Monday, November 30, 2015

Comparing Right-Wing Christians to Muslim Extremists

Sometimes political commentaries are so ridiculous that they’re really only offensive to the people who endorse them.

That might be particularly true about the political memes that fly around Facebook.

For example, I recently saw one comparing right-wing Christians to Muslim extremists. It listed six or eight characteristics that the two groups share or supposedly share, including being against homosexuality and abortion.

A category it didn’t list was the propensity to murder people who disagree with them.

Why didn’t it list it?

Because it can’t.

Aside from the Inquisition, the debatable Crusades and the random nutcase who goes shooting up abortion clinics, Christians don’t normally kill random people. Our religion was founded on a message of peace that was soon marked by persecution… i.e. other people killing us.

Have we behaved badly since then? Yeah, sometimes we do. In fact, sometimes we behave horribly. But since we’re comparing… compare their body count to the rest of the world with its Stalins, Hitlers and Kim Jong-whatevers.

When you do, you’ll find that we’re looking pretty good.

Need further proof of how disgustingly non-right-wing Christians can act? Consider the Hutus massacring the Tutsis in Rwanda, the Turks’ horrific vendetta against the Armenians, the Cambodian crisis in the 1970s, and the depravity that was (and still might be) China for decades.

None of those acts were done in Jesus Christ’s name.

Then there’s Islam, which, like communism, has a pretty revolting track record. Muslims’ religion got its start when a slighted Mohammed declared war on his former people for rejecting him as a prophet.

That seemed to set a precedent, since Muslims have done a whole lot of brutal conquering since then, from the land grabs that predated the Crusades to today’s mounting number of modern terrorist attacks.

So to compare Christians to Muslims is like comparing Wegmans to 7-Eleven. Yes, they’re both retailers that carry food and Advil. But Wegmans has a lot more to offer.

And it doesn’t cost nearly as much.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

What This #FirstWorldProblems Writer Is So Very Thankful For This Year

I was joking yesterday with my coworkers about #FirstWorldProblems, as I was going to have to complete today’s to-do list on a small screen at home instead of my large monitor at work.

I didn’t think much of it at the time. But lying in bed this morning, ignoring my alarm clock and thinking about Designing America (my newest novel-in-the-making, of which I just finished the first draft this week), it hit me how significant my supposed silliness actually was.

You see, my next step since finishing my rough draft hasn’t been to edit. It’s been to go through my historical highlights and notes to make sure I’ve gotten key details and dates correct. And those highlights and notes, details and dates spell out a nearly overwhelming amount of pain.

The Revolutionary War was a miserable time period for those who had to live through it.

I mean absolutely horrific. The Brits were really quite rotten to the Americans.

That’s no offense to the British at large any more than it’s an approval of Americans at large. Any true student of history recognizes that there isn’t a perfect people out there. We’re all capable of committing atrocities, and we too often run with that potential.

Moreover, during the course of the Revolutionary War – as I flat-out state in Maiden America (the prequel to Designing America) – the Americans behaved pretty darn badly a time or two as well.

Yet with that all said, in my very detailed research, I never once came across a story of American soldiers ripping open pregnant women, or crowding thousands of prisoners of war onto ships to let them rot away for weeks or months under the most inhumane conditions, knowing full well they’d die. (Many went insane first.) Those brutalities fall squarely on the British back then.

For kicks and giggles, I watched The Patriot on Sunday; which, yes, is filled with historical inaccuracies. Considering how that movie and Designing America share the same bad guy, I found myself shaking my head and rolling my eyes over and over again.

But that wasn’t what stood out most to me. What stood out most were the battle scenes, where men’s heads were blown off. Their legs shattered. Their stomachs skewered by bayonets.

Because all of that? That really happened.

Even when that wasn’t going on, those soldiers starved more often than not. They got little to no pay. And after the war, they barely got a thanks from a citizenry that was too often thrilled to celebrate victories but apathetic or downright hostile about providing anything else.

Black and white, free and slave, young and old, rich and poor, male and female: Those “rebels” gave their time, their fortunes, their well-being, comfort and very lives…

The result is that I can laugh about #FirstWorldProblems.

For all of those sacrifices back then and my security today, I am truly grateful.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Western World Governments Welcome in ISIS

ISIS is out of control.

It’s officially threatened New York City now with a newly released video showing terrorists with guns and suicide belts amidst clips of Times Square and yellow taxis.

There’s also extreme concern being raised over four men involved in “suspicious activity” near the Pentagon. And eight Syrians were caught trying to illegally cross the Texas border.

That’s shocking. That they were caught, I mean. They must have been exceptionally incompetent in order to run right into border security who actually care about their stated jobs instead of President Obama’s destructive demands to look the other way.

Make no mistake: The fact that ISIS is out of control is Western world governments’ fault.

Forget all of those idiot liberal arguments about how badly we’ve treated the Middle East and Africa and every other non-white locale on the planet. Even if that was true – even if humans of all colors, creeds and nations didn’t have a miserable history of treating humans of all colors, creeds and nations badly – there would still be no excuse to retaliate the way ISIS is.

What I mean when I say that Western world governments are to blame for ISIS atrocities outside of Muslim strongholds is this: We’re doing nothing to stop it. Instead, we’re welcoming it into our societies under the guise of compassion and tolerance.

Europe has a much longer track record of doing this, hence the reason why Paris was such an easy target. The people who died in last week’s attacks shouldn’t be lying six-feet under. They should still be living their lives, untouched by such brutality as terrorist attacks.

They would be too if not for long-standing French immigration policy. Take it from National Review, which reported back in January after the Charlie Hebdo terrorist attack (yup, that was this year):

“The case of France is stark. Roughly 12 percent of its population is foreign-born, about the European average, according to the Migration Policy Institute. But it also has a particularly high percentage of descendants of immigrants. Because of France’s colonial history in Algeria and other countries in the Maghreb, many of them are Muslim.

“It has the largest Muslim population of any Western European country, both in absolute numbers and in percentage terms. These immigrants have tended to cluster in the suburbs of Paris, where they have become self-reinforcing religio-ethnic islands in the broader French sea.

“Some of the Paris suburbs are infamously known as “no go” zones, where there is essentially no official footprint. These areas are not just alienated from the French state; they are actively hostile to it.”

Want to doubt that? Consider this: Only about 30 French Muslims made a visible stand to protest this latest round of terrorism on French soil, as recorded by The Gateway Pundit.

How did this dangerous disconnect happen? Through past and continuing inexcusable levels of government incompetence. If our leaders would do their elected jobs to protect us instead of use our tax money for the most pointless projects ever, ISIS and other terrorists wouldn’t find their missions nearly so easy.

I’m not saying Western countries should close their borders altogether. I’m saying we should start paying a heck of a lot more attention to the larger world around us… and accept reality.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Council on American-Islamic Relations Sighs Over Having to Defend Itself Again

I went onto the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) website today after reading a myway article about how “US Muslims face backlash after Paris attacks.”

It reported alleged anti-Muslim hate crimes – including a shooting where nobody was actually shot – in over nine states. This prompted CAIR Spokesman Ibrahim Hooper to say, “The picture is getting increasingly bleak. There’s been an accumulation of anti-Islamic rhetoric in our lives and that, I think, has triggered these overt acts of violence and vandalism.”

Again, that was all in myway news, but it got me thinking about how I hadn’t heard a single word from CAIR or the Muslim community in general about the Paris attacks. Nonetheless, I gave them the benefit of the doubt and went straight to the source.

This is what the organization posted on November 14, 2015 with the caption, “CAIR’s Executive Director Nihad Awad Condemns Terror Attacks in Paris” and the description, “CAIR's Executive Director Nihad Awad condemns terror attacks in Paris and suggest ways the American Muslim community and all Americans should respond at a news conference organized by the US Council of Muslim Organizations (USCMO) in Washington, D.C.”

As of the morning of 11/18/2015, the five-minute and twenty-six-second clip was still the most or second-most prominent feature on the main page of CAIR.com.

Awad began the conference with one sentence on CAIR’s “thoughts and prayers with the victims of the ISIS attacks in France.” Then he went on to focus on how ISIS is predominantly targeting Muslims, how we can’t punish refugees by denying them access within our orders, and how ISIS isn’t Muslim anyway.

His mention of France was so brief that I completely missed it the first time.

In his defense, CAIR video editors spliced the video. Then again… CAIR video editors spliced the video. This is the message they wanted to convey.

They wanted the focus to be on how weary they are of being linked to heinous crimes.

Do you know what everyone else is tired of? Being victims of heinous crimes! Terrorist attacks and Muslim brutality are becoming the norm, for crying out loud. And while not all Muslims are terrorists, enough are – or at least support terrorists – for the rest of us to be rightfully wary.

How many cases of atrocities committed by proclaimed Muslims do we need before we get it?

I don’t feel bad for CAIR. Nor do I support its call to take in waves of refugees, when it was that kind of policy that made France such a hotspot for terrorism to begin with.

I am truly sorry for peaceful Muslims facing backlash. But I am more sorry for ISIS’ victims, who have been raped, tortured, maimed and murdered… all in the name of the Muslim god.

Monday, November 2, 2015

Why We Treat Our Fellow Humans So Horribly

Why do we treat our fellow humans so horribly?

That’s a question that’s on my mind as I work on a new novel, Designing America, which should be out next summer (It’s prequel, Maiden America is already available on Amazon.com). The story is historical fiction centered around the Siege of Yorktown, Virginia in 1781, a military maneuver that determined the American Revolution.

As with Maiden America, I did copious amounts of research before starting Designing America. Three months’ worth, actually. And some of the facts I discovered were extremely disturbing, including the two cases where pregnant women were mutilated and murdered with the blatantly stated intent of preventing any more “rebels” from entering the world.

Those were supposedly civilized men from the supposedly civilized world who stooped to such disgusting levels of barbarity. Sure, it was 234 years ago, but I’m pretty sure our daily crime reports show we haven’t changed at all in those centuries. We’re still capable of utter depravity.

I got a call from my brother last night after he watched a documentary about the rape epidemic on American college campuses. It was disturbing enough that he started crying at one point, and we ended up discussing the reasons behind it.

Regardless of how many reported rapes are real and how many are falsified, the source of the problem is the same: an absolute disrespect for human life. The same applies to ripping open pregnant women, incidentally.

In the case of British crimes against Americans way back when, they were conditioned to believe colonists’ lives didn’t matter. They had always been taught how superior they were and, when given the power to exercise that idea, some of them went mad with it.

In the case of rape, young men these days are conditioned to believe they don’t matter more than their sexual conquests. It’s all about sex, which means if they’re not getting sex, it’s all about nothing. That’s a pretty serious motivator to get sex then, right? Because nobody wants to feel like they’re nothing. They want value, and they’ll do whatever they can to achieve it, even debase themselves and others.

In the case of women who experience morning-after regrets and then cry rape, they’re conditioned to believe they don’t matter more than their level of desirability. If men find them sexy, they’re worth something. If men don’t, then they’re not. And since they can’t always be sexy – since they’re actually going to lose all sex appeal someday – they’re ultimately worthless.

Society today might not promote one group’s value over another like the Brits did to the Americans in the 18th century. What it does instead is tell everyone they’re worthless, and then step back and gape when they act it.

But it’s not going to change until we start accepting the value of human life.