In his well-written article, Jim Catano makes some valid points about how we demonized Japanese-Americans following the bombing of Pearl Harbor (“Déja Vu,” Opinion, Sept. 16, City Weekly). Catano also thinks we should not similarly demonize Muslims because of 9/11. He goes on to say “rationality takes a back seat when facts are displaced by fears.” But when it comes to Islam and Christianity, it is the facts themselves that are so frightening.
Fact 1: In the Quran, God orders Muslims to kill non-Muslims (8:12, 9:5, 5:33). Those Muslims who become suicide bombers in America and Europe are merely obeying God’s holy commands.
Fact 2: Christ said that he came not to send peace but a sword (Matthew 10:34). And he said that those who choose not to follow him should be slayed (Luke 19:27). Those Christians who killed Muslims during the Crusades were merely obeying Christ’s holy commands. And Christians, again following Christ’s wishes, killed millions by inquisitions, by burning witches, by subjugating the New World, by the anti-Jewish policies of Christian Europe, and by the religious wars following the Reformation.
Now to rationality. Muslims correctly recognize that most other religions are based on brainwashing, myths, coincidences, and absence of critical thinkiing. Likewise, Christians correctly recognize that most other religions are based on brainwashing, myths, coincidences, and absence of critical thinking. What Muslims and Christians fail to do is to apply the same standards of common sense and evidence to their own religions as they apply to other religions.
As long as Christians and Muslims believe their holy books and traditions are the inviolate words of God, I will not pretend for one second that these people want peace. For at any moment, God may demand that a Muslim demolish another structure (dams and nuclear power plants make nice targets), or may instruct a Christian president to invade another country (God ordered George W. Bush to invade Iraq even though God knew there were no weapons of mass destruction and knew that the invasion was based on false pretenses).
Salt Lake City