Recently, I took a course that involved public speaking. There was a time limit, and the instructor had a very specific format in mind. I said my first sentence, and he stopped me, warning me that I hadn’t given the information he wanted yet.
I told him it was to be in my next sentence, if he’d let me continue.
So, I went back to the beginning, said the first sentence, and the same thing happened again.
I asked him, “Why don’t you let me fail before you correct me?”
But, you see, he was so certain I was going to fail, that he couldn’t give me the benefit of the doubt long enough to see me actually do it.
And that lack of faith — and respect — irked me more than anything.
There’s a similar phenomenon that’s happened after every militant Islamist terror attack since 9/11. Before the bodies of the victims are cold, people take to social media and blogs to express concern about all the innocent Muslims that are going to be targeted in retaliation.
I’m positive that such incidents do occur here and there. We’re all only human (American Christians included), and sometimes we do not heed the better angels of our natures when faced with senseless death and destruction on a grand scale. But if you can find links to news reports of large-scale violent retaliations against peaceful Muslim communities in the U.S., please toss them in the comments.
Now we’re hearing it again in the wake of the barbaric, brutal — but carefully planned and executed — assaults on a soccer stadium, clubs, restaurants and a packed concert hall in Paris on Friday, Nov. 13. Islamic terrorists claiming to be part of ISIS (or ISIL or Daesh or whatever the frak John Kerry is calling it now) shot and blew up 129 innocent people, and then blew themselves up.
Because, you see, for these people, dying for Allah always includes simultaneously slaughtering for Allah. This is no martyrdom; this is cold-blooded murder.
In no time flat, the calls came out for an end to hate, for anyone who’s seen bodies strewn in the streets to immediately stop their plans to go out and wreak havoc — or at least think ill of, which apparently is just as bad — the next Muslim they see (coupled with a lot of breast-beating about how the homelands of the dead, injured and dying brought this on themselves, that they’re really responsible, not the people who are, you know, responsible).
At the same time, efforts ramp up to find sympathy for the perpetrators’ point of view, for the ills they’ve suffered, for the crimes they believe were committed against them. They are presumed innocent until it’s proven (and it never is) that nothing was ever done in the world that might possibly have ticked them off.
The purveyors of this bizarro-world thinking are happy to dismiss or wave away the agony of the actual victims — along with that of their countrymen, friends and loved ones — in favor of defending possible victims who might have something done to them by somebody somewhere, at some time which isn’t right now.
And THAT is what we should be most worried about.
Also, at least one of the killers may have been a Syrian refugee who entered Greece — part of Europe’s compassionate willingness to take in the displaced people of that war-torn nation (something the oil-rich Muslim states of the Middle East seem uniformly unwilling to do).
Regarding all of this preemptive hand-wringing and finger-wagging, I have a suggestion. When or if the moment arrives that somebody does something violent in unjust retaliation, arrest and prosecute that person. If somebody says something very mean, remind them to be polite and love their enemy — and demand they apologize to the offended party.
But don’t judge them in advance for things they haven’t done or said, just because some quarters of academia and the media are certain that these people, deep in their hearts, are far worse than the ones who did the wanton killing.
And, by the way, assuming the killers shouldn’t be held fully responsible for what they did is to treat them like a child or a pet, which just can’t help itself, because it doesn’t know better. It’s to imply that these people are lesser beings than we are, that they don’t have their full measure of humanity. Hey, if you want to insult the Muslim world, I can’t think of a better way to do it.
Image: FNC screenshot