Economic globalization, callous capitalist carnivores, exploitation – intellectual jargon has become commonplace. Surely this is a sign of higher educational standards or maybe, ironically, the strength of a movement that has spread awareness on exploitation preventing deeper academic engagement in issues like these. All organizations involved with the International Monetary Fund/World Bank protest have done an excellent job proliferating economic perspectives other than capitalist-constructed knowledge. Still, one perspective in particular has been underrepresented as a solution to this chronic problem: the Islamic solution.
Sunday, April 16, noon at the Ellipse. Zimbabwe took the podium. Their people were dying of AIDS. No treatment was provided because their debt to the World Bank was too great, a debt whose burden could never be removed because of the interest that kept multiplying. In Islam, interest is absolutely illegal.
The president of the AFL-CIO walked on stage. Workers everywhere were being exploited, surviving on only minimum wage. The poor were getting poorer, and the rich were getting richer. In Islam, required charity allows for the natural obliteration of the harsh-class divisions that allow such exploitation to occur.
Environmentalist Ralph Nader took his place on the throne, speaking about invasion of sovereignty and the neo-colonization of nations by multinational corporations. He condemned the application of foreign systems to Third-World countries. Islam strictly opposes neo-colonialism and requires that a country be economically dependent on its own resources. It requires that its people be employed in what they are most acquainted with. It opposes the idea that systems founded on other conditions are adequate in an entirely different location and situation.
Speakers came and went, as the people continued to display vigorous passion – until finally my ear caught on to the one link that everyone, whether from Zimbabwe or Wyoming, seemed to share. It was one word, one perspective: being Pro-Indigenous, the very word that is symbolic of the Islamic Economic System.
There is no name for this united movement. There is no identification for the system that various groups have come to advocate. It is not completely socialist, and it is definitely not capitalist. It is some middle ground, some ideal reality that all are targeting for emancipation. It shares the positive critiques of different movements and organizations, which, through their combination, form a separate system that is identical to the Islamic system.
-The writer is a freshman majoring in international affairs and journalism.