twofold members

anonymous asked:

What exactly are the Muslims doing about the terrorists? Like how are they going against it? We hear in the news about how everybody is against ISIS but what are the people in Islam doing?

Firstly, why are you asking me this when I’m a white girl who has no claims of expertise regarding the situation between Isis and the rest of the world as it stands? You could ask someone way more appropriate than me, like Google.

Secondly, I mean, I would argue that Muslims don’t bear sole responsibility to stamp out terrorism in their midst. To place the blame squarely on the shoulders of the religion to which these terrorists belong is extremely problematic as it ignores the fact that these terrorists’ actions were due to extremism, not Islam. It isn’t only Muslims who have to be vigilant and ready to work against terrorism and extremism, it is society as a whole. We need to make sure that members of minority and oppressed groups are treated with respect, dignity and equality just as much as we treat the ruling / oppressing classes. If we do this, we’ll eradicate at least part of the reason for extremism, which is a feeling of isolation and anger caused by oppression and exclusion from society.

There is a great interview with the sister of an old schoolmate of mine and I think it’s incredibly pertinent and insightful, so I hope she won’t mind me sharing it here. Please take note of the phrase “I can’t get into the psychology of a murderer or a terrorist. I think that’s what Muslims are often asked to do”.

HOWEVER, to answer your question, because unfortunately the majority of the world does believe that this is solely the responsibility of Muslims:

Hezbollah leader Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah denounces ISIS and terrorism as being more hurtful to Islam than anyone else (please note that I am using Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah, a controversial figure who is often dubbed a terrorist, not to try and suggest that his political views are indicative of all Muslims or Islam as a whole, but to try and indicate that it is not just Western Muslims who feel this way, and that not all terrorist / extremist goals are the same, even when ostensibly fighting for the same cause - which makes the ‘terrorists all stand for Islam’ argument moot)

British imams (Muslim community leaders) come together to release a statement urging British Muslims to reject extremist ideas and not to travel to Syria

American imam speaks out against terrorism and urges Muslims internationally to open a debate about extremism (Shamsi Ali wrote this article himself, and it does negate my opening statement - this could well be my white privilege showing)

Australian imam urging Muslims on a global level to denounce terrorism 

Muslim writer explains the differences between extremism and Islam, and contextualises and denounces the former

British imams write directly to Isis* to appeal for the release of their hostages, denouncing their terrorist actions as being unrepresentative of Islam

Basically my answer to your question is twofold: you, as a member of society, should be doing your best to educate people about extremism and its role within politics as a whole and not just the most well-publicised strain of it, and Muslims are doing exactly that, so maybe read the news or something. It took me literally 10 seconds apiece to find those articles, most of which I’d already read, because I don’t get all my awareness of current affairs from Fox News or the Daily Mail.

* officially, Isis has been named IS (Islamic State) since late June 2014, but this name is often not used as it has been condemned as portraying itself as a valid political entity. Both names are technically correct, but the name Isis is more generally accepted.

** Edited to fix a typo - ‘representative’ to 'unrepresentative’. Pretty important typo, that. Well done, me.