Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Islam & Blasphemy, Censorship & Hearings

Islam is a "religion of peace" unrelated to the terrorism, murder and mayhem that we see perpetrated throughout the world. Or so CAIR, virtually the entire left in America and Europe, and the Obama administration wants you to believe.

The only way they can maintain that meme is to ignore reality when they can, cover-up for it when they must, and refuse to allow any competing message whenever possible. Thus did we see the Washington Post recently refuse to publish the comments of distinguished scholar Dr. Willis Elliot, a long time contributer to the Post, in answer to the following from the Washington Post:

The Mutual Blasphemy of Christianity and Islam.

2011 began with some bleak news for Muslim-Christian relations around the world.

Recent attacks against churches in Iraq, Nigeria and Egypt have killed dozens of Christian worshippers. Meanwhile, the Pakistani government is standing by the country’s controversial blasphemy law which critics say threatens religious minorities.

How should political and religious leaders in America and abroad deal with these challenges to interfaith relations?

You can read Elliot's entire offending response here. He merely pointed out some realities. One, while Christianity and Judaism, have at their core, the Golden Rule directing them to treat others as they would want to be treated by others, Islam is largely directed to be hostile to non-Muslims. And while promoting non-violence is a theme of the Christianity, it is not a theme of Islam. Elliot adds:

Muslims don’t know how to behave when they are not in power: it enrages them, makes them thin-skinned to “blasphemy,” drives them to achieve power and impose sharia, even motivates some of them to martyr-suicide in killing any they consider enemies of Allah.

Well, that is certainly true of "political Islam" that describes far too large a swath of the Islamic world. Elliot then pointed out:

[W]e can make no essential progress, religious or political, unless we honestly and courageously confront the reality that our two religions are essential enemies, antagonists each to the other’s essence, mutual blasphemers. Only with that realism can the mutual blasphemers begin to learn to get along with each other without violence.

How well said. Tolerance is the watchword, but there will never be tolerance so long as the left whitewashes both the nature of - and problems within - the Islamic world. Censorship, such as that done in this case by WaPo, contributes significantly to an already dangerous situation, as it allows the problems in the Islamic world to metasticize while much of Western civilization remains blissfully ignorant.

Fortunately, not all in our government are willing to accept the whitewash. Rep. Peter King has scheduled a hearing in Feb. on "the Times Square bombing attempt and the Fort Hood shooting, both involving American-born Muslims, as well as other incidents and on what he sees as the failure of Muslim leadership to combat extremism." Not surprisingly, he is getting a lot of push-back from people who do not want hearings like this to take place. On the other hand, Muslim reformers, such as M. Zhudi Jasser, are applauding the decision to hold the hearing. As Mr. Jasser wrote not long ago:

We are only playing defense against this growing threat with no signs of an offensive strategy. More and more, our homeland security strategy is turning out to be nothing more than a whack-a-mole program. This cycle will only be broken by the development of a national strategy that will counter the true root cause of Islamist terror-the ideology and continuum of political Islam that lies within the Muslim consciousness. This again calls for an American Muslim led strategy for reform against political Islam. . . .

As we move forward into 2011, Americans and particularly American Muslims need to wake up to their responsibility to frontally address the ideological threat that we are facing today. Mohamud's radicalization is not uncommon because the separatist ideology of political Islam is ubiquitous in Muslim communities. Condemnation of violence or terrorism is not enough. We can no longer allow the sound bite to be 'it is one deranged individual'. This is a Muslim systemic problem that needs a Muslim systemic reform.

American Muslims must teach our youth that the ideals of America and the principles embodied in our Constitution provide the best environment for Muslims to practice their faith. We must teach our youth that the idea of the Islamic State and governmental shariah (Islamic law) has no place in modernity and no place in America. Any other approach is mired in denial and avoidance of this core ideological problem."

Somehow, I doubt if Mr. Jasser's quote would ever make it past the WaPo censors, nor be referred to by Obama. That notwithstanding, for a much more realistic and in-depth discussion of issues related to the points raised above by Dr. Elliot, I urge you to read the text of a symposium involving M. Zhudi Jasser, Tawfiq Hamid, Robert Spencer and Timothy Furnish. It is not something you will see in the Washington Post or on the View, nor will you hear it discussed by Obama. But if we are to move forward, the starting point is knowing, realistically, where we are today.

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