I personally agree,Westerners should use the spelling Makkah instead of Mecca. I think it is probably spelled normally this way and will keep people from offending other cultures and other countries who hold a lot of meaning to the word. I do not think it would be a big deal to change how we spell it.
I personally think that Westerners should use the spelling Makkah instead of Mecca. I think it is probably spelled normally this way and will keep people from offending other cultures and other countries who hold a lot of meaning to the word. I do not think it would be a big deal to change how we spell it.
Makkah might be the name for the city in Arabic, but not in Spanish, or English, or French, or German, etc (you see how it goes). Asking people to say Makkah out of politeness and "respect" would be like asking Spanish speaking people to say "London" instead of "Londres" in Spanish, or asking us to start calling Dutch people "Netherlanders" and German people "Dutch" - although, admittedly there is more of a case to be made in this last example, historically speaking.
Part of respecting culture involves using language that is recognizable and widely used. While it may be more important to use the term Makkah when discussing the area in a certain language, it should be acceptable for other languages to have their own spellings or pronunciation rules for foreign areas.
Languages have evolved the world over to help people communicate with one another. There are many different languages, and not only do they use different words to describe the same objects and ideas, but also the same places. This is because each language uses different combinations of sounds and letters (if they even use the same alphabet) to create words. Sounds normal in one language might be unpronounceable to speakers of another. 'Makkah' contains combinations that are not typical in English, and would therefore be unnecessarily confusing. There is nothing at all disrespectful about spelling a proper noun in the manner most appropriate for a particular language.
I think the idea that people who do not follow a religion should have to adhere to that religion's wishes is ridiculous. I think that the only people who should have to follow any rules according to a religion are those who decide to follow it and wish to be respectful.