Letters to the Editor

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ISLAM: Muslims need our support now

Letter by Alfred K. LaMotte, Steilacoom on Aug. 31, 2010 at 2:24 pm with 80 Comments »
August 31, 2010 2:28 pm

I implore Americans who care about America’s covenant of community to reach hands of friendship to our Muslim brothers and sisters. It is time for people of conscience to speak out against the stereotypes, the fear-mongering, and the bigotry that crush the hearts of American Muslims. Anti-Islam is the new Antisemitism. We know where that leads insecure and frightened people who feel that their nation is losing its dominance.

Think what it must feel like to be Muslim in America today. My own Muslim friends are anxious and afraid to speak up. They feel like Jews in Nazi Germany, just before the knocking on the doors of night, the silent train ride to the camps.

Millions of Muslims are just as American as you and me. They are hard-working men and women trying to support their families, trying to partake in the American community. Their mosques have spoken out strongly against terrorism, but their voices were not heard or carried by the press.

Please reach out to your local mosque and Muslim neighbors. Tell them you are a friend. Ask them what you can do to support their citizens’ rights. Saalam aleikum. The Peace of God be upon you.

Leave a comment Comments → 80
  1. nokoolaide says:

    Yeah right. Google “Islam in Sweden” It will open your eyes. Muslims have taken their country away from them, and will do the same here with the help of people like you Alfred.

  2. BlaineCGarver says:

    Oh, BS…..Muslims in this country are NOT being attacked or discriminated against in any numbers that would be considered statisical. Muslims in this country should fall on their knees to the east and thank their “God” that they live in this country, and not their POS homeland.

  3. dewilson says:

    Well said, Mr. LaMotte.
    I hope your plea gets a broad, positive response from the community. However, I am not optimistic. As I said on another thread, the sad fact is that most hatred is based upon ignorance and fear, and these have fueled all great pogroms from the Crusades to the Holocaust. It’s no coincidence that ignorance and fear remain the favored tool of the right wing to keep the masses aflutter and looking to the leader with the loudest voice who promises to save them from the heinous threat they are facing. It’s the source of every despot’s power.

    And if you detect the strong stench of anti-Semitism in the hate-filled anti-Muslim rhetoric from America’s right wing today, then I share your concern that they are doing so because it supports a political agenda. Hopefully there will be some Christian leaders and others who believe in the Constitution who will speak out against the acts of hatred against Muslims and join you in protecting your rights as a citizen in our broad and diverse American community. Sadly, there are far too many Americans in our culture who love to hate.

  4. Roncella says:

    Fred, Its was Muslim Terrorists that killed 3000 innocent Americans on 9-11.

    The American Muslim that kill 12 innocent soldiers yelled some muslim saying as he pulled the trigger.

    The crouch bomber, a Muslim Terrorist that attempted to murder 300 innocent passengers on Christmas day.

    Then the Muslim Terrorist who tried to set off a bomb in Times Square, New York.

    Most Americans agree that the majority of Muslims are peaceful and hold alot of the same values that we all believe in.

    What has brought this to a boiling point is an Emam who is insisting on building a Community Center/Mosque 13 floors a few blocks from the sacred ground of the Twinn Towers. The Mosque part of this new Center is said to be large enough to hold 1000 worshipers.

    The Emam can turn the heat down by picking a different location away from the sacred ground where so many died at the hands of Muslim Terrorists.

    Fred you could also turn the heat down by not doing so much name called of Americans who have a different point of view then you, like Fear Mongering, Stereotypes, Bigotry, Anti-Islam etc…

  5. nokoolaide says:

    Dewilson, First let me explain that the constitution does grant all religions the right to pratice their faith. It does not require me to like them or remain quiet as they hide behind this very document that you so erroneously tie to acceptance. This same document gives me the ultimate right to speak out against this vile excuse of a releigon. As for the Muslims needing our support? We needed their support almost nine years ago as they attacked this country killing 3000 innocent people. All I got was Muslims from all over the world dancing in the streets in celebration. It is an image that was burned into my mind for the rest of my days. Hate? Damn right!

  6. “It’s no coincidence that ignorance and fear remain the favored tool of the right wing to keep the masses aflutter and looking to the leader with the loudest voice who promises to save them from the heinous threat they are facing. It’s the source of every despot’s power.”


    You are correct in your statement. The right wing has settled on world terrorism, while the left has chosen climate change. How’s it feel to be used?

  7. “They feel like Jews in Nazi Germany, just before the knocking on the doors of night, the silent train ride to the camps.”

    If this is true, it’s truly unfortunate, but I would hope that you might reassure them that the likelihood of a repeat of The Holocaust is highly unlikely in this country, rather than fueling their fears by reinforcing falsehoods.

    I’m inclined to think that this is just your bent for melodrama and hyperbole Alfred. We’ve witnessed it before.

    People who live in the U.S. are blessed indeed. Do Christians experience fear and persecution in Islamic countries? What brought your Muslim friends to the U.S.?

  8. scott0962 says:

    In the aftermath of 9-11 the Bush administration went out of its way to urge people to excercise restraint and to avoid sterotyping all Muslims as terrorists.Now that the liberal Democrats are back in control Muslims feel threatened? Of what? People no longer bending over backward to avoid offending them? Get used to it my fellow citizens who happen to be Muslims, in America no one has a right to never be offended and free speech means that from time to time you’re going to hear some opinions you don’t like. Luckily it also means you may speak out with your own thoughts and opinions. This is America, no one is going to swoop down and arrest you for expressing your opinion, talk to us! It’s hard to break down stereotypes if you won’t engage us in discussion.

  9. dewilson says:

    nokoolaide – You could not have made my point better. Your blind hatred says you can blame all Muslims for the acts of a few and that you therefore have the “right” to coerce them from exercising their Constitutional rights because – well, because you hate them. How is this any different from hating (and oppressing) all Jews because some stand accused of manipulating the financial system and/or taking over the country? Or should we infringe the rights of Christian Patriots because the KKK carried the flag and the Bible while terrorizing the African-American population?

    Grouse – your statement doesn’t wash. Liberals are as opposed to ‘world terrorism’ as anyone else; we just don’t see the sense in invading Muslim countries to liberate the population and then kill them willy-nilly and torture suspects, thereby increasing the terrorist threat exponentially. How you draw a parallel to global warming and hatred and fear is beyond me

  10. BlaineCGarver says:

    LOL…Fools…There is a “religion” out there that calls for death to America and any other non-muzlim countries…. You can be with them, or convert to a real religion and be with us.

  11. dewilson says:

    Sozo – Given the anti-Islamic rhetoric on this site, I am convinced that many people would very happily initiate an holocaust against Muslims, in the greatest traditions of the right wing of the 3rd Reich. And the fact that you, as a peace-loving Christian will not speak out against the acts of hate against Muslims tells me that, just as in Germany, Christians will turn a blind eye to abhorrent acts to others because while the preach love they live hate.

    Once again, I ask you, Sozo, what what your Christ do in this circumstance? How would Jesus respond to Mr. LaMotte and what would be his guidance to those who are so ready to cast stones at Muslims who pray to the same God?

  12. “How you draw a parallel to global warming and hatred and fear is beyond me.”

    I can believe that. It’s fairly easy actually.

    To keep the masses “aflutter” the opposing factions need a cause to defend or oppose. You said so yourself. Therefor the right wing tells us the terrorists are going to get us if we don’t elect them to protect us. The left wing tells us manmade global warming is going to get us if we don’t elect them to protect us.

    Nothing brings a population together like an external threat. It’s sometimes reffered to as a “state of fear.” It’s been proven to work as a control mechanism on populations for thousands of years. If there is more than one faction vying for power over a nation, then two or more threats are employed. One side pooh poohs the other, and off we go. We’re all used.

  13. Sumner401 says:

    The founding father would be shamed of the right wing in this country.
    Bigots and racists, every one of them.

  14. Haha. This letter is doing exactly what is was intended – to start arguments and divide people. Really, who would have made a statement like the author? Seriously, dont we have anything better to discuss right now then a few statistical aberrations – random acts of violence.

    This country treats minorities better then any other in the world. Is there room for improvement – of course. But if you want to see it bad, go to a muslim country, and see how accepting they are.

    Get real and get a life. Focus on the things that truly matter today, not this.

  15. LaMotte means never in doubt but always wrong.

  16. nokoolaide says:

    Dewilson, You stand corrected. My hatered is not blind, it could not be more focused. Also, I do not blame Muslims, I blame Islam. “Coerce them from exercising their Constitutional rights” You mean like drawing a cartoon?

  17. dewilson says:

    Crazylibertarian – How can you can claim this country treats minorities better than anyone else? Certainly there are worse countries, Islamic ones included, but there are other diverse countries that accommodate minority groups without the kind of hatred we have witnessed in our own country. And the only reason minority oppression can take place or continue is because others don’t speak out and is precisely what happend in Germany in the 30’s.

    nokoolaide – Once again, you make my point. “Islam” is your target of hate, but you are blind in your hatred because you blame every Muslim for whatever misdeed you perceive on the part of Islam. And yes, there are Islamic countries that don’t recognize “Constitutional Rights” and that is the great difference from us in America where we are bound to by our Constitution. Except of course, if you hate someone enough then you get to deny them their rights because, like, people of their ilk did it to some one somewhere else cause they hated them for some reason or other.

  18. dewilson, apparently you do not read all posts– as I have clearly stated my opinion of Christians who behave in monstrous ways. Try reading back through a few of these exchanges. BTWIn one post I cited Eric Bonhoeffer as being more likely to represent what Christians in Germany believed about the treatment of Jews.

    Are you seriously going to tell us, after all the energy you have put into exhorting folks NOT to make sweeping generalizations, that a handful of bilious comments on these threads are sufficient to conclude that a Holocaust against Muslims could happen in the U.S.?

    You are engaging in the very behavior you find contemptible in others.

  19. It would be an interesting exercise to compare the anti-Muslim rhetoric of today with the anti-semitic rhetoric of the 1920s-30s.

  20. tommy98466 says:

    Alfred you are certified. Just an apologist for Muslims. Pathetic.

  21. Zillahboy says:

    Mr. LaMotte,
    Comparing our government to Nazi Germany by saying that American Muslims live in fear of being torn away from their homes and sent to death camps of some sort is thew most shameful thing I have ever have ever heard an American say. You absolutely know that your insulting, blathering smear comments couldn’t be further from the truth.

  22. iamjimbo says:

    Wow Alfred… “Jews” and “Nazis”.

    Hey Beerboy, hows ’bout you explain Godwin’s law to Fred… Thanks in advance. :)

  23. iamjimbo says:

    … oh, high on drama… lite on fact…

  24. bobcat1a says:

    Zillahboy says:
    AUGUST 31, 2010 AT 5:51 PM
    Mr. LaMotte,
    Comparing our government to Nazi Germany by saying that American Muslims live in fear of being torn away from their homes and sent to death camps of some sort is thew most shameful thing I have ever have ever heard an American say. You absolutely know that your insulting, blathering smear comments couldn’t be further from the truth.
    You might want to point out your comment to some of the Tea Partiers who claim Obama is setting up concentration camps.

  25. “My own Muslim friends are anxious and afraid to speak up.”

    Really? I bet not. They see no reason to speak. They have willing mouthpieces on the left to make all the excuses for them. If American Muslims are afraid, good. Very good. Time for them to decide which side of the fence they want to be on. Six thousands (even six hundred would be a lot) Muslim Americans holding signs protesting the stoning of “adulterers” in Iran, Pakistan, Sudan, Bangladesh, or Saudi Arabia would go a long ways to proving which side of the fence they’re on. But the reality is that only 12 or so Muslims had the balls to show up at a protest in Dearborn Michigan earlier this year.

    “Their mosques have spoken out strongly against terrorism, but their voices were not heard or carried by the press.”

    Another lie. Very big lie. Mosques don’t talk or speak. It’s the people inside that make the difference. And if Moslems from a certain mosque said stoning gay people is wrong and marched in the streets to that effect, it would have made every news outlet in America. We saw that 12 did, imagine if hundreds did show up. Never happen. Now if it was a march in support of extremists …

    And finally, how is it possible for a supposedly peaceful movement to be misinterpreted as a violent one? Whose fault is that? Who enables those who would highjack it to do so? The only reasonable answer is Muslims. Of every strip. They are to blame, not the United States, not Israel, not Christians, only devout and pious hateful Muslims.

  26. Novelist3 says:

    All I’m gonna say is this-
    There’s a reason why there isn’t a newspaper in this country that will print a picture or caricature of mohammed in any way, shape or form.

  27. pazzo242 says:

    “They feel like Jews in Nazi Germany, just before the knocking on the doors of night, the silent train ride to the camps.”

    I find it very interesting that the letter writer wants to use an incident that all Muslims denied ever happened–can’t have it both ways.

    I neither like nor dislike Muslims. What I don’t like is those who say they are committing violence in the name of God–no matter what following they are. I am a Catholic and have no qualms of telling you so. If you commit violence in the name of the Pope or Jesus you are no different them the scum who flew planes into the Twin Towers in the name of Allah. Scum is scum, no matter what race, sex, religion, belief, etc it spawns from and every religion has them.

  28. comment_tayter says:

    It is perfectly possible to be opposed to the building of an Islamic Center and Mosque within 500 feet of the WTC and not be a stereotype hateful bigot. But that is how many in favor of the Mosque are painting those who remain opposed…. I believe it is beyond insensitive to want to site the center in the shadow of the attack site.

    But I have little hope for this, or any other, country — or mankind as a whole, for that matter — given the irrational role religion continues to play in the public life of people and society, especially religions that have seemingly been hi-jacked by extremists.

    Islam’s many Mullahs and Imams need to get on the same page and denounce unequivically and publicly, in a very high profile manner, suicide forays as a ticket to virgins and paradise. They — and only they can do it — need to delegitimize the violent individuals who have taken this tack with their religion.

    I have been waiting for that for the last ten years since 9-11. I haven’t seen or heard it yet. Perhaps this debate will stimulate them to do so.

  29. beerBoy says:

    comment-tayter – you have “been waiting 10 years” for something that has been very available. You just aren’t looking for it. Google “muslim condemn 9/11″ or something along those lines and you will find a huge number of those voices.

    And….the fact that you seem to be willfully ignoring the many Muslim voices that have condemned the extremist suggests that you are not wiling to see Islam in any other way which…..is bigotry.

  30. comment_tayter says:

    BB, Perhaps I have been less than diligent in seeking out Muslim condemnations of violence in their religion’s name. There are plenty of them out there, as you noted a Google search will produce.

    Now… Let’s have those condemnations, most of which seem to be by private individuals, have some effect on the violent types within the religion. I still don’t see it happening….so they are ineffective and invisible, which is my point.

    But I am not a bigot; I dislike all religions equally, with a special place held for violent and repressive ones.

    And it is still possible to disagree with the site placement of the Islamic Center and Mosque as being insensitive and inappropriate.

    Does having a pro-Muslim stance mean that an individual must accept everything that they choose to do as OK? And that disagreement on a single point make one a stereotypical bigot? I hope not.

  31. JungleBoy says:

    A few hundred years from now, when Muslims are fighting Christians right here in America, we’ll have to resurrect Jimmy Carter and Barak Obama to negotiate a peace deal.

  32. Here’s another angle I hadn’t thought about but heard of yesterday. Is it possible that mainstream, moderate Muslims remain muted because they fear for their lives from the extremists?

    And for the record, those who compare jihadists with say, the KKK, surely recognize that there is NO comparison. Size alone makes it a no-go. Same with Jihadists and lone rogues like Timothy McVeigh. We are talking here about a strong, world-wide community of people whose objective is to destroy all things western.

    Can we at least be realistic about that? AND PLEASE NOTE that I am talking about the extremists here, not peace-loving Muslims.

  33. blakeshouse says:

    Rather comical to me that the very same socialists/marxists who use any opportunty to denigrate and besmirch anything Christian are now kneeling with their lips firmly attached to the nether cheeks of islam. Birds of a feather (haters) flock together……….

  34. Refrigerator says:

    The muslims are the cry baby bullies of the world. There are plenty of places on the planet for you to practice what you want. This country is not yours to take over and never will be.

  35. Sumner401 says:

    What brought your Muslim friends to the U.S.?

    Religious freedom?
    Freedom from fear?
    Freedom from persecution?
    How about just plain freedom?

    none of which they are getting because of good christians like you.

  36. Makes me hungry for a pulled-pork sandwich !

  37. Novelist3 says:
    SEPTEMBER 1, 2010 AT 1:41 AM
    All I’m gonna say is this-
    There’s a reason why there isn’t a newspaper in this country that will print a picture or caricature of mohammed in any way, shape or form.

    And the reason is…

  38. FreeAmerica says:

    Sumner401 says:
    August 31, 2010 at 3:52 pm
    The founding father would be shamed of the right wing in this country.
    Bigots and racists, every one of them

    The founding fathers fought people like you to preserve freedom.

  39. If only Alfred would extend the same thoughtful concern to me and other conservatives . . .

  40. BlaineCGarver says:

    This letter is just like the Dems on the campaign trail……telling stories about made up people for dramatic effect…..

  41. beerBoy says:

    What I see is a bunch of folks complaining about “libruls” calling the Islamophobes, bigots and hate-mongers and then sayng that their fears of all followers of Islam based in based in the “reality” that moderate muslims have a vast conspiracy to cover up their extremist views and that all Moslems can be judged by the worst examples of the extremist micro-minority and have earned the hatred of Americans who represent the best of what our Republic is about.

    If you want to stop being labeled a bigot, hate-monger and/or Islamophobe – stop trying to defend yourself from those labels by saying why you feel the way you do about Muslims.

    It is akin to someone accused of being an antisemite defending himself by rabidly claiming that the “Christ-killers” follow the Protocol of Zion. Your “defense” only serves to justify the charge.

  42. iamjimbo says:

    I love all peace loving muslims. Now, how can I tell the difference?

  43. beerBoy says:

    ct – how about that anti-gay Christian who is attempting to set up a “Christian Community Center” near ground-zero (even though he isn’t a New Yorker)? How do you feel about him?

  44. iamjimbo says:

    … what’s with the algore environmental wacko disciple taking hostages?

  45. beerBoy says:

    thread drift!

  46. iamjimbo says:

    … somebody scared ‘em good. Ten bucks says he’s not Beck fan… and it will only get a smidg of the coverage it would were he a Beck fan (or Rush, Palin, Hannity…)

  47. iamjimbo says:

    “anti-gay Christian ” … not thread drift?

  48. iamjimbo says:

    … can’t wait for the TNT’s editorial tomorrow excoriating the rabid environmental left for their part in this deranged mans actions…

  49. beerBoy says:

    What makes you think that was meant for you? (Typed in my best Glenn Beck style pseudo-sincerity)

  50. Our problems with the Muslim world could be solved by simply putting an end to our meddling in their affairs and removing ourselves from their countries. Muslim extremists are terrorizing us because they view us as terrorizing them by invading their countries with both our culture and military might.

    I wonder how many American citizens would have cause to become “extremists” if they reacted with violence to the Chinese navy patrolling the gulf of Mexico and ordering us to do things their way or get bombed, and followed through with it.

  51. CrazyLibertarian says:

    Dewilson – You’re right. I shouldnt make a superlative statement that “America is better then ALL other countries regarding treatment of minorities.” I hae not been to all other countries in the world, how could I know this.

    I CAN and SHOULD make the statement that America treats its minorities better then any country I have visited. And unlike a lot of people who constantly harangue and criticize America and its policies, I have left Pierce County. I have left WA state. Hell, I have been all the way around the world, stopping in countries from Singapore, China, Korea, Japan, France, Spain, Germany, Australia…. etc ad nauseum.

    I see that we have issues in America. But believe me, as someone that has first hand seen the Wall of Mourning around the UN center in Zagreb Croatia, as someone who has first hand seen the violence in the Middle East, as someone who has first hand seen the poverty and desparation in Malysia and the Asian Pacific – believe me when I say America is leaps and bounds ahead of the vast majority of the rest of this world.

    You say that other countries are handling diversity better? Where exactly? And with what results? France, with the outlawing of Burkhas? Germany, with the deportation of Turks? Any Islamic country where Sharia law is practiced, where any difference is punishable by up to death? Asian countries where independence and self identity are so frowned it is a cultural and social institution to “blend in”.

    You dare to compare the building of a mosque only a few blocks from the site of the WTC attack to Nazi Germany of the 1930s? I think if you step back from your ideology, just a few steps, you will see that we ARE close to Nazi, Germany – but not because of that. Possibly because of government takeover of banking and manufacturing industries. Possibly because of the invasion of privacy perpatrated by the Patriot Act and Homeland Security. Possibly because every president we have had for the last twenty five years has systematically worked to destroy the Constitution.

    Be afraid – the path you are taking leads somewhere you dont want to go. Socialism sounds great at the beginning, but it always ends up the same way. Read Animal Farm, and be afraid.

  52. iamjimbo says:

    I suppose you could have been talking to yourself.

  53. CrazyLibertarian, well said! I too have travelled to many of the countries that you listed. That’s why when I got off of the airplane in the USA, I wanted to kiss the ground. If Mr. Lamotte and those who think like him were genuinely serious about extending a hand of friendship to Muslims, he would get on a airplane and go to Pakistan, Afganistan, Iran and some of the other Islamic countries and begin his evangelism there.

  54. Most in-house critics of America will claim that their criticism is rooted in wanting to make America better, but the truth is, over the last several decades, it’s become something far more sinister, imo. Like our current president, I believe that many in this country would like to see our country permanently transformed into something very European-looking. Having traveled extensively, I am more convinced than ever that the U.S.A. is the most desirable place on this earth to live. I am grateful, and I will continue to fight for the preservation of those things that make her the greatest nation on earth.

  55. larsman says:

    Muslims can pray to Allah, Christians can pray to God the Father through Jesus Christ, atheists can silently worship themselves or the amoeba they want to be from. But none of these will ever be the same “god”. Mohamed was about 600 years too late to be included in the script and he could not read or write, that was the job of his (much older) wife and his Jew-hating uncle. In America you can pretty much be free to worship in any manner that does not harm people or destroy property. But my freedom of speech also gives Muslims the right to be offended, including caricatures of their prophet. We Christians have been putting up with that abuse for a much longer time, but we don’t issue fatwahs or lob heads off……or fly planes that can’t land correctly. Those shouting words like “bigot, islamaphobia and hatred” have not read about what they pretend to look “like” they know about…

  56. beerBoy says:

    it’s become something far more sinister, imo. Like our current president, I believe that many in this country would like to see our country permanently transformed into something very European-looking.

    That response is thoroughly rooted in American Exceptionalism and xenophobia.

  57. I think America is exceptional and make no apologies for it. I am not “afraid” of others, ( ie. phobic) but I do not want to be part of the homogenization of the world, either. The Bible speaks of Christ spewing out the lukewarm water representing a diluted church that was neither hot nor cold. If the “one world” crowd gets its way, the whole planet will soon resemble a dishpan full of murky water. No thanks.

  58. Let me ask you something bBoy. You find the KKK contemptible. Does that make you klanphobic? Do you hate all members of the Klan? Should we be wary of the Klan getting too much power? Or is it OK for YOU to judge a group of people and speak out about your perception of them?

  59. American goals have never included wiping all infidels, (non Muslims), from the Earth.
    Since when has it been un-American to hate one’s enemies?

  60. A person can count the “Great Speeches of George Bush” on one hand, but the speech he gave to a Joint Session of Congress on Sept 20, 2001 was excellent. Part of what he said answers what I believe:

    “I also want to speak tonight directly to Muslims throughout the world. We respect your faith. It’s practiced freely by many of Americans and by millions more in countries that America counts as friends. Its teachings are good and peaceful, and those who commit evil in the name of Allah blaspheme the name of Allah.

    The terrorists are traitors to their own faith, trying, in effect, to hijack Islam itself.

    The enemy of America is not our many Muslim friends. It is not our many Arab friends. Our enemy is a radical network of terrorists and every government that supports them.”

  61. beerBoy says:

    sozo – I understand that the Klan, like Fred Phelps, doesn’t represent all of Christianity and I don’t assume that moderate Christians who condemn these extremist Xian wack-jobs aren’t secretly hiding their true agendas.

    Unfortunately, there are more than a few who somehow think that the extremist Wahhabi wackjobs represent all Muslims, including the vast majority who condemn the heretics.

  62. That’s a giant leap in logic. Now beerboy is assuming to know what some Christians think. Another indication of what’s wrong with a liberal, but it also reaffirms that liberalism is a mental disorder.

  63. beerBoy says:

    frosty…..Are you maintaining that what folks write on these threads isn’t related to what they think?

  64. beerBoy says:

    I’m sorry…..I didn’t realize that you were speaking from your own limited mental capabilities when you wrote “a giant leap in logic”.

  65. There are valid reasons to question the connection, or lack thereof, between “moderate” Muslilms and extremists. Questiong this demonstrates a desire for understanding and a reasonable caution — not bigotry or xenaphobia.

    Most of us don’t know much about Islam and have been thrust into a place of learning a lot quickly, or trying to.

    The United States has been “the welcoming agent” to immigrants from all over the world. It is the responsibility of those being welcomed to assimilate into the country they have chosen to call home; likewise it is their responsibility to encourage understanding re their culture and religion.

    There are conflicting messages coming from folks in the Islamic community and it’s up to them to clear up the confusion.

  66. iamjimbo says:

    Gosh, I can’t seem to find even a mention of the eco terrorist algore disciple other than the initial story… kooky.

  67. iamjimbo says:

    “Our problems with the Muslim world could be solved by simply putting an end to our meddling in their affairs…”

    Oh, you mean their imposition of worldwide sharia law?

  68. The naivete here is stunning.

  69. Agreed, sozo.

  70. sozo – pray tell what are those “valid reasons”?

    Please explain.

  71. Start here bBoy:

    The Quran contains at least 109 verses that call Muslims to war with nonbelievers. Some are quite graphic, with commands to chop off heads and fingers and kill infidels wherever they may be hiding. Muslims who do not join the fight are called ‘hypocrites’ and warned that Allah will send them to Hell if they do not join the slaughter.

    These verses are mostly open-ended, meaning that the historical context is not embedded within the surrounding text – as are nearly all of the Old Testament verses of violence. They are part of the eternal, unchanging word of Allah, and just as relevant or subjective as anything else in the Qur’an.

    Unfortunately, there are very few verses of tolerance and peace to abrogate or even balance out the many that call for nonbelievers to be fought and subdued until they either accept humiliation, convert to Islam, or are killed. This proclivity toward violence – and Muhammad’s own martial legacy – has left a trail of blood and tears across world history.

    The Qur’an:

    Qur’an (2:191-193) – “And slay them wherever ye find them, and drive them out of the places whence they drove you out, for persecution [of Muslims] is worse than slaughter [of non-believers]…and fight them until persecution is no more, and religion is for Allah.”

    There is a good case to be made that the textual context of this particular passage is defensive war, even if the historical context was not. However, there are also two worrisome pieces to this verse. The first is that the killing of others is authorized in the event of “persecution” (a qualification that is ambiguous at best). The second is that fighting may persist until “religion is for Allah.” The example set by Muhammad is not reassuring.

  72. And this commentary about post 9/11 conduct:

    “A member of the Islamist group, Hamas, actually described the carnage as “one of the miracles of the Qur’an.” Australia’s Grand Mufti said they were “God’s work against oppressors.” Even Islamic apologist pollsters, Esposito and Mogahed, were forced to admit that about 1 out of 3 Muslims worldwide view the terrorism of 9/11 as justified (which constitutes about 450 million believers).

    It was not for three years, in fact, that there was even a fatwa issued against these attacks. To this day, major Muslim-American groups are reluctant to denounce Osama Bin Laden by name and none will condemn the terror group Hamas, which has sent suicide bombers into discos, shopping malls, buses and restaurants.”

    I’m quite sure bBoy that you will deny all of this, but as I said earlier, the burden of proof regarding moderate Muslims being distinctive and different from the extremists is on the moderates.

    Meanwhile, caution and care are called for.

  73. sozo, I am sorry you have chosen not to even read any of the links I provided to you that show you are repeating nonsense. The first fatwa was issued by a group 0f 57 Egyptian clerics on Sept 14, 2001 as soon as the world knew who carried out the terror attack. Immediately all over the world Muslim clerics signed on and there were over 20,000 different clerics issuing statements against the action and agreeing with the fatwa. Sometimes people do all they can to take action to show their intentions and people like you will just not listen. If Muslims have shown that they can live peacefully in this country for centuries, why do you now want some other kind of proof? What sort of proof would you like? I think the burden of proof is on you for making all the false claims you have about Muslims in America. Why don’t you go visit the mosque in Tacoma and talk to people, or do you want them to go door to door like Jehovah’s Witnesses to share what they believe?

  74. God, protect me from your followers.

  75. What I’m about to say you won’t like either tuddo, but here goes.

    I have said I hope I’m wrong. That’s the truth. That I remain cautious about believing what people “say” with regard to all this– is also true. I grew up hard; perhaps that accounts for a built-in cynicism about duplicity…I’ve known too many people who say all the right things despite what they really believe and what they do. If it has tainted my perception, well…once again, I will happily confess my errant thinking when I’m proved wrong.

  76. I’m sorry, I should have said that I DID read the publilcized comments coming from the Muslim community condemning the acts of 9/11 terrorists — just so you know. And I know you think that should dissuade me from my cautionary posture, but it doesn’t.

    Meanwhile, however, I will continue to have respectful relationships with Muslims in our community just as I do with others who look at the world through a very different lens than the one I use.

    I am fully aware that not everyone can be right about God or “NotGod” for that matter, but it’s folly to pretend we are all the same for politeness’ sake.

  77. beerBoy says:

    sozo – you know better than I how many violent verses are in the O.T/Torah (in fact there are more than one can find in the Quran)

    Your “valid reasons” can easily be used by an antisemite or an anti-Christian to question whether any Jew or Christian really is moderate. (the recent comments by the extremist Rabbi in Israel is one example). But those “valid reasons” are just attempts by the anti-semite, anti-Christian, Islamophobe to rationalize and justify their bigoted hatred.

    According to the Quran, the slaughter of innocents and suicide are sins that prevent one from the rewards of eternal salvation. The extremists who claim that they will receive 72 virgins in heaven by blowing themselves up to kill the “Great Satan” have a false theology based upon cherry-picked verses (perhaps the same ones you cherry-pcked) and ignoring the rest of the Scripture.

    They are heretics, they are false believers who have perverted the religion. To suggest that all of Islam can be judged by their perversion is only justified by a refusal to see the whole religion – i.e., bigotry.

  78. George Orwell satirized Stalinism and all dictators, with Animal Farm but it was not a warning about all Socialism. Although he was intensely in opposition to totalitarianism of all kinds, Orwell was passionately a democratic socialist throughout his life.

  79. I guess I responded to your absurd rationale on another thread sozo so here’s an abbreviated version:

    The Old Testament/Torah has more of those abhorrent verses than the Q’uran does yet, if someone put forward the same sort of logic for not trusting moderate Jews or Christians they would rightfully be labeled a bigot. Look in the mirror.

  80. Context, bBoy, context.

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