Within hours of the attacks in Paris, the familiar ritual began: the calls for Muslims to denounce ISIS rolled in, as they inevitably do after a terrorist attack by a group claiming to act in the name of Islam.
This is a common occurrence, and Muslims — myself included — are tired of it. We’re tired of being held responsible for the atrocities committed by individuals whose actions and beliefs are abhorrent to us and completely at odds with our values and our understanding of our religion. We’re also tired of people acting as if we haven’t already condemned ISIS, al-Qaeda, and terrorism over and over and over, loudly, publicly,“unreservedly,” and in great detail.
It just starts to get old after a while.
Which is why when people on social media began echoing politicians in the UK who demanded that Muslims denounce ISIS, one British Muslim teenager decided he’d had just about enough of that nonsense, and posted this on his Facebook page:
I got in touch with Kash over Facebook to ask what motived him to write that post. Kash — who consistently addressed me as “Miss Williams” — told me:
It wasnt the views or opinions of politicians that made me respond but the views of the general public
when fridays terror attacks happened which were extremely unfortunate there were only 2 opinions on my twitter time line
the first was of people demanding an apology for what happened which was met by either muslims apologising for the acts that occured or the other view, which was my view of muslims asking why we should apologise as ISIS has nothing to do with Islam?
This isn’t the first time Muslims have used social media to express irritation at being told to “do more” to counter extremist ideology and to apologize for the actions of strangers who have perverted our beliefs and who actually kill way more Muslims than they do any other group. The Twitter hashtag #MuslimApologies went viral a while back (with some unanticipated consequences for yours truly), with Muslims using the hashtag to point out the absurdity of being asked to apologize for things well beyond our control. Some were serious, emphasizing the various contributions Islam has made to the world:
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posted by f. sheikh