In the Name of God: The Extremely and Eternally Loving and Caring

“Islam is not a religion of peace — Islam is a religion of submission.”

Thus said Steve Bannon, top strategist for President Trump, on a radio show. As the New York Times reported in a recent article entitled, “Trump Pushes Dark View of Islam to Center of US Policy-Making”:

“The hateful ideology of radical Islam,” [President Trump] told supporters, must not be “allowed to reside or spread within our own communities.” Mr. Trump was echoing a strain of anti-Islamic theorizing familiar to anyone who has been immersed in security and counterterrorism debates over the last 20 years. He has embraced a deeply suspicious view of Islam that several of his aides have promoted, notably retired Lt. Gen. Michael T. Flynn, now his national security adviser, and Stephen K. Bannon, the president’s top strategist.

Out of this view came the recent executive order banning the entry of anyone from 7 Muslim-majority countries into the United States, popularly known as the “Muslim ban.” Other things may follow, and there is no small amount of fear that more draconian measures aimed at the Muslim community are coming in the months and years ahead. 

May God protect us all. 

But, is there something we can do? Is there is something we can do to combat this “dark view of Islam”?

Yes, there is. We can teach. 

We can teach, with patience and love, about our faith. We can teach, with calm and clarity, about how, yes Islam is a “religion of submission,” but not submission to “Sharia law.” But, rather, submission to the will of God. It echoes this verse from the Bible:

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. (Proverbs 3: 5-6)

We can teach, and this is what I am setting out to do. I will teach my fellow Americans, members of my American family, the truth about my faith. And I pray my words can bring some semblance of light in these increasingly dark times. Amen. 

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