With poor communication, lack of preparation time, and without a sufficient heads-up on the upcoming change, implementation of this executive order has been nothing short of abysmal. Doctors, college students, families, and even an academy award nominee were affected by the ban as airport officials scrambled to enforce the new order. Massive international and domestic blowback followed, and thousands of Americans took to the streets to protest.
You may be asking yourself, “How did this happen?” Now, I know that nothing in politics is simple enough to be condensed down to a single issue, but as close as this last election was, there are a number of factors that helped swing the election in favor of Trump. And one of them was definitely his no-nonsense approach to Islam.
For years, liberals, Muslim moderates, and anti-extremists have been writing, lecturing, and studying how to effectively reform Islam – de-radicalize its followers, and make Islam more compatible with the 21st century. Recognizing the distinction between people and ideas, these reformers promoted tolerance and peace towards Muslims, but brutally critiqued the ideas held in the Quran – the ideas of Islam. This approach represents the very essence of American values: treat all individuals equally, but scrutinize all ideas rigorously with critical thinking and rationality. But at every turn they’ve been attacked. Not just receiving threats from Muslims, but they’ve been smeared by other liberals. Sam Harris, a soft-spoken intellectual, was called an Islamophobe by Ben Affleck for criticizing the bad ideas held in the Quran. Maajid Nawaz, a Muslim of Pakistani origins, and Ayan Hirsi Ali, an ex-Muslim from Somalia, were labeled anti-Muslim extremists by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) an American, anti-hate watchdog organization. Their crime was speaking out against human rights violations in Muslim countries and attempting to reform Islam. Dr. Bill Warner, an Islamic scholar who studied the Quran under Sufi Muslims was told by the president of a Florida community college that he should be censored and never allowed to speak because he was critical of political Islam, a criticism shared by many moderate Muslims, even if they can’t safely express so publicly. This is absurd! Since when have universities supported censorship of ideas? But the list goes on and on. Ali Rizhvi, Sarah Haider, and other critics of Islam have faced similar blowback from leftist defenders of Islam who don’t have the slightest clue what they’re defending. Merely scrutinizing the ideology is treated as social barbarism by those unable to draw a distinction between criticism of an ideology and contempt for its practitioners.
But ironically, those actually living under oppressive Islamic regimes are often grateful for the secular voices speaking out on their behalf. Because with blasphemy and apostasy laws, they have no voice. That’s why Richard Dawkins’ book, The God Delusion has been translated into Arabic and spread through the Muslim world like wildfire.
I grew up in a Muslim country, and while I can attest that the majority of Muslims are indeed moderates, and most of the refugees are fleeing the same radicals you fear, I can also attest that the majority of Muslims don’t follow their Quran, which is why they’re not fundamentalists – because they don’t adhere to the fundamentals of Islam. And when you really start getting into the meat of the Quran and the Hadith, there are doctrines that fly in staunch opposition to classical liberal values.
WOAH! The above books are hand-picked and recommended by me. They’re also affiliate links, which means it costs you nothing to click on them, but if you do, I get a small commission from Amazon every time you buy something on their site, within 24 hours of clicking one of these links! Pretty sweet!