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Comments from a Muslim

Reader comment on item: [Beltway Snipers]: Converts to Violence?

Submitted by Umar Gunderson (United States), Oct 25, 2002 at 12:46

Just a few comments. First of all, Nation of Islam is a religion distinct from Islam. Nation of Islam members are not Muslims. This distinction should be made clear, but for some reason, the media seems incapable or unwilling to do so.

Second, I've been a muslim for 12 years, a serious one, you might say a 'fundamentalist', as I believe in following the Qur'an carefully. Not once in that time have I ever had any inclination to do violence towards or hate America, as a result of my religion.

I do criticize some elements of the American government's foreign policy. This is my right, and duty, as a citizen. And, by the way, not a government-granted right, but a God given one, as explained by the founders of our country.

I am right in saying the US was unjust in supporting the Shah, and other brutal dictators, thus enabling them to take many innocent lives. Our country should stand for justice, and not support oppressive governments. This position doesn't make me an America hater, or a subversive, just a citizen who wants the best for this country.

I also speak out and oppose Al Qaeda, and any group that targets civilians and seeks to promote anarchy and chaos. This is a given for any just person. Most muslims are just people - it is required by our religion.

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