Fitzgerald: Muslims and America
“We have a message: Muslim Americans are as American as apple pie” â€“ fromÂ this article in The GuardianÂ about Muslims at the Democratic National Convention in Denver
If Muslims are “as American as apple pie,” are they as American as pumpkin pie, the pumpkin pie traditionally served at Thanksgiving, which like Independence Day, Memorial Day, and other national holidays, are not to be observed by observant Muslims, for only Muslim holidays, Muslim history, Muslim everything, counts?
And one more question. If Muslims have no trouble at all being “as American as apple pie” then surely they have no trouble viewing the defining document of the American polity, the Constitution of the United States, as worthy of their complete loyalty. And that includes, of course, the guarantees of individual rights in the Bill of Rights. And since the Bill of Rights is so very close, in so many of its key provisions — freedom of speech, freedom of conscience (which naturally includes the right to apostatize) — to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, can we conclude that American-as-apple-pie American Muslims find it puzzling that all of the Muslim countries (save for the Shah’s Iran, and most temporarily and temporizingly) have failed to subscribe to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and instead have concocted a Muslim version, the so-called Cairo Declaration, which in every essential respect, involving individual rights, fatally vitiates the original, Universal Declaration?
These people can carry on all they want with their bromides, and their pledges-of-fake-allegiance, but to the precise extent that they are True Believers in Islam, and Defenders of the Faith, to that exact extent they cannot conceivably owe their allegiance, above what Islam commands and prohibits, to the American Constitution. And that means no Believer who owes his loyalty to Islam and fellow members of the Umma, that is, no one calling himself a Muslim who is truthful about the requirements of this Total Belief-System and what it inculcates (above all, the division, permanent and immutable, between Believer and Infidel, until such time as Infidel becomes Believer), can conceivably owe his allegiance to a document that is flatly contradicted, in letter and spirit, by the Shari’a.
We are getting tired of the Interfath Healers, the three-abrahamic-faith boys, the we’re-as-American-as-apple-pie mountebanks and carney barkers.
And the more they say this, the more they insist on these phrases that are so easily seen to be hollow, the more they elicit in people of sense, people willing to find out for themselves (the texts are a click away, the testimonies of defectors from the Army of Islam, the apostates, are a click away — what Islam teaches, what Muslims believe), a deep and growing suspicion.
Repeat the nonsense a hundred times or a hundred thousand times. We can read the Qur’an, Hadith, Sira. We can overhear — thanks to MEMRI and other organizations — what is actually said by imams, what is said on Al Jazeera, and what the quality, the texture and tenor, of Muslim public life in Muslim lands, or addressed to Muslim audiences worldwide, actually is. We can read the testimonies of those who have through no fault of their own been born into Islam and have managed to fight their way free — people such as Wafa Sultan, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Ibn Warraq, and many others. And what they say, the world of Islam that they depict, corresponds exactly to what we read about, what we see, what we have come, some slowly, some more rapidly, to comprehend. It is they whom the evidence of our senses and the workings of our reason confirm. It is not those Taqiyya-and-Tu-Quoque boys, in Denver or elsewhere, who think they can get away with telling us, with sweet smiles and pledges of feigned allegiance to an Infidel nation-state, that they are “as American as apple pie.”
Not on your life. And take that last phrase very carefully indeed: not on your life.
The Guardian reporter in this article also says: “Their [Muslim American] community is still suffering from suspicion in an age of the war on terror…”
No, the reporter has it all wrong. It is not a case of “still suffering from suspicion” but rather, of growing suspicion, growing slowly and inexorably. It is growing even against the natural grain of so many who would prefer not to believe the evidence of their senses, and the correct workings of their reason. No, that suspicion grows because of what we read, what we see, what we learn, about the texts of Islam, the tenets of Islam, the attitudes and atmospherics that naturally suffuse Muslim societies, and of course the experience of dealing with Muslims in Iraq, seeing their mendacity and rapacity and the way they attempt to use the Americans for their own gain against their own enemies, and have no intention of changing their spots, or becoming advanced Democratic Man, despite the messianic sentimentalism of the Bush Administration.
Yes, that suspicion grows, despite the best efforts of our political and media elites, starting with George Bush — who after the 9/11/2001 attacks instituted Iftar dinners and could hardly stop talking about how wonderful Islam is, was, always will be (and Tony Blair, carrying his Qur’an ostentatiously around with him, seconded the motion). Bush and those dutifully echoing him, such as Condoleezza, all find Islam swell. But the “extremists” and the “radicals” and the “radical extremists” and the “extremist radicals” among them — god knows what texts they rely on for the strange version of Islam we’re expected to believe that they’ve apparently made up out of whole cloth — are the ones we are fighting. And in this fight we are so loyally aided by true-blue American Muslims. They are at the forefront of attacking, in thought, word, and deed, those “radical extremist Muslims” who are giving — but we won’t let them succeed, will we, fellow Americans, Americans all? — Islam, kind Islam, forbearing Islam, tolerant Islam, peaceful Islam, an entirely unmerited bad name.