For years I have denied the label “Islamophobe,” because it is most commonly used to refer to people who have an irrational bigotry or hatred toward Muslims, and I don’t. I am not the “bad” kind of Islamophobe who wants any innocent people, Muslim or non-Muslim, to be victimized. Instead I am what I would call the “good” kind of Islamophobe, someone who is honest enough to call a problem a problem, even when the whole world wishes to ignore and deny its existence.
The problem with most analyses of Islamophobia is that they tend to condemn under the same rubric of bias and bigotry any analysis of how jihadis use the texts and teachings of Islam to justify violence and make recruits among peaceful Muslims. Just this week, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau responded to a question from opposition leader Andrew Scheer about the security threat posed by returning ISIS jihadis, not by addressing that threat, but by accusing Scheer of “Islamophobia” for raising it.
If that’s Islamophobia, everyone should be an Islamophobe.
The jihad threat is real, and growing worldwide, as the evidence of over 30,000 jihad attacks worldwide since 9/11 shows. Nonetheless, “Islamophobia” has become, for all intents and purposes, a larger threat than jihad terror, although accused “Islamophobes” have never left as much havoc in their wake as jihadis have. And “Islamophobia” endangers us all in other ways as well.
In December 2015 in San Bernardino, when the Islamic jihadist couple Syed Rizwan Farook and Tashfeen Malik murdered fourteen people at a Christmas party, a friend of one of their neighbors recalled that the neighbor had told him about suspicious activity at the couple’s home. “Sounds like she didn’t do anything about it,” the friend remembered. “She didn’t want to do any kind of racial profiling. She’s like, ‘I didn’t call it in … maybe it was just me thinking something that’s not there.’”
“She didn’t want to do any kind of racial profiling.” For years she had been force-fed the notion that to be suspicious of Muslims was “bigotry” and “racial profiling” – “Islamophobia” – and so she didn’t alert police to the strange activity at the home of Farook and Malik.
Fourteen people were dead so that politically correct niceties could be preserved, and no one incurred any charges of “racism.”
This wasn’t a singular incident. The fear of “Islamophobia” charges has overridden, or threatened to override, concern about jihad terrorism for years.
Yet let us review the ways in which Islamic jihad and Sharia pose a danger to various groups who typically consider themselves liberal:
- Islam is a threat to women, because Islamic teachings allow for the beating of women “from whom you fear disobedience,” as well as the downgrading of a woman’s testimony and inheritance rights. The Qur’an sanctions polygamy, child marriage, and even the sexual enslavement of captive non-Muslim women. These are not just teachings that “Islamophobes” have discovered in dusty corners of the Islamic holy book that no Muslim today takes seriously; women face all kinds of oppression throughout the Islamic world that the oppressors directly justify by reference to Islam.
- Islam is a threat to gays, because it mandates a death penalty for homosexuals that is not, unlike the one in the Old Testament, essentially a dead letter today: states that enforce the fullness of Islamic law today, including Iran and Saudi Arabia, routinely put gays to death, and as the Islamic State’s short-lived caliphate in Iraq and Syria demonstrated anew, whenever Islamic hardliners determine to implement the fullness of Islamic law, this death penalty reappears.
- Islam is a threat to Jews, because in all too many Islamic teachings and traditions, Jews are the villains of the piece. The Qur’an depicts the Jews as inveterately evil and bent on destroying the well-being of the Muslims. They are the strongest of all people in enmity toward the Muslims (5:82); being transformed into apes and pigs for breaking the Sabbath (2:63-65; 5:59-60; 7:166); and more. In line with this, Jews are threatened in Europe to an extent they have not been since the days of Hitler. And it’s getting worse by the day.
- Islam is a threat to Christians, for it mandates that they must either convert to Islam, submit to Islamic hegemony, and be killed – the same triple choice offered to the Jews. The Christian communities of the Middle East, some of which dated back to the time of Christ, were decimated, as jihad groups targeted Christians wholesale as symbols of the hated U.S. and West.
- Islam is a threat to secular liberals, because although noting the fact will get one dismissed as a “far-right” “Islamophobe,” Islam really does have doctrines mandating the conquest and subjugation of non-Muslims, and the major Muslim organizations in the United States really do behave as if they would like nothing better than the weakening and ultimate downfall of the U.S. government and free society, by opposing virtually all counterterror initiatives; polarizing American society by claiming falsely that Muslims are the victims of large-scale persecution and harassment in the U.S.; and stigmatizing all those who call attention to the jihad threat and the devastation wrought in Europe by mass Muslim migration as “racists” and “hatemongers.”
- Islam is a threat to secular Muslims, because many have come to the West as a refuge from Sharia, and now the oppression they left behind in their home countries has followed them to their new homes. Islam in all its traditional and classic formulations mandates a death penalty for someone who is sane, adult and leaves Islam voluntarily. This discourages apostasy, obviously, but it also makes for untold numbers of silent apostates who live outwardly as Muslims while dissenting inwardly. Islamic hardliners target these people, when they find them, no less than they target open apostates.
This is the case I make in my new book Confessions of an Islamophobe, the book to give to liberals who suspect that concern about jihad terror may be just… “Islamophobia.” Get your copy here.