The Muslim community should not apologize for the crimes they did not commit. They are as American as anyone, and have the same concerns about extremism, violence and terrorism. They should assert their rights, and consciously earn the support from the sane majority to speak up with them against the Anti-Muslim bigotry. We have to stand up for each other and build a cohesive America, where all of us can function effectively without apprehension of any – Mike Ghouse
Texas Faith: Have Muslims effectively confronted terrorism within their own community?
By Wayne Slater | Dallas Morning News | Published at 3:15 PM on April 30, 2013
The Boston bombings have heightened the debate over connecting religious affiliation with violence and militancy. There seems to be no doubt that the attacks were associated, at least in the minds of the alleged bombers, with Islam. The drumbeat to convict Islam is loud among some on the right. But many on the left, worried about being politically incorrect, have tried to explain away the hijacking of a major religion by virtually avoiding direct mention of Islam altogether. Neither approach is helpful.
Into the heart of this debate strode Ruslan Tsarni, an uncle of the alleged Boston Marathon bombers. Activist and author Asra Nomani notes in the Washington Post that while others were avoiding or exploiting the issue, Tsarni confronted a central question head-on. Tsarni said his nephews had brought shame on the family. He confronted the dishonor of terrorism within his own community and denounced it. Normani wrote: The collectivist-minded Muslim community needs to learn an important lesson from Tsarni: It’s time to acknowledge the dishonor of terrorism within our communities, not to deny it because of shame.”
Have Muslims been as effective as they could be in publicly confronting terrorism within their own community? Is there a danger that Uncle Ruslan’s direct, blunt and unequivocal denunciation might feed anti-Muslim bigotry? Or is it exactly what’s needed?
Our Texas Faith had some strong ideas:
MIKE GHOUSE, President, Foundation for Pluralism, Dallas, and Speaker on interfaith matters, diversity and pluralism
Uncle Ruslan’s direct, blunt and unequivocal denunciation of terrorism mirrors what the Muslims do; day in and day out. Facts don’t matter to the right, and indeed it will feed anti-Muslim bigotry demanding a pound of flesh from the community. Muslims are sick of extremists just as everyone else.
In fact, most of the FBI terror suspects arrested after 9/11 were turned in by Muslims, and Muslims rejoice when one of those guys is arrested hoping and praying this to be the last one. Safeguarding America is the right thing to do and Muslims do their patriotic duty well.
I was on Hannity show twice in the last week, as well as on the national radio network. My last comment was, Muslims do condemn terrorism every time, more than their share in comparable situations, but they don’t get the microphone. “On your show Sean, I am condemning it, and almost all Muslims will do that if you stick the microphone in their face.”
Just Google, “Do Muslims condemn terrorism?” Sheila Musaji of the American Muslim has compiled anextensive list, and the Ontario consultants on religious tolerance sum it up as follows; “Actually, there are lots of fatwas and other statements issued which condemn attacks on innocent civilians. Unfortunately, they are largely ignored by newspapers, television, radio and other media outlets.”
If we are looking for each one of the 6 million American Muslims to condemn it individually, then we need to ask, did 318 Million of us Americans condemn the Newtown and other killings?
Muslim Americans are as effective in stopping terrorism as all Americans in stopping murders of 3300 Americans in the four months following Newtown shooting. Neither the New town terrorist, nor the Wisconsin killer were authorized by Americans, nor were the Tsarnaev brothers authorized by Muslims. A day before the terrorists were identified as Muslims, I boldly wrote in Huffington Post, so “What if the Boston terrorist turns out to be Muslim?”
What is needed?
The Muslim community should not apologize for the crimes they did not commit. They are as American as anyone, and have the same concerns about extremism, violence and terrorism. They should assert their rights, and consciously earn the support from the sane majority to speak up with them against the Anti-Muslim bigotry. We have to stand up for each other for a cohesive America.
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….Mike Ghouse is a speaker, thinker and a writer on pluralism, politics, peace, Islam, Israel,India, interfaith, and cohesion at work place. He is committed to building a Cohesive Americaand offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day at www.TheGhousediary.com. He believes in Standing up for others and has done that throughout his life as an activist. Mike has a presence on national and local TV, Radio and Print Media. He is a frequent guest onSean Hannity show on Fox TV, and a commentator on national radio networks, he contributes weekly to the Texas Faith Column at Dallas Morning News; fortnightly atHuffington post; and several other periodicals across the world. His personal sitewww.MikeGhouse.net indexes all his work through many links.