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|Wailing Wall, Jerusalem, by Gustav Bauernfeind (19th century). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
The post that follows is a continuation of Is Donald Trump Islamophobic?--visit that post for the full set-up for my current post. However to briefly summarize, I would maintain that nothing that Donald Trump said during his campaign would deem him to be Islamophobic in any way and that furthermore the term "Islamophobia" is an absurd derogatory label that the left and others assign to those who disagree with Islam.
Also I would like to emphatically state that in no way do I condone any mistreatment of Muslims or their property for what they believe. They are free to believe as they wish. By the same token, I and others are free to have and state our opinions about Islam.
As promised in my previous post of my President Trump Acclimation Series I am going to explain why I believe that one of the most brilliant things that I think Donald Trump said during his campaign for president was “Donald J. Trump is calling for a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country's representatives can figure out what the hell is going on,”
Most Americans know little to nothing about Islam. In fact it seems apparent that most of the non-Islam world knows much about this religion and they seem more than willing to accept great numbers of Muslim "refugees" into their countries with the expectation that they will all assimilate just fine into their cultures. Many in fact do and tend to live side by side without too many problems--on the surface of things that is.
Most Muslims living in the United States present little threat, but they are also very much a minority. In areas where their numbers are higher the problems sometimes become greater. The Council on Arab-Islamic Relations has become a somewhat radicalized advocate for Muslims making demands on communities, employers, schools, and other places to provide more accommodations for them rather than assimilating. Okay, I can understand this to some extent, but that is a beginning of something that could have more ominous future repercussions.
Much on this is well documented and can be found quickly through internet searches. Since I want to keep this post as short as I can I won't offer specific examples here, but perhaps in some future posts I can delve more deeply into the issues. However I will make reference to the numerous problems that have arisen in Europe with the rising numbers of Muslim immigrants. You've undoubtedly heard accounts in France, Germany, Belgium, Sweden, and many other countries. The clash of cultures has become an issue of great concern throughout the world. Why?
There is a History
The root of the problem is within the belief system. After the appearance of the Muhammadan belief in the seventh century, the movement spread quickly and often by violent conquest and forced conversions. A stated objective of the followers of Islam early on included a conquest and conversion of Europe. Through the Moorish invasion they were successful to some extent until Europeans regained control. The Crusades were a campaign to wrest control of the Holy Lands from the Islamic conquerors. There has been an ugly history between Christian and Muslim nations for centuries.
Many Americans are not aware that the first international conflict that confronted the newly founded United States was with Islamic terrorists in the Barbary Wars from 1801 to 1815. You may know this not as a war, but as attacks by the Barbary pirates. These were not pirates like we typically think of, but they were Islamist aggressors who attacked our merchant vessels, enslaving sailors, forcing them into conversion to Islam, or killing them. The line in the "Marine Hymn" that references "to the shores of Tripoli" is in regard to that particular conflict.
Our country has had various confrontations with Islamic aggressors over the the centuries, but it has reached the most serious proportions in recent decades. The United States has spent trillions of dollars fighting in Islamic countries and I think the issue that Donald Trump's question raises is why are we doing this? Oil? Our national security? Building democracies? What the hell is going on and why do we insist on interfering?
Islamic extremists have become a threat to the United States and other countries, but haven't we brought a lot of this on ourselves by our interventions? The biggest threat from Islamic terrorist groups is probably to Muslims. There is so much disagreement and infighting among them that it's probably very unwise to get involved. Perhaps they need to sort this out among themselves and then the rest of the world needs to decide where things go after that.
Even certain reformers within Islam such as Egypt's President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi have said that Islam has an internal problem. The United States nor any other non-Muslim country has little business in deciding the affairs of the Islamic nations unless those nations are a direct threat to us. Right now with Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, and so many other hotbeds of contention we see Sunnis and Shiites fighting for control. We shouldn't be arming any of them or taking sides if we are not Muslim. Syria's Assad is an Alawite whose government has protected Christians and yet our government wants to oust him from the presidency even though there had been a relatively stable government there for years.
Let's face it, the Middle East is a mess and much of the world where Islam is in control is of a questionable nature in context with the rest of the world. With all of the Muslim nations that are available, why should Muslim refugees want to go to the non-Muslim nations? Once again this becomes part of the "what the hell is going on" question.
When you get down to the heart of it all, Islam and Christianity and probably any other belief system are incompatible. Islam and Christianity are in direct opposition to each other when you delve into the beliefs of the two. To a Muslim, any one who isn't a believer of Islam is an infidel, lesser than they and deserving of death if they will not convert or subject to special taxes or other punitive measures. This may not be something that is necessarily made much of when they are in the minority, but nevertheless it is at the very core of the belief.
If one is a follower of Jesus Christ and adheres to the words that Jesus spoke then there is, in the end, no tolerance for Islam since Jesus is the only way to the Father. The Christian should love the Muslim with hopes to reach them with the truth of the Gospel, but can a true Christian accept the Koran and its teaching?
The common solution is to live and let live. Don't talk about it or if we do talk about it then accept each other's beliefs in some way--whichever way works. But in reality, if one is a true believer, does any way but One Way work? That is a problem that cultures living together must confront and ultimately can they?
If a Holy War such as what the groups like ISIS are striving to achieve actually came to pass, then would it be wise to have large numbers of non-western-conformed Muslims among us? Even Muslims who have been raised in our country: What happens when they become radicalized? Islam is planting a seed that can sprout with a vengeance when nurtured with extremist teaching. We've seen it happen.
A Call to Figure It All Out
Hatred is not a good solution. But realistic thinking has to come into play. We must become better informed and discuss these issues among those with whom we agree as well as those on the other side. The governments of Muslim nations need to understand what divides them and what unites them as well as what divides and unites all of us. One world government and one world religion is an ominous solution that might be proposed by some and we must beware. This will likely be coming soon and what do you think that would entail?
Donald Trump's simplistic call to figure out "what the hell is going on" is in reality very complex when taken in view of the world and all of its systems of beliefs. Of course we may be seeing that "Holy War" coming sooner than many of us have hoped for if Trump's plan to move the United States embassy in Israel to Jerusalem. From a historical perspective I agree with this move. Bibically speaking I think it's an outstanding move since I am 100% pro-Israel. And right there I'm in dire opposition with many Muslims. If we do have a Holy War then we should not be harboring great numbers of Muslim refugees in the United States, Canada, Europe, Russia, or any other non-Muslim country.
Perhaps my thinking is going to an apocalyptic extreme, but as a Christian I believe what I believe. It's there in the Bible (and not in the Koran or to my knowledge any other Islamic text). You can read it for yourself. Or you can dispute it as nonsense, fantasy, myth, or whatever. However I will leave you with this to think about: The situation with Israel and Jerusalem was foretold three thousand years ago. A prophecy that old should hold some credence even for those who don't believe it. I guess we'll see and the way things are shaping up we may be seeing soon.
Do you think the prophecies about the Jews, Israel, and Jerusalem are more than coincidence? Why do you think Muhammad based his belief system on the same story as recounted by the Judeo-Christian tradition? Do you think it would make more sense for the Muslim refugees to relocate in other Muslim countries if safe zone cannot be established in the countries from where they are coming?