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Shadia: Extremists don't speak for everyone

Unveiled: A Muslim Girl in O.C.

March 07, 2012|By Mona Shadia

A variety of things enrage me about some so-called Muslims.

Sometimes those things are so atrocious that I can't fathom how these people (or governments) count themselves as Muslim.

You might know what I'm talking about.

It's the violent protests over the Koran burnings.

It's the burning of churches and death threats over newspaper caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad.

It's the laughable lawsuits like the one filed against an Egyptian businessman for posting a picture on Twitter of Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse with a beard and a head cover.

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It's a popular Egyptian actor getting jailed for defaming Islam.

It's so-called "honor killings."

And most loathsome of all: deforming and burning women's faces with acid.

If I were to reach out to the people who commit such acts, I would say: Go find another copy of the Koran. Open it up. Read what it says.

And then I would ask, Why don't you follow what it says? For once.

I would then tell them that killing innocents is impermissible in Islam, despite what some of these "Muslims" claim.

These acts are detested in God's eyes, not encouraged by him or the Koran.

Keep reading, I would say.

The Koran will tell you that God's punishment for unjust and criminal activities is so grave, escaping them is impossible.

But to the non-Muslims, I would say something else:

First of all, some of those who act this way can't even read. It's sad. But it's the reality.

I can see why each of these incidents come off like more of the same from these "crazy 'mooslems' out there."

I can see why it gives the impression that all Muslims subscribe to this behavior.

But they are not all the same, and, most important, these are the behaviors of a minority, an uneducated, knee-deep-in-their-ignorance kind of minority.

And I'm here to tell you they do not represent my religion.

Not all of the 1.6 billion-and-counting Muslims behaved the same way when burned copies of the Koran turned up at an American military base.

The protests were not really about the burning of the Koran, many Afghanis have said in interviews.

Maruf Hotak, a 60-year-old Afghan who joined the protests in Kabul, was quoted in the New York Times saying, "This is not just about dishonoring the Koran; it is about disrespecting our dead and killing our children."

By "disrespecting our dead," Hotak was talking about the pictures of American soldiers urinating on dead bodies.

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