Critical Commentary: Violence on Christians in Pakistan

Posted on October 9, 2013 by

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“Christians in Pakistan subject to Violence” was recently printed by The New American, which brought attention to the recent attacks on Christian in the Pakistan area. The article covers the bombing on the “All Saints Church” that killed 78 people along with other attacks on Christians throughout the “Islamic world”. The people of Pakistan have started relating the faith of Christianity to the United States, which seems to be the root of these attacks on the Christians because of the tension between the two countries. Before the attacks began, the Muslims and the Christians had no friction that may have caused these encounters to happen so suddenly.

The issues covered within this article include the tension between the Muslims in Pakistan and Christians in the Middle East, which has led to many attacks on Christians. The Christians residing in Pakistan said to be in the “lowest Hindu caste based on the way they are being treated in Pakistan.” The argument of the article is that the Muslims were guilty for treating the Christian people in this way. The article is shaped in a negative way by interviewing children that were in the church and parents of children that were injured. By only interviewing people that recognize with the Christian faith, the article was skewed because only one perspective was being taken into account, when there were two sides to the conflict.

From the headline, one would assume that the Christians are the victims of the violence from the Pakistanis. Within the first paragraph, there is a quote from the “Roman Catholic bishop of Karachi stating: We always live in a state of tension. What’s going to happen next and where is it going to happen?” From this statement the article then takes the Christian side and frame the article from the Christian point of view rather than the Muslim. One photograph within the piece shows Muslim women praying and mediating in a mosque. This picture gives off a positive side to the Islamic faith because it represents how they practice their faith and should not be known for the recent headlines.

The word Christian is used many times within the article to highlight it as the main subject and to consistently remind the reader of who was the victim of the attacks. A stereotype is made about the Christian children at the public schools in Pakistan by calling them  “sweepers”. They are left out of many things including not be able to eat with the other school children. They are also categorized as being in the “low Hindu caste system.” Throughout the article many interviews were taken from victims of the attacks, people who associate with the Christian faith, and people and news stations from the United States. The overall tone of the article was bias toward that the Christians, by repeating the cruel actions done by the Muslims to the Christians. Within the article, Muslims are blamed for the church bombing, for labeling and treating the Christians in a negative way, and burning a church and its community the previous year in Marden.

In this piece, the author referenced other publications, which had subjects that related to this article. These sources were the Pakistan’s Daily Times, the Times, and the British Daily Telegraph. These sources are reliable because they come from creditable sources and large, well-known organizations. It is difficult to truly differentiate between facts and opinions within this article because there were many first-hand experiences documented through interviews and many others related topics from different sources like the ones mentioned above. However, based on the way this article is presented one can tell the author is wanting the audience to know the Christian side of the story more than the Muslim perspective. One constraint of the media that affected the article was writing from an outsider perspective, instead of being in Pakistan and getting the insider’s look at the situation.

The stance regarding religion given off by this article is that Christians are the victims in these incidents, while the Muslims are made to look responsible for them. The coverage of this topic is not extensive because it was not necessarily easy to find. The coverage of this article did attract my attention because I, personally,  have a relation to the topic at hand because I identify as a Christian. This article interested me to see how other Christians are being treated around the world.

http://www.thenewamerican.com/world-news/asia/item/16675-christians-in-pakistan-subject-to-violence

Works Cited

Mass, Warren. “Christians in Pakistan Subject to Violence.” The New American. 04 Oct. 2013. Web. 05 Oct. 2013.

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Posted in: Islam, Uncategorized