Marc Ambinder wrote a very reasonable article over at The Week, The Insanity of Blaming Islam. In it, he argues that we shouldn’t blame Islam if a Muslim commits a crime any more than we should blame Christanity when a Christian commits a crime. This is an excellent point. When Scott Roeder killed George Tiller for explicitly Christian reasons, no one talked about “radical Christianity” being responsible. So I thought there wouldn’t be much push back on the article. Man, was I wrong!
I started reading the comments and one after another they were vile. Growup commented, “The writer is insane. So blinded by his own desperate ideology that he’s unwilling to acknowledge any form of truth.” Vinney commented, “Dumbest article I’ve ever read. I get tired of leftists trying to humanize these bastards.” And Sybilll commented, “Know the difference between a radical Muslim and a moderate Muslim? The radical Muslims want to kill us. The moderate Muslims want the radical Muslims to kill us. You really are stuck on stupid, Marc.” Makes you proud to be an American, doesn’t it?
The “truth” that Growup thinks Ambinder won’t acknowledge is apparently that Islam is an evil religion. The bastards that Vinney talks about are not the people who did the bombing; they are Muslims generally. And Sybilll’s comment is so over-the-top offensive, I don’t think it needs comment. The point is that Marc Ambinder makes the truly modest suggestion that we don’t blame Islam for the vile acts of two young men and the blogosphere shouts back: no way; Muslims did this!
But it would be one thing if it were just the internet. I overheard Bill O’Reilly on The Factor today. He said, “They want to kill Americans.” That’s just great. Let’s make it all about America. We don’t have enough jingoism in this country, so let’s get everyone worked up for war. Right now, people in Boston are on the TV chanting “U-S-A!” Apparently, the Boston Marathon bombing wasn’t a terrible crime that killed and wounded many innocent people; it was an attack on America itself. Where is Patton?! Let’s go to war! I’ll get the guns, you pick the country.
This is madness. And now I’m more concerned than ever that we will get bad new laws to protect us from terrorism and nothing at all to protect us from guns, workplace accidents, and environmental catastrophe.