Sam Bacile…really? Am I the only one who thinks the pseudonym was intended to sound like “Imbecile”?
There’s isn’t a lot that’s new to be said on this topic. Some bigots/freedom fighters/anti-Islamists/truth-spreaders (depending on your view) posted the 13-minute trailer of a film called the “Innocence of Muslims” which (whatever your view) ridiculed the Islamic prophet. In retaliation, some Muslims (and again, whatever your view, a fraction of the world’s population) have stormed embassies around the world, killing some and injuring others.
Some claim this as proof that Islam is a violent, destructive and medieval religion which will never change. That it is growing and seeks to usurp the West.
Some say that this was provocation, and the reaction to the film was one of culture rather one of religion. That most Muslims have ignored the film and gotten on with their lives, and the rioters are just violent idiots.
I like to think most of my readers can guess my opinion on this topic. It can be summed up in these pictures. I live in a town which has a relatively high Muslim population. Last year (or the one before?) a former resident blew himself up in Switzerland. An anti-Islam group which opposes Islamic extremists was set up here in the last couple of years. (I call them anti-Islam and not anti-extremist because, unfortunately, despite their original noble goal of opposing extremism, most members are skinheads who weren’t of the right social class to join the BNP and who only chant racial slurs at their rallies.)
Yet, the town is not a hive of terrorist activity, anti-Western vitriol or pro-Sharia law demonstrators. It is a town. We have a nice mall. Sometimes it’s sunny. Sometimes it rains. We have a street you might call “Asiantown,” or whatever. There is a degree of distrust between races and cultures. It is the same as anywhere else, and it is bred by the fear of strangers and feeds on the fear of the unknown. It is solvable. At school, there isn’t a reason to fear other students, and we get along fine.
There’s been no reaction to the film in this town. Of course it’s been heard of. But no-one cares. A friend made a Facebook comment: “I wish people would stop mistaking culture for religion.” That was it. Up in London, 150 protesters burnt an American flag. They should be arrested, but they won’t be because this is England. Mob mentalities drive the riots in the Middle-East. Many turned to looting straight after breaking into buildings. There isn’t even a reason, it’s just senseless violence. It reminds me almost exactly of last year’s London riots. Something’s been cooked up simply to provoke a reaction. And it’s a sad situation which has led to the unfortunate loss of life of innocent people. I can only hope that whoever is behind the film is caught quickly.
If you disagree with me (or if you’ve guessed the town I live in from all the massive hints) feel free to start a discussion below.