Monday, March 14, 2011

Keith Ellison and Common Sense

"The best defense against extremist ideologies is social inclusion and civic engagement." Shameful that some people smeared Mohammed Salman Hamdani and recanted only when confronted with his dead, heroic body. More from Rep. Keith Ellison here: Ellison's transcript of prepared remarks for March 10, 2011 Congressional hearings.

Every generation has its Joseph McCarthy, and it appears ours will be Rep. Peter King. Kudos to Rep. Ellison for his common sense.


Tropolis@Israel said...

I think this woman is absolutely right. There'd have been much fewer problems with muslims if other people learnt to respect their point of view as well. It's rather difficult to remain kind and nice when there're so many who hate you.

Matt Rafat said...

@Tropolis: for me, the issue is a little bit different--I don't like painting entire religions with a broad, flat brush. Obviously there are bad Muslims, and America needs to be vigilant against threats.

But singling out any particular religion tends to create absolutist, overbroad positions, which is counterproductive. A majority's failure to be nuanced when it comes to a minority living within its borders will frighten loyal, peaceful minority members. Moreover, a perception that the majority will not treat the minority fairly will make intelligence gathering, inclusion, and integration difficult.

In short, one of the best defenses to terrorism is the loyalty of all or almost all residents within a country's borders, and McCarthy-style tactics don't usually promote loyalty from all or almost all residents/citizens. I hope that makes sense.