The Blasphemy law, as expanded illegally by General Zia ul Haq, effectively prevents Sunni Sufi and Shia Muslims from practicing their faith. An essential part of faith is to rebuff, condemn and disassociate (Lanaat) oneself from the acts of despots and usurpers like the Omayyad Caliph Yazeed.
Disassociation (Laanat) is the mystical anti-thesis to militant violence. It is a reflective, peaceful and cathartic way to oppose oppression of all kinds and adopt patience while rejecting violence upon others.
A Shia Muslim was the first to be handed the death sentence based on the Blasphemy law. This was fairly recent but we heard no condemnation by Pakistani liberals about this. If they had taken a more honest and clear stance, the situation may have been different for Junaid Hafeez.
This liberal hypocrisy is best encapsulated by hypocrites like Jibran Nasir. In a Hussain Day conference at a Karachi university (IBA), Jibran advocates both for and against the Blasphemy Law! All in a matter of minutes. It is a matter of shame as to why this prejudiced sectarian was asked to speak on the event in the first place.
Jibran, in his typical hammy and self righteous style, extorted the audience to “speak the truth”. A few sentences later, he told them to suppress the truth if it is not expedient or harms their interests. To top it all off, his reasoning for this duplicity was “listen to your (Shia) clerics and scholars” who are begging you to stop being critical of certain historical personalities.
If this blatant double standard was not enough, Jibran asked the audience to oppose the Blasphemy law. All within the same 10 minute speech.
Within this short span of time, Jibran contradicted himself repeatedly. Clearly, he knows that his cult following will never question the irony, duplicity or hypocrisy of his talking points.
These contradictions lie at the heart of the Blasphemy debate. When it comes to these contradictions, Pakistan’s liberals and Sipah e Sahaba are on the same page and have the same talking points.
And this duplicitous liberal narrative, now being rehashed by Nayadaur, is exactly why we are unable to formulate a narrative against discriminatory and dictator-inserted legislation like the Blasphemy law.