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Renouncing terror ought to be enough

Reader comment on item: [Fixing] Islam's Image Problem

Submitted by J. Keen Holland (United States), Jul 29, 2003 at 22:13

Isn't it a bit extreme to ask American Muslims to foreswear the goal of an Islamic government in the US? As I understand Islam, it has always sought to proselytize all nations and throughout history seems to have had no concept of distinction (let alone separation) between church and state.

So, if society is conceived as a seamless web of religious and governmental institutions and all Americans are eventually to become Muslims, an Islamic government of the US must come to pass, however far removed in time that day might be. How can American Muslims make this concession without abandoning essential characteristics of their religious tradition?

Renouncing terror, and actively assisting in the rooting out of terrrorists, ought to be enough. After all, there are some Christians (the Reconstructionist movement, for example) who cherish a similar goal of winning the US for Christ and establishing a Christian theocracy here. [Some traditionalist Roman Catholics (Opus Dei, for example) are said to be working for government subservient to the Pope in Italy and elsewhere.]

So long as they rely on winning hearts and minds and contesting elections in the way of other groups with other goals for public policy, they are just another small part of the rich mosaic politics in pluralist democracies. We could hardly ask for more from America's Muslim community.
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