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10/23/2016

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Surprises Aplenty

I already posted a comment but only after I hit 'post' I found some errors. Here it is with fewer errors. I'd appreciate it if you deleted the other comment.
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"although they hate the religious right, they think that things will go well by importing people who are ten times worse than the religious right."
Hate might be a strong word, but let's look at your comparison. I'm taking 'ten times' as, I don't know, a trend or relationship rather than a hard number. If we compare only acts of terrorism in the US, white Christians have done a lot. From murdering abortionists and their patients, to shooting up other churches and Sikh temples, they have committed more acts.

A problem with my claim above is that there are many more Christians than Muslims so as a percentage of their respective populations, you may have a point. Further, one of the terrorist attacks I see mentioned often is McVeigh's Oklahoma City bombings. McVeigh was a Christian but he doesn't appear to have killed for religious reasons.
Still, it has to be accepted that non-Muslims do a lot of terror attacks in the US and if you are the victim of a terror attack it is more likely to be from a white Christian.

As for this group of refugees:
It seems that the majority of refugees are children. We may be talking past each other here, but even if most of what you said were true, I would argue for protecting children.

There is a self-fulfilling aspect to Muslim refugees becoming extremists. If they meet a lot of bigots, they are more likely to act in the ways you fear. It sure seems, though, that people fleeing violence from religious extremists would be less likely than usual to become extremists themselves. Muslims as a group (and a diverse group it is) are more anti-secularist, but this group has experience with why it shouldn't be.

I have not offered any links because the sources were mostly from sites I have not heard of before my search. You have a similar problem with Breitbart though. It is a clearly racist organization. It is also describing events in England. Finally, it is not describing refugees fleeing Muslim generated violence. This seems a strong example of false equivalence.

John Pepple

No, I meant what I said about Muslims being ten times worse than the religious right in this country. I don’t mean that as a hard number, but I do mean that they are way more vicious than white Christians are.

Start with Iran in 1979. I was one of the many idiot leftists who thought that the Shah should be overthrown, and when he left, I cheered. A month later, I knew it was a total disaster for the left because the Muslims took over and destroyed the Iranian left. In addition, the secular society under the Shah was of course destroyed, too.

Let me say this again, just in case it didn’t sink in the first time: the Muslims in Iran destroyed the Iranian left and secularism in Iran. In the process they murdered tens of thousands of leftists, overturned a liberal abortion law, fired many female judges, sent Iran’s communist party scurrying away, and so on.

It was a total disaster for the left. It was a total disaster for secularism. I thought other leftists agreed with me on Iran, until in the aftermath of 9/11 I learned differently. I still have no idea what people like Obama and his many fans could possibly be thinking. Iran is the last country any leftist should be making a deal with. As far as I know, the Muslim attack on the left was completely unprovoked. I understand the reasons behind the taking of the American hostages, but Iranian leftists were not Americans (obviously), and they had helped take down the Shah. It didn’t matter to those Muslims. They murdered leftists anyway.

The next event that happened was the horrible fatwa against Salman Rushdie. This was the first time it hit me that Muslims in other parts of the world wanted to rule us. And of course instituting such rule would destroy leftism and secularism. I now realize that I was almost alone in coming to this conclusion, that everyone else in the West either mostly ignored it or else thought it just meant we should be a little more sensitive. But I stick by my conclusion. They want to rule us, and nothing I’ve seen or heard since then has made me think otherwise.

Many other events could be mentioned, such as 9/11, but since 9/11 was not directed specifically against leftists or secularists, I won’t say anything more about it. But one can mention the murder of Theo van Gogh, the murder of the Charlie Hebdo cartoonists, threats against other cartoonists, the attack on gays in Orlando, and hundreds of thousands of incidents in the Muslim world that don’t even get mentioned here in the West. For example, there was the murder of Amel Zenoune-Zouani, a law student in Algeria who had been threatened by the Islamists because they thought women shouldn’t be going to law school. They dragged her off a bus and slit her throat. This was mentioned in Karima Bennoune’s book Your Fatwa Does Not Apply Here (p. 176). It is a book that should be required reading for every liberal and leftist in the West. What is clear from reading this book is that not only was the left destroyed in Iran, but also that Muslims in other parts of the Muslim world are doing their best to destroy the left (and secularism) elsewhere as well.

Ok, I think I’ve said enough to justify my claim that Muslims are ten times worse than the religious right in this country. The religious right has very few terrorist acts to its name, and most of them (aside from Timothy McVeigh) are at abortion clinics. If you think Muslims won’t do the same and much, much worse once they get power, you are terribly naive. Look at their record in Iran if you don’t believe me.

My assumption is that since they destroyed the left and secularism in Iran, they will do the same in the West once they get the chance. They have never hidden their intentions, and anyone who probes just a little bit can find out their goals. It is true that not all Muslims are like this, but enough are that we need to be extremely cautious about letting them into the West. And now that we have let them in, we need to figure out how to protect various groups from their vicious and murderous tendencies. I have focused in this reply mostly on secularists, but one could also mention women and gays. A year’s stay in a sensitivity training camp should be a requirement for most of them, with the proviso that those who obviously aren’t going to fit in with the West’s values should be sent back home. Let Saudi Arabia take them.

As for most of the refugees being children, that is the story in the mainstream media, but it is not what I am hearing from other sources, which claim that most of them are young men in their twenties. I’m not going to bother getting into a big argument about sources since even if my sources are wrong, the events in Cologne on New Year’s Eve (and many other places) exhibit the problems I am talking about. (Incidentally, those of us who predicted ahead of time that there would be problems like that were called racists, and we were called racists even after we were shown to be right. Think about that and how awful it makes your side look.) People here in the West (and let me single out women, gays, and secularists) need protection from these despicable people.

There’s a lot more facts I could mention, but if you reject what I’ve said so far, there’s no point in bothering.

Surprises Aplenty

Again, you are making poor comparisons. Comparing the US, which has a (present election excepted) stable political environment to a country whose puppet government was maintained and controlled by a foreign power is going to display difference. Your causality chain doesn't go back far enough. Yes, the Shaw was overthrown by Muslims but they had to use violence because the US & UK were protecting him and wouldn't let him fall by other means.

"Ok, I think I’ve said enough to justify my claim that Muslims are ten times worse than the religious right in this country."
Yes, but I was arguing that Muslims in the US are not ten times worse than the religious right in this country. If we go international and back many decades, then we need to also consider terrorism in Ireland - often supported by US donors. Plus the KKK and even Hitler and his Christianity-inspired attacks on Jews and gays. Christians are not much better and comparing events of forty years around the world to twenty in only one country could be used to support any claim. The only reasonable comparison for the actions of Muslims in the US is to Christians in the US.
9/11 deserves mention, as do the other events that took place in the US. The murder of Charlie Hebdo cartoonists was horrible but didn't occur here.
The Muslims were a majority in Iran but even after many refugee arrive in the US will total around 2% in the US.
Now, an important point we can discuss: "the events in Cologne on New Year’s Eve (and many other places)". I am a fan of math and statistics. A single event cannot be used to make generalizations. Perhaps events in "many other places" can be if there were enough but any number coming from this calculation needs to be compared to the actions of locals and I don't see that.
I live in South Korea - not sure if you do, but the person whose link I followed to your blog also lives here so I thought there might be a geographical connection - and the papers highlight any action by foreigners. If a foreigner commits an act of violence, it will be reported with fear and loathing even though foreigners commit fewer crimes than Koreans by population. Which brings me to this quote, "those of us who predicted ahead of time that there would be problems like that were called racists, and we were called racists even after we were shown to be right. " So, what percentage of the population did you claim would commit violence? Was it a higher or lower number than violent acts committed by the same number of locals? If you can't answer those questions, you can't claim to be shown to be right. Most research on immigrants show them to be more law abiding than people born in that country.

Maya M

Harsh but excellent post and comment.

John Pepple

Dear Surprises Aplenty:
Before commenting on what you’ve said, I want to establish some common ground. Your description of what happened in Iran is somewhat different from mine. Leftists were also involved in overthrowing the Shah, for example (not the Shaw!). Anyway, please answer the following questions.

1. Do you accept my claim that Muslims destroyed the left in Iran after the Shah was evicted?

2. Do you accept my claim that Muslims destroyed secularism in Iran after the Shah was evicted?

3. Finally, here is what Nick Cohen says on p. 118 of his book “Waiting for the Etonians”: “The Islamists murdered tens of thousands of leftists, perhaps up to 100,000, after the 1979 Iranian revolution.” Do you accept this claim?

Surprises Aplenty

Oops. My cousin married a 'Shaw". Glad I'm not using my real name.
I agree with all of the above.

Do you agree that the Muslim and leftist groups were driven to violence by outside interference in their country?

And that most times after a leader is violently removed from power, the result is further violence and unrest for an extended period?

Since you know about the history of this event better than I, I have a further question; was there no action by any leftists to attack or drive out the Muslims? Were the hands of the leftists entirely clean and free of blame for the attack against them?

Surprises Aplenty

"I want to establish some common ground." I've thought about this and I wonder at the value of the common ground you are after. I don't particularly care about Iran. As I've said, it seems a poor analogy for events in the US. We can also establish common ground in agreeing that most people in the US speak English.

In contrast to the US, Iran is and has been a majority Muslim country. At the time you are interested in, its politics were heavily influenced by foreign countries so the likelihood of peaceful domestic overthrow of power was low.
With all the refugees coming to the US, the percentage of Americans who are Muslim will raise to around 2%. The most likely Muslim threat in the US is that bigots will wind them up with attacks so that the Muslims will retaliate and be blamed for the whole thing.

John Pepple

I’m taking your first comment first:

“Do you agree that the Muslim and leftist groups were driven to violence by outside interference in their country? And that most times after a leader is violently removed from power, the result is further violence and unrest for an extended period?”

There was not much violence in connection with evicting the Shah. The real violence came afterwards.

“Was there no action by any leftists to attack or drive out the Muslims? Were the hands of the leftists entirely clean and free of blame for the attack against them?”

I never heard of any. Moreover, Khomeini and his henchmen went after many different groups besides leftists: Kurds, rival Muslims (both Sunni and Shi’ite), Jews, Christians, Bahais, and associates of the Shah. Of these, only violence against the Shah’s associates could be considered legitimate. The rest were just innocent victims.

No, there was no blame for the left attached to this. The violence against them bubbled up out of nothing, which is what was so shocking. It was completely unprovoked (as far as I know). The left helped to overthrow the Shah, but got no credit from the new Muslim regime for doing it. I had expected a socialist regime, since that is what usually happened in those days when a U.S.-backed regime fell. Instead, what emerged was this monstrous throwback, a horribly reactionary movement that set back feminism (to take just one example) by centuries.

Now to your second comment:

I am looking for common ground because I can’t understand why any liberal or leftist would want to let their enemies into our country. The average Muslim is clearly an enemy of the left. The average Muslim (not just in Iran, but everywhere) is much more sexist and homophobic than our religious right. No Christian here talks about executing gays, but gays are executed in the Muslim world. The average Muslim also thinks it is perfectly all right to kill apostates from Islam. I don’t know of any Christians who think that.

You say you don’t care about Iran. Do you care about the leftists who were murdered there? It seems not. You seem to care more about their murderers because you want to make excuses for them. What kind of a movement is the left that it doesn’t care when its own members get murdered?

You also say that Muslims will represent only 2% of the population. But they also have lots of “fellow travelers” helping them, namely liberals and leftists. Moreover, the percentages are higher in Europe, and liberals and leftists here generally want to emulate Europe as much as possible.

You also keep talking as though (1) the Christian right is engaged in regular terrorist acts in this country, although the last act of violence against an abortion clinic was quite a while ago, and (2) there have been no acts of Muslim terrorism since 9/11, when in fact there have been many (though not as large), Orlando and San Bernardino being the latest.

Finally, you say that “the most likely Muslim threat in the US is that bigots will wind them up with attacks so that the Muslims will retaliate and be blamed for the whole thing.” This is contrary to every terrorist incident since 9/11. Was Orlando the result of right-wing bigots winding up a Muslim? No, it was the result of that Muslim’s own bigotry. How about San Bernardino? Or the Boston Marathon? Or the shoe bomber? None of these terrorists were wound up by right-wing bigots. They were all motivated by their own reactionary desires to impose shari’a on us.

There is nothing you’ve said so far that indicates any kind of grasp of reality. It’s all irrational, just as I thought it was in the first place.

Surprises Aplenty

"No Christian here talks about executing gays."
I am not American but I know better than that. Scott Lively has long called for the death of gays. Swanson called for the killing of gays, then welcomed Ted Cruz on stage. More than one pastor has applauded the killing of gays.
http://www.patheos.com/blogs/progressivesecularhumanist/2015/06/scott-kill-the-gays-lively-in-federal-court-facing-crimes-against-humanity-charges/
https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2016/03/video-reveals-pastor-calls-for-execution-of-gays-then-introduces-ted-cruz-on-stage/
http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/california-pastor-celebrates-massacre-orlando-gay-club-article-1.2673335
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"You seem to care more about their murderers because you want to make excuses for them."
Oh, are they fleeing Syria and trying to get into the US? I hadn't heard of any ayatollahs among the refugees. Or do you think that all one billion Muslims are the same?

"You also keep talking as though (1) the Christian right is engaged in regular terrorist acts in this country, although the last act of violence against an abortion clinic was quite a while ago"
Abortion clinics are the preferred targets of Christian terrorists, it is true. However, you are leaving out the 2012 attack on a Sikh Temple. Last year, a man was stopped before shooting up a Muslim community - Robert Doggart - so there is no terrorist attack to add to the list, but surely the attempt counts. In 2008, a man shot up a Universalist Church in Knoxville. Sure, it was an attack on a church, but it was a liberal church and attacked because it was liberal. This is leaving out attacks on individual Muslims by Christians that have occurred throughout the US - I am uncertain it they count as terrorism. Of course, if individuals acting on their own doesn't count as terrorism, then the San Bernardino attack by a Muslim couple doesn't count either.
"Finally, you say that “the most likely Muslim threat in the US is that bigots will wind them up with attacks so that the Muslims will retaliate and be blamed for the whole thing.” This is contrary to every terrorist incident since 9/11." I don't have data on motivation but attacks on my place of worship (libraries) would make me upset. There is data that attacks on mosques, and threats against Muslims increased greatly after 9/11. Whatever the result of the election, the Muslims already here have been under pressure from Trump and and others.

"There is nothing you’ve said so far that indicates any kind of grasp of reality." Have I been as irrational as claiming that Christians do not talk about executing gays when they are on record as having done so?"

John Pepple

(1) It’s not irrational to believe something false. It’s irrational to continue to believe it after you’ve been presented evidence for it. Ok, so you’ve presented some evidence, which I accept. Having grown up among conservative Christians, though, I have to wonder if these guys represent the mainstream of conservative Christians in America, or if they are just some outliers. The gay writer Bruce Bawer fled the U.S. for Europe because of what he took to be the heavy influence of conservative Christians in America. Now he says that Pat Robertson merely wants to prevent him from getting married, while the imams in Europe want to kill him. So, Bawer at least thinks that Muslims are worse than conservative Christians.

(2) You say, first quoting me,

“‘You seem to care more about their murderers because you want to make excuses for them.’ Oh, are they fleeing Syria and trying to get into the US? I hadn’t heard of any ayatollahs among the refugees. Or do you think that all one billion Muslims are the same?”

This is just silly. When the fatwa was made against Salman Rushdie, do you think the death threats he got were only from Ayatollahs? Do you think the Muslim men who groped women on New Year’s Eve in Cologne were Ayatollahs? How about the Muslim men who forced young girls into prostitution in Rotherham? How about the Muslim man who shot Malala, or the one who stabbed Theo van Gogh? Much of the Muslim world is, objectively speaking, an enemy of the left. It isn’t just Ayatollahs.

(3) You say that I treat all Muslims the same, but so do you. You treat them all as benign.

(4) I hadn’t heard of (or forgot about) the attacks on the Sikh temple and the Universalist Church. But keep in mind that conservative Christianity in the U.S. lost the battle in the 1960s. They had a brief resurgence in the 1980s, but even then they couldn’t even get abortion repealed. And today our culture is run by liberals. It is run by liberals to such an extent that even older liberals I know are somewhat aghast at what younger liberals are doing. Attacks by conservative Christians these days have to be likened to attacks by Japanese soldiers emerging from jungles in the late 1940s who were unaware that the war was over and that Japan had lost. Being killed by one of them was tragic, but since the war was over, it didn’t mean as much to our country and our allies as it did when we were still at war.

Contrast the situation with conservative Christians with that of conservative Muslims. Conservative Islam is gaining power all the time, partly thanks to idiot leftists who help them, partly because it looks to other Muslims like a winning strategy. There’s a lot of evidence for this, which I’m not going to go into, but just take a look at Turkey. For decades it was just a secular state, but with Erdogan in charge, it gets more Islamic and more right-wing every day. Also, the emergence of ISIS is a bad sign, too. Even worse was the fact that so many young people here in the West were willing to run off and join them. That means that the environment they live in quite screwed up. There was even a Jewish girl in France who joined ISIS. Think about the cultural environment that led her to think that was a smart and moral thing to do. The problem is the constant Islamophilic propaganda in our schools and media. I expect lots of conversions in the decades to come.

(5) You talk of libraries as your place of worship. I feel much the same way, which is why the fatwa against a harmless author (Salman Rushdie) affected me so deeply. I don’t care about churches or synagogues or temples or mosques. I grew up among conservative Christians and fled as soon as I could. And that is why I don’t want yet another group of conservatives to be brought into this country. And that is why I find the attitudes of nearly every liberal and leftist to be so puzzling. You hate conservative Christians, yet you want to bring in the conservatives of some other religious group? How will that help us? It just means another group of conservatives that we will have to struggle with. How stupid and irrational can you get?

Surprises Aplenty

"You say that I treat all Muslims the same, but so do you. You treat them all as benign."
I do not.
I treat victims of religious violence as likely to be anti-religious violence.
One argument you could conceivable use is the 'cycle of violence' argument. A kid that grows up with domestic violence is more likely to abuse his own spouse or children. I don't know if that is true with religion, but that seems to be an argument that would work if the evidence pointed that way.
Right now, Syrian refugees have a waiting period of more than a year. Well, last I heard it was more, but recently it had shortened. There is some effort taken to weed out the extremists. We might argue over how successful it is -and it wouldn't be much of an argument because I don't know - but the refugees are not standard extremist Muslims coming in all with the goal of attacking Americans. I would divide Muslims into three groups. First, current extremists who the US would be wise to keep away. Second, run-of-the-mill Muslims who might or might not become extremists. And third, we have the victims of Muslim violence escaping from a terrible situation. I suggest this group is no more likely to be violent than the worst of the religious right and my sympathies say they would not raise to that level.

"Contrast the situation with conservative Christians with that of conservative Muslims. Conservative Islam is gaining power all the time, partly thanks to idiot leftists who help them, partly because it looks to other Muslims like a winning strategy."
I would say the greatest assistance conservative Muslims received was the pointless attack on Iraq by the US under Bush and Co. Hardly leftists. Personally, I feel the attacks on Afghanistan were justified and the attacks on Iraq were not. The lack of a long term plan for Iraq means that it went from a secular dictator to a mess with a Muslim extremist problem it didn't have before.

I do agree or hope that conservative Christians are on their way out. I think they are outliers and I learn of them mostly due to my strange interests. But Swanson, who called for the death of gays, introduced Cruz at a campaign event. He must still have some influence among a large number on the right.

"yet you want to bring in the conservatives of some other religious group?"
I do not.
I want to bring in the victims of conservatives of another religious group. This is my constant point. The refugees as a whole cannot be considered perpetrators of religious violence. There may be some that sneak in but the group cannot be described that way.

I support much of Ayaan Hirsi Ali's points and views ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ayaan_Hirsi_Ali ) but do not feel all Muslims are a threat.

I think I've meet your challenge:
"I will vote for Hillary if Hillary or one of her supporters will explain to me why, although they hate the religious right, they think that things will go well by importing people who are ten times worse than the religious right. I’m referring, of course, to Muslims"
I believe the religious right is worse than you think and this group least fits the 'ten times worse' description.

John Pepple

(1) “I treat victims of religious violence as likely to be anti-religious violence.”

I don’t understand that sentence.

(2) The fact that there is some effort to weed out extremists doesn’t mean much to me since anyone can be turned to terrorism in the current cultural environment. Some enormous percentage of young Muslims in Britain want shari’a, even though their parents are much more moderate. This isn’t a good trend. Anyway, I don’t trust our government to weed out any extremists.

(3) While I generally agree with your groupings, I would say that victims of Muslim violence could just as well be extremists themselves. The Middle East is a part of the world where vicious victimizers can easily end up being victims instead. Back in 1982 in Syria, Assad’s father massacred 20,000 people, but they themselves would have massacred his group if they had had the chance. Neither side was particularly moral.

(4) Regarding Bush’s attack on Iraq, you could just as well talk about the Soviet attack on Afghanistan. However, neither of those instances of meddling have had much to do with (i) the increasing pressure on Egyptian women over the last fifty years to wear headscarves, (ii) the attacks on ordinary people by Muslim fundamentalists in Mali and Nigeria, (iii) the increasingly fundamentalist push by Erdogan in Turkey, (iv) the execution of so many leftists in Iran by Muslims, etc. Bush’s episode came long after the rise of fundamentalist Islam.

The task of leftists now should be to push against this fundamentalist movement and not to help it. I mentioned Karima Bennoune’s book the other day, “Your Fatwa Does Not Apply Here.” She talks a lot about her frustrations with the leftists in the West because they aren’t supportive of the victims of those fundamentalists and instead regard the fundamentalists as somehow rebels against the world order whom they should support. She quotes an Algerian journalist who says, “the Muslim fundamentalists are our extreme right” [p. 24] Leftists here still don’t get it.

(5) You say you want to bring in victims of another conservative group. Maybe, but see what I said above about the massacre in Syria.

(6) I’m glad you support Ayaan Hirsi Ali, but most leftists don’t. See here, for example:

https://www.splcenter.org/20161025/field-guide-anti-muslim-extremists

I assume that Hillary thinks she is an Islamophobe, or if she doesn’t, she will be surrounded by people who do.

(7) No, you haven’t met the challenge. There are lots of things we haven’t even discussed yet, like female genital mutilation, honor killings, killings of apostates, killings of cartoonists and other people in the arts. This is what I meant when I said they were ten times worse than our Christian right. Have you heard about Molly Norris? No ordinary American should have to go into hiding from immigrants. I don’t know of anyone who has to hide from Christian fundamentalists.

Surprises Aplenty

Last point first: "I will vote for Hillary when Hillary or one of her supporters will explain to me why, although they hate the religious right, they think that things will go well by importing people who are ten times worse than the religious right." "No, you haven’t met the challenge. There are lots of things we haven’t even discussed yet..." I have explained to you why and showed that your 'ten times worse' point is not as clear as you thought. That was your deal. You didn't say I had to convince you, only that my position has some merit.

(1) victims of religious violence less likely to be pro-religious violence. I don't understand what you don't understand. I think that someone who has profited from religious violence would be more likely to be violent for religious reasons. I think that someone who has suffered from religious violence would be less likely to be violent for religious reasons. Well, I could see a Syrian refugee with the means being violent to the religious oppressors that drove them out of his home.
I feel that Syrian refugees would be least likely to join ISIS or Daesh because of their experiences with ISIS or Daesh. In visiting a mosque and hearing someone make pro-ISIS comments, they would be least likely to listen further. This seems so obvious that I am not sure what you don't understand.

(2) "Some enormous percentage of young Muslims in Britain want shari’a, even though their parents are much more moderate." This is a good point but I do not think that all or most British Muslims (or American Muslims) are refugees or the children of refugees. My repeated point is This specific population is not the general population of Muslims.

Your point (3) addresses this. It sounds like the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Both sides have been fighting for so long that neither side has obvious moral high ground. In the US, Jews and Muslims do have conflicts and some are violent but not at the same intensity . I think my defence here is weak but not entirely wrong.

(4) "Bush’s episode came long after the rise of fundamentalist Islam./ The task of leftists now should be to push against this fundamentalist movement and not to help it." Do you think that aiding the victims of fundamentalist Muslims is helping fundamentalist Muslims?
"She talks a lot about her frustrations with the leftists in the West because they aren’t supportive of the victims of those fundamentalists" If only Americans could be supportive of victims, by, you know, giving them a safe place to live and a demonstration that Americans care for their welfare. Your point (3) was a good one but your point (4) seems to support my side.

(6) "I’m glad you support Ayaan Hirsi Ali, but most leftists don’t." I think I mentioned my support before the Southern Poverty Law Center named her. I support most of their statements - about religious right terrorism in the US - but apparently not everything. The websites I read - not necessarily a good sample - suggest that you should have used 'many' instead of 'most'.

(7) I have drawn Muhammad a few times on Draw Muhammad Day, but the day has often snuck up on me so I haven't done so every day. I didn't know that Norris started it.
Note that Uganda had a 'Kill the Gays' law that was written by American christian Scott Lively. It didn't last, I think, or it was watered down, but the religious right is exporting its own violent ideas. In many instances, conservative religious values are similar for Christians and Muslims. Both are anti-gay and anti-women's rights. Both are creationist. The Muslims are more active but many gays in the US are killed or beaten for Christian reasons.
This has been a focused discussion on Muslims and Syrian refugees in particular. If it wasn't clear before, I am not an American citizen and if I were, I would not be eagerly, excitedly voting for Hillary. I would vote for her, but not as a full-on supporter. If the others candidates had a chance of winning, I would still vote for Hillary. I don't know if Stein or Johnson are as bad as Trump, but Hillary is better than any of the other three. So, she has my qualified (and as a non-American, useless) support.
I need now to bring up Trump. He has, in ways reminiscent of Muslim conservatives, called for the beating of opponents and threatened Hillary with jail time. I don't know if her email or financial actions deserve jail time but Trump's claim doesn't seem connected to actual crimes. He would have her arrested regardless. If he becomes president, and does what he says he will, the Christian right will gain such strength that Muslims will definitely not be ten times worse because the Christian right will climb in worsiness.
We have kept this discussion focused on Muslims and the American religious right and refugees and I expanded it to include Trump's influence on similar issues. I am not going to name any other reasons to vote for or against either candidate. Still, I have shown that the religious right is worse than you thought and that this specific Muslim group is less likely to be as bad as you think. Your deal was for me, or someone, to explain why, not to convince you.

John Pepple

You claim I am going back on “my” deal which, if you will look carefully, was never restricted to Syrian refugees. It includes all Muslim immigrants, of which there have been many over the years. You are the one who wanted to talk about Syrian refugees only, and you have even chastised me when I went outside of these bounds which you yourself imposed. Anyway, as far as “Syrian refugees” are concerned, it is commonly thought, at least in Counter-Jihad circles, that as far as European immigration is concerned, these “refugees” are not mostly children, but are mostly young men, many of whom do not even come from Syria. I assume the same would happen here. I do not trust my government to vet these people.

Not only did you decide that my deal was only about Syrian refugees, it was also only about their likelihood of engaging in terrorism. Anyone who read my statement in full could see that I was worried about the anti-secularism of Muslim immigrants (and to a lesser extent, their sexism and homophobia) and not their general terrorist inclinations. This is why the few concessions I made I felt were minor and not really about the substance of my deal. Killing people at a Universalist Church or a Sikh temple doesn’t affect secularism the way that killing cartoonists who are mocking religion does.

But let me explain that my failure to understand your first statement was due to your having put in an unnecessary hyphen. You said, “I treat victims of religious violence as likely to be anti-religious violence.” It should be “anti religious violence.” By putting in that hyphen, you made it look like you saying “The victims are likely to be [modifier] [abstract noun].” That is, it made you look like you were saying that victims of religious violence were to be identified with something abstract (violence, in this case).

I urge you to read Karima Bennoune’s book “Your Fatwa Does Not Apply Here”:

https://www.amazon.com/Your-Fatwa-Does-Apply-Here/dp/0393350258/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1477818293&sr=1-1&keywords=Karima+Bennoune

And also Hege Storhaug’s “But the Greatest of These Is Freedom:”

https://www.amazon.com/But-Greatest-These-Freedom-Consequences/dp/1456452878/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1477818389&sr=1-1&keywords=hege+storhaug

Both of these books are by left-of-center women who are appalled by what they are seeing, and they make the case for being cautious about Muslims far better than I can.

There’s a lot more I could say, but it’s not worth the bother since you seem to want to talk only about Syrian refugees.

Charles N. Steele

"Surprises" lives in a fantasy world. I've spoken at length with moderate Pakistani muslims (moderate by Pakistani standards) and also extremely conservative American Christians. There's no equivalence at all; muslims are far more sympathetic to violence against non-believers. Only a few crazed outliers among the Christians really believe in violence. Not so with muslims.

I'd like Surprises" to test my contention by walking down a crowded street in the most conservative place s/he can find in America (your choice, Surprises, pick the worst) wearing a shirt that says "I love gay atheists." Then we'll have you do the same in a major Pakistani city and compare the results. I'm willing to foot the bill (I can afford a one way ticket to Pakistan). If you prefer Egypt or Saudi Arabia or Iran or some other Islamic country, that's fine.

As for the claim that Muslims are driven to their extremism by colonialism and persecution and all that, as the Hindus of India are fond of pointing out, they (and many other people) have been subjected to the same injustices yet manage to remain decent. There's something different about Mohammedans. Note that it is only Mohammedanism we're supposed to treat with kid gloves; other religions are fair game.

John Pepple

Thanks for the support, Charles!

Pete

Surprises, it seems you are truly media biased, and we can all see just how biased the media truly is after Hilary's guaranteed, landslide win that they forecast up until, and even after, the polls had closed in much of the country.

I am an elementary teacher in a very large liberal U.S. city with a high influx of recent muslim immigrants. And while I can lose my job in a heartbeat for not reporting suspected child abuse concerning my U.S. born and parented students, I can also lose my job by reporting suspected child abuse concerning children of recent muslim immigration or those here courtesy of illegal immigration.

So tell me Surprises, why isn't the media reporting the truth when it comes to muslim violence against their own children here in the United States of America (female genital mutilation and dishonor killings) that are mostly against very, very young women?

Pete

Suprises, this is the new, reliable media you should be getting your news from. Seems Shoe's got it right, and it must really sting to hear Trump, from his own lips, vowing to protect the far, liberal United States' left from the violence of truly hateful foreign ideology(i.e. extreme muslims).

For your future U.S. election and political news, only Styxhexenhammer666 and Dilbert creator, Scott Adams, have their fingers on the pulse of America and its heart(land). Let go of legacy, out-in-left-field, media. They are so analog.

And, so, the final nail in this election coffin is the fact that today's real(ity) news is now being delivered to you by the voice of America's youth which will probably spark protests of ageism among those liberals over the age of 25 and of feeble minds who can't see the fact that Hilary didn't speak even remotely close for everyone or for every minority voter for that matter. But rest assured, there are safe spaces on college campuses for you to retreat to while blaming everyone but yourselves for problems interfering with your utopias while the rest of us trudge along doing our best to solve how to feed, clothe, and house ourselves without your help but with plenty of your hindrances.

John Pepple

Thanks for sharing, Pete. I suspect that Surprises is no longer looking at this blog.

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