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RELIGION: Mea culpa, mea maxima culpa

George Sassiin says: "One of the problems of Islam is that only Allah may be perfect, which is an excellent excuse for slapdash work. I knew a man who worked for the British Army as a mechanic on Chieftain tanks. Some of these were sold to the Shah of Persia/Iran and he was sent out to train Iranian mechanics. He came back a nervous wreck. They could not even be persuaded to tighten a nut properly. Also, the culture has nothing but contempt for people who work with their hands. The only respected occupations are buying, selling, and taking bribes".

My comment: Muslims make excellent carpets, but leave a tiny corner unfinished since only Allah is perfect. They used to be excellent craftsmen, and were renowned in medieval Spain. I suspect that what George reports has something to go with the decline of the Muslim world. Can someone tell me what the Koran says about work? As for contempt for people who work with their hands, that was like the Europe I grew up in, but it was not contempt; it was rather like the attitude toward blue-collar workers in the US. Has the Americanism "blue-collar worker" been adopted in England?. Now people who appear on TV often wear blue shirts, since it shows up better.

Ronald Hilton - 9/17/02