Sun, May 14, 2017
Does "All terrorists are Muslims" mean "All Muslims are terrorists?"
What comes to your mind when you hear and or read the word, “Terrorist”? I can bet that 100% of you reading this, are already having thoughts and imaginations about a given religious group, thanks to the ubiquity of a phenomenon that links terrorism to that group.
The other day, a book titled, “Bin Laden- Behind The Mask Of The Terrorist- by Adam Robinson” successfully caught my attention, as a good read.
Reading its first chapter, I was challenged to drop my long held stereotype that,” All Muslims are Terrorists”. I realized how different and alienated, both in the physical and ideological realms, Osama Bin Laden was, from his family.
In that book, A Harvard Law School-educated Abdullah Mohammed bin Laden, a younger brother of Osama, is quoted giving a remorseful remark, “This is a tragedy for our family. How will people look at our family?”, following the crumbling of the World Trade Center on September 11th 2001. Therein, we also see how Osama Bin Laden was disowned by his family thanks to the ideological chasm between him and them.
The marked difference in ideology between him and his family, and the remorse from Osama’s family, is what got me questioning whether Osama bin Laden and other terrorists were born so, or were made so, during their formative journeys on earth.
Such difference between Osama and his family also got me subjecting the stereotype we have all been successfully fed, that, “All Muslims are terrorists”, to further scrutiny.
“Does All terrorists are Muslims” mean “All Muslims are terrorists?”, I wondered.
I did not only wonder but also realized how careful we ought to be before embracing the reality of a stereotype. Imagine all the great fear, enmity, bloodshed and religious chasm, such a stereotype that, “All Muslims are Terrorists”, has caused on earth.
Whether you believe it or not, your life at the moment, has to a great extent, been shaped by a multi-pronged assault of such stereotypes, held from birth.
None of us is immune to the stereotypes our cultures continue to feed us, especially stereotypes about religion, racial superiority and what success is, and is not.
From Osama bin Laden’s life, it can be seen that terrorists are made but not born!
However, feel free to share, why you think terrorists are made, or at least arise, from the same religious group. In other words, even if we have agreed that all Muslims are not terrorists, why are all terrorists Muslims?
Edrine Habasa is an autodidact bridge engineer, dialectician and knowledge enthusiast. He's also a debunker of falsehoods as he champions the truth.