Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Islamic teachings is the standard scapegoat

The following letter is right on. It's amazing to me that our countrymen have little to no knowledge of the historical contexts behind current violence in the some countries in the Middle East or the civil strife, which plagues many countries in Africa.

Media outlets knowingly and in many cases unknowingly add to the confusion. Many of these present simple black and white examples, those who are right and those who are wrong, and those who are winners and those who are losers. Moreover, the stories seem to neglect the role in which our government has played in some of these conflicts.

http://www.heraldtribune.com/article/20070918/OPINION/709180716/1029

Your recent article "Muslim Americans seek acceptance in the U.S." was on the mark.

As a Christian, married to a Muslim, I do not underestimate the link between the ability to accept others and our own education. Yet I am constantly surprised at how often the American media have utterly failed to put into comprehensible form the politics behind countries wherein Islam is predominant. Reporting seems biased beyond hope, often void of any real world knowledge of the problems people face in these countries -- knowledge that could yield better explanations of underlying tensions than the standard fall guy: Islamic teaching.

Even nonreligious people from the Middle East and North Africa laugh at the version of Islam put forth in the America press, dominated by subjects that cast dubious light on the practitioners themselves, without any serious explanation of the historical, political or economical problems that could have led to unrest in places like Iraq and Palestine.

Perhaps those who are utterly perplexed by how human beings could practice this religion would do well to exercise their fundamental American rights and take a stroll down to the local mosque. By introducing themselves to the local imam, who is as American as I am, and by attending a Friday midday prayer service, they would find that loyal Americans exist in force.

Krista Cole

Sarasota

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