There has been a lot of shouting lately by many of the Presidential candidates about immigration and ISIS in an attempt to gain some traction in the polls and to differentiate themselves from the other candidates. The volume was way up this week especially during and after the Wednesday's debates.
On Thursday, when Donald Trump was conducting a campaign event in Rochester, NH, an audience member stated in the very first question to Mr. Trump:"We have a problem in this country. It's called Muslims.You know our current president is one. You know he's not even an American."
Anyone following the news in the past few days would know that Trump did nothing to correct the questioner. Regardless of your political point of view or feelings toward Obama, he is not a Muslim and he is an American. Some may not want to hear that, but that is the real truth. He may not be a competent President and you may vehemently disagree with his policies, but at least argue the case from a factual standpoint.
We are living in a new age of ignorance where the truth does not matter, where facts take a backseat to innuendo and unsubstantiated rumors are widely disseminated as real. And people believe it because they want to. It has created an ideological divide that has so polarized our political arena, it is rare that something meaningful can be accomplished.
This ignorance can and often does lead to hatred. This case in point is the implication that " Muslim" is bad. All Muslims. All Islam. All the time. Everywhere. That is just not true and if we approach this problem with that mindset of ignorance, we will never be successful in fighting and defeating the real enemy.
We are at war in multiple Muslim countries against a perverted form of Islam.
We are not at war though with the vast majority of the world's Muslims. We certainly should not be at war with Muslims that are here in our country legally and are peaceful law abiding citizens. It is wrong and ignorant to make the leap that they all harbor terrorist ambitions. Yes, we have had a few homegrown, misguided Jihadists that have perpetrated violence in the name of Islam. They are the exeption, however. I strongly suspect that they were swayed by ignorance as well, ignorance of what Islam is really all about.
White supremacists and anti-government radicals are responsible for twice as many deaths ( 48 to 24) in the U.S. as jihadists since 9/11. About 30,000 Americans are killed by guns every year in the USA. Do we have a problem in this country? We sure do.
We have spent billions of dollars on homeland security, and for the most part, we have been safe from coordinated terror attacks. Certainly nothing of the magnitude of 9/11 has reached our shores since. We can't let our guard down anytime in the foreseeable future. We have to continue to prevent those that mean to do us harm from entering the country.
I do not in any way want to be misconstrued as not believing that ISIS and similar terrorists organizations pose very significant threats to our security. They do, and they would like nothing better than to destroy each and every one of us. They are brutal and draconian in their ways. We must not however act on emotion and false ignorant beliefs such as "every Muslim is a terrorist. " Ignorance is not bliss, it is dangerous.