While the Muslim community does not need to collectively take responsibility for violence done by a few of its members, just as no community is responsible for the crimes of the few, it certainly would behoove American Muslim leadership to engage and educate the public that in fact Islam has no room for such atrocities that some may commit in its name.
Despite doing so however, many politicians, ill-informed activists, and self-appointed 'terrorism experts' still claim that they “have never heard a Muslim condemn terrorism.” That is probably most likely because they have never gotten to know a Muslim, or simply because they are not listening to those moderate Muslim voices.
To set the record straight however, I have written this blog post to cite a few of the many references of American Muslim leadership condemning terrorism.
It is important to note however that statistically speaking, only a minority of terrorist or violent attacks in the world are committed by those who claim affiliation with the Muslim faith and that people of other faiths are nonetheless not similarly expected to be accountable for the crimes committed by members of their faith.
Nonetheless, we have a whole section on condemning terrorism on our website where we include many blogs and media appearances where the community condemns violence:
Here is the link to an editorial I published in the Tampa Bay Times “Islam has no room for terrorism”
Here is me in a Fox News video about the Muslim Community reporting an alleged terrorist to law enforcement and us condemning terrorism.
I am on Fox News here as well clearly condemning violence.
Another Fox News video where I am condemning violence on behalf of the community.
Below is a list of articles and resources debunking the myth that Muslims do not condemn terrorisim:
· http://articles.washingtonpost.com/2013-04-19/national/38669385_1_islamic-society-cair-boston- marathon
· http://blogs.spectator.co.uk/coffeehouse/2013/05/not-in-the-name-of-islam-british-muslims- denounce-the-woolwich-attack/
Here are a few excellent academic resources that put the threat of terrorism in perspective:
· Duke/UNC study that American Muslim terrorism is on the decline: http://www.cairflorida.org/resource/accounting_of_muslim_terrorists.html
· “The Terrorism Delusion is another university study on fear being overblown: http://www.cairflorida.org/resource/the_terrorism_delusion.html
· Professor Jaun Cole’s recent article “Terrorism and Other Religions” http://www.juancole.com/2013/04/terrorism-other-religions.html
· Professor Robert Pape’s study that terrorists are not motivated by religion: http://www.apsanet.org/imgtest/apsraug03pape.pdf
It is interesting to note that there are greater chances of drowning in your bathtub than getting killed by a terrorist, and the amount of people killed by terrorism in the US is extremely small compared to those killed by other violent crime:
According to the Triangle Center on Terrorism and Homeland Security:
• Fourteen Muslim-Americans were indicted for violent terrorist plots in 2012, down from 21 the year before, bringing the total since 9/11 to 209, or just under 20 per year.
• The number of plots also dropped from 18 in 2011 to 9 in 2012.
• Meanwhile, the United States suffered approximately 14,000 murders in 2012.
• Since 9/11, Muslim-American terrorism has claimed 33 lives in the United States, out of more than 180,000 murders committed in the United States during this period.
• Over the same period, more than 200 Americans have been killed in political violence by white supremacists and other groups on the far right, according to a recent study published by the Combating Terrorism Center at the U.S. Military Academy.
• Sixty-six Americans were killed in mass shootings by non-Muslims in 2012 alone, twice as many fatalities as from Muslim-American terrorism in all 11 years since 9/11.
We must stand united as Americans for security and liberty and condemn all those who wish to promote hatred, division, or violence.
Clearly, the myth that American Muslims do not condemn terrorism is clearly false.