As we learn more details about the Muslim couple who carried out last week’s terror attack in San Bernardino, California, a tortured debate has erupted.
Fear has unleashed unvarnished and sometimes ugly and inaccurate statements about Muslim-Americans. Emotions roiled further when Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump called for “a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until we figure out what is going on.”
The response has been overwhelmingly negative. Bloggers took to their computers and social media to condemn “Islamaphobia.” Between the attacks in Paris and San Bernardino, a passionate debate has exploded. Islam itself seems to have become yet another casualty of terrorism.
What Else Can Besieged American Muslims Do?
Haroon Moghul – CNN
I cannot remember American Muslims feeling so anxious, unsettled, or scared for their future. Like many, I hoped President Obama would take a clear stand against anti-Muslim bigotry. More importantly, though, I expected an outline of how America might defeat the terrorist movement that has declared war on so much of the world.
You see, for Muslims, this year has been a painful one. Today, for example, Donald Trump called for all Muslims to be blocked from entering the United States.
In April, a former candidate for U.S. Congress from Tennessee, Robert Doggart, was arrested for plotting to attack a Muslim community with guns, bombs, even a machete….
American Muslims are often asked to condemn extremism, though we already do. Obama asked Muslims to “root out misguided ideas,” though there are already many such efforts. But as we face radicals who have gone so far underground, who hide their plans from even family and evade detection of law enforcement, the first option feels like it doesn’t do nearly enough, while the second works very slowly at best.
How ISIS Makes Radicals
David Brooks – The New York Times
The best source of wisdom on this general subject is still “The True Believer,” by Eric Hoffer, which he wrote back in 1951. Hoffer distinguished between practical organizations and mass movements….
The purpose of an organization like ISIS is to get people to negate themselves for a larger cause.
Trump’s Muslim Derangement Syndrome Won’t Matter to His Voters
Richard Whitmire – USA Today
Once again Donald Trump’s outrages — this time a proposed ban on Muslims entering the U.S. — have left the pundits sputtering: Why don’t his supporters abandon him? …
I think I know why Trump persists as their champion: Because his primary supporters, white males with only a high school degree, are furious and they have a right to be mad. This not about embracing Trump’s platform; it’s about embracing his rage.
I first came across this group while researching a book about boys falling behind. What surprised me in the research were the depressing data about white boys coming from blue collar families…. Today, they are suddenly visible — at Donald Trump rallies.
Why Muslims Should Not Have to Apologize for San Bernardino Shooting
Dexter Thomas – Los Angeles Times
On Friday, in a mosque not far from the site of the mass shootings in San Bernardino, Hussam Ayloush, executive director of the Los Angeles chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, spoke in sympathy for the victims of the violence.
But he said Muslims should not have to apologize for the shooting.
There is, Ayloush said, a ‘big difference between condemning and apologizing.’…
Be brave, Ayloush urged fellow Muslims.
‘We will not allow for murderers and terrorists on one hand,’ he said, ‘or bigoted people on the other hand, to change the way of our life.’