“What do you mean you will see me there?”
He dismissed the question with a wave of his hand. Awkwardness hung in the air. Was this the sort of suspicious behavior I was supposed to report? Nearly four years since four commercial airliners were forcibly smashed into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and Pennsylvania and we still don’t know what exactly qualifies as “suspicious.”
With the initial shock of 9-1-1 having receded some, we are more inclined to question our own suspicions. After all, its not very PC to suspect or criticize other cultures. Yes, we read in the paper about terrorists detonating a series of bombs across London’s mass transit system, but nothing like that has occurred here since September 11. Even as terrorists strike again in London, igniting more bombs in the subway and bus system, we remain hesitant to admit that such evil will pass close to us again. Afraid of being labeled xenophobic, we sit passively by while radical Islamic leaders plot ways to destroy our way of life.
Have we become complacent to the threat posed by Islamic extremists? I fear that we have been so conditioned not to disparage the practices of other cultures, that we ignore this evil microbe among us. We have been so brainwashed about what’s politically correct, that we forget about what’s morally correct. We forget that thousands of Muslim women are being enslaved by archaic religious practices. We forget that Muslim children are being taught to blame all the problems of their lives on Western culture. We even forget about the men who are being told to strap bombs onto their bodies and detonate themselves in public squares.
At some point we must realize that actively defending against radical Islamic teachings is not a matter of cultural relativity. It is a matter of universally recognized human rights. The idea of terror attacks is at odds with the basic freedoms embraced by all enlightened, democratic societies. At some point we must make a decision not to allow the mere threat of charges of cultural or religious insensitivity to stop us from dealing with this evil.
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