Saturday, March 11, 2006

Americans Dislike Muslims

“It is better to be hated for what you are than to be loved for what you are not.” ~ Andre Gide

Lately, I haven’t posted a comment on anything political, or even interesting to most people. It isn’t that there isn’t anything happening, it’s just that I can’t come up with an analysis from a different perspective that hasn‘t been already covered by someone else. I refuse to write the same things everyone else writes about. I am not so clever that I can out write anyone else. My various blogger buddies do a fine job of commenting on current events on their own. Adding anything to what they write seems to me to be redundant.

Additionally, I refuse to borrow opinions from talk show hosts, as I have stated time after time ad nauseum. I want what I write about to be my own opinion, which is why I intentionally refuse to listen to the talk shows before I post my daily thoughts.

But I think the real reason I haven’t posted on anything significant is because I have to write about something that I feel passionately about. Otherwise, I have no inspiration. And I just haven’t felt the passion recently.

With that in mind, elashley wrote a provocative piece a couple of days ago about a poll taken by the Washington Post and ABC News, in which they demonstrate a remarkable ability to grasp the obvious. At once, the passion returned.

From the Washington Post poll:

“… [N]early half of Americans -- 46 percent -- have a negative view of Islam, seven percentage points higher than in the tense months after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, when Muslims were often targeted for violence.”

The following is a part of the comment I made about his post:

“Hmmmm, Muslims fly airliners filled with innocent men, women, and children into buildings filled with more innocent men, women, and children. They saw off the heads of innocent contractors who are only in their country to help the people rebuild it. They saw off the heads of journalists who, incidentally, are for the most part, on their side. They set off car bombs and people bombs in the midst of innocent crowds of people going about the daily task of trying to make a life for themselves and their children, and Americans hate Muslims?

Perish the thought!”


The Liberals still think we can talk these animals out of wanting to kill us if we just try a little harder to understand them. And change whatever we are supposed to be doing to them that makes them hate us so much. And presumably, if we discover that, we can change and mold ourselves to fit in with them and their peculiar religious philosophy. Then, maybe they won’t want to kill us, right?

Is that what the Liberals want? For us to live under 7th century conditions? For our women to cover all parts of their body, even their face, and not go anywhere unless accompanied by a male? No more going to school, and work, and aerobics classes.

What do you think the ladies of NOW will feel about that? What about NARAL? Do they know Muslims don’t believe in abortion?

What about the gays and lesbians? Do they know that the Muslims don’t believe homosexuality is normal? Do they know what the Muslims do to homosexuals?

And for you Liberal Christians. Are you prepared to renounce Christ so you can live in peace and harmony with your new masters? Is it OK with you that if you don’t convert to Islam you will be beheaded?

I can go on and on, but I think I’ve made my point.

Just last night, I heard a report on the news that Tom Fox, one of the four Christian peace workers who were captured last November has been found dead on a Baghdad street. Remember them? They went over to Iraq to try to negotiate a peace with the terrorists.

Do you think the Liberals get it yet?

You cannot negotiate with terrorists. They want us dead. All of us. Our armed forces, yes, but also our peace workers. They will agree to a peace when everyone who doesn’t agree wholeheartedly with them is dead, dead, dead. That is the only thing they want. There is no other choice.

Here’s a news flash:

The terrorists are all Muslim! All of them! Not just some of them. Not most of them. Not even 98% of them. All of them are Muslim.

Americans are a unique people. We vary in color to off white to dark brown, and every gradation and chroma of hue in between. We come from every country on earth, and we are descended from every culture on the planet.

We are proud.

If we are injured, we bleed. If we are attacked, it is our nature to be angry with whomever attacks us.

The majority of Americans are the rank and file Joe Lunchbox, just living and working and chasing the American dream. All we ask is to be treated fairly and left alone to pursue life, liberty, and happiness where ever it can be found.

The Muslims want to take that away from us. That makes us angry, and rightfully so.

And the Washington Post finds it surprising that American’s have negative feelings about Muslims. How profound is that?

Next, they’ll be reporting the news that the world is round.

30 comments:

Mike's America said...

I never had any personal dislike for Muslims. I even had a Libyan suitmate freshman year in college.

But every time I hear about a Muslim group in the U.S. these days they are either demanding special treatment or trying to curtail the rights of others.

Case in point is the Oregon State University newspaper which published a column critical of Muslims. Now, they have been forced to allow Muslims pre-approve articles discussing Muslims so they do not cause offence.

I am also very concerned with the importation of extreme Wahabbi beliefs into mosques and Muslim schools in the U.S.

Muslims should decide whether they wish to be Americans or Muslims first.

Goat said...

I will just say that they have given me ample reason to.

Sheila said...

Mark,

Didn't you listen to the President last we? He said that He was afraid there would be wide spread racism and Prejudice against our Alies and Friends.

Frankly, I say its silly to say that, when we were maimed by these people. I think it's silly to totally trust these people, as we have been shown so many times. Even since before 9/11 that we have to be carefull. WE ARE AT WAR AND WE DON"T KNOW WHO TO TRUST.

That's not Prejudice. it's just plain smarts. "Fool me once, Shame on you. Food me twice, Shame on Me."

The ports deal was based on money. VERY sad to think it had to be.

And this out of one of your wimpy liberals......

Mark said...

Well, right or wrong, Americans, as a rule, are distrustful of Muslims.

Erudite Redneck said...

Re, "And for you Liberal Christians. Are you prepared to renounce Christ so you can live in peace and harmony with your new masters? Is it OK with you that if you don’t convert to Islam you will be beheaded?"

For you conservative Christians, are you prepared to admit that you've sold Jesus down river for a pot-of-porridge of a president, one who talks the talk of Christ yet walks the walk of a warhawk, which is NOT Christlike?

Are you prepared to admit that you've sung hymns and blindly followed a pied piper of a party that's free-trade doctrine will leave this country HELPLESS in the face of its enemies before another generation passes? All in thename of American Judeo-Christianity.

That bullshit about renouncing Christ was nowhere close to reasonable, true or fair. Go back and count the commas and semicolons in the KJV.

GRRRR.

Actually, I'm releived, bud, You hadn't written anything to piss me off in a long time. Glad to see you still got plenty of balderdash on yer mind.

The fact is, Jesus said to love your enemies. That's not a very good diplomatic stance for this country, or any country, to take. But there it is -- precisely why mixing religion and government is insane.

Keep Jesus out of your war machine. And keep your distrust and hatred of "Muslims" -- when you should mean "Muslim extremists who hate this country" -- away from Jesus, or he's liable to come back and toss you and the modern moneychangers (Dobson, et al.) out on your ears again. Lord, come quickly!

Mark said...

ER, the poll didn't ask Americans if they disliked "Muslim extremists who hate this country", it asked if Americans disliked Muslims.

And as far as the reference to Christians, The same question can be applied to Conservative Christians as well as Liberal. The Muslim religion commands it's followers to convert or "purify" the unbelievers. In this case they are talking about anyone who is not a Muslim. Purify means Kill.
Renouncing Christ is exactly what the Muslims expect us Christians to do in exchange for retaining our heads.

My point is, it is no surprise that average Americans don't like Muslims in general.

There is no need to look for malice in my comment. I simply stated the facts. Any Liberal belief that stubbornly insists that we can negotiate with these animals to make them stop killing us has been consistently proven dead wrong. Pun intended. The murder of peace activist Tom Fox is just another proof of that truth.

Timothy said...

ER,
If I understand you correctly, you are saying that because Bush is a Christian, that he cannot lead his country to war as the President, who's roll is to protect the country for which has been placed under his charge? In that case... the South should have been allowed to succeed and we should, as a country, resubmit ourselves to the Queeen of England. Charles of Martel should not have defended himself and his country, and they should have allowed the Muslims to take over Europe in the 8th Century.

That seems to me to be what you are saying...

That would be an unbiblical approach because as the bible says, there is a time for war and a time for peace. We as Christians have a right to defend ourselves. Yes, there is a time to die for Christ and become a martyr... but that is between the individual and Christ. Bush doesn't have that freedom to sacrifice those under him for the same reason. He is only being obedient to his charge to protect the nation against those who war against us.
Blessings

Timothy said...

Mark,
It must also be noted that the enmity will always be there between Christians and Muslims. The hatred is born out of their disbelief in God. This same hatred began in the garden between Cain and Abel. Cain hated his brother because he was a believer in the promises to Adam and Eve, so he rose up and killed him. Theologically, there are only two seeds in the world, those who descend from the woman, a seed of belief in God, or Christ for salvation, and those who do not. The latter are seeds of the serpent and it involves anyone who does not believe in Christ. Those outside of Christ hate those who are in Christ, therefore the animosity will always be there. They see us as a Christian nation, so their hatred of us is real.

And they find it a victory when we pray with them, but not in the name of Jesus. That's why I don't participate in the ecumenical gatherings... they don't want Christians to pray in Christ's name. And if we don't, then who and by what means do we have to approach God? None. They need to be told this, which of course, will anger them to no end.

Just some thoughts from a theological perspective... the only real perspective...
blessings

Anonymous said...

iWe could learn a lot from TOM FOX who like Christ accepted all people, worked for peace and did not want to be saved from a violent death by the use of more violence. Tom followed the footsteps of Christ. Something more of us should be doing.

ELAshley said...

What? The world is round? I thought this was settled centuries ago. In fact, didn't the Church force Galileo to recant his belief that the earth orbited the Sun?

I don't hate Muslim's, I hate what they believe, and this is not inconsistent with Christianity.

And to say I must love my neighbor and commit no violence, or participate in war-- according to ER --means I must stand back and watch one neighber kill another neighbor. Christ expects us to defend the helpless. Sometimes that requires strength of arms.

If a man desires to slap me in the face, I'm told to turn to him the other cheek. But nowhere in the scriptures do I read I should not defend myself should someone seek my life. If I'm on a street corner preaching the Word of God and the crowd chooses to stone me... That's one thing, but to be attacked simply because someone decides he wants to kill someone, and that someone turns out to be me... What? I shouldn't defend my life? That's not scriptural.

If Muslims want respect, they should demonstrate they have respect for the very one's from whom they desire respect.

Jim said...

Titus,

What theology are YOU talking about?

Holy cow!

ELAshley said...

I get you Titus. Though I take issue with you on Cain's motive for murder, I get you nonetheless.

Numbers 23:19, Titus 1:2, Hebrews 6:18
Without these simple truths, there could be no assurance

Dan Trabue said...

"The Liberals still think we can talk these animals out of wanting to kill us..."

No. "Liberals" - as well as reasonable conservatives - still think that we ought not label a whole group as "animals" because of the actions of a few.

Most Nazis were nominally Christians. Ought the world have gone on a crusade against Christians?

Other than that, I'll just agree with much of what ER wrote. I have decided to follow Jesus. No turning back. No turning back.

Mark said...

Oh right, Dan. Some of the terrorists aren't animals.

Dan Trabue said...

Your post topic is "Americans dislike Muslims," so I therefore assume you're talking about Muslims. Am I mistaken?

If you're talking about terrorists, then that's a different thing. If you want to argue that we're justified in being angry/disgusted with those who'd commit terrorism, then I'll agree. I don't believe that was the gist of this post, though.

Mary said...

Anonymous wrote:

iWe could learn a lot from TOM FOX who like Christ accepted all people, worked for peace and did not want to be saved from a violent death by the use of more violence. Tom followed the footsteps of Christ. Something more of us should be doing.

Tom Fox didn't accept all people.

Well, I guess it depends on how you'd define "accept."

He protested against the Israeli treatment of the Palestinians. He considered the U.S. to be "occupiers" of Iraq, not liberators. He believed that U.S. forces were "illegally detaining" those suffering under the U.S. occupation.

It's hard to say that he "accepted all people." He certainly didn't accept the actions of our troops or Israeli forces.

I respect Fox for living out his beliefs. His death is a tragedy. It is particularly tragic that he was tortured and murdered by the people he sought to help.

But let's be honest. Let's not pretend that Fox was apolitical and nonjudgmental. He was nonviolent, but he definitely had an agenda.

Jim said...

Mark,

You and others keep insisting that liberals want to negotiate with Muslim terrorists, that liberals figure they can talk the terrorists out of wanting to kill Americans. This is false. It's simply false. It's an absurd assertion.

Let me give you some numbers. There are approximately 1.2 billion Muslims in the world today. That's 21% of the population or more than 1 in 5. What do you want to do? Kill them all? How are you going to do that?

I don't think you're going to be able to kill them all. Maybe it would be more effective to stop the recruiting of terrorists, because 1.2 billion people is a large and rich pool from which to recruit terrorists. Of course we should hunt down and kill the terrorists like liberals are suggesting. But that's only part of the equation. You also have to give the recruiting pool incentive not to sign up. Give them an alternative to dying. Give them the possibility of a better future. Engage them in trade and business. Employ them. Make it more attractive to them not to want to kill us than to want to kill us.

Otherwise you face a never-ending threat of terrorism from a 1.2 billion person pool of hopelessness.

Or do you have a plan to kill them all?

The WordSmith from Nantucket said...

dan wrote:

Most Nazis were nominally Christians. Ought the world have gone on a crusade against Christians?

I'm not sure that analogy will work. I don't recall the Nazis using Christianity to promote their ideology. And my understanding of their extermination of Jews wasn't an attack on their religious faith, but an attack upon Jews as a "race".

Sheila,

I was one of the minority conservatives who saw the Ports deal as hysteria-driven. And having read what I can on it, I still think it is based on a lot of hysteria. The UAE post-9/11 has been extremely helpful to us in the war on al-Qaeda and the GWOT. And I think they can be trusted, as proven allies. They donated 100 million to Hurricane Katrina, almost 4 times more than all the other nations combined.

The chairman of Israel's largest shipping firm STRONGLY ENDORSED the DPW deal. "During our long association with DP World, we have not experienced a single security issue in these ports or in any of the terminals operated by DP World," Zim Integrated Shipping Services CEO Idon Ofer said in a letter to Senator Hildebeast Clinton (D-NY) written February 22. The letter goes on to state: "We are proud to be associated with DP World and look forward to working with them into the future."

http://www.cnn.com/2006/POLITICS...rity/ index.html

Lone Ranger said...

I think Howard Dean summed up Islam perfectly when he said, "I hate Republicans and everything they stand for." Instead of a Renaissance man, we might describe Dean as a Barbarian man.

This may come as a shock to multiculturalists, but there are some cultures that should not exist in the modern world. Modern civilization would never tolerate the human sacrificial culture of the Aztecs. We no longer tolerate tribes that practise cannibalism or headhunting. So why do we tolerate the murderous 7th century religion of Islam?

Dan Trabue said...

elashley said:

"And to say I must love my neighbor and commit no violence, or participate in war...means I must stand back and watch one neighbor kill another neighbor..."

The first half of your comment here could stand a bit of clarification. Just Peace advocates absolutely do NOT believe in standing idly by while oppression occurs. Just the opposite.

This is, indeed, one of our reasons for standing in opposition to war-as-solution. War-as-solution costs a huge amount in terms of humanity and dollars.

From a practical and humanitarian standpoint, we believe those dollars could be better spent to deal with more problems more effectively using peaceful methods. As a point of reality, war-as-solution demonstrably cannot work - it costs too much and there are too many places where oppression is happening to be useful generally speaking.

While we have poured a trillion dollars and thousands of lives in to Iraq to get to whatever point we're currently at, genocides and oppression have been occurring in Liberia, Colombia, the Sudan and probably a dozen or two other countries. You can't accuse the peacemakers of ignoring oppression if the war-as-solution also fails to address oppression.

We need a better way. I'll end there for now because this is already long, but if nothing else, understand the reality that peacemakers are not isolationists or do-nothings. Reality says otherwise.

Lone Ranger said...

In the entire history of the world, when has a brutal dictator ever been convinced through sweet-talking diplomacy to change his evil ways? Ask Aung San Suu Kyi as she sits under house arrest in her moldering home what other solution there might be to war. War works when the spineless politicians stay out of the way. When the good guys don't win, we see what we saw in Southeast Asia -- millions slaughtered, enslaved and fleeing from yet more brutal dictators. Until you have a viable alternative, war is the best solution we have.

ELAshley said...

"...genocides and oppression have been occurring in Liberia, Colombia, the Sudan and probably a dozen or two other countries..."

I'm not so certain we've actually spent a trillion dollars... Yet. But pushing that point aside, if every man woman child and government on the face of this planet, excluding those governments who are oppressors, were to hand over every last penny to fight that oppression, you would not put an end to oppression. No amount of money will cure Man of his fundamental flaws. Man is tainted. War, however distasteful, is sometimes necessary.

'Peacemaker' is somewhat of a misnomer in light of reality. Even a 'peacemaker' will pick up a weapon if forced to do so. Sometimes the only way to make peace is to put a bullet in the unruly's brainpan. I know that sounds harsh, but it's reality.

Dan Trabue said...

LR said:
"Until you have a viable alternative, war is the best solution we have."

To paraphrase Chesterton, Pacifism hasn't been tried and found wanting, it's been found difficult and left untried.

No one is talking about "sweet-talking" people in to doing the right thing. Jesus didn't sweet talk the moneylenders in to quitting their oppression of the poor, he drove them out of the temple. Forcibly. Strongly.

BUT, he did not use deadly violence.

I was responding to elashley's comments about what Jesus did and didn't teach. In the context of the Bible and Jesus' teachings, there are indeed alternatives, but these have been left largely untried.

There is a misunderstanding about Just Peacemaking, or Non-violent resistence, or pacifism, whichever version of it you want to call it. That misunderstanding is that it encourages us to just be sweet to our neighbors and they'll be sweet to us.

We're talking about something Other. Jesus taught when struck on the left cheek,
1. Not to strike back AND
2. Not to cower in fear BUT
3. To try a Third Way: to stand and face down the violence, but doing so non-violently.

elashley said:
"Even a 'peacemaker' will pick up a weapon if forced to do so. Sometimes the only way to make peace is to put a bullet in the unruly's brainpan."

"Peacemakers" by definition will not pick up a weapon and solve problems with deadly violence. Tom Fox didn't. Gandhi didn't. MLK didn't. Jesus didn't.

Peacemakers don't have a problem with the notion of a police force and even with the notion of responsible, restrained violence in extreme circumstances.

However, the problem of translating the notion of a police force shooting at a dangerous "bad guy" as an allegory for modern warfare is that it is a horribly wrong analogy.

In this Iraq War, which ably demonstrates the problem with most modern wars, it has been suggested that a majority of those killed in Iraq have been civilians. Innocent men women and children.

That's where the comparison ends. If the police force killed 120 people in the process of apprehending and stopping every 100 criminals, then we'd call for a change. War is a poor solution and Peacemakers question whether it's ever a solution at all.

Whether nations ultimately decide to embrace war or not, those interested in following the teachings of Jesus and other great leaders have decided that, at least for us, we'll stick to the Third Way, the road less traveled, in our quest for Just solutions.

And elashley, on the cost of war, it is not yet a trillion but rapidly approaching it. Here's one study that suggests it's close or above that:

http://www.tpmcafe.com/story/2006/1
/5/11510/30624

Lone Ranger said...

Jesus didn't need body armor to drive off the evil doers.

Dan Trabue said...

That's right - Jesus could have had body armor if he'd wanted it or even a million angels to rush in and kill "evil-doers" - but he didn't.

And Jesus wouldn't need it today.

And this is one of the things I'm saying: for those of us who are Christians or interested in following Jesus, we have a command to follow in His steps. Yes, certainly stand up to evil-doers, yes certainly protect the innocent but in the process, we still must Love our enemies and overcome evil with good. Those are his teachings.

Dan Trabue said...

Mark, earlier you mocked me, saying, "Oh, right Dan. Some of the terrorists aren't animals."

Which is fine, I don't mind sarcasm. However, when I pointed out that what I said made sense in context (that you weren't attacking terrorists, you were attacking muslims), you didn't issue a correction or retraction.

Again, not that I mind for my sake, but I think you're an honest guy - this is evident from your essays. And so it is a bit surprising that you didn't either own up to the point or address why I was wrong.

Any further points forthcoming?

Mark said...

I wasn't attacking Muslims myself. My point was that it's no wonder that average Americans don't like Muslims. All of the terrorists are Muslims. Americans, as a rule, don't make the distiction between all Muslims and terrorists. I do.

I was adressing the results of the poll that determined averags Anmericans don't like Muslims in general.

I never said it was my own personal opinion that all Muslims are terrorists. I know they aren't, and if you had been reading my blog since I started blogging you would know that I have made that point many times.

But all terrorists are Muslims. I don't agree with Dick Durbin and John Kerry and others who characterize American soldiers as terrorists. In fact, I find that assertion highly offensive to American servicemen.

Lone Ranger said...

People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf. -- George Orwell.

We have come a long way since we used to carpet bomb entire cities. We can now send missiles to specific addresses with an error of only a few yards, if our intelligence is correct. But if so much as a brick falls in the streets, liberals start shedding crocodile tears. If the Avon lady happens to be ringing the doorbell when a bomb hits, liberals march in the streets. Where was their concern when Saddam was filling mass graves, when people were having their tongues cut out, limbs chopped off, being raped, being pushed off buildings? Human suffering is just an abstract to be used in liberals' pseudo-intellectual discussions. They are no more concerned about brown people half way around the world than they were 30 years ago about yellow people halfway around the world. They are trying to sissify the one country on the globe that has the morality, the courage, the determination and the resources to end brutality and repression in the world. I call their "concern" cowardice. And I don't understand even that. The draft no longer exists. They will not be called to serve. The military doesn't even want them. If you're not one of the rough men, relax. Go out. Eat. Stop worrying about things that don't concern you.

Dan Trabue said...

"When we kill the innocent, we become the enemy."

We may not like it, but as soon as we start killing or causing the deaths of innocent bystanders, we are terrorizing people.

Whether or not you want to call our actions "terroristic," (and I know our soldiers only have the best of intentions and always strive to avoid civilians) they are, by definition (or at least until such time as we can chase bad guys without endangering so many innocent bystanders).

A nation that can drop nuclear bombs on two civilian populations and deliberately kill tens of thousands of men, women and children needs to be careful about calling other actions "terroristic," without first owning up to our own assumptions.

Dan Trabue said...

LR said:
"But if so much as a brick falls in the streets, liberals start shedding crocodile tears."

I'm not talking about bricks falling from buildings. I'm talking about tens of thousands of innocent lives killed and maimed by our actions. That is just cause for concern or do you disagree?

I'm talking about some 50-70% of the Iraqis being killed in this invasion being innocent bystanders. That is cause for concern or do you disagree?

I'm talking about children having their limbs blown off while their parents are blasted to death in front of them. I call that cause for concern or do you disagree?

LR said:
"Where was their concern when Saddam was filling mass graves,"

We showing our concern by protesting Reagan and Bush for supporting Saddam. Where was yours?

"I call their "concern" cowardice."

And I call the "bravery" of Bush and his supporters, cowardice and thick-skulled stupidity. Does everyone feel better now that we've appropriately labeled the other's positions?