Southern Religion

Going Muslim?

Words matter and are doing grave harm in the wake the the Fort Hood killings. Daniel Martin Varisco, who is Professor of Anthropology and Director of Middle Eastern and Central Asian Studies at Hofstra University, explains:

The deeper issue here is the politics of blame fueled by fear. Despite several “going postal” episodes in recent years, we still go to our local post offices, and local postal workers have not quit en masse. It sometimes seems like hardly a month goes by without a disgruntled individual going on a shooting spree. To neologize the term “going Muslim” is an insult that would not be tolerated for any other group I know. Were the perpetrators of the Columbine school killings “going teenager”? If a fanatic fundamentalist Christian kills an abortion doctor, is he “going Christian,” or should an Israeli soldier who loses it be considered as “going Jewish”? As much as I hate the term “Islamism,” could Varadanjan not at least have come up with “going Islamist”?

November 17, 2009 - Posted by | Crime, Cultural, Religion | , ,

1 Comment

  1. If the terminology for the horrid events at Fort Hood receive the mentioned term, then every time an event like this happens someone will use the “going (insert group or individual here)” will become over used. I never heard anyone call the shootings at Virginia Tech as “going hokie”, nor did we hear “going McVeigh” when the despicable bombing of the federal building in Oklahoma City occurred. Americans tend to compartmentalize every event as unique unto itself. That is because we live our lives on sound bites rather than being inquisitive and skeptical.
    If we do not search for the real reasons these heinous acts occur we are no better than the pharisee and Sadducee of Jesus time. They could not look beyond tradition and known beliefs to embrace the Gospel on Faith.
    No more sound bites, just facts.

    Comment by jiggsh | November 19, 2009

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