Sunday, August 13, 2006

Why I Don't Fear Islam

I don't need to provide examples of the many people who are fearful of Islam. They mock it by calling it a "religion of peace' as they list atrocities attributed to its adherents. They are convinced that a huge population of violent people wants us - you, me, and everyone we know - dead, and that they won't sleep until they have been successful. They are raising little children and filling them full of hate, in the fervent hope that those children will bring honor by strapping on a vest packed with shrapnel and explosives, or, praise Allah, that little Johnnie will grow up to take down an airline of screaming infidels.

Idiots who believe that bullshit are frightened fools, poisoned by fear-mongering propaganda and unable or unwilling to administer the best antidote, which is knowledge of human nature.

Why are Americans so convinced that Muslims are better at being Muslims than Christians are at being Christians? Assume, for the sake of argument, that the Koran really, truly does direct that violence against non-Muslims is justified. (I am no scholar of Islam, though I have read excerpts from the Koran, and I personally don't believe that the religion of Islam condones such violence, but I'll go along with the more rabid pseudo-scholars here in the US.) Then, look at what the New Testament directs. Look at what the Old Testament directs. While we're coveting each others' asses, and failing to live up to scripture every single day, sinning in every imaginable way, we somehow assume that a significant majority of Muslims are willing and able to live up to their faith in a way we never have.

Didn't Jesus suggest that we should sell all we own to enter the kingdom of God? Did you see any such garage sales this weekend? Didn't God direct that we should honor our mother and father? Did you call home this weekend? Didn't God tell us not to honor false Gods? Don't a lot of Christians place blind faith in their President, trusting that he and the NSA, not God, will deliver us from evil?

I would strongly suggest that the fearful among us think about what they know. Religious zealots, be they abortion-clinic-bombing Christians, assassination-supporting Christians, Islamist decapitators or airline-bombing Islamists, are rare, sick people. The fact that we still tolerate Pat Robertson in our midst may give us some perspective on why the peaceful vast majority of Muslims tolerate some of the insane radicals in their midst.

People are people. We want our children to grow up happy, and to have a better life than we had. Whether your child is named Muhammad or Lisa, you love them and want them to get happily married some day and bring you smiling grandchildren. We listen to what the Bible tells us, but we don't really follow the hard parts - we interpret them into metaphorical mush, so we don't have to sell our stuff or love that homeless creepy guy on the corner as ourselves.

Do you really think that Muslims are that much better than we are? Until you're a good Christian, I don't think you need to worry about good Muslims.


Blogger antimedia said...

I wonder how you would explain the young Muslim couple that was involved in the recent terror plot in London? They were planning on boarding a plane, with an explosive concealed in the baby bottle of their six-month-old child.

Apparently watching their children grow up and get married wasn't on their agenda.

8/13/2006 10:11 PM  
Blogger Dan said...

That's why I fear crazy people, not Islam. I wonder how you would explain the Irish terrorists.

8/14/2006 6:03 AM  
Anonymous travelingal said...

I'd be curious how you'd write this piece with another religion, such as Hinduism, in place of the references to Christianity.

I'm glad you don't fear Islam. I assume the same goes for Christianity?

8/14/2006 8:01 AM  
Blogger dolphin said...

The recent terror attack was hwarted after a tip from within the muslim community. So much for "they're all out to get us."

I actually saw a right-wing blog acknowlege that it was ultimately Muslims who prevented the most recent attack in the same breath as he suggested (seriously) micro-chipping them all for 24 hour government surveilence.

8/14/2006 9:18 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

and you wonder why I'm upset your not teaching this semester! Where am I going to get all this great perspective from??

8/14/2006 9:40 AM  
Blogger emawkc said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

8/14/2006 9:45 AM  
Blogger emawkc said...

Dan, strange timing on this post from you. This weekend I, 1) had a garage sale; 2) called my parents; 3) Had a discussion with my supermodel wife about how the current style of gubment actions won't bring peace to the middle

So, I'm three-for-three, baby!

8/14/2006 9:47 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous Me said...

While we may disagee with Pat Robertson, and tolerate what he says even as we don't like it (that troublesome first amendment again), there is a world of difference.

Pat Robertson hasn't blown anyone up. The vast majority of christian leadership has been vocal in their condemnation of acts of terrorism done in the name of "christianity."

Islamic fascists (yes, I'm sure it is very much a minority) have blown people up by the thousands; and more troubling, people with little if any connection to their perceived grievances. And the muslim community has been troublingly silent in response; there's been no outcry of condemnation, that I am aware of. ON the contrary, it appeared (and appearances may be deceiving; I hope so) that much of the moslem street was celebrating the 9/11 attack.

I don't fear Islam, as a religion. But I am quite concerned about what some INDIVIDUALS do in the name of Islam, and the lack of condemnation of those acts by the Muslim mainstream.

8/14/2006 2:46 PM  
Blogger dolphin said...

The vast majority of christian leadership has been vocal in their condemnation of acts of terrorism done in the name of "christianity."

Really? That's news to me. Maybe they need to get a little more vocal. Typically when I hear an evangelical talking about a bombing at an abortion clinic or a gay club it goes something along the lines of "Well, it's not right, but..."

And the muslim community has been troublingly silent in response; there's been no outcry of condemnation, that I am aware of.

Remember it was tips from the muslim community that foiled this most recent attempt. If they were 'troublingly silent' you'd have had another attack to rant about.

8/15/2006 9:56 AM  
Blogger Xavier Onassis said...

"Pat Robertson hasn't blown anyone up."

That's true. But only because he's too cowardly to risk his life to back up his goonbabble rhetoric.

He called on the CIA to assasinate Hugo Chavez.

He called down the Wrath Of All Mighty God in the form of hurricanes, floods and other natural disasters to smite (not too often that you get to use the word "smite" in a sentence these days) homosexuals, abortionists, liberals, Muslims and all manner of "Evil Doers".

You'd think a guy who could leg press A TON would be able to fight his own battles.

But no, he's content to sit back and incite violence and let other zealots carry it out.

Kinda like that Nasrallah guy. He's the leader of Hezbollah, but when was the last time he pulled the trigger of an AK-47 or strapped on a vest full of explosives?

Nasrallah and Robertson (and GWB for that matter) are I D E N T I C A L. No difference. They all sit back, rant like lunatics about some millenia-old fairy tales and send other peoples sons and daughters into the meat grinder without the slightest hint of doubt or guilt.

I'll bet if you rounded up GWB, Dick Cheney, Don Rumsfeld, Hassan Nasrallah, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Kim Jong Il, Ehud Olmert, Osama bin Laden, Condy Rice and John Bolten, put them all in the same room, every single one of them would STFU and be REAL nice.

Know why?

Because they are all a bunch of power-tripping, candy-ass, loud-mouths who love the sounds of their own voices but who wouldn't put themselves in harm's way for love or money.

They would all just cower in corners and hope no one tried to hurt them.

8/15/2006 6:45 PM  
Blogger emawkc said...

"They all sit back, rant like lunatics ..."

Now that reminds me of someone. Who could it be. Ah yes, this guy.

8/16/2006 2:00 PM  
Blogger Xavier Onassis said...

LOL! Very funny emaw! But at least I don't incite violence. Except, ya know, against 18 wheelers, people riding bikes, Christians and Republicans. But other than that, I'm all about the LOVE baby!

Got nuthin' but luv for the peeps!

8/16/2006 5:57 PM  

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