Especially in America?
I come from a contrast of backgrounds; my mother is Irish and a Christian follower. Whereas my father was Jamaican- Indian and a Muslim.
I have a very good understanding of both religions, I respect both. However, I have never been made or even asked to pick one over the other. So yes, in a sense I have been brought up without a religion but I have learnt different morals from both.
I visited Iraq, with my aunt, before the war started about six years ago and it was a beautiful place, I hate to think what this war has done to it. Since then I’ve been interested in places such as Iraq, and mainly Afghanistan. My favourite author has recently become Khaled Hosseini (Writer of “The Kite Runner” & “A Thousand Splendid Suns”) despite the fact he writes beautifully, it’s the stories he tells. It's sad because they face enough horror within their homeland and they don’t deserve that; many look for a way out. So what happens next? They move to places such as America in order to gain a better way of life, a safer one and a happier one. Having a developing love for stories of Afghanistan and Islam altogether, I found a book that caught my attention: “American Islam – A Search for the soul of a religion” It really opened my eyes to the reality of it all and it told me that, unfortunately, after moving to this country they originally thought would be there safe way out they are faced with more & more constant battles. I don’t think enough of us really realise what the people within the Islamic faith have to go through; it’s not nice at all. Why make it worse by discriminating?
Islam is the second largest religion in America, next to Christianity, and yet 60% of Americans claim to have never met a Muslim...? I think we have a serious problem with the general knowledge that most people are lacking. When things like Al-Qaeda take place it understandably creates worries within people. But to act like those certain irresponsible, and possibly crazy, people represent the whole of the Islamic faith is so wrong beyond belief. 90% of Muslims do not support Al-Qaeda and groups similar to this, in fact they do not even sympathise with them. So maybe we need to realise that the majority of us have the wrong view of Islam and its people. The media portrays terrorists groups to, in a sense, lead the Muslim people. And if not lead then certainly take into action what Islam teaches. THIS IS NOT TRUE. Islam does not enforce an act of terrorism. Yes, it does speak of non-believers and what their punishments should be. But can you honestly say that Christianity does not also teach us something extremely similar; that non-believers of the Christian faith will, and should, burn in hell. A significantly small number of Muslim people believe that things such as 9/11 are good, but that minority (supporters of things such as 9/11) cannot be the reason to discriminate against Islam. The Muslim people have never once said “these terrorists are what Islam is about”. Because it’s not.
Let’s all gain a full understanding; we need to use our minds, we need to stop being so narrow-minded and only allowing ourselves to have limited knowledge when in actual fact, we could and we should have endless.
And before you go and say but they’ve done so many terrible things... etc etc.
Think about the current war in Iraq. I know I am right in saying that the majority of our soldiers would call themselves, if asked, “Christian men”.
If they call themselves Christian men then why are they raping mothers and children, beating and torturing fathers and sons? This is not what Christianity is about. But yet in places such as Iraq these are the people we have sent in, these are the people we are allowing to call Christian men. This is wrong. No wonder why America is disliked by so many Muslim people. But wait, before you say “well yes, this is true, but a group such as Al-Qaeda have come to America and destroyed some of our lives, so how is there a difference between the two?”
The difference is that we have two choices on who to choose as our representatives of Islam, we have; the terrorists (remembering that they are the minority of Islam) and the Muslims coming to America for better lives, and even the ones that have been brought up all their lives in America, or even the ones that are still suffering for no apparent reason in their own countries (remembering that they are the majority). Why are we choosing to see Islam as what the terrorists do when, really, we know we shouldn’t be? We have choices of how to view Islam, let’s make the right one.
Muslim people in Islamic countries do not have choices, they see what we show them and currently they are seeing terrible things.
So, I have some questions; why do people limit themselves to their surroundings and not embrace the cultures of others? Why don’t we question things that are told to us in the media? Why do we self consciously refuse to gain at least the smallest understanding for other religions besides our own, or other country’s beside the one they are currently living in?