I thought about writing a memorial article for the 11th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, especially since my wife and I spent the weekend in New York City and were at Ground Zero on Sunday. On Monday, 10 September, I left my office building and the air itself reminded me of September 11, 2001. A near perfect Fall day, warm but with a hint of a chill underneath it. I was struck by the similarity of the feel of the day to that from 11 years before.
Unfortunately, I had neither the time nor energy to devote to a testimonial to 9/11; although the events of that day struck very close to home for me personally.
Eleven years later, Islamic fundamentalists used a protest in Benghazi Libya to fire rocket propelled grenades in to the US consulate killing our ambassador and several other embassy personnel. In Cairo, Muslims stormed the walls of the American embassy compound destroying the American flag, thankfully without killing anyone.
It is impossible to forget that perpetrators of the terrorist attacks on 9/11 were, well, Muslims as well.
So this may not be a popular question to ask – but I’ll ask it anyway…Does Islam breed violence or is it an inbred cultural issue specific to the Pan-Arab/Persian world?
If I understand the situation correctly, a movie that “insults” Islam and Mohammed was all it took to whip up several thousand of people in Egypt and Libya into a killing frenzy.
[Pardon me for a moment just to say how f’d up that is]
There’s a lot of hand wringing going on right now with regard to a way forward. The State Department issued a statement calling for tolerance and respect of religion, while Mitt Romney expressed his disgust with “respect” for religion (pretty ballsy for a Mormon…). I hate to say it, I’m with Mitt on this. How on earth can we be expected to “respect” a religion whose adherents go blood-rabid at the drop of a hat?
I gotta give Christianity a bit of a prop here – at least the vast majority of Christians aren’t out to kill those that find their weird ass religion worth mocking. Sure, I know some Christians make death/rape threats against those that don’t believe in their cult, but by and large, they seem content in knowing that those that reject their loving god will face an eternity of torment, which apparently helps pacify their indignant rage.
I don’t know if that’s the difference in a few hundred years of religious evolution. Maybe sometime around 2700 Islam can learn to chill out?
“Islam does not condone violence but like other religions does believe in self-defence.” the religion of peace…
By “self-defence,” this would include taking retribution on those that would dare draw Mohammed, or kill innocents because someone threatened to burn a Qur’an.
This is the crux right? Supporting tolerance of Islam, by definition, means you have to take the wacky bad with the good. We need to be sensitive to Muslims and their apparent proclivity to violence at the drop of a hat if their religion is somehow offended.
As an atheist, it’s fair to say I think all religions are simply cultural cults that have become accepted as norms. They’re all developed fairy tales grounded in ancient nomadic belief systems established by peoples barely removed from cavemen. I have to admit, it’s amusing to watch one religion denigrate or mock another for its “weird” beliefs. When Terry Jones threatens to burn a Qur’an, I don’t think “what an insensitive bastard – doesn’t he know that this will whip up a million Muslims into a killing frenzy?” No, I think that here’s a guy who thinks his fairy tale is better than a Muslim fairy tale.
But in the game of self-defense, apparently getting your hands on a few holy bibles and burning them tit for tat isn’t enough. Muslims feel they have to kill someone to set it all straight with Allah. [Did I mention that Islam is f’ed up?]
Christians get irritated when atheists make fun of their religious beliefs, maybe even offended, but at least they (collectively) do not go on killing rampages. Allah must be the weakest god of monotheistic belief systems – since he needs a mob of angry adherents to carry out his blood-lust.
Nihad Awad, national executive director of the Washington-based Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), said in a statement:
“We urge that this ignorant attempt to provoke the religious feelings of Muslims in the Arabic-speaking world be ignored and that its extremist producers not be given the cheap publicity they so desperately seek.
It’s almost as good as saying “we don’t like violence, but hey, when provoked…shit’s gonna happen”
America and the West have bent over backwards to accommodate and tolerate Islam. The question becomes, how much more is expected? Are there limits to tolerance? Can blood thirst be slaked by playing nice? I’m seriously interested interested in your response, because right now, I cannot see anyway we can peacefully coexist with these people – yes, I realize this sounds terrible, but sometimes you gotta call it for what it is…