The American Right and neocon activists have whipped up so much Islamophobia that this bigotry is now shaping the Republican presidential race and contributed to the arrest of a 14-year-old Texas boy who built a clock as a school project, writes Nat Parry.
By Nat Parry
The arrest of Ahmed Mohamed, the 14-year-old whiz kid who brought a home-made clock to school in Irving, Texas, seems to have struck a nerve in the United States in a way that any number of other stories regarding anti-Muslim bigotry over the years have not.
While there have been countless examples of Islamophobia run amok since 9/11 including attacks on places of worship, harassment at airports, hostile protests against the so-called “Ground Zero Mosque,” and even a recent “Muhammad Art Exhibit and Contest,” which encouraged Americans to draw deliberately offensive cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad few events have garnered as much sympathy for the Muslim targets of religious and racial intolerance as the shabby treatment endured by Ahmed Mohamed last week.
A photo of the high school freshman being marched out of school in handcuffs after administrators accused him of possessing a “hoax bomb” quickly went viral. Yet, even following his release from custody, the police apparently refused to accept that he only built the device as a clock and did not intend it to resemble a bomb, saying, “He kept maintaining it was a clock, but there was no broader explanation.”
While being interrogated, Mohamed was not allowed to contact his family and was repeatedly asked about his suspicious-sounding last name, according to reporting by the Washington Post. During the questioning, he also claims he was threatened with expulsion, and although he was not criminally charged, he was ultimately suspended from school for three days.
The support he has received has been overwhelming, including invites from Facebook, Google, MIT and the White House. The hashtag #IStandWithAhmed quickly shot to number one as the top trending topic on Twitter, garnering more than 370,000 tweets within five hours last Wednesday, and the Twitter account @IStandWithAhmed ballooned to thousands of followers within a few hours of being set up.
Even the music streaming site Spotify threw its support behind the wrongfully arrested teen with a special playlist titled “For Ahmed.” Featuring tracks intended to send Mohamed “good vibes & upbeat jams” with songs such as “Time Is On Your Side,” “Keep Your Head Up” and “You’re the Best,” the playlist was meant, it seems, to both inspire the young inventor and to counter the culture of fear that led to his arrest in the first place.
But notwithstanding this touching outpouring of sympathy and solidarity, America’s uglier side of intolerance and small-mindedness has returned with a vengeance. In case anyone may have hoped that this unfortunate incident would provide a teaching moment leading to greater tolerance and understanding, prominent right-wing politicians jumped in to remind everyone that nastiness and prejudice still rule the day.
Sarah Palin for example chastised Obama for inviting Mohamed to the White House, calling his clock a “dangerous wired-up bomb-looking contraption.”
“Yep, believing that’s a clock in a school pencil box is like believing Barack Obama is ruling over the most transparent administration in history,” Palin wrote on Facebook. “Right. That’s a clock, and I’m the Queen of England.”
Beth Van Duyne, the mayor of Irving, defended the actions of school administrators and police as understandable and justifiable. “We have all seen terrible and violent acts committed in schools, the workplace, and in public venues,” Van Duyne wrote on her Facebook page. “Perhaps some of those could have been prevented and lives could have been spared if people were more vigilant.”
Some have pointed out that Van Duyne’s response is unsurprising considering that she has “been on an anti-Muslim crusade all year,” having led an earlier attempt to nip “sharia law” in the bud when an “Islamic Tribunal” was set up in nearby Dallas to arbitrate civil disputes between Muslims in the community.
Van Duyne took a firm stand against the Dallas arbitration panel, vowing to keep a close eye on it and fight any perceived encroachment into state law.
“While I am working to better understand how this ‘court’ will function and whom will be subject to its decisions, please know that if it is determined that there are violations of basic rights occurring, I will not stand idle and will fight with every fiber of my being against this action,” she wrote.
Her stance earned her a reputation as an “anti-sharia crusader,” but although the words “crusade” and “crusader” are sometimes casually thrown around to describe the demagoguery of politicians like Van Duyne, it is not clear whether the historical significance of these terms are fully understood, nor how fitting they actually are to describe the climate of anti-Islamic hysteria in the United States today.
Cause or Crusade?
George W. Bush was once criticized for using the word “crusade” to describe the campaign against terrorism that was being launched in the wake of 9/11. As the president said on the afternoon of Sept. 11, 2001, “This crusade, this war on terrorism is going to take a while.”
Wall Street Journal reporters Peter Waldman and Hugh Pope noted at the time that the “crusade” reference “could hardly have been a more indelicate gaffe.”
“Crusade?” they asked. “In strict usage, the word describes the Christian military expeditions a millennium ago to capture the Holy Land from Muslims. But in much of the Islamic world, where history and religion suffuse daily life in ways unfathomable to most Americans, it is shorthand for something else: a cultural and economic Western invasion that, Muslims fear, could subjugate them and desecrate Islam.”
While Bush’s spokesperson later tried to clarify his remark, saying that it was only meant in “the traditional English sense of the word, a broad cause,” the damage had largely already been done, and America’s enemies seized on the statement as proof of the West’s anti-Muslim bias.
As al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden said in a televised message on Nov. 3, 2001, “After the U.S. politicians spoke and after the U.S. newspapers and television channels became full of clear crusading hatred in this campaign that aims at mobilizing the West against Islam and Muslims, Bush left no room for doubts or the opinions of journalists, but he openly and clearly said that this war is a crusader war. He said this before the whole world to emphasize this fact.”
Bin Laden described what he perceived as historical continuity between the medieval Crusades and the modern-day “war on terror.”
“These battles cannot be viewed in any case whatsoever as isolated battles, but rather, as part of a chain of the long, fierce, and ugly crusader war,” he said.
However Bush meant the “crusade” reference, there are clearly recognizable parallels between the historical Crusades and the current “war on terror,” both of which can be seen as an amalgamation of religion, politics, opportunism and conquest. What the historical Crusades dramatically demonstrated most clearly is the power of exploiting religion in order to advance political goals not unlike the demagoguery on display in contemporary American political discourse.
In calling for the liberation of Christians living under Muslim rule in Jerusalem, Pope Urban II appealed to a sense of victimhood and desire for revenge prevalent among medieval European Christians. In his call for the First Crusade, he said in 1095: “We have heard how, with great hurt and dire sufferings our Christian brothers, members in Christ, are scourged, oppressed, and injured in Jerusalem, in Antioch, and the other cities of the East. Gird yourselves, every one of you, I say, and be valiant sons; for it is better for you to die in battle than to behold, the sorrows of your race and of your holy places.”
While he appealed to religious sensibilities, it is clear that political considerations played a key role in Pope Urban II’s decision to launch the Crusades, calculating that there was no better way to gather the various elements of the Christian West under his cloak.
To entice people to take up arms, the pope promised the suspension of any legal proceedings being taken against them the modern day equivalent of prosecutorial immunity and absolution for any sins they may have committed, assuring them a place in heaven.
Claiming their ordained status as victims of Muslim oppression, the Christian Crusaders then proceeded to “liberate” Jerusalem on July 15, 1099, killing an estimated 40,000 men, women and children in the process. The massacre was described by eyewitness Raymond of Aguiles:
“Wonderful sights were to be seen. Some of our men cut off the heads of their enemies; others tortured them longer by casting them into the flames. Piles of heads, hands and feet were to be seen in the streets of the city. It was necessary to pick one’s way over the bodies of men and horses. [I]n the temple and porch of Solomon, men rode in blood up to their knees and bridle reins. Indeed it was a just and splendid judgement of God that this place should be filled with the blood of the unbelievers since it had suffered so long from their blasphemies.”
And so began an era of sustained and extraordinary violence that lasted two centuries. This violence ultimately included attacks against not only Muslims and pagans but also other Christians.
The Fourth Crusade in 1204 for example sacked Constantinople, the seat of the Greek Orthodox Church. While some Crusaders dissented against the idea of attacking an innocent Christian city and deserted the Crusade before the attack, others stayed on and eagerly joined the assault.
Despite having taken oaths to conquer the city in a manner appropriate to the occupation of a Christian city, with no women were to be molested and no churches to suffer depredations, the Crusaders attacked the city mercilessly.
According to historian Jean Richard, the Crusaders spared “neither churches nor the monuments and works of art inherited from Antiquity; the population, without there being a true massacre, suffered badly.” Karen Armstrong goes into more gruesome detail, calling the sack of Constantinople “one of the great crimes of history.”
As she described the rampage: “For three days the Venetians and Crusaders rushed through the streets, raping, killing and pillaging with a horrible eagerness. Women and children lay dying in the streets and nuns were raped in their convents.”
Pope Innocent III was so distressed by the sack of Constantinople that he excommunicated the entire Crusade.
Scholars have long debated the efficacy of the Crusades and their larger meaning, and while there may be no clear historical consensus yet, most experts tend to agree that this was generally a dark chapter in history, with Christian teachings exploited and misused as an excuse for murder and pillage.
What is striking however is that there now seems to be a concerted effort underway to revive the Crusades and polish their status in history, with recent books such as Steve Weidenkopf’s The Glory of the Crusades claiming to “debunk the numerous myths about the Crusades that our secular culture uses as clubs to attack the Church.”
Similarly, the “Real Crusades History” series on YouTube paints a picture of the Crusades as a necessary and just campaign against alleged Islamic expansionism. Islam is portrayed as bent on devouring Christian Europe despite the fact that there is no historical evidence to support this theory, and the Crusades are further celebrated in the videos as a crucial event that united European Christendom.
Mainstream conservative pundits have also taken up this cause, with Jonah Goldberg, writing recently in the National Review, emphasizing that “The Crusades despite their terrible organized cruelties were a defensive war” (thus distinguishing them from the barbarities of offensive jihad).
Those who fail to see the Crusades as glorious, necessary and just are the ones guilty of historical revisionism, according to the contemporary conservative view.
Running for the Republican nomination for president four years ago, Rick Santorum said, “The idea that the Crusades and the fight of Christendom against Islam is somehow an aggression on our part is absolutely anti-historical.” He attributed this “anti-historical” perception to propaganda perpetrated by “the American left who hates Christendom.”
The revival of the Crusades has even extended into the marketing of firearms, with one Florida-based gun manufacturer now offering a “Crusader Rifle,” emblazoned with biblical verses and a symbol of the Knights Templar, a religious sect tracing its roots to the First Crusade. The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) of Florida objected to the gun, asking whether it may inspire right-wing extremists to commit violence against Muslims.
“Sadly, this manufacturer’s fancy new gun won’t do anything to stop the real threat in America: the escalating problem of gun violence,” said Hasan Shibly, executive director of CAIR-Florida. “This is just another shameful marketing ploy intended to profit from the promotion of hatred, division, and violence.”
While it might be easy to dismiss the rantings of a few right-wing politicians and pundits, or as shameless profiteering the marketing tactics of an obscure Florida gun maker, the fact is, these views are infusing the U.S. political debate to a degree once unimaginable. Far from the fringes where they belong, the Christian-Crusader mentality has seeped into the echelons of both policy-making and military strategy.
Total War on Islam
In May 2012, journalists Noah Shachtman and Spencer Ackerman revealed in Wired magazine that for years, the U.S. military had been teaching its future leaders that a “total war” against the world’s 1.4 billion Muslims would be necessary to protect America from Islamic extremism.
The lessons taught in the class included using the lessons of “Hiroshima” to wipe out entire cities at once, targeting the “civilian population wherever necessary.”
“For the better part of the last decade,” Shachtman and Ackerman reported, “a small cabal of self-anointed counterterrorism experts has been working its way through the U.S. military, intelligence and law enforcement communities, trying to convince whoever it could that America’s real terrorist enemy wasn’t al-Qaida , but the Islamic faith itself.”
“We have now come to understand that there is no such thing as ‘moderate Islam,’” Army Lt. Col. Matthew A. Dooley noted in a July 2011 presentation to young cadets. “It is therefore time for the United States to make our true intentions clear. This barbaric ideology will no longer be tolerated. Islam must change or we will facilitate its self-destruction.”
The class, which has since been discontinued by the Defense Department, included course material that explicitly stated that international law including the Geneva Conventions no longer applies to the United States in its conduct of the “war on terror.”
More recently, Republican presidential hopefuls have insinuated that Muslims are constitutionally unqualified to hold the highest office in the land, and have even hinted at the possibility of removing Muslims entirely from the country.
Ben Carson, who’s currently running for the Republican nomination, said on NBC’s “Meet the Press” on Sunday that Islam is antithetical to U.S. constitutional principles, and that a Muslim should never be elected president in the United States.
“I would not advocate that we put a Muslim in charge of this nation. I absolutely would not agree with that,” Carson said.
Other presidential candidates criticized Carson for his statement, including Lindsey Graham, who said that Carson should apologize to American Muslims. Ted Cruz reminded Carson that “the Constitution specifies there shall be no religious test for public office.”
Democratic hopeful Bernie Sanders said his sentiments have no place in the Twenty-first Century.
“You know, this is the year 2015,” Sanders told reporters. “You judge candidates for president not on their religion, not on the color of their skin, but on their ideas on what they stand for. I was very disappointed in Dr. Carson’s statement.”
Curiously silent on Carson’s controversial remarks was Donald Trump, the billionaire construction tycoon and reality TV personality who has propelled to the front of the race for the Republican nomination with his own divisive statements on immigration, race and religion.
For his part, the Republican frontrunner last week seemed to suggest that deportations of Muslims could be a possibility if he lands himself in the White House.
At a town hall in New Hampshire on Thursday, Donald Trump nodded in agreement when a supporter declared, “We have a problem in this country, it’s called Muslims,” warning darkly of supposed “training camps” in America. “When can we get rid of ’em?” the man asked.
Throughout the meandering question, Trump encouraged the man, saying “we need this question” and “mm-hmm.” He then responded, “We’re going to be looking at that and plenty of other things.” The implication was that a future Trump Administration would be “looking at” how to “get rid of ’em,” i.e. Muslims.
Clarifying Trump’s response, his campaign issued a statement the next day blaming the media for twisting the issue. “The media wants to make this issue about Obama,” said Trump’s campaign. “The bigger issue is that Obama is waging war against Christians in this country. Their religious liberty is at stake.”
Thus, much like Pope Urban II a millennium ago, Trump portrayed the issue in simple terms that victimized Christians can easily understand: their faith is under attack by heretics who threaten their very religious liberty.
Meanwhile, the actual victims of persecution, innocent clock-makers like Ahmed Mohamed, continue to suffer the very real consequences of religious intolerance.
Nat Parry is the co-author of Neck Deep: The Disastrous Presidency of George W. Bush. [This story originally appeared at Essential Opinion https://essentialopinion.wordpress.com/2015/09/22/ahmeds-arrest-and-the-modern-day-crusade-against-islam/.]
Islam is portrayed as bent on devouring Christian Europe despite the fact that there is no historical evidence to support this theory……… How about 400 years of violent Islamic conquest reaching as far as Poitiers in France. Is that not evidence enough for you? As for pope urban II – no one knows what he said to invoke the crusades. There are several unqualified accounts but that’s all. But hey it helps to cherry pick doesn’t it. I suggest to read up about Islam prior to the crusades.
400 years of violent Islamic conquest? How is it counted? Please: start year, end year. Concerning Christian conquests and forcible conversions, what was the first one and what was the last one? Check some sources and then we can discuss again, but forcible conversions of Indians in USA were still done in XX century.
Mortimer, the link is: http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/what_it_means_to_be_a_socialist_20150920
Underscores instead of hyphens. No problem though. I found it. Thanks.
Excerpted from a very recent Chris Hedges speech–
The human cost has been horrendous. Over 1 million dead in Iraq. Millions more are displaced or are refugees. Iraq will never be reconstituted as a unified state. And it was our war industry that created the mess. We attacked a country that did not threaten us, and had no intention of threatening its neighbors, and destroyed one of the most modern infrastructures in the Middle East. We brought not only terror and deathâ€”including the Shiite death squads we armed and trainedâ€”but power outages, food shortages and the collapse of basic services, from garbage collection to sewer and water treatment. We dismantled Iraqâ€™s institutions, disbanded its security forces, threw its health service into crisis and engineered massive poverty and unemployment. And out of the chaos rose insurgents, gangsters, kidnapping rings, jihadists and rogue paramilitary groupsâ€”including our hired mercenaries, like [the current army of] Iraq. Gary Leupp in an article in Counterpunch titled â€œHow George W. Bush Destroyed the Temple of Baalâ€ got it when he wrote:
”Bush destroyed the law and order which had permitted girls to walk to school, heads uncovered, in modern western dress. He destroyed the freedom of physicians and other professionals to go about their work and caused masses of them to exit their country. He destroyed neighborhoods whose residents were forced to flee for their lives. He destroyed the Christian community, which dropped from 1.5 million in 2001 to perhaps 200,000 a decade later. He destroyed the prevalent ideology of secularism and ushered in an era of bitterly contested sectarian rule. He destroyed the right to broadcast rock â€˜n roll music, or sell liquor and DVDs.
He destroyed the stability of Anbar province by sowing the chaos that allowed Abu Musab al-Zarqawi to establishâ€”for the first timeâ€”an al-Qaeda branch in Iraq.
He destroyed the stability of Syria when â€œAl-Qaeda in Mesopotamiaâ€ (now ISIL) retreated into that neighboring country during the â€œsurgeâ€ of 2007. By creating power vacuums and generating new chapters and spin-offs of al-Qaeda, he destroyed Yazidi communities and their freedom from genocide and slavery. By hatching the forerunner of ISIL, he destroyed the prospects for a peaceful â€œArab Springâ€ in Syria three years after his presidency ended.
Through his actions he destroyed the border between Syria and Iraq. He destroyed the Tomb of Jonah in Mosul. He destroyed 3,300 year old monuments, the glorious art of the Assyrians, in Nimrud. On August 23 while sitting in his home artistâ€™s studio in Crawford, Texas, he destroyed the 2,000-year-old Temple of Baalshamin in Palmyra, Syria.
The most complete structure in that gorgeous pearl of an ancient preserved city, a mix of Roman, Syrian and Egyptian artistic influences, is now a pile of rubble.
Foreign battlefields are laboratories for the architects of industrial slaughter. They perfect the tools of control and annihilation on the demonized and the destitute. But these tools eventually make their way back to the heart of empire. As the corporatists and the militarists disembowel the nation, rendering our manufacturing centers boarded-up wastelands and tossing our citizens into poverty and despair, the methods of subjugation familiar to those on the outer reaches migrate back to usâ€”wholesale surveillance, indiscriminate use of lethal force in the streets of our cities against unarmed citizens, a stripping away of our civil liberties, a dysfunctional court system, drones, arbitrary arrest, detention and mass incarceration. The tyranny empire imposes on others, as Thucydides reminded us, it finally imposes on itself. Those who kill in our name abroad soon kill in our name at home. Democracy is snuffed out.”
zed, may I ask, how long have you lived in the USA?
Whoever wrote this crazy stuff should be forced to live in Saudi Arabia or Iran for a year or so. THEN and only then will you understand how utterly crazy this “article” above is.
By the way, I am a european who was forced to leave his country to the jihadists, so they could create their little state in the middle of Europe. They were trained, armed and helped by you-know-whom. You see the same hordes playing the ISIS-charade in Syria etc. nowadays.
zed. may I ask how long you’ve lived in the USA?
Wow, this article is so off. It’s not the GOP whipping up bigotry. It’s the left handing out the victim card to Muslims and empowering them enough to shape an election based on hypotheticals. The GOP might be the party of ‘old white men’ as branded by Democrats, who then decided their candidate should be a… wait for it… old white man named Bernie. The very fact that an organization with criminal links – CAIR – feels empowered enough to ask candidate to drop out of running just because of hypothetical scenarios – is absurd.
Wow, this article is so off. Itâ€™s not the GOP whipping up bigotry.<<>aggrieved white males,<>Here is a polite Google definition: â€œthe avoidance, often considered as taken to extremes, of forms of expression or action that are perceived to exclude, marginalize, or insult groups of people who are socially disadvantaged or discriminated against.â€<>Those in the anti-PC crowd expressed their frustration in altruistic terms. They offered concern about preserving the heritage and protecting the well-being of American society and Western civilization. They didnâ€™t want to see that culture decimated due to white liberal guilt or minority group pressure.
Those of us Euro-American white male types who were in school during the early 1990s remember what was really going on. On elite campuses, America was beginning to evolve into the gender-egalitarian, multicultural society that we are today 25 years further down the road to becoming. Any remnant of belief that this country belongs to upper-class white males was being pushed aggressively to extinction.<<
The belief that course programs and syllabi should reflect a diversity of voices became increasingly entrenched. Student admissions and campus life policies were altered to reflect and advance gender, ethnic, racial and eventually sexual-orientation diversity. Hiring was bringing increasing diversity to staff and faculty. Even language was changing. Gender-inclusive language became ascendant, and terms used to name various groups of people were being altered to reflect what the affected people now wanted to be called.
Reinhold Niebuhr and Martin Luther King liked to say that no one ever gives up power voluntarily, even if that power is unjust or unjustly exercised. That includes the transition from one group in a society having total control to a situation of having to share control with others.
Exclusive white male power was being taken away, both by people from the previous margins of society and by privileged white people themselves who now agreed that changes were required.
Academia became the leading edge of social change, and those who were not happy with those changes went on the counterattack.
Certainly there were times when white men experienced demeaning treatment as these changes unfolded. I remember times when I felt misunderstood and mistreated. Sometimes it seemed that those who had so often experienced subjugation took some pleasure in making white guys like me squirm.
But I started on a personal journey of change, and got excited about a genuinely egalitarian, multicultural America (and church). The pressures I first experienced in school in the 1980s and 1990s proved indispensable in nudging me along, however uncomfortable they were at the time.
The surfacing of â€œpolitical correctnessâ€ as a snarl word here in 2015 reflects the continued reaction of some white males to the changes that have swept them out of an exclusive hold on cultural power.
Donald Trumpâ€™s linking of political correctness with American decline both connects with past usages of the term and gives it a powerful new focus.
Now being â€œanti-PCâ€ can be about taking America back to greatness under effective (white male/â€colorblindâ€) leadership, at last. Then we can â€œwinâ€ again.
For a number of reasons, I am increasingly worried about this politics of white male anger, despair and defiance. I think it explains a lot of what is most troubling about our country right now.
Samuel P. Huntington
All are ONE. Itâ€™s so much easier to hate when you reduce everything to ONE.
â€”-Peter Loeb, Boston, MA USA
But there is no ONE, Peter Loeb. Every Whole is really the sum of It’s Parts — everywhere and in everything.
Well before writing “The Clash of Civilizations,” Samuel P. Huntington wrote, “American Politics: The Promise of Disharmony. Toward the end of the book, he wrote, “… .a major sustained creedal passion period will occur in the second and third decades of the twenty-first century.” – That would be between 2010 and 2030, where we sit here and now. — As we witness a veritable ‘clash of civilizations’ as we destabilize toward this NEW WORLD ORDER (or perish trying), we’re also in the midst of a manifold top to bottom world-wide Clash of Cultures – even the rapid extinction of species! DISHARMONY is Pervasive ! — There is no ONE.
Huntington was a true seer. The below is a paragraph from his last book. See how it fully & faithfully describes the ethos of the advocates of “let’s take OUR country back!!!”
America was founded by British settlers who brought with them a distinct culture including the English language, Protestant values, individualism, religious commitment, and respect for law. The waves of immigrants that later came to the United States gradually accepted these values and assimilated into America’s Anglo-Protestant culture. More recently, however, our national identity has been eroded by the problems of assimilating massive numbers of primarily Hispanic immigrants and challenged by issues such as bilingualism, multiculturalism, the devaluation of citizenship, and the â€œdenationalizationâ€ of American elites. —— Samuel P. Huntington, from his 2005 book, “Who Are We?”
This ideal/ideology is at the core of Palin’s self-idenity. These are the self-proclaimed American Exceptional’s.” They are exclusively, “full blood” Nationalists, full of pride in their singular
heritage. There cannot be a conglomerate ONE within a system of governing that favors/allows Exclusivity.
Therein lies The Clash – The Superior super-imposed over & above the Inferior. The only reduction to ONE could only be a state as described by Huxley or Orwell — there’d be no “religion” in such a state — only Totalitarian Nationalists… .
Do you Agree?
“YOU’VE GOT TO BE TAUGHT TO HATE…”
Mr. Owen has been well-schooled. Everything is reduced to ONE. The
Muslims are “they”, the “other”. Singular. All Christianity is, according to this
view, also ONE. All parts of the Torah, all Israelites, all Christians,
all Catholics, all Protestants, all Eastern Orthodox Christians,
all Crusaders, all settler colonists, all murderers of millions of Native
Americans…All are ONE. It’s so much easier to hate when you
reduce everything to ONE.
—-Peter Loeb, Boston, MA USA
The whole idea of ‘taught to hate’ or that bigotry is ‘taught’ shows how dumb the left is, when they can’t distinguish the discernible differences between ‘learned behavior’ and ‘being taught’.
Some random and idle thoughts about the essay:
For some reason the photograph of Sarah Palin set me to thinking about how she – bad as she was – is still a cut above Carly Fiorina. Palin was actually elected as a governor, but the only accomplishment by Fiorina was to run a large company into the ground.
Then there is the 14-year-old clock kid. Did anybody else notice how Richard Dawkins once again stuck his foot into his mouth on this one by condemning the kid? This fellow’s brain is NOT aging well at all.
Regarding the Crusades, the former Pope called them simply “misunderstandings”. No big deal at all.
Finally, Mr. Parry mentioned the name of Jonah Goldberg. Anytime I learn a newspaper publishes that doughy pantload of a chickenhawk, that’s the time I’ll never spend a dime on that newspaper ever again. Which is one of many reasons I haven’t purchased the rightwing rag Indianapolis Star for a very long time.
I still see two Imperial “Religions” competing with one another for the expansion and “Imperial Glory” of their respective realms. Before the appearance of these two Imperial Religions the landscape was peppered with a plethora of Mystery schools with their Mystic/Teachers at the helm. They co-existed with a complex, cosmological World of animistic/paganistic/polytheistic perceptions and also various hierarchies of many Gods and Goddesses. The landscape resembled something similar to what one might assume one would find in India (who can report on the horrors of the Muslim onslaught), where nothing is ruled out, and all is worthy of investigation. Both of these two Imperial Religions FORCEFULLY changed all of that, and are guilty of erasing thousands of years of gathered wisdom and experience, and even the collective “Tribal Memory” that held this Gnosis in mind, and in ancient libraries too….all of that is now lost; our LIVING connection to ALL of that is lost. BOTH are guilty of this crime, so enough of who-did-what-and-when. Let us now just sit down in our darkened Universe and counsel with one another upon “what is to be done; how to learn to live, and let live”. Surely there are MANY things we have in common, where cooperation will more easily help to meet common needs. Let the exploration of “The Inner World” begin again.
Thank you for this refreshingly pagan and gnostic perspective.
For far too long, Christians have oppressed heathens and pagans. Americans see pagans as devil worshipers who kill unbaptized babies and hate progress.
It is not mere fear that permeates the American mind, ignorance is the primary parasite sucking intelligence from our collective psyche.
Indeed, Sunni-Wahabbi extremists refuse to recognize any border or government, the Koran is their code, and blood must be spilt to mollify their Allah. In this case I must agree, Muslims are not compatible with political office.
However there are sects of Islam that do not take the Koran so seriously, much like modern Christians, they see verse more as allegory and metaphor. Poetry and art is rich in the Shiite and Sufi sects. Women aren’t subjugated and oppressed the way Americans see ‘how them Islamists treat their wimmen!’
But to offer nuance and understanding in modern America is tantamount to treason. We’re supposed to hate them, Beth Van Duyne is only reacting like a properly indoctrinated American SHOULD, it’s what we learned. Even today, saying that there is a massive schism in Islam and that not every Muslim in far off lands chants Death to America, and wants to rape your daughter gets one condemned for ‘supporting terrorism.’
The whole shebang is absurd;Muslims revere Christ as a righteous prophet,while the Zionists who dupe America hate Him.
No story on Joshua Ryne Goldberg of Florida who posed as an Australian jihadist to entice jihadists out of the woodwork into violence?The Garland TX shootings were instigated by him,among many other underhanded provocations,and we get stories of children built clocks.