Sometimes a person’s gotta wonder what gets into some people’s minds.
Take Boko Haram for example. These self-proclaimed Islamists in Nigeria are doing more harm to the reputation of Muslims worldwide (but especially in the West) than anyone since Al Qaida used airplanes as weapons to kill thousands of civilians a decade and a half ago.
Kidnapping more than 270 young girls from a boarding school to prevent their getting an education? Forcing them into “marriage” (actually, slavery) in the name of religion?
Slaughtering more than 300 in Gamboru Ngala on Nigeria’s border with Cameroon just this week?
As reported by Michelle Faul in the World Post, “Boko Haram’s five-year-old Islamic uprising has claimed the lives of thousands of Muslims and Christians. More than 1,500 people have died in their attacks so far this year. The insurgents say Western influences are corrupting and they want to impose an Islamic state in Nigeria, a country of 170 million of whom half are Christian.”
How can we stop this idiocy in the name of Islam? It does no one any good, least of all Muslims — especially those of us who live in the United States.
It’s about time!
The New York Police Department has shut down its controversial Muslim surveillance program.
As reported on The Huffington Post, the decision “comes amidst two federal lawsuits against the NYPD’s secretive Demographics Unit, and is the first major indication Police Commissioner Bill Bratton is distancing himself from some of the post-9/11 tactics established by his predecessor, former commissioner Ray Kelly.”
Besides: it was a complete waste of time and money. As reported, “NYPD officials later admitted that the broad intelligence program failed to produce any significant terrorism leads.”
Writing in an OpEd piece for the New York Times, Vali R. Nasr comments, “Russia’s problems with Muslim societies are bigger than the West’s. Some of its restless Muslim regions are turning to extremism; that is why Russia has always looked at the Arab Spring with suspicion, fearing that successful Arab rebellions would inspire Islamic risings in Russia.”
What do you think? Are more problems sure to arise in former Soviet states (especially in Central Asia) due to an escalating conflict between Orthodox Christianity and Islam?
“Google must take down a controversial anti-Muslim video on YouTube that sparked protests across the Muslim world because keeping it on the website violates the rights of an actress who sued after she was duped into appearing in the film,” reports Howard Mintz of the San Jose (California) Mercury News.
“In a 2-1 decision, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected Google’s arguments that being forced to take down the video, ‘Innocence of Muslims’, would be a prior restraint that would violate the company’s First Amendment protections.”
The article goes on to say, “The ruling already has sparked a debate on legal blogs and social media, with some free speech scholars expressing concern that the 9th Circuit extended copyright claims too far at the expense of the First Amendment.”
What do you think? If you’ve seen the video, please weigh in with comments. (If you haven’t, you can discuss the reactions of others who have or talk about the First Amendment.)