Monday, February 22, 2010

Kairos: "Muslim" Doesn't Mean "Terrorist"!

We all need to spend more time talking to our nanas. At least if we're in search of moral authority.

Inside the American bubble: Illinois high school swimming championships
(Image: Sports Illustrated)

I was standing around in my "Loyola Academy Swimming and Diving" shirt after the Illinois State sectional meet at Glenbrook North HS on Saturday. A little old lady, also wearing maroon, came up to me and introduced herself as the grandmother of one of the swimmers. We started to congratulate each other on the great showing by all the Ramblers in general, and by our two respective kids in particular.

I mentioned that I had bumped into a lot of people with her last name, and that launched a whole discussion of roots. (Hers: Italy, Germany . . . Mine: Ireland, Holland . . . .) Before long, each of us had rattled off a substantial part of our family tree. We then progressed to figuring out all the people we knew in common.

We talked for a long time, but we were really just passing the time. Eventually, the swimmers appeared and it was time to get in the car and go home. Before parting, my new friend turned to me one more time and said, "Yes, I tell everyone: I'm Sicilian -- but that doesn't mean I'm Mafia -- and German -- but that doesn't mean I'm a Nazi." And then she added: "And being Muslim doesn't mean someone's a terrorist! That's what I tell people!"

What a big thing she did in that tiny moment! How many moments like that are we given in this life?

Related posts

MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA -- Angle Computer (NASDAQ: AGL) today announced the launch of their new iPhobe offering.

The iPhobe is a humanoid robot that spouts anti-Islamic rhetoric and encourages fear and hatred in an unprecedented variety of ways.

(See Like your iPhone? You'll LOVE the new iPhobe!)

In 2013 America, we have been conditioned to feel anything associated with Middle Eastern and/or Muslim men should trigger feelings of suspicion, fear, and hatred. And when those cues are triggered, all of our objectivity and healthy skepticism goes out the window.

(See Orwell and the Uses of Hate)

We all wish to be judged by our good intentions. But the way people know us is through our actions. So ... what do people in the Muslim world know about us here in the United States?

(See They'll Know Us By Our Actions)