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Whether and Whence

Reader comment on item: Americans Wake Up to Islamism

Submitted by John W. McGinley (United States), Sep 7, 2010 at 11:42

Thank-you for a sane and balanced review of the present situation of Islam in America. It is indeed good and necessary to distinguish between "Islam" as one of the great World religions and "Islamist ideology" which is both dangerous and morally bankrupt. Or, should I say, I HOPE it is good and necessary to make this distinction. Two factors make me pause on this:

a). Where are the strong voices within "Moderate Islam" which will condemn, WITHOUT EQUIVOCATION, both the goals and violent means which Islamist ideology endorses? In my review of the media I find that the spokespersons for "Moderate Islam" never quite enunciate an unconditional rejection of the "Islamist" agendum. Quite to the contrary. This is extremely problematical.

b). The historical fact is that the very birthing of Islam as a religion was, ab initio, joined at the hip with militancy and a "death to the Infidels" teaching concerning the non-Islamic peoples and nations. Yes. Christianity (just to cite an other major World Relgion) has terrible stains on its history with regard to violence, militancy, and utter lack of tolorance (perhaps especially towards Islam) for other relgions. (And, somewhat tangentially, let it be also acknolwedged that Christianity has been plagued almost from the beginning with a vicious strain of Anti-Semitism based on its own Theology.) Let all of this be stipulated about Christianity, and for that matter, most major World Relgions. But overt militancy and violence is not present ab initio in the case of Christianity (or of most major World Religions) nor is such militancy a continuous motif in the history of Christianity (or of most major World Religions). Further, such an agendum of violence and militancy does not have a Theological grounding in the case of Christianity (and, for that matter, in most major World Religions).

I WANT to believe that "Islam" is NOT a religion which is theologically and ideologically joined-at-the-hip with militancy and a "death to the Infidels" orientation. But people outside of Islam cannot credibly make that case. Where is the cocaphony of voices from "Moderate Islam" which, without equivocation, condemn what has been so prominent in the history of Islam?


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