British Muslims react to Charlie Hebdo attack (BBC Today programme)

This is such a tough topic to address, and I genuinely find this hard to put into word. But I getting fed up of people pushing the blame away and saying:

well these [insert religion, political view or ethnic group here] aren't real [insert religion, political view or ethnic group here]

For the sake of being topical, let's use Islam and Muslims. But my view extends to just about any sort of religion, creed or way of life.

I find it especially hard to get my head around the that argument, especially when people say 'Well no true Muslim would do that'.

At the end of the day, in it's most basic form a Muslim is someone who follows Islam. If someone is killing in the name of Islam, then you can not simply say 'well no, they're not Muslims', to me that is as good a response as putting your hands over your eyes and shouting. If a man takes a life in the name of Islam, then he is doing it because he is a Muslim.

You might want to argue with that he is not, and I can understand why. Your interpretation of the religion might be that killing is wrong and yes, there are many passages that make it perfectly clear that killing is wrong. But at the end of the day, an interpretation is exactly that.

Your interpretation that killing is wrong is no more valid that the interpretation that drove someone else to kill in the name of Islam. You both read a book and you are both essentially acting upon the teachings of that book.

I wouldn't dream of telling a any other interpretation of Islam (lets say Shia or Sunni) that they are wrong. Yet when someone decides to interpret the religion in such a way that it drives them to do something that we obviously absolutely, unquestionably immoral (in this case mass killing), we are more than willing to simply brush it off and say 'naah, they got it all wrong!'

The problem of extremism is clearly lying at the door of the faith, creed or way of life they are following. To argue otherwise is, to me, not going to bring around any sort of solution.

Sure, actions of outsiders, governmental policy or anything else might not help that situation. But nor do they physically force a man to kill in the name of a god, only one person has the power to make the decision to kill for a god, and that's the person doing the killing.

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