Muslims Aren’t All Extremists

In the summer of 2000, I had the opportunity to take the trip of a lifetime with some of our leaders from Mosaic. We traveled to Cairo, Beirut, Istanbul, Damascus, as well as a few other places near these cities. We were impressed with our friends who were serving in these areas and fell in love with the people in those regions.

Even after the terrorists attacks of September 11th, 2001, I knew that this was not a war between Islam and the West.  I had too many Muslim friends in the Middle East and in the USA that proved differently.

I think we all know that, but it has been sad to see the response of some well-meaning people to stereotype all 1 billion Muslims based on the actions of a very, very small yet dangerous minority group of extremists.

This past week I heard a story on ESPN about the high school football team that practices from 11pm to 4am during the Muslim holiday of Ramadan.  The parents of Muslim students and non-Muslim students have all been supportive of the decision.  Read the full story here.

During the story, they mentioned one of the players is related to Miss USA who was crowned in May.  She is the first Arab-American Miss USA in history. Obviously, to participate in the Miss USA pageant, she represents a more moderate version of Islam.  Rather than a burka, Rima Fakih feels more comfortable in a bikini.  Even this week she spoke out against building a mosque so close to Ground Zero in NYC.

I can see her point that the center shouldn’t be so close, but I also heard that the imam spearheading the center wants to help Americanize Islam.

Most of us realize that not all Muslims are extremists, but for those who start to feel that way, at least these two stories offer a differing viewpoint.  You almost cannot get more American than high school football and Miss USA. 🙂

For more posts on this topic, check out:

“Kidnapping a Muslims” (excerpt from Not Like Me)

“Our Wars Are Against Terrorists Not Muslims…”

“Defeating Al Qaeda”

How far should we go to allow religious freedom in our country?

Should we allow for an Islamic Center so close to Ground Zero in NYC?

How can we allow for both diversity and integration?

Showing 3 comments
  • Peter Amico

    Hey Eric-
    I agree that we need to do a better job of mainstreaming Arab-Americans into society and the Ramadan football team and Miss USA are good examples. I also dont understand how there is a debate over the mosque; that debate seems anti-American to me.

  • Howard E

    I too have been all over the middle east and have been invited to eat at way more Arab homes than I have here in So Cal…..Most Muslims do not even pray 5 times a day and when they offer you a German beer you know they are pretty chill. I have tried to share Christ with most of my Muslim friends and they are hard to convince but I believe the Holy Spirit will draw many to Christ in the end times.

  • David S

    Peter, you said “that debate seems anti-American to me.” – While its true that not all Muslims are extremists, the Qur’an is. Not all Muslims are terrorists, but all terrorist are Muslims. Islam is a political system just as much as it is a religion and doesn’t deserve First Amendment protection. It is completely incompatible with freedom of speech, freedom of religion, etc making it incompatible with the west as a whole. It is a dangerous system that instructs its followers to kill infidels – and many obey it. Saying that denying the building of the Cordoba House at ground zero is anti-American is as foolish as saying it’s anti-American to deny the KKK the right to build an outreach center for KKK ideology right next where they curb stomped a bunch of African Americans. The question of Islam isn’t “What are the followers like”, the question is “What does the book teach” and what the resulting actions will be if followed.

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