Terrorists? No. Photo by Markus Spring
In the US it’s basically cool to be racist against Muslims. People on national TV can say stuff like ‘all terrorists are Muslim’ and Senators can call for them to testify to their loyalty without repercussions. Imagine saying the same things about blacks or Jews? You can’t. People would lose their jobs. This racism (religism if you will) is really bad now but it will look even worse historically. I live in a country that started modern terrorism and Muslims have nothing to do with it. They’re really great people with a cool culture and it’s a real shame seeing them smeared in America.
The most obvious smear is calling Barack Obama a Muslim as if that’s an insult. That’s like calling me Cambodian. I wouldn’t be offended to be Cambodian, it would just be wrong. Yet, there are people going around America saying stuff like
“In the Muslim world, extreme is mainstream,” she wrote. She said that there is a “cancer” infecting the world, and said: “The cancer is called Islamofacism. This ideology is coming out of one source: The Koran.” (Brigitte Gabriel
Well, not really. That’s both ignorant and offensive. What does she mean by Muslim world? The two biggest Muslim countries are Indonesia and India, both fairly mainstream democracies. The most mainstream Muslim I know is Shah Rukh Khan. As for the Koran, has she read the Koran? It’s beautiful and a bit scary in parts… like the Bible.
Most people I know who are Hafiz or live by the Koran are actually quite chill. It’s also curious that a 20th century European style of government would come out of a much older Arabic document to create Islamofacism. I think that this just shows that the word and the idea are oriental in nature, a product of ignorant minds rather than a useful description of reality.
What Ms. Gabriel is saying is actually ignorant at best and hate speech at worst. It’s tarring over a billion people as criminals and murderous, which is both unlikely and unkind. This type of behavior should be treated with as much opprobrium as anti-Semitism. Actually, Arabic is technically a Semitic language and Muslims, Christians and Jews are from the same mythical family tree, but whatever.
Instead, Senator Peter King is holding a hearing on radicalization of American Muslims. His basic thesis is that American Muslims might turn to terrorism, even though most American terrorism has actually been from white fundamentalists (Terry McVeigh, the Unabomber, etc). Oh, and King is also an unashamed IRA supporter, saying “If civilians are killed in an attack on a military installation, it is certainly regrettable, but I will not morally blame the I.R.A. for it.” He justifies himself saying that the IRA never attacked America, which is not in anyway a moral defense, merely a political one.
Still, the basic premise of King’s investigation is that Muslims are terrorists and different and somehow less than other Americans or other human beings. That and a lot of the discourse going around America today is actually just ignorant and racist and deeply uncool. Racism wasn’t cool against African-Americans, it wasn’t cool against Irish or Italians or Japanese and it isn’t cool now. Muslims are equal to anybody. They should be given a chance to be judged on their merits as human beings.