By Noah Fitzgerel
"The portrayal of
Muslims as victims or heroes is at best partially accurate."
published this sentence from Ayaan Hirsi Ali's "The Global War on
Christians in the Muslim World" on February 6, the publication stooped to
a new low. The article that Ms. Ali wrote was simply a well-worded rendition of
an alarming new paradigm in "academic" thought -- the systematic
amalgamation of Muslims justified under the accusation of hypocrisy.
The article aimed to
appeal to readers through the utilization of statistics that evinced the
growing persecution of Christians in nations with populations which
overwhelmingly adhere to Islam. I should establish that Ms. Ali's assertion of
the rising persecution of Christians in Muslim nations is a real problem, and
just as unfortunate as Ms. Ali stated. Fundamentally, the systematic
persecution of a people is never acceptable. However, I believe that the end to
which Ms. Ali attempted to use the statistics was inappropriate.
Beginning with the
sentence above, Ms. Ali went on to invoke examples of the unfortunate killings
and burnings of minority Christians throughout the Middle East to cater to an
overwhelming simplified fear. As I mentioned, such persecution is a disgusting
trend growing in popularity amongst the radical Islamic groups in power in such
nations. However, it was this important term, "radical," that Ms. Ali
failed to include in her first sentence. In neglecting to add such a term, Ms.
Ali immediately grouped Muslims of all nations into one mass.
Maybe this wasn't
intentional. Maybe, right?
At the foundation of
any column, or Newsweek article, is a fundamental argument. In some articles,
the argument is clearer than in others. In Ms. Ali's article, the argument was
Fact is not synonymous
with argument. Facts can be used to supplement an argument (and should be, if
the argument is to be believed), but facts cannot substitute for argument.
Thus, it seems that the inclusion of such startling statistics regarding the
persecution of Christians must have some sort of aim.
If the aim of her
article was to enlighten the world about such a growing trend in the hopes of
bringing an end to it, such an end would have been admirable and just. However,
it seems that this was not the case.
Of course, as a
well-educated political activist, Ms. Ali is well aware of this. As her article
progressed, she proved my first inclination wrong. It was quite evident that
Ms. Ali purported to use the image of death for a more sinister end.
Ms. Ali, ever so
subtly, enabled herself to point the finger of hypocrisy to Muslims in general
-- whether they're American or Saudi.
This was proven
through her attempt to explain the growing trend of persecution in Middle Eastern
nations: "[The growing persecution] is, rather, a spontaneous expression
of anti-Christian animus by Muslims that transcends cultures, regions, and
Excuse me? So, what is
Ms. Ali suggesting? That it is in the makeup of the Islamic faith to encourage
adherents to persecute others? Let's not forget the harmonious centuries that
comprised the Middle Ages (or more aptly called the "Dark Ages") in
which Church officials justified the pillage and rape of
"non-believers." Did the words of a few powerful men in the Crusade
necessarily represent the religious convictions of the masses? No, as any
Christian today would tell you, they did not.
In this sense, what
vindicates Ms. Ali's assertion that the actions of radical Islamic governments
represent the convictions of the Muslim masses? Certainly, just as the Medieval
Christians of England might have had their disagreements with Rome, so too do
American Muslims disagree with radical clerics who have won the minds of people
with whom they have never associated on a religious basis.
What seems most
evident to me, by this line of thought, is Ms. Ali's attempt to demonize
Muslims across the globe.
The persecution of
Christians in predominantly Muslim nations is certainly a growing predicament.
However, by no means do I believe that such an "anti-Christian
animus" is something, if left to the minds of Muslims that would develop
into a widespread conviction. Instead, it is an animus that has developed into
a widespread conviction of radical Islamic leaders -- whose religious beliefs
have about just as many similarities with international Muslims as those
between Catholics and Pastafarians, whose only religious commonality is a
belief in a singular omnipotent deity.
Simply, Ms. Ali needed
to qualify her argument. I would like to do such for her. Before addressing the
nefariously atrocious persecution of Christians in foreign nations, it is
necessary to establish that the persecution of Christians is not a sentiment
justified by popular Islamic thought. Instead, it is the sentiment of radical
Islamic thought. To neglect to qualify such an assertion unreasonably casts a
fallacious blanket accusation over a group whose diversities far outnumber its
commonalities. Do not equate radical Islam with popular Islam. It is simply
ignorant. Unless, of course, such was intentional in the first place:
falling for overblown tales of Western Islamophobia, let's take a real stand
against the Christophobia infecting the Muslim world. Tolerance is for
everyone--except the intolerant."
With the last sentence
in her article, it seemed as if in the effort to amalgamate all Muslims into
one mass, Ayaan Hirsi Ali established that the only "intolerant" one
Noah Fitzgerel17-year-old Editorials Editor of his
high school newspaper
Source: Huffington Post