An Encouraging Development In The Fight Against ISIS

Here’s some good news to start the new year:  some Muslims are publicly and pointedly making fun of ISIS, the murderous, beheading terrorist organization that wants to establish a caliphate in the Middle East.

footage-al-baghdadis-friday-speech-which-he-appears-be-wearing-rolex-twitterThe fun began when the leader of ISIS, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi — who curiously sported a Rolex in one of his prior public appearances — issued a recorded statement about the state of ISIS on the day after Christmas that said, among other things, “We urgently call upon every Muslim to join the fight.”  His statement was translated and released on social media — and then Muslims began making hilarious responses to his call:

“Sorry, bro.  Mom made pizza rolls”

“I wanna wait until April and find out what happened to Jon Snow”

“sorry but this Big Mac isn’t eating itself”

“You should have told me before. I just renewed my pornhub subscription.”

“Sorry, I’m busy being a real Muslim, giving to charity etc. Also, your dental plan sucks.”

You can read the translated statements and the reactions here

Why is this encouraging and significant?  Because while military action is obviously needed to defeat the ISIS forces on the ground, the only sure way to really defeat radical Islamic terrorism long-term is to cut it off at its roots, by having Muslims everywhere reject the evil ISIS represents and thereby deprive the group of new recruits.  And when ISIS is trying to present itself as a formidable and intimidating force that represents the true Islamic faith, public mockery is a pretty effective weapon.

When an act of radical Islamic terrorism occurs, people often wonder why moderate Muslim religious leaders don’t publicly condemn the actions and the killing of innocents.  I’m not sure why the religious leaders aren’t more vocal, but it’s good to see that, in the world of social media, Muslims are speaking out and puncturing the titanic ISIS pretensions with humor.

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Reeking Of Class

How low can Donald Trump go?

Trump obviously is a jerk, but his buffoonery seems to have a kind of unfortunate multiplying effect.  He makes the outlandish claim that he saw, on television, thousands of Muslims in New Jersey celebrating the fall of the World Trade Center towers on September 11.  His claim is debunked.  Trump then seizes on an article written by a reporter that suggests that at least a few people in New Jersey were detained by police for apparently celebrating the attacks.

When that reporter says in an interview that he doesn’t recall anyone in authority saying that thousands, or even hundreds, were celebrating the 9\11 attacks, Trump attacks the reporter.  Some view Trump’s depiction of the reporter as meanly mocking the reporter’s hand disability, and Trump denies the charge — on the barely more defensible ground that he was simply mocking a flummoxed reporter, rather than mocking the reporter’s hand — and demands an apology for being criticized for his insensitivity.  All the while, Trump stays in the headlines, day after day.

Even if you take Trump at his word that he was not mocking the reporter’s disability, it is inarguable that he was mocking the reporter — and all the while acting like the loud-mouthed bullying kid who made 7th grade so unpleasant.

If, like me, you are disgusted with the coarseness of our national discourse, it’s hard to even imagine how low things could go with Trump forever in the news.  When was the last time you saw a politician stoop to physical mockery?  Where’s the next stop on the downward spiral?