By misquoting the Quran and misrepresenting Islamic concepts, one of our state representatives tried to degrade Islam and humiliate its followers. He did this while politicking for legislation formerly known as the anti-shariah bill.
The official, who said he had spent ten years studying Islam, must have missed the chapters on dignity (izzat in Arabic). Otherwise, he would have known that neither his rant nor the bill he helped pass could lower the dignity of those who believe in God and obey Him.
That's because "honor belongs to God and His Prophet and the believers." (Quran 63: 8)
"A person who has izzat never gets insulted," says scholar Abbas Ayleya. "When we are grabbing on to the rope of God and we are connected to God's Power no one can insult us because no one can insult God."
Likened to a mountain, they are unmoved by the machinations of their opponents. Nothing can influence their spirituality nor erode their commitment to God and His principles of truth and justice.
Oh Yazid! Do you think that by making us prisoners...you have humiliated us in the sight of God and have earned respect for yourself?!
You feel that you have conquered the whole world and your affairs are organised and that our domain is now under you control… Are you forgetting that God says: 'Surely those who have bought unbelief at the price of faith shall do no harm at all to God, and they shall have a painful chastisement'?" (3:177)
Cowardice, apathy and dependence on others, on the other hand, is what truly humiliates a community or nation. It gives oppressors free reign to do as they will.
People who've tolerated oppression for decades are awakening to reclaim their honor through "Dignity Revolutions" all across the Middle East and Africa. One chant commonly heard during protests: "Disgrace is far away from us!"
To avoid similar humiliation, the rest of us must also keep opposing injustice and encourage our family and friends to do the same.