A Third Perspective: A Brief Discussion Regarding The Muslim Ban.
Right and left wing media have been going back and forth in regards to the executive order limiting if not completely banning immigration from nations with predominantly large Muslim populations. The perspectives being shared in the pubic square are diametrically opposed to one another. We have the “Let Them In” camp and the “Keep Them Out Camp” and both utilize emotions to push their perspectives. The “Let Them In” camp espouses values that have been a reoccurring theme among people who ascribe to an idealistic viewpoint of American history. This camp favors refuge for the millions of people who have been displaced from their home and their argument is simple, we are America the beacon of hope for all of humanity we can’t turn them away. The “Let Them In” camp brings forth their arguments from a place of love and hope for humanity. Their opponents in the “Keep Them Out Camp” espouse other values whose worth should not be diminished just because you personally oppose them. This camp cares about the safety and security of their own personal lives and the lives of their nation and its many citizens. Their arguments are logical, even if you think they are misguided. Why would you let in refugees from nations whose populace views you as hostile and who could potentially be infiltrators sent in by enemy groups? Yet this group like the “Let Them In” camp utilizes emotions to push their perspective, whereas the latter uses love and hope, this group focuses on fear and paranoia. Both these perspectives though ignore a third perspective that is far more necessary to address then either of these.
In the United States there are about 3.3 million Muslims according to a recent estimate. Since the tragic September 11th attacks in 2001 this nation has been at war with itself. Do we associate all Muslims with the radicals who are responsible for that tragic attack or do we just focus on the radicals, who by the way are difficult to separate from the general population in some cases. As more and more attacks happened on American soil the Federal government under both Bush and Obama actively tried to discourage the American public and the American media apparatus from associating Radicals with your average run of the mill Muslim. Both of those leaders understood that while yes America was currently at war with small groups of Muslims they were not at war with Islam. The War on Terror is a complicated hot mess, but both Bush and Obama stated several times that one thing is certain; radicalism was the target not Islam. Yet ISIS the current radical threat and Al Qaeda the former king of the castle both heavily recruit using the notion that it is the Crusader Americans vs. the Muslims. Their narrative is different from Obama’s and Bushes, they do believe and want their viewers to believe that America is at war with Islam. They use this talking point to pick up soldiers and support from wealthy Gulf Sheiks and sadly they use this strategy to target Muslims living in western nations. By convincing a Muslim In a western nation that the country they reside in hates Muslims and Islam you can have an easy soldier that will do your bidding for you. Bush and Obama understood this. Which brings me to my main point, the third perspective. The two camps mentioned above both have valid points, but both miss the big point. The ban will not end terrorism, and its language will in fact aid the methods of ISIS and bring them more Muslims on silver platter. My fear is that this shortsighted attempt securing America will cause more damage in the long run. I hope I am wrong, but the chances of some of those 3.3 million Muslims living in America radicalizing just increased thanks to a group of leaders who may not understand the situation or just simply do not care.