By the Editors in October 3, 2016 Issue of America, the national Catholic Reiview
(Note: “The cow in the book never eats grass,” goes a proverb in Malayalam. No matter who preaches and how he preaches, if what is preached against ground realities no one will ever believe. Here we have such a polite speech about Islam describing it as a religion of peace. When one says all Muslims are not terrorists, but most of the terrorists caught are Muslims, what is the message one conveys? Christianity also is a religion of peace, it is equally credited with deadly crusades. Neither George Bush nor Popes John Paul II or Francis can make people say Amen, if what they say is contrary to ground realities as pointed out by the article below and especially by facts cited by James Richard about his experience in Saudi Arabia.
It is simply absurd for some of the Muslim countries to demand freedoms from democratic western nations which they deny to foreigners in their own country. This is demanded by justice. Muslims or followers of any other religion not prepared to abide by this rule — “Treat others as you wish to be treated by others” – should not be allowed entry into a democratic nation. Readers are most welcome to send in their views. james kottoor, editor)
“Islam is peace,”said George W. Bush just days after the terror attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. Earlier this year, President Obama wrote that it reflects a “tradition of peace, charity and justice." And Pope Francis has repeatedly said it is wrong to identify Islam with violence. But many Catholics disagree. According to a new report from Georgetown University’s project The Bridge Initiative, 45 percent of U.S. Catholics believe “Islam encourages violence more than other religions,” and fewer than two in 10 have a favorable view of Muslims.
Catholics’ negative impressions of the world’s second largest religion may be explained in part by their unfamiliarity with its adherents: 70 percent of Catholics say they do not know a single Muslim. (Those who do are more than twice as likely to view them favorably.) That means most Catholics “know” Islam through the media, where it is most often discussed in relation to violence and terrorism. And, it is disturbing to note, those who frequently read Catholic publications have on average more unfavorable views of Muslims than those who do not.
This report should prompt those who work in Catholic media, including America, to examine how we write and talk about Islam. It is important not to downplay the atrocities committed by the Islamic State—whose victims are primarily other Muslims. But it is also vital that we not speak of our Muslim neighbors as if their value depends solely on their being allies or instruments in the fight against violent extremism. They are, first and foremost, in the words of St. John Paul II, fellow believers “in the same God, the one God, the living God.”
James Richard, 23/9/2016
Well you can start with explaining why Saudi Arabia does not allow any non-Islamic religions into their nation.
If you travel there and custom's finds that you're carrying a Bible in your luggage, you have a choice of giving it to the customs agent for its destruction, or be refused entry into the country.
Even during the 1st Gulf War, US Servicemen sent do defend Saudi Arabia against Saddam, they were not allowed to wear crosses. Masses and Christian Services were said secretly in tents and not allowed to be done in the open.
There are no Christian churches, Buddhist Temples, nor any other religion allowed to worship freely there. Other Islamic nations aren't much more tolerant of other religions.
Sure, you'll get nice peace loving Islamic professors in the West explaining a different Islam than what we see in the Middle East, but those professors are considered apostate by Islamic groups in the Middle East.So, perhaps if you can explain this, then we Catholics can be enlightened to how peaceful Islam is.