a difference of opinion

A:    Stalin was truly evil.  Look at the number of people he killed. I would group him in with Hitler and Pol Pot.

S:    I think evil is a very subjective term. I think there are types of evil.

A:    What do you mean…

S:    Well, the Taliban who shoots at girls is evil right?

A:    Yes. Killing is objectively wrong.

S:    But he also prays five times a day, know the Quran by heart, he thinks he is serving god when he kills “ungodly” things, he gives zakat and charity, and begs God for forgiveness… is he still evil? I think he is still evil, but many would disagree.

A:    Then evil is of two kinds. One that is blatant; lying, cheating, stealing, hurting people. And the other this is evil disguised as good.

S:    That the real problem I think. Evil disguised as good. One can lock up a serial killer, or a murdered, but not the religiously pious husband who beats his wife, or the father who makes sure that his daughter does not have the rights his son has...

A:    But Sadiq, are those criminal offences?

S:    Should they not be?

A:    Telling your daughter not to leave the house without a male escort or family is hardly evil.

S:    Oh, so this one hit home. Ameen, anything that cages a human being is not good, even of it is a loving father worried about his honor. All pain is not physical, and a lot of the pain in our society is mental. From forced marriages to forced conversions we have parents and mullahs and grand parents just pushing at us. No one should have the right to cause pain, even a parent. If it causes pain, it is evil.

A:    Well that’s not very subjective now is it?