Finally, a fatwa I can actually get behind!
The 20 imams associated with the Islamic Supreme Council of Canada said this marked the first fatwa by the Muslim clergy declaring attacks on Canada and the U.S. to be attacks on Muslims.
“In our view, these attacks are evil, and Islam requires Muslims to stand up against this evil,” the imams said in their fatwa.
They *would* be Canadian… Good for them. I’ll take this anytime. I wanted to call the imams “voices of reason,” but… well… I have no doubt we atheists would find many of their other beliefs pretty absurd.
All this said, what matters is how seriously this fatwa will be taken. If it’s just noise in the air, it does no good. Despite the fact this story is being covered in the media, it’ll be even better once we know this message is making its way into mosques. Still, we need more brave religious leaders like these to take a stand against the extremists.
It would be great if we could do away with religious influences completely… but that’s unrealistic and this is a positive step forward.
On a similar note, a new report (PDF) from Duke University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill scholars says that moderate Muslims in America have helped prevent radicalization:
The research shows that denunciations of terrorism, internal self-policing, community building, government-funded support services and political engagement can all reduce risks of radicalization…
“Our research suggests that initiatives that treat Muslim-Americans as part of the solution to this problem are far more likely to be successful,” said [co-author David H.] Schanzer.
(Thanks to Richard for the link!)