We Must Call Out The Double Standard With Respect To Islam And Muslims Every Single Time


In the Name of God: The Infinitely Merciful and Compassionate Beloved Lord

Sam Harris, one of the famous “New Atheists,” has spoken a lot about Islam and Muslims, using sweeping generalizations unbecoming of an intellectual of his stature. He recently responded to the Chapel Hill shootings of three young American Muslims in the Washington Post. He concluded his comments by saying:

If a person considers his atheism (a lack of belief in God) or secularism (a commitment to keeping religion out of public policy) a basis for hating whole groups of people, he is either deeply confused about what it means to think critically or suffering from some psychological disorder.

Yet, what if I were to use this very same standard and apply it to Muslims? What if I replace “atheism” and “secularism” with “Islam” in his quote:

If a person considers his belief in Islam a basis for hating whole groups of people, he is either deeply confused about what it means to think critically or suffering from some psychological disorder.

Would even Dr. Harris agree with this? I dare say not. In fact, no one would agree with this. No one would call a Muslim using Islam as a basis for hating all others – as the savages of ISIS and Al Qaeda do – as someone “deeply confused about what it means to think critically or suffering from some psychological disorder.” No. They would call him a “terrorist” and link all of Islam and Muslims with his crimes.

In fact, this is just what intellectuals like Sam Harris and Richard Dawkins do: conflate the terrible things done in some parts of the Muslim world with all of Islam. Hence Dr. Harris saying on Bill Maher’s show: “Islam at the moment is the mother lode of bad ideas.” Hence Mr. Dawkins saying, “Islam is one of the great evils in the World.”

This is a terrible double standard, and we must call it out every time until it stops.

Speaking of the terrible Chapel Hill murders: we had to practically scream at the mainstream media on Facebook and Twitter for it to cover this truly newsworthy event. Contrast this with the also terrible shootings in Denmark: it was all over the media within hours of its occurrence. The difference? The gunman in Chapel Hill is not a Muslim; the gunman in Denmark was Muslim.

This is a terrible double standard, and we must call it out every time until it stops.

This gunman in Denmark, 22-year-old Omar El Hussein, “had reportedly been released from prison two weeks ago after serving a two-year sentence for grievous bodily harm.” He had a criminal past and connections with gangs. He clearly was a criminal, known to authorities.

Yes, he attacked a cafe at which a cartoonist known to have defamed the Prophet (pbuh) was present; yes, he attacked a synagogue. He killed innocent people for who they were, and I am outraged at his act of savagery.

I am also outraged at the execution-style murder of three beautiful American Muslim kids by Craig Stephen Hicks. It also seems that Hicks killed innocent people for who they were. Hicks, however, is not a terrorist. Hussein is.

This is a terrible double standard, and we must call it out every time until it stops.

On February 14, authorities in Canada disrupted a horrific plot by a Canadian man and a woman from the Chicago-area to massacre as many people in a mall in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Authorities called them, “murderous misfits.” What if this exact same plot, with the exact same story line, had been planned by Muslims? Would they have been called “murderous misfits”? Absolutely not. They would have been called “terrorists,” and Islam would have been smeared in the process.

This is a terrible double standard, and we must call it out every time until it stops.

Within hours of the Denmark shootings, the White House issued a statement of condemnation, which was absolutely the right thing to do. I have no issue with this. Yet, it took three days for the same White House to issue a statement of condemnation for the Chapel Hill shootings, even though this was a heinous crime committed on American soil.

This is a terrible double standard, and we must call it out every time until it stops.

I get that there are savages who commit egregious crimes in the name of Islam; they cite Islamic scripture and Prophetic tradition; they claim that they are the true followers of the faith. They are terrorists, without a doubt. They are a cancer that must be removed.

But, there are Christian terrorists as well, who commit terrible atrocities against Muslims in the name of Christianity. And there are Buddhist terrorists who are waging a campaign of murder and violence against minority Muslims in Myanmar. This is the terrible truth of our world today.

Yet, I would never conflate the actions of these terrorists with the whole of Christianity or Buddhism. That would not be right, honorable, or proper. So should it be for Islam and Muslims. And until it stops, we must call out this double standard each and every time.

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2 thoughts on “We Must Call Out The Double Standard With Respect To Islam And Muslims Every Single Time

  1. Excellent Hesham; This should be distribute to a maximum numbers of American people and I’ll do so.

    Many thanks and salaam;

    Mahmoud

    ________________________________

  2. Pingback: Calling Out The Double Standard: Christian Terror Against Muslims Ignored By Media | God, Faith, and a Pen

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