After all, it is still being pointed out by the feckless mainstream media that the supposed threat posed by the “caliphate” to our national security is mostly hype. Rather, ISIL has given anti-Muslim forces an excuse to give full vent to their already existing hatred.
We are fairly inundated with lunacy, like the cry of “they want to rule the world!’ Which is funny, because the same is true of Christianity (the Great Commission can be blamed for that). It is hardly a coincidence that a Washington State Republican wants to mandate that all prayers at council meetings be directed to the Christian God. Not even a pretense of religious freedom here.
I don’t know about you, but it strikes me that it is not Muslims who are the biggest threat to my religious freedom.
And even while WND’s Joseph Farah is claiming that there is no difference between CAIR – the Council on American-Islamic Relations – and ISIL, we see Duck Dynasty’s Phil Robertson embracing ISIL’s own policy, that Muslims must “convert or die.”
Last I checked CAIR, unlike the Religious Right, was not advocating a policy of “convert or die.”
And Larry Klayman, fresh from demanding a holy war against President Obama, is demanding a “holy war” against Islam. Klayman also wants an end to immigration of Muslims and, and oh by the way, American Muslims must be deported because “they have no business in our land.”
This contrasts strongly to the smile that came to my own face yesterday at a Muslim mom holding a stop sight at my son’s school crosswalk. I remember thinking, we are truly a diverse country. And nobody seemed to have a problem with her being there, or with making our trip from the building to the parking lot safe. Yes, there is sanity even in Scott Walker’s Wisconsin.
We have Gary Cass of the Christian Anti-Defamation Commission (CADC) calling for a holy war. As the SPLC notes, a Sept. 4 blog post on the group’s site is almost certainly written by Cass, who says Christians must fight back with “overwhelming Christian just war.” The title of the post say it all: “I’m Islamophobic. Are You?” Cass warns that “every true follower of Mohammed wants to…subjugate and murder you. They believe they have been given a mandate by Allah (Satan) to dominate the world.”
As SPLC’s Leah Nelson points out,
That, of course, is in direct conflict with Cass’s own belief that in fact it is Christians who have been given a mandate for dominion. Cass’s mentor, the late D. James Kennnedy of the anti-LGBT group Coral Ridge Ministries (of which Cass is the former executive director), once said, “As the vice regents of God, [Christians] are to exercise godly dominion and influence over…every aspect and institution of human society.”
After all, it’s to the Christian God Air Force re-enlistees are being required to swear in an unconstitutional oath to defend the Constitution, in order to stay in the Air Force, not Allah.
Cass does not, like Klayman, push hard for deportation, though he flirts with the idea of deportation or sterilization as alternatives. This is not out of human kindness or consideration for Islam’s Constitutional rights in this country, but simply because, practically speaking, it’s not going to happen. The only thing that “has [been] shown to work,” writes Cass, “is overwhelming Christian just war and overwhelming self defense.”
Self defense, I am assuming, as when Christian armies marched from France and Germany to sack Jerusalem and kill every living human being in the city, regardless of religion (along with everybody else they met along the way whose religion was suspect, including other Christians). Or when President George W. Bush illegally invaded Iraq, shattered the country and its economy, and created through his maladministration, the fertile ground from which ISIL later sprung.
THAT kind of self defense.
Cass writes that,
We have to face the harsh truth that Islam has no place in civilized society. Muslims cannot live in a society based on Christian ideals of equality and liberty. They will always seek to harm us. Now the only question is how many more dead bodies will have to pile up at home and abroad before we crush the vicious seed of Ishmael in Jesus’ name?”
That last line says it all: crush them in Jesus’ name.
Wasn’t what Jesus himself said more along the lines of “love your enemies” (Matthew 5:44) and “turn the other cheek”? (Matthew 5:39).Jesus nowhere preached just war. That was Augustine of Hippo, who lived four centuries later. That same guy who loathed the idea of religious freedom for anybody but Christians. If the religious right were better read, they’d be quoting the hell out of that particular hater.
And then we’ve got Michele Bachmann, still celebrating her own tenuous freedom by attacking the freedom of others. Bachmann was one of a group of GOP members of Congress who, as Right Wing Watch reported yesterday, to “join anti-Muslim group ACT for America at [a] Capitol Hill briefing.” Also present were Rep. Louis Gohmert (R-TX), Rep. Jeff Duncan (R-SC), Rep. Peter Roskam (R-IL), and Rep. John Boozman (R-AR).
Ted Cruz (R-TX) was supposed to attend but was presumably too busy trying to find his balls after being booed off stage by listeners at the Middle East’s Christian conference in Washington D.C. ACT for America’s Brigitte Gabriel wanted to give the emasculated Ted an award too (Roskam got the “Patriot Award”) but she did manage to give awards to Alabama State Senator Gerald Allen, who opposes Sharia Law in his state even though he doesn’t know what it is and despite the fact that less than half of one percent of Alabamians are actually Muslim, and his counterpart from Kansas, Rep. Peggy Mast.
The ever-intellectually-challenged Michele Bachmann opined that, “In the art of war you are to know yourself and the enemy…our president either doesn’t know the enemy or he knows them too well” (I’m pretty sure this makes no sense at all) but she’s not alone: Klayman says that Obama is “a Muslim through and through” and Gabriel agrees, saying back in July that Obama is a Muslim and that he is “not only pro-Islam, he’s pro-jihadist.”
ISIL has been a bonanza for haters. And they have reason to hope. After all, even under a Democratic president ,Japanese-Americans suffered for the sins of Japan when it attacked Pearl Harbor. They probably do not see their own hopes as unreasonable should Republicans win in 2014 and 2016. And you know what? I can’t say they are wrong. Because it CAN happen here. It can happen anywhere.
Hrafnkell Haraldsson, a social liberal with leanings toward centrist politics has degrees in history and philosophy. His interests include, besides history and philosophy, human rights issues, freedom of choice, religion, and the precarious dichotomy of freedom of speech and intolerance. He brings a slightly different perspective to his writing, being that he is neither a follower of an Abrahamic faith nor an atheist but a polytheist, a modern-day Heathen who follows the customs and traditions of his Norse ancestors. He maintains his own blog, A Heathen’s Day, which deals with Heathen and Pagan matters, and Mos Maiorum Foundation www.mosmaiorum.org, dedicated to ethnic religion. He has also contributed to NewsJunkiePost, GodsOwnParty and Pagan+Politics.