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Splendor in the Sand

©2007, Jack Trimpey. All rights reserved.

A British couple visiting Dubai was recently observed warned by police against having sexual intercourse in a public place, a sandy, public beach which was obviously under the jurisdiction of Islamic law. Later on, they were once again found in their flagrant embrace, deterred neither by fear of arrest nor even by sand itself. As might be expected, they were arrested, charged with public indecency, and now face six years in prison, where they presumably will not have convenient access to each other.

News agencies have seized upon this lurid news story as an example of the intransigence and moral excess of Islamic law, as if one nation must accommodate the cultural traditions and moral standards of their tourists and other visitors. Although I do not endorse such draconian punishments for the crimes this couple committed, I strongly support Dubai’s sovereign right to punish any crime any way they so choose. If they chose to publicly execute this couple through whatever primitive means their traditions may call for, I would grieve for them and their families, and certainly look with moral condescension upon a theocracy so given to moral excess. I would feel great pride in my own ancestral heritage and in the founding traditions of the United States of America which preclude such cruel and unusual punishment. In the American tradition, we legislate morality by creating laws of justice tempered by reason and compassion. Our lawmaking is an inexact art, to be sure, but a sign of human consciousness at work.

An interesting side note to this is that the couple had been drinking, which adds a uniquely American dimension to this international incident. In American courts, this couple may have only faced minor, misdemeanor charges, drunk or sober. If drunk at the time of the offense, however, they may have found considerable leniency in that fact, and the judge may have compassionately sentenced them to “counseling,” or into recovery groups consisting of other lowlife suffering from mysterious biopsychosocial anomalies such as “alcoholism,” and “sexual addiction.”

Yes, we can see an oceanic gulf between “primitive” Islamic theocracy and the New Primitivism carried forward by the American social service system. In Dubai, sin is illegal. In America, sin has transmuted into disease. In Dubai, if you do the crime, you do the time. In America, you may do the crime, cop a disease, and do one day at a time in the spiritual shackles of recoveryism — for life. In Dubai, you are assumed to have free will, able to restrain bodily desires according to laws. In America, you are presumed unable to obey the law due to a constellation of biopsychosocial factors which dispose you to break the law, and referred into political re-education. In other words, our traditional judicial philosophy has come to deny free will, justifying antisocial conduct based upon the intensity of desire, resulting in a radical change in mainstream thinking and public behavior. More and more, we are animals in a large sanctuary regulated by social policies, rather than free souls seeking liberty and happiness.

Six years in prison for a roll in the sand will be a heavy penalty for stupidity, if this couple is convicted. But when they are free again in 2014, they will truly be free to continue their lives as free souls, emotionally battered of course by the ordeal, but nevertheless free to start over, climb back into their family trees, and make whatever they wish out of their terrible vacation in Dubai. I doubt they would be overweight from being provided imported fast-food based upon cultural sensitivity, nor would they be court-ordered to participate in programs delving into why they screwed up on the beach, nor would they be granted proactive forgiveness for future “relapses.” In fact, I imagine either of them might be executed for ever again defying the law of the land in this particular way.

Had they committed their erotic error on American sand, 2014 would see them six years “sober,” at best, or more likely, wound down from six years life on the wild side, and headed toward the docile, burnout state called, “in recovery.” They would hate their genetic origins and original, dysfunctional families, and have no identity higher than “grateful, recovering alcoholic.” More likely, they would not have been prosecuted at all, in the mistaken belief that public morality should not be legislated. That belief has resulted in radical social changes that only 20 years ago would have been uniformly rejected as improbable futurism or humanistic fantasy. Not long before that, the words “pregnant” and “brassiere” could not be said on TV, in strong contrast to current standards which broadcasts dinner-time drug ads which cutely suggest emergency medical services if the product evokes four-hour erections.

Although I disagree that the penalty for sexual error should ever be death, I believe that sovereign Dubai is entirely entitled to impose any sentence it chooses upon persons duly convicted, regardless of their personal values. When you travel into a sovereign, foreign nation, you are subject to the laws of that land, no matter how much you may disagree with them. It is most unwise to enter a foreign country with the idea that you are or should be exempt from the laws and taboos of that culture. Sadly, we have little expectation that our own citizens conduct themselves according to traditional cultural standards, much less those who cross our borders to escape the tyrannies of their homelands.

8 Responses to “Splendor in the Sand”


  1. Mike

    Perfectly said.

  2. Jack Anderson

    I completely agree with you Jack, as far as you take it — I understand the larger point you were making was about choices we make. I see also a discussion of newcomers and visitors respecting their new countries traditions etc.

    You said:

    “As if one nation must accommodate the cultural traditions and moral standards of their tourists and other visitors” and

    “When you travel into a sovereign, foreign nation, you are subject to the laws of that land, no matter how much you may disagree with them. It is most unwise to enter a foreign country with the idea that you are or should be exempt from the laws and taboos of that culture.”

    But Muslims in general don’t let that get in their way of demanding that we in the West accommodate them.

    It should be troubling to us all that Muslims in Europe, and to a growing extent in America, are agitating for sharia law. Polygamy, blood money, honor killings, Ramadan accommodation by non-muslims, blaring the call to prayer five times a day, divorce by the male simply by repeating “I divorce you” three times, wearing the hijab in public schools, etc.

    Exactly how many Christian churches are there in Saudi Arabia, the home of Mohammed and considered the holiest place in Islam? None. But they have no problem demanding that more and more mosques be built in the West.

    At this point in history the West doesn’t have the clear, definitive view of its culture to withstand the Islamic confidence in its culture. I hope that changes.

    http://www.jihadwatch.org is the best site I’ve found to learn what’s coming this way. Jack A.

  3. DCNatsFan

    Actually, it would appear that Dubai is ahead of the West in this regard. They view a drunken public display of sex as the gross abomination that it is, as opposed to the “disease” that so many 12 steppers would make it out to be. If I were to get in trouble under the influence of alcohol, I would find it more humane to be hauled up as an adult who should have known better, as opposed to a poor sick disease victim who needs supervision.

  4. JR

    To rebut the anti-Islam spammer, and to bring some balance to the first name Jack, I must interject. I can’t have cyberspace thinking that for every Jack that starts an excellent website (that I only found now, shockingly enough), there is a wacko who watches Fox News with a pencil and pad, taking notes from Bill O’Reilly’s squawk-box.

    Your jihadwatch.com is nothing more than a racist website set up by people who want us to bomb the Middle East into oblivion. Perhaps they’re old-school Jews who hate everyone who isn’t Jewish, and perhaps they’re defense contractors. It doesn’t matter anyway. There is no problem of “radical Islam” – especially vis-a-vis terrorism.

    Terrorist activity in the U.S. has been nil since 9/11, and was nil prior to it, if you take away the OKC bombing (FBI & SPLC provoked, and possibly carried out) and WTC ’93 (FBI provoked; McVeigh isn’t Muslim anyway). Fake bombs get through TSA constantly, and yet we’ve not seen one explode on an airliner. Meanwhile, overseas, the people that get bombed and beheaded overseas are consistently those who would oppose U.S./Israeli interests. They tell us that so-and-so was pro-Wahabbist, and that he was killed by “gunmen.” But who were the gunmen? Cui bono?

    PEACE

    JJR

    To The Readers: This post by JJR is off-topic and below standards of responsible discussion. Similar posts with confused, political radicalism will be rejected or removed. — Jack Trimpey

  5. hockley

    This is off topic!
    I quit on my own. I used AVRT, or my version, before I read about RR. It is commonplace for people to quit or moderate on their own. I am not unusual. Now, life is quite normal.

  6. Brian A. Asbury

    Well said, Mr. Trimpey. If you enter a nation whose law says no shrinking heads in public, you are subject to that law, whether you think it’s unreasonable and ridiculous or not. It would be nice if there was less of a tolerance in our legal system for blatant, willful drunken misbehavior, yeah?

  7. Jack Anderson

    @Jack Trimpey, thank you for leaving both of the above comments in place. Here’s an update to the story you posted and originally discussed.

    From Newsday.com, http://www.newsday.com/news/nationworld/ny-world175886786oct17,0,4370318.story

    “A British couple was sentenced by a Dubai court to three months in prison for a drunken escapade that supposedly led to sex on the beach and a clash between Western permissiveness and Islamic values. Vince Acors, 34, and Michelle Palmer, 36, each were fined $272 for drinking alcohol and ordered to be deported immediately upon leaving prison. They were charged with having unmarried sex after a taxi took them from a Champagne brunch at a five-star hotel to Jumeirah beach in Dubai. Palmer had claimed that they were only kissing and hugging, and that a medical report showed they did not have sex.”

  8. Dan Mc

    What on earth does liberalism have to do with recovery or drug addiction?? It’s an outside issue. There is absolutely NO correlation between pot smoking and political views anymore than compulsive over-eaters and political views. (By the way they’re the same disease.) Mr. Trimpey is obviously a conservative. That’s his business. But he’s allowing his views to “color” his point of view. We all do it but when one is working a good program of recovery, we become AWARE that we’re doing it. Then we can uncover, discover and discard those character defects (ego) that cause us to feel “better than” others which ultimately separate us from our fellow man, isolate us and ultimately drink or use again. All one has to do is look at all the right-wing christian teenagers in Orange County California who smoke pot on a daily basis, to disprove his theory. The Orange County area is one of the most conservative areas in our nation. Alcoholism (the disease includes all mind altering chemicals and here’s a revelation for you: It’s not what we put in our bodies, it’s why we put it there.) is a disease of perception. Mr. Trimpey has obviously not done “the work” necessary to recover or he wouldn’t be judging someone based on their political views. Or maybe he’s not even a recovering person; but whether someone is a liberal or conservative is completely irrelevant. I judged everyone 10.5 years ago. before I got sober and did and continue to do the work. I had to. Because I hated myself so much, it was the only way (besides drugs and alcohol) I had to feel better about myself. According to the latest statistics Alcoholics Anonymous is still the alcoholic-addict’s best chance for recovery if they TRULY are ready to stop. And one of the main reasons it works is due to one of our 12 traditions: WE DON’T ALLOW OUTSIDE ISSUES (i.e. whether someone is liberal or conservative) TO DISTRACT US FROM OUR PRIMARY PURPOSE: TO STAY SOBER AND HELP OTHERS TO RECOVER. PERIOD. Oh, by the way, Try “Live and Let Live.” It works.

    Dan,

    I think anyone, even you, can plainly see that substance abuse causes anti-family beliefs and values, and that those same, inverted values are at the core of American liberalism. After all the harm you’ve caused your own family by drinking/using, you refuse to guarantee them or anyone else you’ll never drink again. You reserve the privilege of having yummy relapses any time you really feel like it, and you expect everyone to live under the dark cloud of your own, one-day-at-a-time uncertainty.

    Political beliefs are a core issue of addiction and recovery. To the extent that one is self-forgiving of self-intoxication, gluttony, and other vices, using the pretend disease excuses such as “eating disorder” or “alcoholism,” he is also a member of the fellowship of victimhood which has amassed such political favor these days. Children who smoke pot are not Christians, regardless of what’s on their tee-shirts; they are Teen Monsters fortified by the mythology of addictive disease, destroying their own lives, their families, and their country.

    Addiction has no geographical demographics and appears in all social systems starting with the family, the community, the business world, the religious community, and the political system. When responsible people experience the mind-blowing pleasures of synthetic drugs, including alcohol, they regress to an animal state in which continued addictive pleasures becomes the prime mover in life. Addiction is a natural function of a healthy human body, and sensational lying, such as promulgated by Alcoholics Anonymous is a natural function of sociopathy, the spiritual bedrock of addiction.

    Your self-portrait as a suffering, self-hating victim of emotional agony, just trying to medicate his pain with alcohol and other hedonic drugs is pathetic, lame, and vicious all at once. Your primary purpose is to avoid quitting your addiction for life, and to prevent others from doing so with your sick social cultism. You and your ilk in recovery groups are the problem, and not a solution, to the gravest threat to humanity, substance addiction.You are a disgusting liar leading others from problem drinkers into chronic addiction, into destruction of the human spirit, and into death.

    Jack Trimpey



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