Tuesday, December 08, 2015

Can Islam Assimilate Into American Society or Is Islam Protected by the First Amendment? Pt. 2

Read Part One.

Another question that would have lengthened the title is, is Islam a religion?  In a discussion about whether the first amendment allows for the free exercise of Islam, one must consider the definition of free exercise and the definition of religion.  It is a legitimate question to ask whether Islam itself should even be considered a religion.  I don't think that "some of the founding fathers thought it was one" is enough evidence that it is.  They didn't write enough about Islam to give me confidence that they knew what it was about.  Islam wasn't a threat to them either in the world in which they lived.  It is now, for sure.

Rebecca Bynum has written a book asserting that Islam isn't a religion.  You can read a bit of a synopsis of that theme from her as well, giving some of the arguments for that point.  Bernard Lewis, author of Islam and the West, has written something similar to the theme of Bynum in an article, Europe and Islam:

But for Muslims this word, religion, does not have the same connotation as the word religion has for Christians, or even had for medieval Christians. . . .  For Muslims, Islam is not merely a system of belief and worship, a compartment of life, so to speak, distinct from other compartments which are the concern of nonreligious authorities administering nonreligious laws; it is the whole of life, and its rules include civil, criminal, and even what we would call constitutional law. . . the semisacred early history of the Islamic state, which constitutes the core of memory, of self-awareness, of Muslims everywhere, tell a story of swift and uninterrupted advance in which the leaders of false and superseded religions were overwhelmed and the way was prepared for the eventual triumph of the Muslim faith and of Muslim arms.
What the founding fathers had in mind and what Islam did and does likely do not constitute the same idea of what a religion is.  Islam by nature does not fit into the constitutional understanding of a "free exercise of religion."

One important consideration is the meaning and the place of the term "jihad" in the belief and history of Islam.  Bernard Lewis, former Princeton professor and preeminent expert on Islam, in Jihad versus Crusade writes:

The literal meaning of the Arabic word "jihad" is striving, and its common use derives from the Koranic phrase "striving in the path of God." Some Muslims, particularly in modern times, have interpreted the duty of jihad in a spiritual and moral sense. The more common interpretation, and that of the overwhelming majority of the classical jurists and commentators, presents jihad as armed struggle for Islam against infidels and apostates. Unlike "crusade," it has retained its religious and military connotation into modern times. . . . In his declaration of 1998, Osama bin Laden specifically invokes this rule: "For more than seven years the United States is occupying the lands of Islam in the holiest of its territories, Arabia, plundering its riches, overwhelming its rulers, humiliating its people, threatening its neighbors, and using its bases in the peninsula as a spearhead to fight against the neighboring Islamic peoples." In view of this, "to kill Americans and their allies, both civil and military, is an individual duty of every Muslim who can, in any country where this is possible, until the Aqsa mosque and the Haram mosque are freed from their grip, and until their armies, shattered and broken-winged, depart from all the lands of Islam, incapable of threatening any Muslim."

You can find this teaching in the Quran.  It is the literal teaching of Islam.  Freedom of religion cannot coexist with a professing "religion" that has its goal the elimination and subjugation of all other religions through violent, militant means.  Some may interpret "jihad" in an allegorical or spiritualized fashion against the plain meaning of Islam, but that does not mean that anyone should assume their corruption of the literal and historic meaning.  You can read the writings directly from the Quran about jihad that belie the modernistic or even postmodernistic Islamic interpretation.  To support a decision, one must not take the most convenient understanding, but the correct one.

A mantra repeated again and again is about the minority of jihadists and the majority of peace-loving Moslems.  A recent National Review Online article challenges that.  The author uses statistics to prove that assertion wrong.  It is wrong and anyone, who just refused to hear-no-evil and see-no-evil, knows it.

The "good Moslem," the peace-loving Moslem, is more upset with Donald Trump for saying Muslims can't visit the United States than he is over the murdering of the people in San Bernadino. In this sense, the "good Moslems" should not focus on whether new Muslims can pass through the borders of the United States, but on the frightening behavior of their fellow adherents to Muslim doctrine.  People in their right mind can see the contrast, the greater offense with societal shunning than the terrorism of their co-belligerents.

What you read right now is that Moslems all over the world are upset that Trump doesn't want to let them come to the United States.  Is anyone surprised that Moslems are upset about someone opposing Moslems? Really?  What about the following headline?  Moslems are upset they can't come in, so we let them, and one of them blows up a thousand people!  Will Moslems all over the world be opposing that? Will Moslem opposition even be a headline?  Not at all.  Let's get some perspective here.  The media is manipulating this because of their twisted worldview, to oppose Donald Trump for their preferred leftist candidate, and to create controversy.

Again, it's not that I don't want to live with Muslims.  I would want them all around me so I could preach the gospel to them, but you've probably read at this point that the targets in San Bernadino were people like me, who might refute Islam.  If you go to Syria or Iran or Iraq, you would expect to be killed for preaching the gospel.  There is a place called the United States where the practice of preaching against false doctrine is still not to be threatened.

Saying that Islam is not a religion and that a primary goal of Islam is the annihilation of all those who will not believe Islam does not constitute hatred of Moslems.  You can continue to evangelize them out of love without believing that Islam should be protected by the first amendment.  You can treat Moslems as well as possible without either believing their teachings or supporting their freedom to exercise Islam in the United States.  Not everything that calls itself a religion is welcome in the United States.


I have to say, I'm ashamed of our country right now with its reaction to these recent killings.  The sun doesn't go down upon my wrath, but I'm angry at the response.  At one time, if someone killed Americans like this, we would not let it go.  When Muslims killed the American ambassador in Libya, we did nothing.  The Boston bombers.  We did nothing.  The Fort Hood killings.  We do nothing.  The killings in San Bernadino. We do nothing.  And then we say we won't have a religious test for people entering the United States because that is being a Third World Thug.  I'm embarrassed and ashamed.

I'm also outraged at the lack of discernment here that has come from moral relativism and political correctness, and unwillingness to call something what it is.  This is a problem with Islam.  Dick Cheney, the president, who is cozy with Saudia Arabia:

I think this whole notion that somehow we can just say no more Muslims, just ban a whole religion, goes against everything we stand for and believe in. . . . . I mean, religious freedom has been a very important part of our history and where we came from. A lot of people, my ancestors got here, because they were Puritans.

What a totally ignorant statement.  The pilgrims came here because of religious persecution.  The Puritans came and started a state church, the Massachusetts Bay Colony, which persecuted Bible believers, Baptists.  Dick Cheney either doesn't know what he's talking about or he wants to make nice with Saudia Arabia, because of his money ties with them.  All of the 9/11 terrorists were from Saudia Arabia.

Cheney says banning Muslims goes against everything we stand for and believe in.  The new Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan, says:

This is not conservatism. What was proposed [by Donald Trump] is not what this party stands for and more importantly, it is not what this country stands for. . . .  Not only are there many Muslims serving in our armed forces dying for this country, there are Muslims serving right here in the House, working every day to uphold and defend the Constitution. Some of our best and biggest allies in this struggle and fight against radical Islamic terror are Muslims. The vast, vast, vast, vast majority of whom are peaceful, who believe in pluralism, freedom, democracy, individual rights.

If you read about the Iraq War in 2003, there was sabotage by Muslims in the American military that killed many, leading up to that war in Kuwait during the staging period.  The media was pretty much silent about that.  It happened again and again.  Then you had the Fort Hood killing.  I think it tends toward low morale, because you're not sure whether you can trust someone.  I'm sure some will vouch for those who served with honor, but I believe that overall it is a negative to have Muslims serving in the military, and I don't believe it is an argument for a Muslim test for entering the country at this juncture.  It's just smart.

Cheney and Ryan do not understand religious freedom.  The do not understand the first amendment. I'm afraid they either don't understand Islam or they are too manipulated by Muslim oil money.