In the debate over Islam, let the facts be damned

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.

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 Continue reading “In the debate over Islam, let the facts be damned”

The day that America lost its innocence

Sept. 11, 2001, started off as an unusually beautiful day in the Washington, D.C., area. I left for the office early to prepare for a day on Capitol Hill, where a client would be testifying before a House committee about the national nursing shortage.

By Chris Ingram

The Tampa Tribune

Published September 9, 2011

Sept. 11, 2001, started off as an unusually beautiful day in the Washington, D.C., area. I left for the office early to prepare for a day on Capitol Hill, where a client would be testifying before a House committee about the national nursing shortage.

At my office I had the TV on when I heard the news that a plane had hit the World Trade Center. No one seemed to know something terrorist-related was occurring until the second building was hit. Like many Americans I watched with dismay as the events occurred on live TV.

I called the staff director of the committee where my client would be speaking later to see if the hearing was still a go. To my surprise, she said the hearing was still on, so I walked a block to the Rosslyn Metro station and headed to Capitol Hill.

I got off the train and went to the Cannon House Office Building to make my way to the hearing room. I had just passed through the metal detector when Capitol Hill police officers began Continue reading “The day that America lost its innocence”

Airport Security Measures are Window Dressing

Okay, let me get this straight. Some Nigerian terrorist attempted to take down a U.S. airliner on Christmas day using liquid explosives. That much I understand very easily. A lot of people still hate the United States — apparently all the liberals were wrong. It wasn’t Bush they hate. It’s America.

If government bureaucrats and politicians did their jobs, screening Grandma wouldn’t be necessary

By Chris Ingram

Okay, let me get this straight. Some Nigerian terrorist attempted to take down a U.S. airliner on Christmas Day using liquid explosives.  That much I understand very easily. A lot of people still hate the United States — apparently all the liberals were wrong. It wasn’t Bush they hate. It’s America.

As I start to look at the facts and consequences of this case I start to get confused.

This much we know: The alleged terrorist’s father warned U.S. officials that he thought his son had gone off the reservation and was up to no good.  U.S. bureaucrats at the State Department put him on some sort of “watch list” which we have now learned is pretty meaningless.

We know this because the terrorist has a U.S. visa that is not immediately revoked. Rather, the nice people looking out for you and me at the State Department put a note in his file indicating he should be examined with further scrutiny the next time he applies for a new visa.

Terrorist (he has a real name that wouldn’t surprise you is one of a terrorist, but we’ll just call him terrorist. Okay, his real name is Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab and I’ll take the lashings for suggesting someone with an Arabic sounding name you can’t pronounce doesn’t make them a terrorist) proceeds to pay cash for a a one-way ticket to the U.S. and checks no bags. Continue reading “Airport Security Measures are Window Dressing”

Happy Birthday, Earth Day; You’re On Your Own


The nation that invented the atom bomb to end World War II could take on global climate change with the same kind of drive and innovation

By Elan Barnehama

I’m thinking that President Bush had the annual celebration of Earth Day in mind when he announced last week that the U.S. strategy for tackling global warming was to pretty much do nothing for the next dozen years. It could be that he was reacting to the news that China has overtaken the United States as the world’s leader in carbon emission. I mean, really, how many more setbacks can one administration take? Continue reading “Happy Birthday, Earth Day; You’re On Your Own”