Tuesday, 8 December 2015

Muslim "backlash" is balderdash

Letter to South China Morning Post:

Like the Obama administration, Joseph Ting frets about the "backlash against Muslims", saying that they have borne a "searing burden of living under the suspicion that ties them… to criminal atrocities" (Unfair to tar all Muslims with same brush, Letters, 8 December).
But the fact are otherwise.
The FBI's Uniform Crime Reports for hate crimes date back to 1996.  They show this:
Jews have been subject to an average of 68% of all religious hate crimes, Muslims just 10%. (and that's including post 9-11). 
Given the relative populations of Jews and Muslims in the US, Jews are roughly three times more likely to be targets of hate crimes than are Muslims.
Yet all we hear of is the backlash against Muslims.
Of course we must fight against both anti-jewish and anti-Muslim hate crimes.
In fact, the figures show that both anti-Jewish and anti-Muslim hate crimes are rather low, just 932 and 133 per year, respectively, or 3 per day and one-third per day, over the whole of the Republic.
My main point is this: that instead of engaging in victimhood on behalf of a non-existent "backlash" against Muslims,  let's hear political leaders saying something along the following lines:
"We know that the majority of Muslims are fine and peaceable folk.  But there's clearly something in the doctrines of Islam that motivates some Muslims ('an extremely small minority', if you wish), to murder their fellow citizens.  We urge all fine and peaceable Muslims to address this issue, to lead to a more moderate and secular Islam, so that all Muslims can live in peace in our secular society.  
Practice your religion freely and safely in the US.  But practice it in private ('without attempting to impose your religion on the rest of us, on pain of death' ... if you wish).  
In private: that's the key to our western/US secularism.  It is the key to our living well together."

Peter Forsythe
9 Siena One
Discovery Bay
Hong Kong
9308 0799