If we insist on requiring Muslims to disavow Islamist violence, it's fair also to ask conservative Americans to be honest and self-critical about the connections between our country's poisonous environment and domestic extremist violence.
If we don't understand what makes ISIS tick we'll never be able to defeat it. To view ISIS as simply a determined army of vicious psychopaths is a significant mistake. ISIS is far more complicated than that, in its origins, philosophy and strategies.
It is our belief that these prejudices and misperceptions damage the strength of our American democracy. Higher education has a role to play in beginning to address these challenges. But what can campus leaders do?
Turkish fans twice in two months disrupted moments of silence for victims of Islamic State attacks in Ankara and Paris in a demonstration of the kind of intolerance bred by religiously-cloaked authoritarianism in countries like Turkey and Saudi Arabia.
"People are realizing that the Middle East is not a big mysterious region where everyone is the same. Countries and people are different from one place to another. Persia is a very different place than the 'Arab world,' and the Arab world doesn't mean anything either, because life is very different between let's say Tunisia and Saudi Arabia. People need to talk about themselves and their lives. The comic expression is dynamic and the best medium for this."
The nations that need to work together are not working together. By not working together, they are undoing some of the advances that each other make, allowing ISIS to operate in the cracks and disagreements.
SONEPAT, India -- ISIS' manslaughter in Paris has placed on Muslims across the world the agonizing task of self-definition and self-explanation. It has placed Muslims in India in the doubly agonizing predicament of fearing a local backlash for what ISIS does as part of its global agenda. I do not believe intolerance will prevail in India. The people here are not stupid. But they live in a trapezium of wildly swinging emotions. And there, belligerents want to have their macabre fun, get their bloodied thrills.
I am trying to stay above water. Trying not to drown in the poisonous pool of hate and ignorance. I am doing what I can, writing the op-eds, making sure the media hears our voices and continuing my daily work in pursuit of justice not only for my own community but for my sister communities.
In a month when our attention has been riveted to waves of Syrian refugees flooding Europe, and punctuated by atrocities in Paris, Beirut, Kenya, and Mali, one of our American communities is once again under attack -- Muslim Americans.
Lately, I have noticed that the only moments during the day when I can maintain an absolute silence is when my fingers are hosting my feelings and the piano in a conversation. Perhaps one might be inclined to think that this is the reason why my lips are sealed shut, because my hands are the ones participating in a dialogue with the instrument.
I've never had the privilege of visiting Idaho so I can't say that I know you. I don't know your specific fears or experiences and I would never presume to minimize or dismiss them. All I can say is that we're all Americans, and we share the ability to talk to each other with an open mind and an open heart.
How do we begin to understand terrorism and how do we begin to build a strategy to defeat it?
"Crisis-talk," including talk about religious crises, dominates media and discourse currently. Terrorism. Migration. Economies. Morality. These and others are big-screen topics, but they reflect the small accumulating evidences.
When the Islamic State stormed the city of al-Mayadeen in the eastern countryside of Deir ez-Zour along the Euphrates River, they struck with particular vengeance at the homes of Syrian Sufis. Members of the Sufi order were arrested; their clerics were flogged, their spiritual corners torn down.
It seems like the Western world has not yet made a distinction between the minority of so-called Muslims who engage in violent, suicidal operations and the vast peaceful majority of Muslims scattered across the world, who are constructively contributing to the progress of their societies.