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JLeslie's avatar

Why are some people so upset some politicians won't use the phrase Islamic Radicals to describe the terrorists?

Asked by JLeslie (59842points) December 4th, 2015 from iPhone

If the KKK was shooting up black and Jewish neighborhoods is it ok to call them Christian Radicals? They’re Christian aren’t they? They justify some of their violence with the bible.

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12 Answers

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

Because it’s political correctness taken a bit too far. Christian radical is the right term for some groups also and they should be called what they are.

FireMadeFlesh's avatar

Because, if we’re to be honest with ourselves as a society, it must be acknowledged that there is a problem with Islam. To avoid confronting the problem for fear of offending people is shameful.

There are Christian radicals, Marxist radicals, and if you look to Burma, even Buddhist radicals. But Islamic radicals have more widespread support from within their community, and pose a greater threat to security than any other extremist group.

jaytkay's avatar

The people who are upset will always be enraged at Democrats regardless of what happens. They are clowns and should be ignored.

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

When it comes to people perpetrating acts of violence from the aspect of doing it in the name of Allah it has to be radicals. Since many of them do not live long enough to be dragged in front of any court and punished to the satisfaction of whatever government, the best way to vilify them and feel like some justice was served is to call them radicals or terrorist. Why get mad, as with most mass murdering gum men/women they are unhappy, miserable, and when they plan these acts they know they are not going to grow old. If they don’t kill themselves when the loose is tightened and they are cornered, they fight it out to the death and have the authorities take them out, either way they got what they wanted; an escape from this horrible life to nothingness, and took a bunch of people with them, and maybe even got their name branded into history, even though they will never know it. Since they (_the gun men/women _) get what they want, and society just got misery

JLeslie's avatar

@FireMadeFlesh I would argue they don’t in America. Most American Muslims don’t support the violence in any way shape or form, and are moderate and Americanized/Westernized.

When Irish Catholics and Protestants were fighting and bombing up things in Europe we didn’t call them Christian radicals or extremists I don’t think.

FireMadeFlesh's avatar

@JLeslie You’re right that most Muslim Americans do not support the violence that is associated with Islam. However the numbers are still frightening. According to Pew Research, 2011, there are approximately 1.8 million Muslims in the US. Of these, only 81% are prepared to say that violence targeting civilians should never be used to “defend Islam”. 13% said that violence against civilians is either “often”, “sometimes”, or “rarely” justified. The remaining 6% “don’t know”. That doesn’t sound like much, but that still means that there are still 234,000 Islamic extremists living in the United States, and another 108,000 who are conflicted on the issue. And, as you pointed out, Muslim Americans are some of the most moderate in the world.

Additionally, the same survey found that 2% of Muslim Americans are very favourable of Al Qaeda, and a further 3% are somewhat favourable. That makes 90,000 people residing in the United States that, while they may not carry out acts of terrorism, support one of the most notorious terrorist organisations in the world. These are ripe for recruiting, or may lend financial support to sworn enemies of the culture they are living in. 90,000 really isn’t many as a proportion, but the asymmetric nature of terrorism means it only takes a handful to create enormous problems.

I’d say those numbers are enough to support the conclusion that there is a problem with Islam.

JLeslie's avatar

@FireMadeFlesh I’d like to see how that survey was worded. I’ll agree the 2% in favor of Al Qaeda is worrisome, but the percentages you named who are ok with violence against civilians, I wonder if you ask Christians in America if they are ok with violence against civilian Palestinians, or even other Arabs in the Middle East if you will get an upsetting number. Not because they generally want to kill civilians, but because they might view killing civilians as a necessary way to get at the real bad guys, or view civilians as “soldiers” themselves.

I can’t imagine what the US looks like to many countries. We are the one who has actually dropped an atomic bomb. We are the country who has people on Facebook happy when we kill people thought to be the leaders of the opposite side. I don’t think anyone should be happy and exuberant when someone is killed, no matter how awful the “bad” person was. You can probably find citizens, and even online comments of normal citizens saying, “just flatten the whole country.” Basically, it means just kill them all over there.

I agree there is an element within the Muslim community that is bad news, but I see it as totally separate from Muslims who are normal, every day people. Just like Christian neo-Nazi skin heads do not define Christians for me, but I do think their religion makes their commitment to their cause part of the problem.

FireMadeFlesh's avatar

@JLeslie I agree, the wording is relevant. But the way it is phrased in the article is pretty clear cut.

I read recently that a disturbingly large percentage of Americans surveyed were in favour of bombing the city from Aladdin. There certainly seems to be an element in your country that is trigger happy without seeking to even understand what they are wading into. It is supreme arrogance to believe that raining destruction on people can bring a modern liberal democracy into being.

I’m not going to pretend that the rest of the world is a happy peaceful place. The ascendency of China scares me more than any terrorist organisation. Certain Western politicians are a greater existential threat to the West than any jihadists. But when we are talking about Islamic Extremism, it is equally dangerous in my opinion to separate these groups from Islam as it is to assume that they are representative of Islam.

ISIL cannot be understood or opposed without understanding their doomsday prophecies. If you don’t understand the significance of Raqqa and Dabiq to them, you can’t even draw up a plan to oppose them. Likewise the key to stopping their foreign recruitment is to encourage local clerics to play their part with greater determination and vigour. Sure, not all Muslims are like that. But some are, and that needs to be addressed within their religious and cultural context if the conversation is to have any relevance at all.

JLeslie's avatar

@FireMadeFlesh What does extremism mean in that article? They didn’t define it did they? Can it mean simply very religious? If someone asked me about extreme Jews (I’m Jewish) I don’t think they mean terrorists.

FireMadeFlesh's avatar

@JLeslie Agreed, but that is why in my responses I referred to the data on violence against civilians and support for Al Qaeda.

Extremism is a word that does not apply well to the Islamic world, because much of the religion is extreme by Western standards. And if you apply Western standards to the actual beliefs of Muslims around the world, you realise that they’re actually not predominantly moderate at all. So despite the use of the word in the links I’ve posted, I don’t like the word “extremist”.

jaytkay's avatar

that they’re actually not predominantly moderate at all.

Funny stuff, a Ben Shapiro link.

He’s most famous for trying to smear Chuck Hagel as beholden to “Friends of Hamas”.

The group doesn’t exist.

Ben Shapiro is a hack and well known for his lack of judgment and honesty.

FireMadeFlesh's avatar

@jaytkay I can’t say I know a huge amount about the guy, being that he seems to be primarily concerned with US politics.

I don’t think this is the place for me to go through why Islam is such a disgusting belief system (yes, even the moderate forms). But when it becomes controversial to point out a strong correlation between Islamic fanaticism and violence, we have a serious problem on our hands. An enemy cannot be defeated if they are not understood, and while ISIL for example is certainly not typical of Islam, Islamic beliefs do form a core of their modus operandi. To pretend otherwise is to put us all in danger.

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