One of the top news stories in the past week on cable news has been the upcoming hearings on American Muslim radicalization by Homeland Security Committee Rep. Peter King (R-NY), which is provoking some interesting comments.
Rep. King’s comments that most American Muslims are good citizens but we have to single them out for investigation reminds me of the so-called liberal White person who claims not to be racist because he/she has one or two Black friends yet behavior is driven by racial assumptions, stereotypes and biases. I’ve heard this rhetoric before; the objects of discussion just differ. King’s rhetoric reflect something deeper than just national security concerns.
Switching gears, we have hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons, who spoke at a rally this past Sunday in New York, who states that the King hearing is dividing Americans and that Muslims should not be singled out. Simmons is filthy rich and has nothing to gain directly from standing up against the King hearing except his own moral conscious. This is what America is all about.
Then we have the self-proclaimed “devout Muslim” (whatever the world that means) Dr. Zuhdi Jasser, who heads a three person board organization that says Americans Muslims do turn in others who are extremists, but Muslims are not ahead of the curb by discussing the roots of extremism. This man also states he’s against shari’ah, which he mistranslates as Islamic law. Since Jasser claims he’s “devout,” then perhaps he should know that Islam by nature is moderate and against extremism and that is the reason why the vast majority of Muslims, who are guided by the spiritual objections of shar’iah are not terrorists! He must be intellectually dishonest or an Uncle Tom because a man who is educated enough to graduate from medical school cannot be that ignorant.
Obviously there have been other so-called experts and pundits on television discussing this issue. At the end of the day, empirical data and history will prove the King’s mini-McCarthyism era remix hearing will be viewed as a semi-media circus that accomplished absolutely nothing to make out country safer.
My greater concern is that while country is facing so many economic and social challenges (we have the world’s highest incarceration rate, one of the highest levels of drug abuse and the worse health care system in the industrialized world), our lawmakers valuable time and energy is being wasted on this rubbish.