The SamuraiMarine

Thoughts, Philosophy, Life and Love

A Muslim does not a terrorist make

I was awoke to some bad news this morning. It appears that a group of Hispanics decided to go after a local Mosque this morning at about 5am.

It has yet to be decided if this was a hate crime or just a issue where the Hispanic group was just being stupid, though for my money, I will go with the later.

What this does do is bring to a head, for me, something that has bugged me non-stop since Sept 11th, 2001. That is this misconception that all Muslims (or anyone following the path of Islam) is either a terrorist or in some way supporting them. This could not be farther from the truth, and the accusation is made out of one of two things… fear of what they do not understand or ignorance.

I know and have known many Muslims through my life. I work with some and I have met many through my travels, and never once, even after 9/11, have I felt uncomfortable around them. In fact a couple of them were worried about me and my attitude towards them. Shortly after the attacks, there was a rash of attacks on Mosques in the US, these were being lead by people that thought that they were doing something to get back at the people who started the attacks. In reality they were doing nothing more than showing their own ignorance and intolerance to a people that they do not understand.

To be fair, I am certain that there are those in the local Muslim communities that do feel that the attacks on 9/11 were justified, and that there should be more, but I am also very confident that they are not all that way, and in fact those that support the attacks are probably the minority of those groups. It also needs to be said that I am not including the militant groups that cause the 9/11 attacks in my qualifier.  There are militant groups in every religion, but I do not believe that they speak for everyone that practices it, only for the few that decide that this is the only option open to them.

I will not claim to be an expert on this, or anything like it. I can only go on my own experiences in life, and I have learned that most people are basically good. There are the exceptions, and we all run into them as we go through life, but they are not as many as you might think.

Back to the topic at hand. I encourage you to read the Quaran. It is truly a beautiful book… I only wish that I could read it in it’s native language. I have been told that it is much more so. I also encourage you to visit a Mosque. Not all will allow visitors (at least at the time of this writing due to threats), so check before you go. You should call them and talk to someone there, and make sure that you do nothing to offend, in other words, be respectful as you would like visitors to be while visiting your church or synagogue. Along those same lines, visit other places of worship, and learn about them as well. One of the biggest enemies to us is our own ignorance. If we succumb to ignorance, then we will never win anything more than self destruction.

In closing, religion, all religion, is a wonderful tool for living. It provides you with guidance and gives you a center. It helps keep you and your life in check by letting you know that there are much bigger things out there than yourself. Nothing is more humbling that to think of the Earth and everything on it as being nothing more than a single grain of sand on a beach.

Thank you for your time.

(12 December 2008 – Small edits have been made for clarity at this time.)

Samuel Wright
Writer / Father / Listener / Philosopher
I am a starving writer living in the backwater of California, in a place known mostly for Buck Owens and Valley Fever called Bakersfield.

This site is my release. A place for me to talk about things that annoy, please, or excite me.

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9 Comments

  1. Russell

    I concur with the moderators ramblings by-in-large, but where my feeling digress is regarding the following:

    The mainstream body of Islam/Muslim sits idly by while their faith is being hijacked by the extremists within their midst. The Quaran does not condone killing and/or suicide any more than does the Christian bible, yet they remain silent, by-in-large! For this, I have no respect.

  2. The Samurai

    It cannot always start as large movement. There are organisations out there that I trying hard to make a difference like FreeMuslims (URL Below) and a few others I will list at the end of this.

    The point of my article was not that they are not doing enough, but that non-muslims acting like idiots does not make the issue any better. By treating all Muslims poorly, we are only making ourselves look bad. There are many Muslims that are speaking out against the terror, but speaking alone does nothing if the right people are not listening.

    http://www.freemuslims.org
    http://blogs.usatoday.com/oped/2007/07/post-17.html

    This site lists many groups over the last several years and have stood against Terrorism.
    http://www.muhajabah.com/otherscondemn.php

  3. AtomicNovaGenius

    I agree that the actions of the Hispanic individuals was unjustified and offensive and I pretty sure that will find grounds to charge the individuals with a hate crime.

    But are we truly surprised by the reaction and treatment the American people give Muslims. Minorities face these same issues that Muslims feel today. Like you said earlier in the article, “and the accusation is made out of one of two things… fear of what they do not understand or ignorance. Do I feel the treatment of these people is justified? No. But I do think that a intense vigilance is necessary? Yes. I do feel it is necessary to racial profile in this instance. Our national security is at risk. In addition, it has already been proven what radical Muslims are capable of. Even though infringing on a persons privacy and rights in the general sense is wrong, those decisions have to and must be made. When you consider the consequences of being “politically correct,” I think the cons way more than the pros. We as an American people don’t have the luxury of been 100 % sure when pursing a terrorist suspect, because each second could cost another Americans life. Don’t get me wrong, racial profiling is a demeaning tactic but an affective one, especially in national security issues.

  4. The Samurai

    ANG…

    First off, regarding the Muslims… American citizens that are Muslim are just as much American as you and I.

    Second off, racial profiling is a slipery slope… Yes it is effective, but if pursued too strongly… Well, there are places like Manzanar (along with nine other camps) that attest to us going a little too far.

  5. Russell

    Samurai ….. Me thinkith you protestith to much … and unnecessarily!(Shakespeare) The reference you make to what happen to the Japanese during WWII is a far reach in my minds eye. I find that kind of thought to be the extreme of the profiling debate.

    As has been said by minds far more acute than mine: “All of the hijackers were ‘Male’ of ‘Middle-Eastern extraction’ between the ‘age(s)of 21-35′(approx.).” With these facts, zeroing in on this “group” is a no-brainer to me …. why toss a Caucasian 82yo grandmother unnecessarily?

    Slippery or not, it’s a slope that needs to be navigated!

  6. The Samurai

    I said “If pursued too strongly…” And I think that it is a valid example of profiling gone too far. Anything can be taken to extremes.

    Topaz, Granada, Manzanar, etc… are good examples of what can go wrong if you go to extremes. The attacks on the Mosques after 9/11 were an extreme (unless there was definitive proof that terrorists were hiding in those structures.)

    I can see that I am of the minority here in my thoughts. Racial profiling is not bad, if done properly, and treating Muslims, or anyone of middle-eastern origin, is a terrorist or has terrorist motives, is wrong. There is already too many reasons to divide people today… why add yet another?

  7. Russell

    ….. I can live with that!

  8. jdbaker001

    First, we were in a declared War when the Japanese were rounded up and hauled off to Manzanar, and yes, it was an extreme act by a country who was attacked without warning at Pearl Harbor killing thousands. I don’t recall hearing about the rounding up of any persons of middle-eastern descent, so your attempt at comparisons, pales only by your lack of historical knowledge.
    Second, it was either Lenin, not the beatle one, or Marx, not the groucho one, that stated the axiom that “religion is the opiate of the masses.”
    How true that statement has become throughout history and today. Look at those who kill because God or Allah demands it. I referring to the Christians and the Muslims. Listen, I gave up my imaginery friend when I was about five years old, and to believe that someone will care about me because he can’t be seen or heard, but is controlling things from heaven is not only contrary to scientific methodology, but is beyond common sense. Do you actually give money to a church based on this premise and yet you are writing about being distrustful of Charities who actually can be seen and heard? I hear that God answers all prayers…and most of the time the answer is a resounding “NO”…..before the church came along people who lived on this earth used to pray to a multitude of Gods which are all now in complete disuse. Why? Because it’s human nature to think that anything we can’t explain must be in the realm of the supernatural or much greater than what can be comprehended by mere mortals.
    Third, you say we should all go to a local Mosk, if they’ll let us in the door, but they may not because some you can’t go into. Last time I checked around the good old USA you could go into any place of worship anytime of day or night if the door wasn’t locked. But, if we’re not allowed into some Mosks, it begs the question: Why? Now who is discriminating against whom? And, you try to warn us not to offend them. Why? Because they’re easily offended why? I’ll tell you why, because they are offended by the mere reality that we are not fellow Muslims. Yet, they choose to live in a non-muslim country. And if they worship allah that means they believe we are all inferior to them..ie infidels…the ones who if they won’t convert should be killed…….
    Fourth, I have read the Quaran, and it’s ideas were antiquated, barbaric and discriminatory, especially against women, when it was written and in it’s present form. It’s a total B.S. piece of propaganda written by men who practice a certain way of life to legitimize it’s continued existence and horrific suppression of anyone’s civil rights who does not agree with them. Women are subserviant to Men, and so they should not work, be educated or have the same or equal rights to real or personal property, or the rights to their own children. I suggest you read this book and talk to some people who have lived under it before you want to talk about how loving it is in todays world.
    You’re correct in your statement that not every Muslim is a terrorist, but all that are or will be use the Quaran to justify their dispicable and diabolical actions. If you would just watch the news you’d see the millions that hate the US and want to kill us all because we aren’t muslims, while waving their loveing book, the Quaran at us.They also get their information and facts about how to deal with all of us from the Quaran and those who interpret the meaning of it’s contents for their own agenda ie to remain in leadership
    Lastly, I find it odd that you wouldn’t understand our people being angry at those we let into this country and our given the same freedom and the right to practice their own religion that vilifies us and wants to destroy us. Maybe they don’t bomb us, but news events have shown over the years that they raise funds in order to support the terrorist. Yes, through the auspices of their local Mosk. Also they use their rights to free speech and freedom of movement to vilify us and to spread their doctrine of hate.
    I also strongly disagree with your broad generalizational statement that “there are militants in every religion”…so that makes bombing us, Ok? When was the last time you heard of any religion other than the Muslims beheading someone for T.V. because they weren’t muslim or beheading a Muslim because he was the wrong kind of Muslim ie Shiite, not Sunni…killing their own
    faith…because of disagreement over which brother was followed in ideology hundreds of years ago…now again…that’s a loving book.

    I don’t agree with anyone defacing a Mosk, but I wonder why they lock us out just because we’re Americans, I thought it was only Scientology that had the Secret religion. Maybe if we all pray, this problem of Muslim Terrorism will go away. NOT!! If you now lived in their country and tried to use the bible or talk about it to the locals you’d be killed…that’s how loving their good book is in todays world. And a further reading will show that it demands all worthy muslims kill all of the infidels (you and me)if they’re is any slight against Allah. Now that’s a loving God…you do something they don’t like…and they send you to meet him…on the FastTRac. And, it’s their duty to die for him and become a Martyr. Then they go directly to his Throne Room to sit at his feet and enjoy everything that was taboo in life. They can now drink alcohol,smoke, and get 47 Virgins just by dying…now that’s a religion to die for…..puh-leeeeze…even the christian religion doesn’t go that far..because we know americans only buy into people in the name of God trying to tell us how to live while taking our money..dying off doesn’t help the sunday collection plate……they want us to live to tithe another day!!…A Loving Book…are you kidding me?

  9. The Samurai

    Let’s see…

    By not offending I mean this:

    When I visit a Catholic Church, I understand that there are places in the church that I do not go out of respect for the religion. I also do not walk down the center aisle, I always walk along the side aisles because I was taught that walking down the center aisle is for the worshipers and not visitors. This is a sign of respect.

    When you go into a Jewish temple, you do not approach the Pulpit unless invted to do so by the Rabbi. You should also wear a Kippah or Yarmulke, if you are male and regardless of your religion, as a sign of respect.

    Also… Temples, Churches, Mosques, etc… are usually private property that is held by the church or the congregants… so right of access is the choice of the leaders of the facility. Many years ago, the temple I went to was robbed and defaced. They became very careful about who they let in for some time. In the case of the Mosque that I wrote about, they probably did the same thing for a few days… and rightfully so.

    I will address more later… got some fires to put out.

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