Why must I keep repeating this? Surely this should be self-evident. Anyway, here goes ...
Some people suggest that by accommodating mainstream Muslim religious traditions, America and other Western countries are somehow opening themselves up for further terrorist attacks. Many Muslims respond by arguing that the terrorists and the mainstream Muslims are two entirely different groups of people.
The Quran says what it says, but that has no bearing on the fact that mainstream Muslims and their religious traditions pose no threat to the West whatsoever.
So what if the Quran does say Muslims should convert or kill non-believers? So what if the Old Testament says the same? How many mainstream Muslims have killed or wounded non-Muslim Americans or Australians because they weren't Muslim? It just doesn't happen.
Maybe those violent passages in the Quran and/or Old Testament can help us understand more where the terrorists are coming from, but none of that is relevant to mainstream Muslims carrying on with their own peace-loving interpretation of those texts.
We have enough external enemies without creating new ones from a group of people who would like to think of themselves not only as allies but fellow citizens.
I've adapted this from a comment appearing in an online discussion on an American newspaper called the Morris Daily Herald.
Words © 2008 Irfan Yusuf
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