I just read a published open letter by a Muslim asking film director/ producer J.J. Abrams to create a Muslim hero in one of his films.
Of late there’s been many articles supportive of Muslims, written to temper the wave of anti-Islamic sentiment sweeping the nation. So I ask this question. Are American Muslims and Christians the same? For me, intrinsically, yes. Ostensibly, no.
I’ll explain slowly. But here are some clues. Yin and Yang, Republicans and Democrats, love and hate. I agree, I disagree. Choose almost anything, any subject, you’ll find two sides, two contrasting opinions. More often than not the numbers on the one side versus the other are pretty identical, roughly 50% give or take.
It is these numbers that have me worried. Far too many American Muslims, even moderates, do not decry all terrorist organizations. A huge percentage, more than fifty percent of Muslim University students do not believe that Israel has the right to exist, they do not feel the need to condemn terrorists such as Hamas who strike against Israel, or strike against supporters of Israel. The last time I looked America is a supporter of Israel. To me this anti-israel sentiment is a cancer that helps to breathe life not only into Hamas but all jihadist groups including ISIL.
If Muslim leaders in America and around the world really want to stop the anti-Islamic wave, they’re going to have to confront the cancer in their own ranks. Educate, teach your Muslim students the real history of Palestine—named by (and meaning the invaded lands) by the Roman Emperor Hadrian. Read the history as documented over 2000 years by scholars of Islam, Christianity, and Judaism. Tell them about the Philistines from Crete. Tell them about the first mosque in Jerusalem and of Saladin. Tell them about the British accord in 1936 to portion the land into two: the Jewish Palestine and the Arab Palestine. And above all, teach your students peace and love as Mohammad did.
I realize that to some this article is going to come off as anti-Islamic, which is a shame, because I am not. I am adamantly against Trump’s Muslim border initiative. I am for admitting refugee Muslims into America. I’m for all peace-loving folk, regardless of color, religion or race.
Here’s what I think of J.J. Abrams creating a cinematic Muslim hero. If he is driven or impulsed to, it’s his choice, his free will, and I wouldn’t judge him for it. But I hope he wouldn’t dream of doing so out of guilt, or because he feels pressured—even though there are real life Muslim heroes in the world, as there are Christian and Jewish and Hindu heroes.