religious persecution is more than the study of an interesting phenomenon: It is the study of a violation of human rights. Sociologists can add to the understanding of religious persecution and aid in its reduction or elimination by helping to develop better definitions of religious persecution, investigating and articulating its antecedents, and by devising ways to neutralize religious persecution in an effort to promote world-wide human rights.
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The harassment of an Islamic girl for wearing a hijab or of an orthodox Jewish boy for wearing a yarmulke are contemporary examples of religious persecution on a small scale as is the prejudice shown toward a Christian in the workplace who actively tries to evangelize. All are behaving according to the tenets of their respective religions and are being mistreated because of it. Persecution of individuals and groups on the basis of religious beliefs or demonstrations of religiosity is still alive on a large scale, as the conflicts between Hindus and Muslims in India, the Chinese government persecution of the Falun Gong sect, or the religious persecution of Christians in Pakistan …show more content…
Individuals or groups are persecuted on the basis of their religious beliefs and practices for a number of reasons. Perhaps most obvious of these is persecution on the basis of religious ideology, doctrine, or belief. Examples of this kind of religious persecution include the persecution of Hindus by Muslims in India or the terrorist attacks perpetrated by Islamic extremists on the World Trade Center, the London Underground, and the U.S.S. Cole. Intolerance and religious persecution is not only perpetrated by adherents of Islam. The Crusades are an example of religious persecution of the severest type, and was perpetrated by Christians against the Muslim world. Although some religions such as Hinduism teach tolerance and are open to the teachings of other religions, others do not. Some religions teach that there is only one way to know and please God. When groups have mutually exclusive perspectives on how this is done, conflict in the form of religious persecution is a frequent result. This particularly becomes a problem when fundamentalist sects perceive that members of another religion with opposing and mutually exclusive views are threatening their own quality of life, recognized position of being right, or even their very survival. For example, it was a fundamentalist sect of Islam that

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