My apologies for this post, folks. I try to keep the Real World as far from my blog as possible, as I consider it a haven, both for you and me, from the madness we deal with every day. But every now and then, I gotta ask, WTF?
Understand, I grew up in suburban America. You meet all kinds of folks here. Our friends and neighbors include Christians of various stripes, Mormons, Muslims, atheists, and Unitarians. I've adjusted dinner plans to accommodate vegetarian Hindus, worn a yarmulke at a Bar Mitzvah, and one of my father's groomsmen was a Sikh. You get all kinds in suburban America. Except extremists. The most extreme I've ever dealt with on a regular basis were some Catholic nuns, but they were pretty much get-along-go-along folks for the most part. So, like most Americans, the idea of religious extremists is something I have a hard time wrapping my brain around. Especially when we start talking about Hindu extremists. I'm sorry, but that makes about as much sense to me as militant Amish.
So can someone explain to me what's up with Shri Ram Sena? I mean, how do you expect us to take claims that women at a bar are “violating traditional Indian values” when you've got this sort of thing (NSFW) decorating your temples? Seriously, the folks that told us that kama is one of the four goals of life are getting their knickers in a twist just because some gals decide to go out and enjoy a few drinks?
Ok, maybe there was more going on in this bar than I'm aware of, or maybe there's some cultural issues I'm just ignorant of. But near as I can tell, this would just be amusing if it didn't actually involve people physically assaulting folks. Can anyone enlighten me?
UPDATE: In the interests of full disclosure, I should point out that I myself am Episcopalian, which is the American branch of the Church of England. Our extremists look like this.