By Chris Ingram
The Tampa Tribune
Published May 20, 2012
I received a large volume of comments from my column last week, “The enemy isn’t Islam“ (Other Views, May 15). The comments tended to be either very supportive of my position or strongly against it, with nothing in the middle.
Hugh in Tampa, a former captain in the U.S. Navy, said he spent six years working in the Middle East and has “experienced Islam firsthand.” He said, “Beheading and stoning is not only recommended in the Quran for certain behaviors, it is common practice in some Islamic countries. If you think the actions of the radical Islamic leaders is anything other than war on non-Islamic religions then you need to read the Quran.”
Without knowing it, Hugh makes my point for me: The actions of radical leaders don’t mean all Muslims are terrorists. These radical leaders don’t represent all Muslims anymore than the KKK — the goals of which include an intent to “re-establish Protestant Christian values in America by any means possible” — represents all Christians.
Many readers took issue with the pejorative term “knuckle draggers” that I used to describe those who protested against Hassan Shibly, who spoke about Islam at Steinbrenner High School. Never mind the protestors have slandered Shibly by calling him a terrorist — I’m sure he’d swap that term for knuckle dragger. I have spoken with Shibly several times, and I have researched the facts surrounding the government’s labeling of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (Shibly leads its local office) and the Islamic Society of North America, and do not believe that he or either of those groups support terrorism.
The knuckles of Shibly’s critics may not literally drag to the ground, but they are certainly ignorant to the facts.
Chris Ingram is the president and founder of 411 Communications a corporate and political communications firm, and publisher of Irreverent View. Ingram is a frequent pundit on Fox News and CNN, and has written opinion columns for the Washington Times, UPI, and National Review online. He is the Republican political analyst for Bay News 9, the only 24 hour all news channel in Florida’s largest media market. The opinions expressed here are those of author and do not represent the views of Bay News 9. E-mail him at: Chris@IrreverentView.com.
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