Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Krauthammer gets it wrong on Islam

As much as I like Charles Krauthammer's take on most things, he misses the mark on this one regarding Geert Wilders.

Quote Krauthammer: "What he says is extreme, radical, and wrong. He basically is arguing that Islam is the same as Islamism. Islamism is an ideology of a small minority which holds that the essence of Islam is jihad, conquest, forcing people into accepting a certain very narrow interpretation [of Islam].

The untruth of that is obvious. If you look at the United States, the overwhelming majority of Muslims in the U.S. are not Islamists. So, it's simply incorrect. Now, in Europe, there is probably a slightly larger minority but, nonetheless, the overwhelming majority are not."

For Krauthammer's argument to work, one must accept that the religion of Islam is accurately reflected by the actions of those people who are in the majority, in a predominately secular Western society like the US or Europe. To do so would be akin to distilling the essence of Christianity through the lens of those "Christians" who only attend church on Easter and Christmas. And, it would be just as wrong.

In neither case does the argument hold water. If you want to judge a religion, look to the most devout as examples of their faith. Do not use as the exemplar those who fall away and stray from the path of righteousness as described by the core tenets.

Mother Theresa never beheaded anybody...




Lord Obsidian said...

I don't know what Islamism is, but by your rationale, we should judge Protestant Christianity by the KKK.

Terrorists are never wholly motivated by religious principle. There is always a political aim.

Newbius said...

You missed the point...

Lord Obsidian said...

I suppose I could have. I assumed when you said the most devout you were talking about Islamic terrorists. If that's incorrect, I apologize. Sorry, Newbius.