‘Je Suis Turkey’

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In January 2015, extremists killed 12 people at the offices of the French satirical newspaper, Charlie Hebdo. The phrase, Je Suis Charlie (“I am Charlie”) swept Twitter and then Facebook and then newspapers and then the world. Je Suis Charlie expressed empathy for the cartoonists as well as support for freedom of speech.

Millions of people, including more than 40 world leaders, marched the streets of Paris in solidarity. These world leaders included British Prime Minister David Cameron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, Malian President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita, EU President Donald Tusk, and Jordan’s King Abdullah II.

Muslims and Christians: On Worshipping the Same God

Suppose there is a God who a long, long time ago spoke to Abraham, promising to bless the world through his descendants. Suppose his descendants told their friends who told their friends who told their friends about Abraham’s encounter with God, with some of those friends identifying as Jews, some as Christians, and some as Muslims. Their descriptions agree in many respects, even important ones — they all believe, for example, that God is one, merciful, just and Creator. Their descriptions of God also differ in some respects. Christians, for example, think that God was incarnate in Jesus while Muslims and Jews reject the Trinity. And they, Muslims-Christians-Jews, even call God different names — among them, Yahweh, the Father and Allah.

Why Don’t Moderate Muslims Denounce Terrorism?

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They do. But it doesn’t make the news. Bad news, such as terrorist attacks, is news. Good news is not.

Immediately after the San Bernardino shootings, Hussam Ayloush, executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations in Los Angeles, said, “The Muslim community stands shoulder to shoulder with our fellow Americans in repudiating any twisted mind-set that would claim to justify such sickening acts of violence.” Tahmina Rehman, president of Buffalo’s Women’s Auxiliary of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, criticized the shootings, noting that those who are truly faithful to the Quran live lives of peace and humility. Roshan Abbassi, an assistant imam at a San Bernardino mosque, said: “We are all against terrorism. … We all want peace.” Saira Khan, the sister of the shooter, said, “I believe that that’s not Islam. Islam condemns killing or hurting of anybody. Any person.”

Franklin Graham and Christian Bigotry

165,533 people liked, 57,084 shared and 19,016 commented on Franklin Graham’s shameful and bigoted July 17 Facebook post:

Four innocent Marines (United States Marine Corps) killed and three others wounded in ‪#‎Chattanooga‬ yesterday including a policeman and another Marine—all by a radical Muslim whose family was allowed to immigrate to this country from Kuwait. We are under attack by Muslims at home and abroad. We should stop all immigration of Muslims to the U.S. until this threat with Islam has been settled. Every Muslim that comes into this country has the potential to be radicalized—and they do their killing to honor their religion and Muhammad. During World War 2, we didn’t allow Japanese to immigrate to America, nor did we allow Germans. Why are we allowing Muslims now? Do you agree? Let your Congressman know that we’ve got to put a stop to this and close the flood gates. Pray for the men and women who serve this nation in uniform, that God would protect them.

Is Atheism Evil?

TEHRAN, IRAN - AUGUST 14: Iranian women in chadors walk at the Holy Shrine mausoleum of Ayatollah Khomeini on August 14, 2012 in Tehran, Iran. (Photo by Franco Czerny/Getty Images)

TEHRAN, IRAN – AUGUST 14: Iranian women in chadors walk at the Holy Shrine mausoleum of Ayatollah Khomeini on August 14, 2012 in Tehran, Iran. (Photo by Franco Czerny/Getty Images)

On February 11, atheist Craig Stephens Hicks killed three young Muslims in a dispute over a parking space. On atheist Hicks’ Facebook page, we learn of his associations with fundamentalist atheist groups such as Militant Atheism for the Soul, United Atheists of America, The New Atheists, and Atheists for Equality. The vast majority of his postings mock religious belief and religious believers. And then there’s the photo of atheist Hick’s gun in a holster, with the caption: “Yes, that is 1 pound 5.1 ounces for my loaded 38 revolver, its holster, and five extra rounds in a speedloader.”