Re: Kevin Foley guest column, "America is tolerant (unless you're a Muslim)," Sunday's MDJ
A well known rule for fiction writers, especially those short on experience, is: "Write about what you know." This applies not merely to fiction, but equally to newspaper columnists. Evidence of the wisdom of this rule was blatantly apparent in Kevin Foley's guest column.
He described "The Turner Diaries" by William Pierce as the guidebook for the racist Christian Identity movement. Foley concludes McVeigh was therefore a Christian terrorist. I was unfamiliar with the Christian Identity movement, but in less than three minutes I discovered that among the groups under its umbrella are the KKK; American Nazi Party; Aryan Nation; Confederate Hammerskins; Jubilee, National Association for the Advancement of White People; The Order; radical modern offshoots of the original Posse Comitatus; Scriptures for America, White Aryan Resistance and White Separatist Banner.
As a follower of Jesus all of my 70 years, I can attest that none of those organizations qualify as Christian. While one may successfully identify an apple tree by the fruit on its branches, one should not assume a fruitless tree to be an apple simply because someone has written "apple" in its trunk. I could call myself a Martian, but that doesn't mean I came from another planet.
Foley points out there are Christian churches of various denominations in close vicinity to the site of the former Murrah Building in Oklahoma City. He expresses idiotic surprise or bewilderment that no one has proposed removal of the churches "because they represent all that McVeigh stood for." Why do agnostics such as Foley and atheists presume to know so much about religion? Are any of the organizations listed above included in the churches of Oklahoma City that Foley seems to think should be removed after the fact? Of the nine groups on the list, only one, possibly two, would even classify as churches in the broadest definition in the eyes of the Government for tax exemption purposes.
It has apparently escaped Mr. Foley's attention that Ground Zero in New York is surrounded by several existing Mosques. No one has suggested nor have they demanded the removal of those places of worship. The proposed center is a different situation altogether. It is a monument to the 19 terrorists who became worldwide heroes in the Muslim world on Sept. 11, 2001.
"Like McVeigh," writes Foley, "the 9/11 terrorists cloaked themselves in a sick interpretation of their religion, using Islam as justification for their atrocity just as McVeigh used Christianity." Again, Foley demonstrates his ignorance of his subject. McVeigh was influenced by the hate-mongers of the Christian Identity movement - KKK, etc. - not Christianity! The 19 Muslims who hijacked four airliners and killed 3,000 people were doing precisely what the Qur'an teaches. For example, the Qur'an teaches all good Muslims that infidels are to be killed. An infidel is anyone who is not a Muslim. That includes agnostics, Mr. Foley.
Americans have been told repeatedly that Islam is a religion of peace. Sure it is! Just ask the citizens of Israel who have lived under constant attack or threat of attack since May 1948! Ask the people of Iraq who have been trying to elect government officials for the last eight years. Ask the Christian citizens of Lebanon who used to share in governing their country. Ask the people of France whose homes and cars were burned in riots a few years ago. Ask the people of Denmark about the peaceful Muslims who rioted when a political cartoon depicted Mohammed in the newspaper.
Buy a Bible, Mr. Foley, and try to take it through customs in Saudi Arabia. The various sects of Islam, Sunni, Shiite, Wahabi and others cannot even be peaceable with each other, let alone the rest of the world.
The "peaceful" Muslims in this country operate from the same text, the Qur'an, or as President Obama so frequently refers to it, "the Holy Qur'an," as the Wahabis in Saudi Arabia, or the Taliban in Afghanistan, that force women to wear the burqh'ah and refuse to educate females. Do not forget the Iranian version that wants to nuke Israel and sentences women to death by stoning for adultery while the man goes free.
Yeah, I guess you're right, Mr. Foley, there is no difference between Christianity and Islam.