We need to be so careful not to condemn an entire religion, a huge number of men, women and children, because of Islamic extremists. No one is hurt more seriously by the fanatics and the atrocities of the terrorists than Muslim people.
Brainwashing is the weapon some religions use to control the minds, bodies and wealth of those who follow without thinking for themselves.
In history, we find clear evidence of how "Christians" tortured and burned those who did not accept their version of who Christ was.
I don't know of any time Jews forced others to obey their religion since New Testament times. In fact, I remember being told that, if someone wanted to convert to Judaism, it was the task of the rabbis to try very hard to dissuade them. We say, "It is hard to be a Jew" and "If this suffering is what it means to be the Chosen People, please God, choose someone else."
There will always be tyrants who control great numbers of people through intimidation, lies, deprivation, and even murder. How many millions of people are still devout Catholics in spite of all the crimes of child rape and even murder committed through the Vatican?
In our time, Islamic extremists stone women, burn them with acid, bury them alive, slaughter them - for the sin of wanting an education or daring to love someone who is not a Muslim.
People live in fear of Islamists. But there are millions of Muslim people who are well educated, creative, decent human beings who just want to live and raise their families in peace. We are blessed to have them as neighbours.
By their love and care and generosity, my Muslim and Christian and Jewish friends have helped me to stay alive for many years, through life-threatening illness, poverty, hunger, homelessness, and more.
Let us not condemn the innocent along with the guilty lest we become like the tyrants we hate.
RESPONSE FROM A DEVOUT CHRISTIAN FRIEND
When the Muslim Extremists commit an atrocity like the World Trade Center, where were the Muslims who were not terrorists? I didn't hear an outcry from these mild peace loving Muslims. Their silence was deafening.
When the extremists try to persuade the people of their congregations to join terrorist groups why isn't there an uprising? We Christians don't have a cry to kill an infidel. It is their motto.
I agree Phyllis, I have met a very few quiet mannered Muslims but very few. Most will try to jump the line as if they think that they are better than us.
Sorry Phyllis, I can't trust a Muslim.
End of message
This friend has helped me through one crisis in my life after another for decades. She is a very kind and generous person. But you can see here how the acts of extremists have affected her attitude toward Muslim people.
I am sure that thousands of others have been similarly affected. The terrorists have had great success by being terrorists. They have succeeded in making people around the world fear and hate Muslim people.