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Stick to breakfast cereal; it's more nutritious

Reader comment on item: Hamza Yusuf Fails My "Test"
in response to reader comment: Interesting.

Submitted by Archimedes2 (Canada), Apr 22, 2007 at 23:37

Hi Anoy ( = Subriah, I infer) You say, "I refuse to be called "moderate muslim" I am just a Muslim."

Very well, I have no problem with that on the face of it. But if you refuse distinctions between evil men (such as adherents of Al Qaeda, Hizbullah and Hamas) who act in the name of Islam, and ostensibly peace-loving muslims like yourself, then you cease to be what we generally call a moderate, and it matters no longer what you call yourself.

For you cannot align yourself with them and express solidarity with them without being an enabler their evil, and without sharing moral responsibiliy for their acts -- you become what we might call a "passive jihadi". There are many who have never strapped on a suicide belt and killed innocent teenagers, but they have knowingly allowed their Zakat to be sent to finance those who do. And, by doing so, such men are just as guilty and will be judged just as severely by God (perhaps more so). Perhaps more of immediate interest: such men automatically, and rightfully, become the objects of our suspicion.

The two terms "extremist" and "moderate", abused and ineffectual though they may be, are there for your protection. The purpose of these categories is to clarify whom the enemy is. The enemy is not all muslims -- it is only those who kill innocents or struggly by means violence, politics or kitman, to replace free society and democratic government with shariah law and "Khilafat-i-Rashida".

If muslims refuse to allow this distinction to be made -- indeed instead of exposing and assisting in the fight against the radicals who would drag you to the dark side, fight the distinction and oppose those who stand up against this evil -- by doing so they (wittingly or unwittingly) drag all of Islam to that side. Pipes says "radical islam is the problem and moderate islam is the solution" (a formulation which has been largely accepted in antijihadist circles in the west). If the only response of the Ummah is "there is no distinction!"

Then, guess what? The formulation becomes "...then, unfortunately, all of Islam is, after all, the problem". If painting all muslims with the brush of extremism is "islamophobia", then it is not scholars like Pipes who are "islamophobes". Rather it is the muslims who refuse to allow such a distinction. You cannot be neutral: you are either part of the problem or you are part of the solution. You must decide your allegiance. Until he clarifies his statements, along the lines I have suggested, Hamza Yusuf has apparently made his allegiance perfectly clear. It's too bad, because I, too, would have placed him in the "moderate" category -- but apparently he disagrees.

I could not help but note the following toss-out comment you made: "I read anything i can get my hands on from the back of cereal boxes to the gospel of barnabas or whatever." It is good for you to read widely. I do the same. It is good not only to keep an open mind but also to understand when there is an attempt to deceive. Cereal boxes, although full of commercial fluff, generally contain factual information. The so-called Gospel of Barnabas, I hope you understand, is a 14th century fabrication formulated specifically as piece of pro-Islamic and anti-christianity agenda; it has no factual basis. Though it is a far more subtle piece of writing it is just as false, and just as hate-motivated, as the Protocol of the Elders of Zion. If you must read poison, be sure you understand its nature. Or stick to cereal boxes.

Submitting....

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