To SLO County, from your Muslim neighbors

March 6, 2017

Letter to the editor from the Muslim Community of SLO

Thank you for supporting the “Get to know your Muslim neighbors” event Feb. 24. The 600 attendees included many San Luis Obispo County leaders who represented the diverse groups of our county and the love our communities have to offer.

This event, inspired by the Women’s March, was sponsored by the Muslim community and hosted in The Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter-Day Saints (LDS), creating a heartfelt synergy. Thanks to KSBY, KYET, and the SLO Tribune for their honest and thorough coverage.

Present to support SLO County’s solidarity were elected officials Aaron Gomez, Andy Pease, Kristen Barneich, Mayor Heidi Harmon, Mayor Jamie Irons, SLO County District Attorney Dan Dow, and Senator Monning’s field representative, Hunter Snider.

Statements from President Eric Kasper (LDS), Mayor Heidi Harmon, and Director Lauren Bandari (Jewish Community Center) eloquently framed the evening’s discussion. Special thanks to our panel: Dr. Hisham Assal, President Ermina Karim (Chamber of Commerce), President Rubia Siddiqi (MSA), and moderator Dr. Steven Lloyd-Moffett.

Thank you, SLO, for a beautiful night we will always remember.

Sincerely, The Muslim Community of SLO: The Mosque of Nasreen, The Islamic Society of SLO County , and the Muslim Student Association.

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I am well aquainted with narco-traffickers in Mexico and their violent crimes. They are as you point out Catholics. But, Paragon, here is the problem apologists like you don’t admit. Narco-traffickers are motivated by money. Killings are over trafficking routes. Those cartels who control the routes through the Americas control the flow of supplies, including the pre-cursors used in the manufacturing or processing of drugs, and they control the flow of finished products to their markets in the U.S., Canada and parts of Asia via Canadian transit routes.

The cartels fight turf wars over markets and market shares.

The big difference between narco-traffickers and Islamic terrorists?

The traffickers never killed anybody because Jesus Christ commanded them to do so.

Nice attempt at deflection, but I stand by my earlier statement. Some Muslims in our community are nice people and I will always be polite to them, but their religion needs to evolve about six centuries before I trust the whole lot.

I am no apologist, Gordo. Terrorism is an abhorrent evil no matter who commits it, and those responsible for the planning and execution of it should be swiftly and severely dealt with, both Muslim and Christian alike.

If you think for one second that ISIS wants to kill Americans because they hate Christians, you are sadly deluded. Sure, terrorist leaders like to use that narrative to wind up their followers and war hawks in our government, but the real motivation, just like the drug traffickers, is about power, control of territory, and in many cases money.

Otherwise, you would not see ISIS killing far more Muslims than Christians. A 2011 report by the U.S. government’s National Counterterrorism Center found that: “In cases where the religious affiliation of terrorism casualties could be determined, Muslims suffered between 82 and 97 percent of terrorism-related fatalities over the past five years.”

Make no mistake, no one wants to see ISIS defeated more than Muslims as they are the ones who are suffering the most at the hands of these evil terrorists.

I will feel a lot more receptive to our Muslim neighbors when they publicly reject their anti-female views.

Specifically, I’d like to hear them reject female circumcision; mandatory hajibs; right to beat their wives; treating females as second class citizens; rejecting sharia law.

When I hear the local imam’s preaching this or printing an editorial piece adopting these views on CalCoast News, I’ll feel that they share SLO values.

That synergy is great and all but the way that religion treats women is appalling.

I am all for equality. I also feel like Muslims are getting a bad rap. It’s easy for them to open the doors and say -come see how cool we are. Take it a step further. Get out in the public and do some community work. Raise some money and put it for a good cause. I AM NOT SAYING MUSLIMS ARE NOT ALREADY DOING GOOD DEEDS. But there are clubs and groups that are doing community service, fundraisers and other good deeds that helps others and gets attention. It’s unfortunate that most people have a skewed vision of what Muslims look like. This is a not knock against Muslims. It is intended to prove that Muslims are like you and I.

Ben Daho,

I am sure our Muslim neighbors demonstrate splendid behavior, but, the religion of Islam has a problem. Planes flown into buildings, suicide bombers on transit buses, murderers cutting people’s heads off en mass, homosexuals thrown off buildings, rape victims stoned to death in honor killings and husband/wife terrorists shooting up San Bernardino in the name of their religion. These are not acts committed by Methodists, Mormons or Jews.

The problem is with those Muslim leaders who prey on the ignorant and impoverished by convincing them that their religion commands them to kill non-believers. It is true that each religion has had its “dark age” but Islam remains stuck in the 12th Century in many parts of the world, while the other religions have evolved to the betterment of mankind.

If Islam could just make it to the 18th Century I would feel better about its practioners. Until that time comes I will be polite and watch them like a hawk.

Gordo, apparently you have not heard of the horrible violent crimes committed by Mexican Drug gangs? Unspeakably violent torture and murder of innocent civilians and their families who dare to stand up to the gang violence or inform the police. The internet has numerous videos of the mothers and sisters of drug informants getting their heads hacked off by these murderous gangs. These acts rival the horrible crimes committed by ISIS and they are happening right next door to our country.

Why am I bringing this up? Because these violent horrible crimes were committed by gang members who are practicing Christians (mostly Catholic). It’s funny how no one ever mentions what religion these gang member terrorists are. Apparently the religion of a criminal only matters if that criminal looks or is Muslim. Should we criticize all Christians or Catholics for the actions of these Christian terrorists? In the last decade they have murdered far more people in the United States than any Islamic terrorist has.

Respectfully, paragon, those Mexican gang members are not Christians. They are terrorists of the same evil stature as Muslim terrorists.

Thank you for so adeptly pointing out the blatant double standard: That Muslims who are terrorists are “Muslim terrorists”, but Christians who are terrorists are just “terrorists” and you’d rather turn the blind eye to what religion they are.

Listen up America and let San Luis Obispo show you how its done!

Did any of the speakers condemn terrorist acts committed in the name of Islam?

When was the last time you invited people to become friends and then started bitching about things you could not control? Have YOU ever condemned CHRISTIAN terrorists? Or denounced a Draw Mohammed contest? If so, show me where. (I’ll wait)

I am an atheist and when I see people whine about something and ignore their own peers, I feel sad. I served in the Navy and worked alongside Muslims, Catholics, Protestants, Jews Hindi, and many others that kept their religion private. it NEVER affected us. We were all brothers. It was only when someone was trying to gain and or control power did they try to turn us against each other. We just waived them off and carried on as sailors, watching each others backs.

Muslims are our brothers and sisters. They want what you want. To live a better live. They aren’t trying to pass laws that limit our freedom in the bedroom, they are NOT trying to pass Sharia law here. they are in the car next to us, the theater seat in front of us, the aisle in the store behind us. they’re checking out our groceries and doing surgery on our children.

Please stop being confrontational. We CAN get along.

Please list all the acts of terrorism committed by Christians and I’ll denounce them.

What decade would you like to start with? You’d have to state a decade because there wouldn’t be enough room in this post to even touch on the history of christian based terrorism perpetrated on the planet…

Just a recent sampler…

Wisconsin Sikh Temple massacre, Aug. 5, 2012

Tennessee Valley Unitarian Universalist Church shooting, July 27, 2008

The Centennial Olympic Park bombing, July 27, 1996

Planned Parenthood bombing, Brookline, Massachusetts, 1994

Should I go on? And when can we all expect your promised denouncement? Bury your hand in the sand and even god can’t get through…

Wisconsin … Shooter was a white supremacist. Not a Christian

Tennessee … Shooter targeted the church because “of its liberal teachings and belief that all liberals should be killed because they were ruining the country.” In his manifesto also wrote of being angry that he couldn’t get a job and his food stamps were being cut. Not a Christian.

Centennial … Shooter said that he was motivated by hatred of Democrats, liberals, African Americans and homosexuals. Not a Christian.

Planned … Shooter suffered from schizophrenia. “Shortly after his arrest he released a handwritten note alleging conspiracies of Freemasons, conspiracies to manipulate paper currency, and conspiracies against Catholics. … He has talked about the Vatican printing its own currency and a specific conspiracy of the Ku Klux Klan, the Freemasons, and the Mob.” Not a Christian.

Lovely post.

Love one another and love your neighbor as yourself…that’s how it is meant to be and the world would be a much better place.

I was unable to make it to the event, but I was with all of you in spirit.