Fort Hood Tragedy: What Muslims Know and what non-Muslims conveniently don't

Now that the pitchforks have been dutifully handed out and the heads of Muslims have been called for, I sit back and shake my head wondering at which point do I have to fear for the lives of my family because some “Muslim” somewhere in America I have never been, decided to spit in the face of all that I believe in and cherish.

To have served this country honorably as many other Muslims in uniform have over the years, I don’t think there is a word to describe my heartache, pain, and sheer disgust I have concerning this madman and the actions he carried out.  Even as I make extra prayers and give Dua, I know that my fellow non-Muslim Americans would love to see me leave my country.  To go where I wonder…

To read the blogs, msgboards, comments, etc. while I understand people are upset, the reactions have been very disheartening.  Some are calling for the expulsion of Muslims from the armed forces, others are calling for an all out ban on Islam, others are calling for a vetting process, etc. etc.

As the author of a blog in which I make it no secret my love of my faith but my Country and Corps, I have received countless emails over the years from Muslims who want to serve wondering what it’s like to be a Muslim in the Military.  These Muslims often want to serve even to the objection of their parents, primarily because they want to be part of something, they want to do their part, and the myriad of reasons many other young Americans decided to get yelled at for several weeks and earn the title  of US Marine, Soldier, Sailor, or Airmen.

When our military loyalties, honor, integrity, etc. are not being questioned even greater still is the commentary directed toward the greater Muslim community.  Many wonder why we are doing more to prevent this, why are we protesting against terror, etc. and openly accuse the lack of action they perceive as a silent acceptance of this madness that infests the minds of some.

We Muslims know the very reason why these things occur and so do many non-Muslims however in the case of the latter, it’s not politically advantageous to admit these truths and would go against their agendas.

The truth is that Muslims can’t collectively do anything because we are disunited beyond belief.  Nevermind the entire world, but just here in America you have divisions so deep along the lines of ethnicity and ideology, that even getting Muslims to agree on the language of a proposed universal statement would be an exercise in futility.  Extremely sad but true.

The oldest Muslim community in America is composed of African Americans.  You would think that our shared history, racial identity, etc. would at a minimum cause us to at be united, yet we are divided in ways that aren’t ordinarily discussed in mixed company.  Not only do you have the various sectarian divisions, you have divisions based on class, interpretation of practice even within one “sect” (see salafi), the NOI, etc. etc.  In our one ethnic community, African American Muslims are Sunni, Shia, Ahmaddiyah, NOI, Moorish, five percenters, and many other beliefs or non-beliefs depending on who you ask.  Then you have other communities that contain many of the same sectarian divisions, but also bring their unique cultural identities from various regions across the globe.  It would be an out and out lie if people stated that divisions here aren’t strong when you have majority Pakistani, Arab, African, Asian, East European, etc. etc. mosques all over, some even broken down by some cultural or community ideology I could never understand.

But we are all Muslim right?  Sure on paper…

Muslims fight internally over the silliest of reasons once you examine the faith we all claim to share.  Whether or not women should pray in a different location, behind a wall, or not come to the Mosque altogether, whether on not it’s proper to wear or not wear a beard, how one dresses regardless of gender, etc. etc. and the list is too exhaustive to detail here.

The greatest taboo is race.  Yes race, but also class, and culture.  I don’t want to single out any specific communities, but in many communities in America depending on what your country of origin, mother tongue, income, etc. is, can determine your access to a Mosque or the “welcome” you receive.

I bring some of these very real issues up to explain the reason behind the age old question of “why won’t the Muslims…” The reason is quite simple if one was really interested and not just trying to score cheap political points, the reason is obvious, there are no “The Muslims”.  What exists in America and I dare state in other “Western” Nations are pockets of Muslim communities who in varying degrees may or may not communicate, associate, or fellowship with one another.

So when a tragedy like this occurs at best your going to get an isolated blog post, op-ed, or statement from the various “Islamic Organizations” but that’s pretty much it.  Most American Muslims today are going to get up, get ready for work, send their kids off to school, and pray that nothing stupid happens because they happen to be Muslim.  In the case of the Muslims in uniform, depending on locale and the professionalism of their units, you will have a range from escalating violence or fighting, to casual jokes and debate, my vote is on the latter.

I happen to know what’s it’s like to wake up one morning as a Muslim in uniform just to receive this sort of news.  I was in uniform the day Hassan Akbar turned on his fellow soldiers.  Here we had a black American convert, who was a Sgt, and was from New York, there I was a black American convert, who was a Sgt, and was from New Jersey.  Fortunately, I served with professionals and the most I got was a few off-color Marine ribbing and jokes, but I count myself among the fortunate.

I wouldn’t want to imagine what it’s like for other currently serving especially those Muslims stationed on Fort Hood.  One could pray that they won’t have any issues, but it’s definitely not for certain.

Thus far, every Muslim blog, tweet, facebook, messageboard, and internet comment I have read was universally sentimental, expressing outrage, disgust, and making sure others know that we don’t condone these actions.  I pray for a day when we don’t have to go out of our way to state the obvious.  However, that’s the best we can do.

It baffles the mind why some non-Muslims actually believe that a religious community (well only Muslims) have the unique human ability to see into the minds of other so-called believers and as such have the ability to control their actions, even if we do not personally know each other or even live near the person.  Muslims all over America now have to deal with the negativity from other Americans because of the actions of a guy we didn’t even know existed prior to yesterday.  What other faith community is taken to task in this manner?  I know, I know, but we are not at war with people who believe in other religions, etc. etc.

The fact is the overwhelming majority of American Muslims share in the grief, horror, and disgust as every other American.  We have giving our condolences, some have gone out of there way yet again to state that this is not what Islam teaches (and can prove it) and generally stated we are sorry that some evil guy who claimed to be one of us that we did not know killed fellow Americans.  How many of you have to apologize for the actions of others.

What else can we do given the reality of our division?  What Catholic, Protestant, Jew, etc. can control the actions of their flock and your considered somewhat united?  Yet, Muslims who can’t even agree on the start of Ramadan, where women should pray, etc. are supposed to be able to do what exactly?  Walk hand and hand march on Washington and repeat loud and clear that we are sorry?

Not to take away anything from anyone, but look, we hate this guy as much as you do and not just because he’s a murderous traitor to God and Country, but also due to the fact, that sane Muslim lives all over the country are now disturbed once again for something we did not do.

I already grew up listening to the news fingers crossed hoping it wasn’t a black person, now I have to listen to the news cross my fingers and hope it’s not a Muslim, sometimes I get smacked twice!

So there, another long incohesive rant.

Lastly, I wanted to state that there are many who know the reality of the divisions within the Muslim community, many of these very people are major critics of Islam/Muslims who make loads of money criticizing us at every turn and opportunity, yet they promote this idea of Muslim oneness as if the actions of on Muslim directly ties to the actions of another.  If if this well mass produced lie was true, then that would mean that once again the number overwhelming show that Muslims are in fact peaceful citizens and a productive part of society, but of course only the minority counts in our shock and awe press and no better page turner is the “radical Muslim”.

Look I hope this guy is executed and rot in hell like the next guy, but when you try to compare this and other idiots to the religion I practice, study, and live daily I have to draw the line.  Many American Muslims have no criminal records and have HONORABLE Discharges, many of them gave the ultimate sacrifice for our nation and are buried in Arlington, this murderer is no more a part of us as  the pedophile priest, the abortion doctor killer, or the millions behind bars now who claim to be Christian, are a part of you.

Can we all just be civil for a moment see this as a tragedy for all Americans and go back to the health care debate?

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85 Comments

  1. I agree with this article 100%
    We Muslims are being alienated by the actions of a few ‘rogue’ Muslims who kill in the name if Islam.
    The only thing we can do is pray that we are all brought to the straight path.

    Wa Salam.

    Reply

  2. Hi Robert,
    I have not posted on this. I linked to other sites I visit and hit upon yours by accident on  a site I hit once in a while. A very refreshing counter point of view to what I have seen elsewhere. I will post a link to this post and hope some others read it.
    Aisha, more posts like this one can only help. You guys need to get your points out. I will say that I am very anti-Islamist, but would appreciate your comments. If you want you view posted e-mail me.
    boudica_bpi@boudica.us
    Bob A.

    Reply

  3. I can’t believe there are muslims in the USA that are speaking out that this killing was good. These people need to get the hell out of our country. They should be arested and put behind bars.

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  4. This is a good and balanced article and I congratulate you Br Robert Salaam.

    I agree that in todays world, we muslims are held to account for the actions of individuals who simply go against the teachings of Islam- to murder/kill innocent people. The muslim community can be fickle and hence your point of division is quite true- if we displayed a united front,  sharing a common love for God and Peace, regardless of Aqeedah etc then the non muslims would see a more clearer picture.

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  5. there is no doubt that muslims the world over cannot stop fighting to defend Islam.
    Incidents like Fort Hood’s only serve to worsen the situation.
    we are so demonized, so embattled that the fight seems unending.
    how tired we all must be to have to always condemn the action of a mad and crazy muslim just to prove that we are an ok people and Islam is not a religion of extremism.
     
     
     

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  6. hello robert my advice to you is read ahadith,quran,surah with open mind and you will know the action of malik hassan is right, he is true muslim he follow what muslim prophet did during their time, raiding caravan slaughtering jews,pagan and chistian i know you are good person my advice to you is leave islam the dangerous cult before it infects your mind and become jihadi join us in http://www.faithfreedom.org we are ex muslim our goal is to expose islam and save muslim from this dangerous cult. see you there.

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    1. Dear abu agool,

      Once again self promoting from your illogical position. I read and STUDY the Quran and Hadith daily and have so for many years. I would love for you or any Muslim or non-Muslim to show me exactly where in the Quran surah and ayah that Maj Hassan’s actions are justified along with the tafsir, because we all know how organizations like yours love to cherry pick from the scripture to make a “point”.

      Reply

  7. Dear Robert:  Why would you suppose the killer praised God while killing people?  Maybe God really commanded him to do these bloody things? Can you list for me the things that God cannot do.  Or is it just beneath insult to even ask?

    Reply

    1. Dear Aquinas,

      I really debated whether or not I should approve your comment and/or respond. Since you set up the scenario, explain why would God want His will to be followed in such a manner. I do not know what you believe, but as a Muslim we are taught the greeting and words of paradise is Peace. The only time (s) that God has allowed fighting in any form was in self-defense against persecution and injustice. The only other one who’s will I know of is to create discord, death, and destruction is Shaitan.

      Reply

      1. Dear Robert:
        Please.  It is just a question.
        Hassan seemed to think that his actions would please god.  Do we know that it did not?
        Maybe he was fighting injustice and persecution, at least as he saw it.  Even if he is insane, in his sincerity there is logic that God is pleased.
        What limitation do you place on God to say that He is not pleased by the sincerity of Hassan.

    2. Did God command the following to kill to?!

      April 3, 2009: Jiverly Wong, a Vietnamese immigrant, opens fire at an immigrant community centre in Binghamton, New York, killing 11 immigrants and two workers. Wong killed himself at the scene

      March 10, 2009: Michael McLendon, 28, killed 10 people, including his
      Mother and four other family members in Alabama before himself committing suicide.

      February 14, 2008: Former student Steven Kazmierczak, 27, kills five students and wound 18 more in shooting at Northern Illinois University in DeKalb. He then killed himself.

      December 5, 2007: Robert A. Hawkins, 19, opens fire in a shopping mall in Omaha, Nebraska killing eight people before taking his own life.

      April 16, 2007: Cho Seung-Hui, 23, kills 32 students and staff at Virginia Tech before killing himself in the deadliest mass shooting in modern US history
       
      Just because M Hasan used two words which are commonly said everyday by billions of muslims, does not mean it was ‘God’s work! I can shout Allah Akbar when I score a goal or someone can say the same if he/she passed their decisive exams or got a new job.

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      1. Did God command these bloody things? I don’t think so. But Hassan seemed to think that God would be pleased as he praised God between reloading.
        What is our argument with him that God is not pleased with a fight against injustice (at least as he saw it)?
        This is just a question.  It is not an answer to say everybody else was doing something bad.

  8. Hi Robert,

    You are mistaken to rush to a conclusion before an investigation is completed. You already decided that Muslim hates Hasan and want him to go to hill. well that is not true. We would like to know what happened first.

    In case you are not aware of the mass killing, rapping and other crimes the US troops are committing in Iraq and Afghanistan everyday, then you should know that many many Muslim are aware and can’t do something about it. We dont have CNN or Fox news to sing our songs (like american singing their songs only). Tell me what you wrote about 1 million Iraqi killed because of America’s wholly work to free Iraq from massive destructions weapons that never existed (the lie of the century). It’s the US who owns and use these weapons regularly, not Arabs or Iraqis. Can one American confess they hate their solders as you confessed that you hated Hasan?

    I don’t know if people killed in this incident are totally innocent, as they all or some were solders served in ‘Iraq and Afghanistan and some did very horrible things in Iraq and run with it free of accountability.

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    1. Dear Arab lives in North America,

      I speak for myself and those whom I personally associate with. Furthermore, I find it quite tragic if there are Muslims who do not agree that one who has given their oath decided to break it only to kill innocent men and women in a surprise attack from one they trusted. Furthermore, obviously you are new to my blog as I have equally condemned time and time again the actions of some servicemembers in Iraq and Afghanistan, I call out wrong and injustice regardless of the culprit. Lastly, you stated that you don’t know if the people killed were “totally innocent” whatever that means but then follow up with an allusion to their having served in Iraq or Afghanistan that could somehow make them guilty. We don’t know what they have done in the past, for all we know they were all admin who sat in the office on mail duty or payroll, or they could have been engineers helping to build schools, pave roads, provide running water, electricity, etc. The infantry is the smallest part of the military, the overwhelming majority of the military serves in support roles. Regardless, your right we don’t know what those troops may have done overseas, but we know what Major Hassan did, don’t we, regardless of his motives as a Muslim who believes in what the Prophet (saw) stated that a Muslim is one in which his neighbors should not have fear, I cannot condone his actions for any reason, unless of course you can prove that those he killed persecuted him and prevented him from religion? He could have just resigned his commission you know?

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  9. Assalaam u  Alaikum Robert,
    Great  Website, and timely articles.  I’m a former Army officer, and convert to Islam.  I became Muslim after a yearlong stay in Saudi Arabia and southern Iraq during the 1991 Gulf War.  I currently, have a website where I share the stories of US soldiers/Marines   who became Muslim after their contact with the Muslim world.  Most of them are close friends.
    http://www.bayaaninc.com    –  Would you like to me post your story?
    Erich

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  10. There is obviously something amiss with the way Islam is being taught and/or practiced. You can obfuscate all day long, but the truth is that there’s something in there that seems to make it acceptable to invoke the name of Allah right before you kill a bunch of innocent people. I realize fully that has to plainly suck for the obviously millions upon countless millions of Muslims worldwide who live perfectly normal lives and practice a religion that would no more cause them to commit murder and terrorism than anything else in their lives.
    Unfortunately, in the case of Maj. Hasan…..and countless millions of others, they harbor a belief of Islam that to their understanding, Allah favors such actions and what they do pleases him greatly.
    You can drag out Tim McVeigh all day long, or the random nuts who shoot abortion doctors and set off pipe bombs at clinics, but you and I both know that there isn’t a worldwide proclivity of Christians or Jews or Buhddists or Hindus to bomb and shoot innocents while yelling “Jesus is Great!!”.
    When something like this happens, and you say “oh God please don’t let this be a Muslim….there’s a reason you think that….its the same reason I think “oh shit, I bet it was a Muslim”…..and we’re both right almost always.
    You can spend time being tired of having to defend Islam and pissed off because you think its unfair that people associate Islam with violence and terrorism, but you might at the same time want to think about the fact that people just didn’t make this crazy shit up, and the hundreds of thousands of individual acts of terrorism over the past 30 years were committed by people screaming “Allahu Akbar!” and expecting that what they were about to do would be the ultimate expression of the true Muslim faith.
    If you are weary of having to condemn acts of terrorism, perhaps you ought to understand why you are weary……which I’m thinking is because there are SO many acts that need to be condemned.
    This is something that Muslims have to sort out for themselves. The world cannot end Islamic terrorism with bombs and troops, but neither can we stand there like sheep while getting slaughtered in the name of Allah.
    Personally….and I’m sure you agree with me, I’d prefer it if Islam went back to being just another of the many world religions. Maybe you think I’m unfair, or biased or uninformed….but I see what I see. I’m not suggesting that Islam is the problem, but rather how its being taught and practiced and I wonder what it is about its teachings that makes people like Hasan think Allah favors their actions.
    Peace

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  11. Robert, first, I would like to thank you for your service as a marine.

    That said, I have to agree with Abu Agool.  You would have to be pretty hard pressed not to see that Islam has a violence problem.  The Catholic Church has pedophiles because it’s a place that pedophiles go to get access to kids.  This is a problem, but the church doesn’t MAKE priests into pedophiles. 

    Both Christianity and Islam have long traditions of creating violent people through their ideology.  Abortion doctors get killed because of Ideology.  Suicide bombers kill because of ideology.

    I am not a Christian, and I have no love for Christianity.  Personally I think it’s an evil death cult.  But that said, Islam is much worse.

    When a Christian kills an abortion doctor he is killing the doctor to stop the doctor’s behavior.

    When a Muslim engages in suicide bombing or this shooting spree he is killing his targets indiscriminately not for what they do, but for who they are.

    This behavior is abetted and supported by your religion.  You can talk about how the holy book or the prophet never said to do that, but we all know that people make the holy book say what they want it to say.

    That’s why it’s morally unsupportable to believe in holy books.  The Quran is not the word of God.  It is a book of mythology.  Same thing for the bible same thing for the Torah etc. etc.  Whenever people decide that a book was written by the creator of the universe and they take their moral code from that book, they are abdicating responsibility for deciding morality for themselves. 
    I don’t know enough about Islam to understand why Muslims are so violent, but It’s not just bad press.  Islam as an ideology is incompatible with liberal democracy.  I have NEVER met a Muslim who DIDN’T support this conclusion.  The problem is that as soon as you start believing that a book is “sacred” and “inerrant” you can pretty much be programmed to do anything.
    Christians have the same problem, but at least they went through the reformation, so their ideology has “mutated” into a less violent system of belief than Islam over the years.
    Bottom line,  If I can make you believe the incredible, I can make you do the unthinkable.
     

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  12. Robert, first, I would like to thank you for your service as a marine.

    That said, I have to agree with Abu Agool.  You would have to be pretty hard pressed not to see that Islam has a violence problem.  The Catholic Church has pedophiles because it’s a place that pedophiles go to get access to kids.  This is a problem, but the church doesn’t MAKE priests into pedophiles. 

    Both Christianity and Islam have long traditions of creating violent people through their ideology.  Abortion doctors get killed because of Ideology.  Suicide bombers kill because of ideology.

    I am not a Christian, and I have no love for Christianity.  Personally I think it’s an evil death cult.  But that said, Islam is much worse.

    When a Christian kills an abortion doctor he is killing the doctor to stop the doctor’s behavior.

    When a Muslim engages in suicide bombing or this shooting spree he is killing his targets indiscriminately not for what they do, but for who they are.

    This behavior is abetted and supported by your religion.  You can talk about how the holy book or the prophet never said to do that, but we all know that people make the holy book say what they want it to say.

    That’s why it’s morally unsupportable to believe in holy books.  The Quran is not the word of God.  It is a book of mythology.  Same thing for the bible same thing for the Torah etc. etc.  Whenever people decide that a book was written by the creator of the universe and they take their moral code from that book, they are abdicating responsibility for deciding morality for themselves. 
    I don’t know enough about Islam to understand why Muslims are so violent, but It’s not just bad press.  Islam as an ideology is incompatible with liberal democracy.  I have NEVER met a Muslim who DIDN’T support this conclusion.  The problem is that as soon as you start believing that a book is “sacred” and “inerrant” you can pretty much be programmed to do anything.
    Christians have the same problem, but at least they went through the reformation, so their ideology has “mutated” into a less violent system of belief than Islam over the years.
    Bottom line,  If I can make you believe the incredible, I can make you do the unthinkable.
     

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  13. Some of the issues  & comments stated here are all basically moronic. Why? Because they are based on “religion”. Take a few steps back & realize that all religions are made up by humans, who, centuries ago, made up stories to explain the natural world that was, at that time, beyond their comprehension. I’m not specifying “a religion”, I’m specifying ALL religions. Studying a book on religion is an absurdity!(which side of the egg to open, how many angels can dance on the head of a pin) When the human race finally evolves past this irrational state, then, perhaps, we’ll find out the real reasons that “Guns don’t kill people…Religious ignorance kills people!” In the meantime feel free to waste the time you have on this earth in the pursuits of whatever make believe friend you wish. Just try not to kill anyone in the name of “god”.  And stay the hell away from me!!!

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  14. I am ignorant to most of the teachings of Islam, but I do know Islam is a religion of peace. I will not judge Islam or any Muslim on the action of one, an action I know is against the teachings of Islam. I condemn the action of Nidal Malik Hasan, but I can not condemn the man, I don’t know what was in his mind,  that I leave to God. Peace be with you.

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  15. Dear Robert,
    I cannot help but agree with most of your analysis and thought process. As a Muslim myself, I strongly believe in the sanctity of human life and condemn any such outburst of violence from anyone, Muslim or otherwise.  To me this particular incident is an isolated, violent manifestation of a person’s political view that does not represent any segment of the society. It will be understandable (though unacceptable) that this person got pushed hard because of his faith and experienced first hand the graphic narratives of the war zones  that made him loose his mind.  I don’t believe he was acting in any other capacity.

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  16. “Can we all just be civil for a moment see this as a tragedy for all Americans and go back to the health care debate?”

    It was in poor taste to conclude your commentary with the above remark.  Obviously, this isn’t a tragedy for all Americans…since some Americans support his actions.  I actually don’t consider this an act of terrorism.  It was a murderous act of treason.  The shooter is a traitor, not the least of which is his country.  As many special interest groups or self-identifed sections of society attempt, you can’t have it both ways.  Had he served overseas with distinction, winning a medal for valor, he would have been touted as a Muslim-American hereo.  Now that he has acted as he felt his (your) religion required, you dismiss his religious affiliation as irrelevant.  

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  17. As a liberal american, I cannot believe that when Mohammed left the planet he did not leave anyone in charge , no organization can survive unless it governs itself. I am further mystified that any dusty ,robed , bearded nomad that wanders into town can claim to be a leaned student of the Koran and set up shop as a teacher: I understand that the tenant  of faith says to embrace all,but in practice it is has not worked for centuries case in point unresolved Sunni/Shiete conflict.

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    1. The Prophet Muhammad left the Quran and his example, the Sunnah- he made it clear that if people followed these they will NEVER go astray- he had rightly guided successors to initially did just that- but as you can expect, greed, lust for power, turning away from the authentic sunnah and not following the Quran as it was meant to be followed, results in a lot of trials for the muslim world and hence why there are so many questions asked today of Islam- as it is the people (followers) who corrupt themselves- not that Islam corrupted them.

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  18. Been thinking about this and i can’t put it away.Got a couple of things to say,first:If this pal right here,thought he did a good deed,he’s way damn wrong.”Islam” comes from “Peace”,this religion doesn’t encourage harming innocents.Second:Dear American Military DO NOT appoint any muslim as psychiatrist and this way all can save loads of trouble!

    Muslims have been recovering from 9/11 and it’s not fair that this lonely,confused individual comes and sabotage everything that was built afterwards.My consolance goes undoubtfully to all the families that these moments suffer by this nameless tragedy!

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  19. The attack against Ft Hood was made by Islam. You people infiltrated
    our base. Islam is not about peace except if you are Muslim.

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  20. Bottom line is, you gotta make a choice; Religion, or Country. The US made a stupid decision by allowing Muslims to infiltrate thier enlisted and officer ranks of the military. That was a terrible mistake! Now, look what happened! And to think the guy was a Major, in the US Army??? He was a buttwipe from the getgo.Type your comment here

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  21. Muslims have been recovering from 9/11 and it’s not fair that this lonely,confused individual comes and sabotage everything that was built afterwards.My consolance goes undoubtfully to all the families that these moments suffer by this nameless tragedy

    To the above poster: Stop supporting the Taliban and Al-Quiada !!!!!!!!!!!! If you are living in the US, you are an ingrate. First you bitch about the (very leninient) Passport controls. Then youwant US Government Grants , that the average American cannot get. (So you can open a 7-11, so nyou can price gouge the average working  American)Then you want our governmet to put your child through school, and you aviod taxes!!!!!!! Stop sending your money through Western Union to Al-Quida!

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  22. “… and they expressed their remorse. They were very good at remorse.” (From The Good Soldier, by Ford Madox Ford)
    I am reminded constantly that Islam is “the religion of peace.” If that is believed in the Muslim heart, then it is quickly boiled out of the blood by the time it reaches the brain. AROUND THE WORLD “a few” Muslims are committing continual atrocities (upon other Muslims, mostly), while the vast majority offer what appears to be no resistance — only apologies and expressions of shame after the fact.
    America has changed the Protestantism, Catholicism and Judaism that immigrants brought from the old world. When will American Muslims stop mindlessly following the hate-fueled poison path mapped for them in Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Gaza, Iran etc.? As long as you search for or expect a Great Leader, you excuse your own lack of effort to enforce the well-established norms of society among your own.

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  23. Wouldn’t it be nice if there was one voice for the leadership of all Muslims? Too bad you don’t have a Pope who can speak from your version of the Throne of Rome. He can issue edicts that cover all Roman Catholics, you have no such authority figure.

    As I understand it, though there are a few sects of Islam there is no central enforced heirarcy of any version of the faith. Anyone can basically call himself a mullah and say he speaks for God in a fashion similar to Christian storefront/street corner preachers.

    Just as Christians in general are often tarred when a crazed gunman kills an abortionist, or conservatives are blamed for Timothy McVey, or when anyone opposing liberal political points of view are called racists, Muslims are called upon to answer for the views of those who cite and call upon God as they commit acts that mainstream westerners cannot fathom.

    I will not quote this animal’s shouts of “God is Great” as he gunned down his fellow soldiers because it is too early in the investigation to know if he truly said it. Early news reports are notoriously inaccurate.

    But there are too many honor killings occuring these days in non-Muslim countries to ignore.  There are too many suicide bombers, there are too many willing to follow any two-bit tyrant waving a Koran. 

    True, these are cultural crimes, not truly religious ones, but the killers always cite God in their justifications, rightly or wrongly.

    Mainstream Christians long ago gave up preaching or condoning hate from the pulpit. Soldiers do not seek out non-Christians and gun them down screaming “In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, die!!”

    Muslims worldwide need to forcefully, continually and convincingly condemn actions and speech that might incite intolerance or violence against non-Muslims. As it stands now this does not happen.

    In the case of the major, if he had qualms about shipping out he could simply have gone AWOL or refused deployment and taken his medicine. He murdered in the name of Islam, now deal with it.

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  24. Muslim’s are all about piece in the world, yes? Then why do you justify killing all ‘INFIDELS” ? (Non mslums). You spend all your time, making up suicidal type bombs, that kill innocent women and children. You call that a good religion? If you are that stupid, you need to roll with it, because you a problem that will solve itself. Self correcting poblem, so to speak. Roll with it!!!!your comment here

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  25. Robert Salaam
    I read your blog. I did not know the division of the Muslim faith was so great. I know the Shiites and Sunni’s will never get along, just as the Jews and Muslims will not.
    My question to you as a U.S. enlisted soldier. If and when you are to deploy to Iraq, or Afghanistan and fight these radical Islamic Terrorists are going to be able to do what’s necessary when/if the situation arises to shoot and kill another Muslim? I believe this is where the murdering Major’s problem arose. (albeit, he would never had been on the front line). If you as a Muslim shoot and kill another Muslim this is against your whole faith. No? Then you become an infidel by nature of Muhammad’s teaching. Are you an American Soldier who chose to be Muslim  or a Muslim who is an American Soldier.
    Many Muslims in the Armed Forces of the U.S. have to decide which side of this situation they would choose. The safety of our Armed Forces are in peril until then.
    What’s your take?

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  26. Type your comment here
    Thank you for a well writing such a well thought out article. I just want you to know that a lot of non Muslims understand that an act of a disturbed individual should not make one judge a whole group. Lets pray that people understand this and work together.

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    1. I understand completely what your saying.  We non-muslims have to go through exactly what your going through now.   Everytime a cop arrests a muslim, I get accused of profiling.  Everytime some idiot soldier kills or tortures a muslim, I get blamed.
      Funny.  When you heard the news you thought, “God, I hope it is not a muslim.  When I heard the news,  I thought,  “Sigh, not a another distraught soldier”
      There are going to be people that will think what you first thought and that can not be helped.  People have their prejudices, so instead of feeding the fire, you need to  step back and stop painting everyone who is not muslim as being prejudice.
      a non-Muslim does something unspeakable, and christian/American/European organizations issue statements condemning it.  It goes both ways.  don’t you think its time we put a stop to it?

      Reply

      1. mike,

        How did I paint everyone who is not Muslim as being prejudice? Did you read someone else’s blog and then accidentally respond here? Read carefully, I stated that those non-Muslims who are out attacking Islam were in so many words, most like prejudiced against Islam in the first place. Or do you deny there isn’t a contingent who can’t wait for opportunities to scream from the rooftops that Islam is evil? There are many non-Muslims who have posted who don’t share these sentiments and I respect my non-Muslim readers who have common sense and/or don’t come from a place of automatic islamophobia. I’m not lumping all non-Muslims into a box.

  27. It makes me so angry that I and my children have to pay for the actions of one man, a man I don’t know and one that never knew me,whatever his reasons, it will be assumed he was just another hateful Muslim. Most non Muslims already believe  we spend all our days  plotting  ways to convert or kill them.
    When I converted to Islam, from Catholicism nearly 15 years ago, hardly anyone had heard of Muslims,  now we seem to be the new Communists, those who want to destroy America and leave it in a burning pile of ash.
    Between work, my children, my duties as a wife and my worship, I don’t give America or non Muslims a second thought, I certainly don’t want to see them all dead, and I have no desire to kill anyone, I have more pressing things to deal with in my life. But by  deafult of my faith I am pre-judged. I just wish stupid people would stop doing stupid things in the name of my religion!

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    1. “I don’t give America or non Muslims a second thought.” This is part of the problem.  Muslims hate the American culture. Everything about it is against Islam.  You enjoy the Freedom that America gives you, that is certain. Radical Muslims are killing innocent Muslim women and children in Iraq and Afghanistan, and it seems the leaders of the mosques are doing nothing about it. If the Iman’s and Mullah’s hold so much power over their people, why do they allow this to happen? Why are they allowing the Taliban and AlQaeda to hide in the Mosques? Schools? Hospitals? All locations that house innocent people. This is the main reason why there is collateral deaths in these area’s. BTW-  Still waiting on an answer from the Author about his willing to kill another Al-Qaeda Islamic Terrorist.

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      1. I know you think your pretty smart DeanNJ, but on this blog I prefer my readers who comment produce facts or admit their flat out lying.

        1. In what way(s) do Muslims hate American culture?
        2. How is everything about America against Islam?

        You ask a lot of questions but can you at least answer to the two allegations you made first, you know back your words up?

      2. @DeanNJ How can I hate a culture I was raised in my family is not Muslim my mother, father siblings their children, I love them all dearly, and interact with them whenever I am home..btw I no longer live in the West I live with my husband in the Middle East, by choice, because I believe it to be the right place to raise my children. So I do not “enjoy the Freedom America gave me” I chose not to, because I feel my children would be best served living in a Muslim country, where, might I add, I have all the freedoms I had in the West, I do not feel opressed in anyway, I work, go to the gym, have coffee at Starbucks, take my kids to all kinds of activities, vote and am an active participant in social life. If you bothered to read my post to the end, you would see  that my statement that you so graciously took out of context , was meant to mean that I do not give them a thought as in wanting to hurt them, I am too busy dealing with my own problems in life to want to wish ill will or violence on anyone else, yet athe majority of Americans assume that  all that goes through a Muslim’s head is death to the Infidel!!
        The problems you talk about are more of a political nature than a religious one, in nearly 25 years in the Middle East in several different countries, I have never felt any danger or been in danger, and while I may be very lucky to have been so blessed, I understand that is not always the case, but innocents die every day in countries of all the world, why are only Muslim countries being called out for it?
        During the early 90’s almost 85% of all the IRA funding, came from the US and from some pretty influencial American politicians to boot, that money was used to blow up innocent women and children in the name of Catholicsm, does that mean all Catholics are terrorists? And that Americans support terrorism?
        In short, my point was,  I am sick of being blamed for actions I have not commited, nor intend or want nor have the time to commit based soley on my religion.Nidal Hasan does not speak for me, any Muslim who picks up a weapon and uses it on any innocent, regardless of religion or nationality does not speak for me or the religion I believe in.

  28. Muslims outnumber the all the other faiths that exist in the world. 3- 1. Look at Malasyia. 1.8 billion Muslims. Please, correct me if I am wrong,  But where the terrorists are coming from, is the Quran says that  if you are not of the Muslim faith, you gotta be dead. I am Christian,  my wife a Bhudist. I embrace all religions that accapt others. If the Taliban, Al-Quida  refuse to do the same, needs to be an ass kicking!Type your comment here

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  29. You muslims must get to the point of admitting there is a pattern, and it is global. You can deny all you want, but that won’t help the dead and maimed. When I heard the news I said to myself, it s gotta be Arab or muslim. Just have the guts to get your act together, speak up and take risks by standing up to what goes on with your radicals, what goes on your mosques, and the bias and hatred that Arab press spews all over the world.
    From my stance, this proves that political correctness kills, just like it did with the FBI not digging into Moussawi before 911, by letting these Saudi train in flight schools in Miami, by overlooking Major Hasan’s plenty warning that he wwas a proselitizing moslem who cheered for the enemy side in our war, and keeping him in the military of all places.
    Get your act together, it is because of you that I hace to remove my shoes every time I travel an I make a mental note of who to thank every time I recall what a pleasure things were at airports before you brought this hate upon us.

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    1. What if I said you “white people” must get to the point…. since we all know the majority of the negative comments are coming from the what could be considered the GOP base? I mean if we want to get totally honest I mean non-PC and brutally honest, the demographic most likely to have nothing but negative things to say about Muslims are in the GOP base, you know your average Fox “News” viewer, who by the way almost always vote Republican, indentify as Christian/Evangelical, and more often than not are Caucasion. Why? Because the propraganda that many of you spew, you know the repeated talking points that all of you continue to used were crafted by those who knew they could bank on your xenophobic tendicies to make a lot of cash. You invite them to your churches and other events where some get paid more than 13k an engagement, you buy their books, and you go to their sites where they rant without end about how 1 billion people secretly want to come to your small towns and cities and get you! You eat this stuff up, because it would take too much energy to go research for yourself, actually go meet a Muslim (I know diversity isn’t really your cup of tea), or even better go to a Mosque (and no not to burn a cross). It’s much easier to hear from a so-called former Muslim, terrorist, or other so-called “expert” (notice none are ever practicing Muslims because only non-Muslims know about Islam surely not actual Muslims) because it’s a lot easier to just hate those different from yourselves because in truth, it really points to your feelings of inadequacy and your need to stroke your own ego to feel better. What better way to build self-confidence than to spend your time trolling Muslim message boards, blogs, etc. by trying to tear an entire people down with your fake fear.

      The unadultered truth is white America (those who are terrified of the Muslim boogey man) has more to fear from themselves than a Muslim any day, or do you suppose that Muslims are responsible for the crime rate in America? You know the one where women are raped every few seconds, teen pregnancy is through the roof, homelessness, etc. etc. etc.

      You want to talk religion, let’s start with yours, let’s start with getting the beam out of your eye first, before you arrogantly try to point out the flaws with others.

      Terrorists primarily terrorize Muslims not Jack and Susan in middle America. Terrorists are blowing up markets, Mosques, and other buildings in Muslim countries right now. Thousands of Muslims have died at the hands of terrorists, yet many of you come to my site with your faux outrage and want to tell me how “dangerous” Muslims are. Your really funny, which is why I continue to approve these silly posts, because while most of the adults are on here commenting in a civilized manner a few well placed ignorant xenophobes keep with the mantra’s they read in some book, heard on Fox “News”, or read on some anti-Islam site.

      You have come to the wrong site, somewhere you forgot to read I am a Sergeant of Marines, I earned that title and have never forsaken it. I will not bite my tongue for Muslims nor non-Muslims, I will not watch idly and not respond to the foolishness spouted by some of you. I’m not that guy.

      I have been speaking my mind on these subjects for years, my blog has a search function, so before you ask another stupid question such as what I would do to Al Qaeda use it.

      Other than that, keep up the entertainment, false accusations, and general lazy intellectual excessive I enjoy reading it between spending time with my boys, playing the Xbox, and writing my sci-fi book!

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  30. Al-Qaeda, Hezbollah, and Taliban. What are they? Nevermind the 100’s other splinter groups. What is the ONE thing that is common in all of them?
    I have friends that are Muslim and very disciplined in their beliefs. The problem that I have is what is happening to the Muslim religion, or better yet what is happening in the name of Islam. Perhaps it is the major divide in the religion that is the problem. I do not wish Islam to disappear. I do wish all peaceful Muslim’s would unite and defeat the terror groups that radicalize and take hostage the Muslim religion.  A “Jihad” or Holy War against the radical Islamic Groups. Would/Could this ever happen?
    There are many Middle Eastern Countries that just do not fight these terror networks enough. In fact most of them fund the networks.
    Josephine, I did not know you weren’t living in the U.S..
    For, if you were, I take offense to an American saying they do not care about America.
    The U.S. has always been very open to all people, of all backgrounds and beliefs. It still is. Always will be.

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    1. Once again DeanNJ, you have misunderstood what I have said, please point out where I said I did not care about America,? What I said, was that contrary to what most non Muslims believe, I am too busy with my own personal struggles to hate the West and wish death upon it. I feel like I am writng one thing and you are reading another!!! Show me where I typed “I do not care about America” Please read my post again with an open mind and without any prejudice. And you will see the essence of my post is, I am angry at Muslims who kill innocents in my religion’s name and because of that I am angry at the people who assume I too am a murdering Muslim fanatic, and the fact is I am too busy with my own trials and tribulations to even think about hurting or maiming anyone American or otherwise. That is my point period, just as you take offense at someone living in America and not caring about America ( not that I ever said that at all in either of my posts, that is something you came up with ) I take offense at being treated like a terrorist based on the actions of a few evil people who share my faith and do terrible things. Is that so hard for you to understand?

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    1. Billy
      We much more to fear from the Drug Cartels coming in from Latin America illegally than any other threat. They are poisoning our entire Country.

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  31. Here are theS oldier  basics: Never believe in a fellow soldier, with an obvious American verbal and physical appearance, who changes thier name to an Arabic one.

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  32. Robert, as a Human, I’m disgusted that one could/would commit such a horrible act against their fellow man. As an American, I’m heartbroken that one who swore to protect and serve his fellow Americans, would in turn murder them. As a Christian, I’m as confused as the Muslim community, as to how a whole sector of OUR fellow Americans would be held accountable for, or blamed for the actions of one person. Please know that although my faith is different from yours, I will keep you and all Americans, no matter their faith or lack thereof in my prayers. I stand with the Muslim community against the actions of this one person, and I will pray for my fellow Christians to take a deep breath and let God lead them through their hurt and anger. I hope that we can all, as fellow Americans, and in truth, as brothers and sisters in God get past this tragedy and move forward in love and peace.
    Blessings, Lisa Rose

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  33. Threat lie’s within. Already here.  As I said before: Shut the ,  doors! It is as simple as that.  Close the Mexican, Canadian borders as well as all aabic nationals. Not hard to do,  but do you think  Obama could do it? Think not. No balls. Busch could have done it, probably would have, if he had another term.

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  34. The answer to the Mexican problem is easy. Invite mexico to give up it’s countryship and become the 53rd state. They have more to gain than lose. Make them do a clean sweep of thier own government, then we do our own clean sweep. The first sweep will k nock about about 10% ofgovernment/military corruption . The next sweep, would Knock about 30%, including all non-legal aliens.Then make em a state, just like  North Dakota, Califonia, New York, etc. Yes, it will hurt our economy. Vegatables and such will become pricey. But in the big picture,  the US can’t lose . Will make Americans go back to work. Will bring prices of produce and other things  down, T.V’s, fridges, etc.

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  35. So in essense, what you are saying is: Mohamed gave the people the information to corrupt themselves. Which they promptly did.

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    1. @ Billy McGee-  No, the message given by Muhammad was as any message and teaching left by previous Prophets- be it Moses or Jesus. But like I pointed out, the followers who do not follow instructions are bound to fall- its like buying a new gadget- you get instructions from the ‘designer’ or manufacturer- so you follow it. Now what if you decided to not follow those instructions but instead said ” I’ll just do it my way and interpret as I see fit”- chances are you will suffer set backs and your appliance will not work as well as it should do- as you are not following the instructions as per the information provided.
      So its the same with Islam- if you do not follow it the way it was meant, then what do you think will happen?!

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  36. Sorry Robert, but you do yourself and your views no favors when you come from a place as prejudiced and illogical as you accuse others of being. Your constant association of the “GOP Base” with degrading and  demeaning names and whatever this weird fixation is on a news network makes you precisely as ignorant and unthinking as those you rail against.

    You have an agenda and a point of view to push, and that’s more than OK….exchange is generally good, but you have proven to be a pretty large hypocrite, which is sad.

    Having read a lot of this….and other Muslim blogs in an admittedly late coming attempt to try and reconcile what I know of my Muslim friends and their faith and what I observe in the world, my feeling has been reinforced that Islam’s first tennant is Islam first and your attempts to portray those who question openly what we observe as ignorant and prejudiced is at odds with your belief that you are a leader of men and an enlightened individual.

    Your faith is your own, and I hope that you come to the conclusion that these comments are made not as a condemnation of your personal faith, but as an effort to better understand a nature that is foreign to me.

    Continued peace, and whatever our differences, thank you for your service.

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  37. If God exists and can do anything then how can we be certain that it was not His will; that Hassan’s praise for Him as he fired his weapon was not pleasing to Him.  Hassan seemed to think so.  It isn’t a abusive to ask this question.  Please?  Why do you think that God did not desire this?  What can god not do?

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  38. @Aquinas…
    As-Salaam’mu Alaikum
    “If God exists and can do anything then how can we be certain that it was not His will;” Correct! Allah(swt)/God gave man limited free will(choice) and Allah’s(swt) will allows Him to see how events will begin and end!
    It is just unfortunate when man harms himself, he begins to blame others even God for his wrong choices, we all have options…Peace

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    1. Tabir:  Thank you for understanding.  When Hassan recovers someone must tell him that God is not pleased. No one seems ever to have convinced Hassan that God loves all his creations ; else he could not give praise to God while destroying  those creations — he may not have been able to do it at all.

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  39. boo hooi killed for god …what a joke hasan is a joke,any religious person muslim,jew,or christian,doesnt kill in gods name only a coward does

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  40. Perhaps those crying out “God is great” as they murder in His name are actually begging his forgiveness. I hope such forgiveness is withheld and the eternal virgins they think are promised turn out to be virgin male goats.

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  41. Billy McGee-  ” No, the message given by Muhammad was as any message and teaching left by previous Prophets- be it Moses or Jesus. But like I pointed out, the followers who do not follow instructions are bound to fall- its like buying a new gadget- you get instructions from the ‘designer’ or manufacturer- so you follow it. Now what if you decided to not follow those instructions but instead said ” I’ll just do it my way and interpret as I see fit”- chances are you will suffer set backs and your appliance will not work as well as it should do- as you are not following the instructions as per the information provided.
    So its the same with Islam- if you do not follow it the way it was meant, then what do you think will happen?!”
     
    This is a BS statement.  Whenever someone follows the sacred text and does something horrible people say they didn’t follow it “the way it was meant.”  This assumes that any human being KNOWS the way it was meant.
     
      If you believe that your magic book was written by the creator of the universe (Koran, bible whatever), then you have to get into some kind of decision-making process about how to interpret the text.  This means that ALL “holy books” are really just crutches for people to use in order to avoid having to do any moral reasoning for themselves.
     
    If you are using a “sacred text” to do your moral thinking for you, it follows as night follows day that some people will use that “sacred text” as an excuse for doing horrible things.  This is the problem with faith:  It teaches people to obey the authority of the sacred text INSTEAD OF THINKING FOR THEMSELVES.
     
    Then when other true believers see that a person has done a horrible thing in the name of their religion, they say “well, he didn’t really understand the text.”  This is a cop out.  It’s the same cop out Christians make when they say “Hitler might have given lip-service to the bible, but he wasn’t a real Christian.”  It is disowning responsibility for the fact that FAITH ITSELF IS TOXIC.
     
    The Koran an iron-age text that contains equal parts of great wisdom and utter bullshit.  I can say this with authority even though I have never read it.  Do you know why?  Because ANY book that can convince people to follow it as a “sacred text” must have something going for it.  I’m sure there are all kinds of pearls of wisdom in the thing, but by the same token ALL sacred texts include a HUGE AMOUNT OF MAGICAL THINKING.  And that makes it bullshit.  Religious faith is the DECISION to take mythology WAY too seriously.
     
    THAT’S what it takes to go on a killing spree in the name of Allah!
     

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    1. @Susac
      Your post is flawed- you state you have never looked or read the Quran and yet say it contains BS and tales of magic?

      Also, your agument that those who incorrectly follow the teachings is an excuse is also flawed- as the Quran does not command anything evil but on the contrary it condemns injustice and transgression0- if it was open to simple interpretation then you would have billions of muslims attacking and fighting everyone they came across!

      The Quran is not just a beautiful Arabic literature but also a great source of wisdom. The Quran is the last revealed word of God and the basic source of Islamic teachings and laws. It deals with a variety of subjects including the basic beliefs of Islam, morality, worship, knowledge, wisdom, God-and-man relationships, and relations among human beings. Comprehensive teachings on which sound systems of social justice, politics, economics, legislation, jurisprudence, law and international relations can be built from an important part of the Holy Quran.

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  42. NO ONE “thinks for themselves.” If you deride religious sacred books, what are your crutches? Socrates? Plato? Locke? Shakespeare? Hemingway? Seuss? Doonesbury?

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  43. “In our one ethnic community, African American Muslims are Sunni, Shia, Ahmaddiyah, NOI, Moorish, five percenters, and many other beliefs or non-beliefs depending on who you ask. ”
    This is somewhat hyperbole , based on my anecdotal real experience having lived in Houston , Upstate New York, Cleveland ,Columbus I have found no Shia , 5% , Ahmadiyyah, communities worthy of note. My sense would be based on that experience is that it is the same for other areas excluding  New York City , L.A. and Philly. African Americans are divided because of religion , they are divided becasue we have no sense of  group aim or purpose.

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    1. Brother Hakim, I would have to disagree, because based on my real experience having lived in New Jersey, the DC Area, and other East Coast locales, I know of plenty black Shia, 5%, and Ahamadi’s. I’m not sure what “worthy of note” implies, but suffice to say that these communities exist and if they exist along with any groups that may be “worthy of note” it’s enough to validate my division commentary within the African American Muslim community. That said, I think you meant to say that African Americans are (not) divided because of religion, which I of course agree and never implied, just pointed out that we were diverse, and I definitely agree with your last statement regarding group aim or purpose.

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  44. Hmm.  My anti-faith comments seem to keep disappearing.

    Or maybe all posts are vetted first?

    Ah well, It seems that either way, only people who agree with Islam get a say on this board. 

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    1. “Ah well, It seems that either way, only people who agree with Islam get a say on this board”

      Cry me a river… A: This is not a message board this is a blog, B: unless your blind you would have noticed that I approve many anti-Islam posts where even I am attacked personally. However, those comments that you have made that I did not were too over the top. It’s one thing to debate, even in anger, but it’s an entirely different thing to just keep posting militant atheistic rants using profanity all the while. If you want the msgboard experience where you can keep the back and forth going feel free to join my messageboard, but on my blog, if comments get too repetitive or out of hand, I reserve the right to delete them. How many of your comments against religion I have approved already?

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  45. Aside from the profanity, what exactly did I say that was over the top?

    That obedience to God is immoral?
    You’re a soldier.  I’m sure that you have been trained to realize that blind obedience is incredibly dangerous.
    All the Abrahamic religions are built on the false morality:  The idea that the blind obedience to the authority of God is righteous.  That if God commands it it is good.

    This is ideology is not only incompatible with any sane standard of morality; it is also incompatible with the constitution which you have sworn to protect.  There were no such things as civil rights in Mohammad’s time where there?

    Obedience is a moral skill.  So is disobedience.  The trick with making moral decisions is to decide when to do either.  Nidal Malik Hasan decided that “God is great” was all the reason he needed to obey, and several people died as a result.

    Isn’t that the REAL profanity here?
    If you want to debate, I’m happy to oblige.  But the problem is, there really is no ground for debate is there?  The Koran is the word of Allah.  Why?  Because you believe it.  How do you debate that?  What is the standard by which you decide that one side or the other is right?
    This is the trouble with faith.  It is, by definition, bereft of reason.

     

     

     

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  46. NOTE:   This is a post I just added to a thread on this same topic over at the Christian blog Verum Serum.  The quotes in this text are from posters on that blog.  I wanted to share it here, because I think that it covers what I have to say pretty well.

    Jim said:
    <blockquote>The newspaper article I read this morning says there are thousands of Muslims in our armed forces. This gives me the creeps.</blockquote>
    It’s funny; I sometimes feel the same way when I hear about Christian Officers using boot camp as a tool for indoctrinating army recruits into the Baptist church.
    Or that there are groups in the pentagon that are specifically working to recruit officers into the evangelical subculture.
    Religion has a way of being sinister when it’s not your group that’s using mythology to control people’s minds doesn’t it?
     
    Roger said: 
    <blockquote>It seems like Christians get pretty upset when they feel that their religion is being dissed. Especially in countries where they are in the minority. Muslims feel the same way in our country when they are being dissed by the likes of PRCalDude and Jim Bob. Lack of respect for ones culture and religion forces a minority to band together (strength in numbers). Blacks are no different. Brothers stick together. It has been no different with the Jews. When you show disrespect for any group of people you feed the festering hatred of the radicals within that group. </blockquote>
    This is a nice liberal sentiment (and as a liberal myself I DON’T mean that as an insult).  The problem is that religion is not the same as culture or ethnicity.  Blacks don’t choose to be black.  Arabs don’t choose to be Arabs, All cultures have their mores and taboos, and their specific beliefs that make them members of the “in-group” in question.  The problem is that many of these beliefs are factually incorrect.
    A voodoo priest might kill a chicken to cure a fever, but it’s the chicken soup they make out of the bird that increases the chances that the patient gets better.
    Human beings have all kinds of wrong ideas about cause and effect in this way.  This leads to an ethical dilemma:  Do you respect the beliefs or do you correct the ignorance?  Personally, I believe that respecting people by giving them knowledge is more important than respecting the culture by leaving people ignorant. 

    Taking this ethic into religion, we have a special set of problems.  People identify religion with who they are, even if their beliefs are wrong or downright immoral.  So you have (for example) genital mutilation practices that are horrific, but viewed as a moral necessity by the established culture.  Do you let people maim their children?  I would vote no.

    The so-called main stream religions are really no different.  The problem with the Abrahamic desert cults is not that they disrespect each other, it’s that they are factually wrong on so many levels that once you start educating people you either get people losing their in-group (also called “faith), or you get “blow-back” like our American young earthers.
    In short, belief and ideology should not be taboo to challenge.  Calling it “religion” doesn’t change that.  This is especially true for us liberals.  We are often accused of being bleeding hearts who don’t believe in anything.  Well, I believe in the values of the enlightenment.  Civil rights, freedom of speech, freedom of religion, the right to bear arms.  The values of the enlightenment are MUCH better than any holy book for running a society. 
    I believe that knowledge is better than ignorance, ESPECIALLY when the truth is something you don’t want to hear or believe.  I believe that humans have the psychological and moral strength to face the truth without fairy-tales, and that “I don’t know” is a FANTASTIC place to start when searching for truth.  I think that religion robs us of this dignity. 
    Calling bullshit on another person’s religion is not disrespectful.  It would be more disrespectful to allow a person to believe a wrong thing and to let it go uncorrected.  If I’m wrong I want you to tell me I’m wrong.  It would be immoral not to extend the same courtesy. 
    The bible is wrong.  So is the Koran.  Not always, but lots of times.  Like the story of Genesis for example.  That’s a bunch of nonsense.   It is historically wrong.  It’s a fairy tale.
    The bible, the Koran, and the Torah are also morally wrong.  They were all written by ignorant desert tribes who had a twisted idea of morality.  You can’t obey an authority to the point where you are ready to sacrifice of your son and call yourself a moral person.  <strong>Even if that authority is the creator of the universe. </strong> So we atheists get called “strident and shrill” when we call bullshit on the ridiculous histories and warped moral calculus of religion.   But hey, no one said being reality-based was easy.
     

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  47. Mr. Salaaam,
    First of all, thank you for your service.  For the past eight years I have argued “They all aren’t like that”.  I now find myself in the unfortunate position of having to step down as the Equal Opportunity Liaison due to my inability to trust anyone who shares your faith.  This isn’t your fault and this isn’t the fault of any patriotic muslim.  This is the fault of those small pockets and the individual actors.  Since 2001 there has been an average of right around 2000 muslims who serve in the United States Army and since that time there have been about 20 deaths of soldiers due to 2 muslim extreemists who served.  This works out to about 1 dead soldier for every 100 muslims who serve, 99 of whom serve honorably and faithfully.  If this were switched around to 1 dead American muslim for every 100 christian soldeirs who serve I believe that we would have no problem as a society admitting that there was a problem.  Where the problem lies is that even though you have pointed out that American muslims are fractured and factioned there has been no demonstration that there are muslims out there saying that if an individual harbors extreemist views, that individual is not welcome in a mosque, or a community.  There has been no demonstration, no invalidation of islamic crazies by any muslim community as a whole.  Christians have their own whack jobs, but they are marginalized and belittled.  The “reverend” Fred Phelps used to go around protesting at service members funerals.  This caused the creation of the Patriot Guard which now has over 170,000 members, Phelps church has just over 30 members.  A quite majority of muslims could very quickly demonstrate that the muslim communities hold these kind of actions in contempt rather than the silence which we now get which only signals acceptance of extreemist views.  Take to the streets, march, ride do something else besides bemoaning your victim status.  Right now I hear more muslims complaining about a nonexistant ‘backlash’ than I do denouncing these actions as those of a lone unbalanced nut who just happened to be muslim.

    Reply

  48. “there has been no demonstration that there are muslims out there saying that if an individual harbors extreemist views, that individual is not welcome in a mosque, or a community.  There has been no demonstration, no invalidation of islamic crazies by any muslim community as a whole.  Christians have their own whack jobs, but they are marginalized and belittled. ”

    THIS is precisely the problem. THIS is the recipe to fix the problem of backlash. THIS is even the solution to showing those unstable Muslims on the fence that violence is not a reasonable solution and if they choose it they will be ostracized.

    On the news I hear the military is wringing its hands about possible anti-Muslim reactions rather than calling for the exposure and weeding out of those who hold extremist views.

    A number of people are now reporting they knew of his views – and some even passed the warning on – but were afraid to mention them. The politically-correct crowd is happy the mop up the blood afterward and examine the murderers as a science project, rather than dig them out and eradicate then pre-emptively.

    Reply

  49. P.S. Who are the intolerant ones? There is a new film that features the end of the world. Cities and mountains and landmarks the world over are destroyed in this disaster. Religious monuments the world over fall from mountains, are swept away by tidal waves, are shattered in earthquakes. All but one. The film’s production staff are quoted as saying they feared being made the subject of death squads – jihadists – if they dared to show the destruction of a single Muslim structure.

    Reply

    1. Have you ever considered John that is hype to boost an upcoming film, it’s called marketing. And who said they feared a death threat? Did anyone actually threaten them? (Innocent until proven guilty remember, it’s what makes America great). No they “assumed” they might receive death threats. Making assumptions is a dangerous thing.

      Reply

  50. AA,

    Here, here brother Salaam; you echoed my thoughts and concerns to the letter. We have so many tragedies that we must deal with as a community. From the fear of being victimzed twice; the first as a victim of terror (I’m sure during his rampage, the Ft. Hood gunman didn’t bother asking about religious affiliation before shooting you in the back) and the second as a victim of any sensless retaliation some demented person might see as “patriotic”. Also, you piece on this brought up the depressing reality of our disunity in this country and all over the world. This truly is the time, as our beloved prophet (pbuh) said would come when ‘it will be harder for a believer to hold on to his religion that to hold on to a burning piece of coal’. I pray that Allah (swt) gives us the strength and conviction to hold on to this way of life,

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  51. Yes, David, here is the point for ALL Muslims in every corner of the world to unite in fighting these terrorists, not to unite and rally around them and defend them, simply because they bear the name Muslim.

    If you can’t bring yourself to turn them over to civilian courts for incarceration, then quietly take them into the wilds and dispose them. This includes those who assume the role of leadership as mullah or political authority.

    I would much rather that they be made to see the error of their ways and resume the praise of God and doing charity on earth, but you know best whether they can be convinced of this.

    Reply

    1. So you are saying that ordinary people should murder other people who might potentially terrorists, because they are fanatics or have shown fanatical impulses? Interesting.
      A 75 year old Evangelist pastor was just sentenced to 175 years of prison for sexually abusing and marrying girls as young as 8 years old, this is in the US. Do you suggest that, American citizens,  go around and murder all Evangelist pastor that they think might be like him. You are suggesting chaos. It is the Governments  of these countries job to wage war, not the people. You want to send unarmed civilians on suicide missons against terrorists, you want to combat terrorism by creating terrorists??

      Reply

  52. Very well put, especially at the end about the problems within the Christian community and how we don’t lump them in with all Christians.  The only words that I can offer as to why many in America feel this way or that way about Muslims is that it wasn’t mainstream and many were not introduced to Islam until we saw things like the bombing of the Marine barracks in Lebanon or The PAN AM flight blown up in Scotland.  Americans often are creatures of habit and comfort and anything new or seemingly dangerous gets demonized quickly.  This is not an excuse but I think eventually America will see that not all people of Islamic faith are the enemy, but that may take some time.  Stories like yours go far in accomplishing this goal, just look at the fact that I never heard of you before today and yet after reading your comments I felt compelled to write you and tell you I think I understand and will do my part to not rush to judgment in these cases and advise friends and family to do the same.

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  53. Actually, many of us heard of the Black Muslims of the 60s and 70s and their radical take on self-reliance that sometimes veered into vitriolic hatred of whites.
    Also, don’t forget the Moslem attempt (and near success) of the conquest of Europe. There were quite  a few unspeakable acts committed by both sides.
    Islam has never, ever been projected as a religion of peace.

    Reply

    1. And let’s not forget the atrocities the Crusaders committed when they tried to invade the Muslim middle east.
      The Bible says let he who is sinless castthe first stone. No one is innocent, atrocities are committed everyday in athe name of all religions, and have been for years. Remeber the US backed funding of the IRA who bombed mainland UK during the 90s? 85% of the IRA’s funding came from influencial Irish American Catholics in the US, many of them prominate politicians.
      Did you buy a gun and murder them for their support of a recognized terrorist organization??
      Did you storm the Congress where they were housed and demand they be turned over to the authorities?
      If you did, good for you, if you didn’t how can you tell others what to do, and how to behave.

      Reply

  54. I had to move away from DC, as I couldn’t keep myself from marching in the streets for causes (and there were a couple marches a week back then).

    Are we digging back into the Middle Ages to allow modern Islamists to get their shots back at us now? (“our turn! our turn!”)

    And though the Crusaders were not gentle in any way (sometimes murdering other Christians), they felt they were answering the invasion of Islam, which actually was on the verge of taking over Europe by sword.

    Reply

  55. Sir, if as a “soldier”,  you had been deployed to iraq, where you would be required to shoot and kill muslims… would you so so? Or would you fight the orders to deploy? Would you go gladly to keep the fight from our soil, to go and defend your fellow Americans? Or would you refuse?
    Ask yourself, are you WILLING and ABLE to fight against your fellow muslims and their belief in your allah, or would you simply lay down and submit.
    You see, I am Cherokee, Irish and Italian, I believe in Christ, yet follow Judaism…. in all of that, I consider myself first and foremost and American.
    I do not consider myself  “Native American”, “Irish American” nor “Italian American”. I do not consider myself a “Jew”. I look at myself as AMERICAN, who happens to be all those things.
    What do YOU claim, where do YOU lay your values and YOUR commitment?
     

    Reply

    1. Sir, I wasn’t a “soldier” I am a Marine, get your facts straight. Secondly, if you had been reading my blog rather than dropping by with pseudo intellectualism you would know where I stand on the issues. I don’t have to prove my commitment, my DD214 does that. Do you have one?

      Reply

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