Yesterday at Vaughan Foods a former employee decapitated one person and was stabbing another before he was shot by the company C.O.O. who may have stopped a massacre. The very last line of the article reads, "The FBI is 'probing whether (the killer's) recent conversion to Islam had anything to do with the attack.'"
The first reaction most people probably secretly have to that is, "Of course it did! Muslims and beheading go together like Peanut Butter and Jelly, don't they?" Incidentally, that was also probably their second reaction, because beheadings are just something that seem to happen with surprising frequency in areas teeming with Muslims. Violence and terrorism also go hand-in-hand with Islam and if you can't figure that out from watching the news, you could learn it from reading a history book.
Moreover today, there are Muslims all over the world committing acts of terrorism along with raping, murdering, and enslaving their fellow human beings specifically for religious reasons. These aren't bad people doing bad things who happen to be Muslims; these are bad people doing bad things BECAUSE they are Muslims. Just ask them; they'll tell you.
Every religion has people who do repellent things in the name of God, but there are big differences in the degree of their offenses, their numbers, and how they're treated. Just to give you a couple of examples, the Westboro Baptist Church claims to be picketing funerals in the name of God. There have also been a handful of people who have killed abortion doctors because of their Christian beliefs. Is this the equivalent to what's going on with Islam? No, not even close. For one thing, these loons don't even represent 10,000th of a percent of Christians and for another, they're almost universally, harshly, publicly condemned by other Christians.
On the other hand, a significant number of Muslims support Sharia Law, forced conversions, slavery, rape, terrorism and religiously-inspired violence and murder. When pollsters haven't been too cowed by political correctness to ask, these backward attitudes have been borne out in poll numbers again and again. Just to give you one example, here are some numbers from the 2013 Pew Poll of the Muslim world.
* A majority of Muslims in several countries also support the death penalty for Muslims who convert away from Islam, including in Afghanistan (79 percent), Egypt (88 percent), Pakistan (75 percent), the Palestinian territories (62 percent), Jordan (83 percent) and Malaysia (58 percent).
* In contrast, in every other Arab country surveyed — Iraq, the Palestinian territories, Morocco, Egypt, Jordan and Tunisia — a majority of Muslims indicated they supported Shariah. Muslim majorities in these Arab countries, with the exception of Tunisia, also indicated they either supported stoning adulterers or killing apostates, or both.
* Forty percent of Muslims in the Palestinian territories and 39 percent of Muslims in Afghanistan said attacking civilian targets to defend Islam is often or sometimes justified. Further, 18 percent of Muslims in Afghanistan and the Palestinian territories said such actions are “often” justified.
* When a female commits the “offense” of pre-marital or extramarital sex, only 34 percent of Muslims in Jordan, 22 percent of Muslims in Iraq, 31 percent of Muslims in Egypt, 44 percent of Muslims in the Palestinian territories, 45 percent of Muslims in Lebanon and 24 percent of Muslims in Afghanistan said they think the girl’s family is ever justified to kill her to protect the family’s honor.
But, you may say, “Well, those are Muslims OVER THERE. Certainly, Muslims in Western countries wouldn’t hold those kind of radical beliefs.”
Don’t bet on that.
* A new, widely-covered poll shows that a full 16% of French people have positive attitudes toward ISIS. That includes 27% of French between the ages of 18-24
* In 2006, a poll for the Sunday Telegraph found that 40% of British Muslims wanted shariah law in the United Kingdom, and that 20% backed the 7/7 bombers.
* 19 percent of American Muslims as of 2011 said they were either favorable toward Al Qaeda or didn’t know.
Wherever there are Muslims in large numbers, there are usually going to be a significant number of them who believe Islam requires them to be violent, backward savages. Some of them may act on it while others just provide moral support, but they’re definitely going to be present. That’s not a statement of opinion; it’s a statement of fact backed up by history, experience, and poll numbers.
This is why people laugh when politicians like Barack Obama and, yes, Republicans like George W. Bush, call Islam a “religion of peace. “
That being said, many Muslims don’t believe Islam requires them to be violent, mistreat women, hate Christians or generally behave like one of Genghis Khan's horde – and it’s a huge mistake to forget that. It’s an even worse mistake for Westerners to tell Muslims that if they understood their own religion, they’d want to murder us, which is something some misguided people have been doing over the last few years.
Most Muslims here in the United States, across the Western world and even in more moderate Islamic countries don’t support ISIS or Al-Qaeda. They don’t want Sharia law. They’re not okay with honor killings, rape, slavery, burkas, female circumcision, forced conversion or beheadings.
It’s wrong to write those people off as enemies or worse yet, to lump them in as part of Team ISIS or Team Al-Qaeda.
If anything, we need to encourage genuinely moderate Muslims and understand the difficulties they have to face. The ISIS-sympathizing fanatic who thinks he should be able to rape Christian women and who forces his wife to wear a burka isn’t “somewhere out there” to them; he’s sitting in the back row of their mosque on Sunday. Their wives say “Hello” in the grocery store. Their children see his weird, troublemaking kids on the playground. Isn’t life hard enough already without having to worry that potentially dangerous Muhammad McMurder views them as a cancer, undermining the coming worldwide Islamic Caliphate from within? That’s a strong incentive to stay quiet.
So, when these Muslims do speak up, we need to encourage them.
Personally, I’m glad to hear that Muslims against ISIS’ gathered in Michigan to pray for James Foley. Good for the Muslim leaders In Alabama who defied stereotypes with a strong message to ISIS over the murder of Steven Sotloff. I applaud the Muslims in Britain who started
It’s a mistake to believe that Muslims are all bad people. In fact, most of them, particularly in the United States, are decent, patriotic citizens chasing the American dream just like everyone else. When decent people act like you’d want and expect decent people to behave, you can’t just always write it off as Taqiya and assume that it’s a trick.
Ironically, that’s also part of the reason why we shouldn’t keep making the mistake of referring to Islam as a “religion of peace.”
When we blanket over the fact that there are significant differences of opinion within Islam, it keeps us from being specific enough about the problem. If you’re for ISIS, Al-Qaeda, Sharia, terrorism, genocide against Israel, murder, honor killings, forced conversions, violence against apostates or rape, you’re not for “peace,” you’re not a “good guy,” and you’re certainly not a “moderate.” We can’t empower real “moderates” in Islam if we’re not willing to draw a line in the sand about what’s acceptable behavior and what isn’t.
We also can’t empower real “moderates” if we make people cynical about their very existence by calling Islam a “religion of peace” despite the fact that we all know that there are hundreds of millions of radical Islamists across the world who believe in spreading their primitive version of Islam by force. Mindlessly repeating the phrase, “Islam is a religion of peace,” isn’t going to make it so. If Islam is ever going to effectively deal with radical jihadists from within, we’ve got to do our part by doing a better job of helping the moderates and ostracizing the radicals rather than painting them all with a one-size-fits-all brush.