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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 1/17/15

Clash of Cultures: The Pen vs. The Kalashnikov

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Millions upon millions of Muslims throughout the world are aghast at "Islamists" who pervert Islam. And many, just like some non-Muslim critics, deal with that reality by condemning specific Muslims like ISIL leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, or current al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri. That tactic garners no objection here. Go ahead and ridicule them in any way you like. Mock them, scorn them, isolate them.

But for far too many non-Muslims, ridiculing just one or two obvious Islamic charlatans is wholly unfulfilling. For these folks, the only way to stem their disdain is to condemn the entire religion --starting at the top -- in a conscious effort to incite those millions upon millions of ordinary Muslims who insist that al-Baghdadi is not the Prophet Muhammad and ISIL is not Islam.

And by doing so, they place the lives of those around them in danger from the potential repercussions from al-Baghdadi or al-Zawahiri disciples.

Anyone who's followed the childish antics of French and Danish cartoonist/provocateurs who for years have incited fury among Muslims by creating and printing utterly loathsome renderings of the Prophet Muhammad -- puerile caricatures designed not to stimulate intellectual thought, but to ignite zeal and emotion -- could have seen this coming.

Unfortunately however, far too many were far too busy reveling in the knee-slapping hilarity they find in nauseating, anti-Islam imagery like that of the Prophet Muhammad lying face down being photographed ass-naked while saying: "And my butt? You love my butt?"

But now, because the reaction -- a massacre -- is so much worse than that particular piece of "provocative satire" and all preceding acts of provocation, the laughter has stopped. Instead, millions are now solemnly marching in the streets.

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Anthony Barnes, of Boston, Massachusetts, is a left-handed leftist. "When I was a young man, I wanted to change the world. I found it was difficult to change the world, so I tried to change my nation. When I found I couldn't change the (more...)

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