Muslim Rally Against Terrorism In Portland, Oregon
Muslim community members and clergy took an important step to demonstrate to young Muslims that their community is very much opposed to terrorism to prevent any young members to be swayed by radical Islamic thought at a well attended rally in Portland, Oregon this weekend. Muslim clergy and members condemned the teachings of any radicals to promote terrorism or violence as not in accordance with the teachings of the Koran. These leaders condemned any terrorism as taking innocent lives, which they stated to be in opposition to clearly stated Koran teachings to respect innocent life.
The Muslim community in America also intends to run radio advertising to promote an antiterrorism message as well.
This will serve several purposes. It could help prevent copycat incidents in the U.S. similar to the London incidents by young Muslims who have become radicalized. It sends a warning to young Muslims to respect and honor their religion and community, and to work within democratic means to express any differences with the American government on the questions of Iraq, and Israel and Palestine. And it reassures most Americans that the overwelming majority of Muslims are decent religious persons who believe in peace, are good citizens, and reject radicalism and violence in their community.
It is also hoped that this message will prevent acts of prejudice or racism against Muslim community members. I have both Jewish and Muslim friends. I like both cultural groups very much. But those who do not have such friends sometimes build up prejudices. Hopefully this Muslim community effort to promote a message of peace will result in respect for the Muslim community. Even at the funeral of the late Pope, the number of Muslim leaders attending was very impressive. All in the Christian, Jewish and Muslim community should have mutual respect for the faiths of each other, while being the best possible members of their respective faiths.