Trevor over at the will to exist blog posted a link to this funny little music video called . The gist is that extremist muslims are simply reading the Koran (or Qu’ran, whatev) literally and doing as their Allah bids them. I have no beef with it, I laughed and I bet you will too, unless you’re a Muslim, in which case keep reading (or, considering the smackdown that we regularly lay down upon uptight people of any religion, you might want to go back whatever direction you came from).
What’s funny is that some of these pro-war people (and by pro-war I mean adventurous invasions like Iraq, Iran, Syria, not the retaliation in Afghanistan) think that we’re gonna buy this whole Islamic religious extremism as an excuse to be at war with half the Middle East. And that got me thinking: boy, there’s a whole bunch of idiots at war with each other.
The great conspiracy of 9/11 for the right is that there’s a global islamo-fascist conspiracy to topple the West. And the great conspiracy of 9/11 for the left is that there’s a global capitalism-fascist conspiracy to rule the world. Both are laughable in their overreaching ability to extend super-human abilities to the other side. Personally I don’t see George Bush or Osama bin Laden as being very bright, just charismatic in extending their message. Of course I speak from the rational position of wanting to kill OBL and anyone who calls themselves Al Qaida, and wipe my hands of the whole thing, but that’s me.
Here’s a fact, using religion and its texts as an excuse for extreme acts is as old as the dirt we stand on. Since the first day some dude decided to pray to a sun god, there was probably another dude chillin in the shade ready to slit his throat for not paying the right homage to his river god. They probably waged wars over that kind of thing for centuries. Just guessing.
So let’s dispense with the faux shock at religious extremism, islamic or otherwise and take a look at the root of the problem: willful ignorace of reality. Both sides are guilty of allowing their perception of reality to be shaped by their own worst fears of the other side, and in the end both end up fighting a bogeyman.