If Jimmy Swaggart could do it, so can you. Our foremost activists, after all, still stand firmly at your side, still pushing half truths and prevarication to rehabilitate your reputation, standing shoulder to shoulder with you, come what may. Already the articles have been published in the Muslim online press, once again painting a skewed picture of the affair, repeating all over again information debunked long ago, while omitting every detail that stands against you. Your loyal friends stand ready to defend you, even at the expense of your religion.

If Imam Malik made announcing a marriage in public obligatory and considered a secret marriage a type of prostitution, these fervent activists will be on hand to present it not just as halal, but as the norm. If their beloved Ibn Taymiyyah said that a concealed marriage witnessed by no one is invalid according to most of the scholars of Sunni Islam and constitutes a type of illicit relationship, these apparent defenders of religion will find another way to spin the unfortunate facts. Already the presumed champions of the truest, purest, most rigorous rendition of religion have come out to advocate on your behalf.

Fear not. Bill Gothard fell from grace, but rose again. Likewise, Jimmy Swaggart, as evangelicals found it in their hearts to overlook his misdemeanours. Granted, Original Sin is central to Christian theology — and such mishaps became proof of the need for a redeeming saviour — but Muslims too stand ready to preach the gospel on behalf of their beloved. We all make mistakes, they remind us over and over, forgetting what the books they otherwise champion so vehemently actually state about such mistakes.

Be glad, for the mission to rehabilitate your reputation is already in full swing. In truth, nobody cares about the small details. Nobody cares to seek out facts. As long as their leaders and scholars stand by you, that will be enough for the masses. Most of the people do not care about fiqh. Most of the people only care about identity and communal solidarity. We all love religion, as long as nobody brings religion into it. Fear not, soon your rehabilitation will be complete. Onwards and upwards?

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