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What I Learned about Peace from an Imam

Khlalil Sultan Ryan Gear

Last week was an experience in contrasts.

For a month, I had been looking forward to having lunch with a local imam named Khalil. He speaks regularly at interfaith gatherings and flatly condemns all violence in the name of Islam. He is one of the moderate Muslims who are accused of not speaking out enough against terrorism. Like many American Muslim leaders, however, he speaks out against violence continually. It’s just that he has trouble getting his message into the news media.

I suspect that the very cable news channels that complain that Muslim leaders do not speak out, rarely invite Muslim leaders on air to speak out. After all, if you invite Muslim leaders on air to condemn violence, you’re can’t induce fear and rage in your viewers by claiming Muslim leaders won’t speak out. Fear and rage drive up ratings, but what kind of ratings do calm, reasonable Muslim voices get you? Depending on the news outlet, inviting them to speak might ruin their ratings…

Read the rest at the Convergent Books Blog. Click here.

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One thought on “What I Learned about Peace from an Imam

  1. John LeFevers says:

    Read your blog. Very insightful.So happens, my fishing buddy is Muslim.Shiite to be exact, raised in Lebanon and Kuwait. I have been picking his brain for 20 years trying to understand more.I have learned a great deal over thousands of hours of back and forth. And yet, I feel like I know nothing. Recently he told me that if a Sunni Wahhabi were to take us prisoner and only had one bullet, he would shoot my Shiite friend rather than me, a Christian. The complexities of the Muslim religion boggle the mind. Not to say Christians are any easier to figure out, just look at Northern Ireland. And don’t get me started on the Spanish inquisition or the crusades. Anyway, enjoyed the article. Peace.

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