November 16, 2013

The Myth of Islamic Extremism

The question of Islamic extremism has more relevance to Muslims than to non-Muslims. It’s mainly Muslims who are obsessed with Islamic extremism. And with good reason. As they so often point out; they tend to be its leading victims.
It’s not that Islamic extremism doesn’t exist. Islam, like every ideology, has its gradations. It’s that for Muslims, there is a great deal at stake in the battle over Islamic extremism.

That battle will determine whether they can listen to music, play chess or watch soccer games. Whether men can shave their beards, women can drive cars, little girls can go to school and little boys can grow up learning anything except Koranic verses.

Non-Muslims however remain unequal no matter which brand of Islamic theocracy is in charge. And either way they remain fair game in their own countries.

Every leading form of Islam agrees that an Islamic society is perfect, that its laws perfect man and that imposing those laws on society is a religious duty. They may differ on whether those laws allow Muslims to vote or fly kites; but that is small consolation to the non-Muslims who lose their civil rights either way.

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