By Doug Newman – email me.
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“For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” ~ II Timothy 1:7
While this past week’s killings at Charlie Hebdo in Paris as well as the related atrocities are horrific crimes, they need to be treated as nothing more. Let us mourn the dead and pray for all affected. Let us punish the perpetrators severely. But let us not read too much into these events.
Radical Islam doesn’t scare me. It is not going to take over the world. It can’t possibly do so.
Islam is not a centralized religion. It has no pope or Vatican. Politically and militarily, it has no Berlin, Tokyo or Moscow.
And so what if Islam’s stated goal is world domination. I can state that my goal is to score the winning touchdown in the Super Bowl a few weeks from now. The chances of Islam dominating the world are about as great. Indeed, it has been several centuries since a Muslim country conquered a non-Muslim country.
The following 2-minute video cannot be watched often enough. The entire history of the Middle East and, for that matter, of the world, is one of empires rising and falling. Yes, the caliphate covered a lot of territory at one point. However, it is worth noting that Mongolia was also once the mightiest empire on earth, covering more real estate than the Soviet Union. Where is Mongolia now?
Have certain clusters of Muslims been responsible for violence in the non-Muslim world? Certainly. However, we in America can avoid this is we just adhere to our Constitution.
The Constitution gives us four tools for “dealing with” Islam. If things get violent, we have the Second Amendment. If Judge Smails on some circuit court somewhere makes a ruling based on Sharia law, let us impeach him pursuant to Article 6, Section 2.
The third tool are letters of Marque and Reprisal – see Article 1, Section 8. These are congressional warrants to pursue the perpetrators of crimes like 9/11. The 9/11 attacks, while unspeakably horrible, were not a military invasion and thus were not grounds for war. I wish the following thought were mine: If 19 Americans went overseas and committed some horrific crime, would that justify an open-ended war on America?
And if you are a Christian like I am, the strongest weapon we have is the First Amendment, which protects our right to preach the Gospel and carry out Christ’s Great Commission – Matthew 28:18-20. Christians are not supposed to fight like the world fights – II Corinthians 10:4. We are not supposed to be “jerks for Jesus”. Rather we are supposed to set such Godly examples that the non-Christian world, try as it may, cannot help but be impressed by the influence of Christ on our lives – I Peter 2:12.
Jesus’ ministry was not about changing societies top-down via the iron fist of the state. Instead, it was about changing individual lives through the Real Power of the Holy Spirit. Tragically, too many American Christians would like to turn the Prince of Peace into some sort of war god.
What goes around comes around. We reap what we sow. And as long as America insists on throwing its weight around militarily to the extent that it does, it follows, as night does day, that there will be a whole lot of people hating on us. Neocon ranting notwithstanding, France has done its fair share of intervening overseas as well. Can anyone say “blowback“?
Too many Americans think that America is some sort of “exceptional nation” and is thus not subject to the same rules as any other nation, and that we have some divine license to do whatever we want, whenever we want, wherever we want because, well, because we are America bygummit. America, **** yeah! There is a God and He is not going to smile on any country that aborts a million babies a year.
Your chances of dying in a terrorist attack are downright infinitesimal. I read recently that about 2 million Americans die of various causes each year. This means that in 2001, 1,997,000 Americans died from something other than terrorism. Read this and this and this for more information.
And, no: this is not because of the post-9/11 surveillance-police state. There is no federal program that would stop some whack job from walking into a grocery store or coffee shop or shopping mall, detonating a bomb and killing a whole lot of people. TSA does not protect you either. If you will give up some liberty to have more security, why not just give up all your liberty to have total security?
Do you want to live in such a society? No? Well neither do I.
Here in America, the overwhelming majority of criminals are not Muslim and a similar majority of Muslims are not criminals. In fact, if there is any demographic in America that is likely to visit violence on Americans it is unmarried men. Let’s “go after” them! Let’s deport the whole wretched lot of them!
Oh, wait. Let’s not. I am an unmarried man.
It is always easy to sit there and demand that your government “do something” as long as they do it to somebody else.
Presuming someone a terrorist or even a terrorist sympathizer just because they are Muslim is just as idiotic as presuming someone a racist because they are white. Click here and here for documented evidence that the majority of terrorists are not Muslims.
So don’t succumb to the media-induced paranoia about terrorism. Don’t be manipulated into becoming unhinged for no good reason whatsoever. On the other side of this is something far more dangerous than terrorism: an omnipotent state.
Late in the afternoon of September 11, 2001, I received an email whose subject line read: “They want you to panic.”
The first line of the body of the email read: “So don’t.”
Oh, that was prophetic.