Words matter in ISIS war. Boston Globe.
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05-12-2015, 11:06 AM (This post was last modified: 05-12-2015 11:15 AM by Reltzik.)
RE: Words matter in ISIS war. Boston Globe.
(04-12-2015 05:16 PM)Alla Wrote:  
(04-12-2015 05:06 PM)Reltzik Wrote:  Should Obama be calling a spade a spade? Definitely.
So should O'Reilly. And if you think that HE isn't always playing word games, you've lost your mind. It's called politics.

Agreed. Bill O'Reilly and Obama have to stop to play words games.
Obama is not afraid to call bad Christians "Christians", but he will never call bad Muslims "Muslims".

What Chas said. But there's also a distinction that needs to be reiterated.

With O'Reilly, it seems pretty clear he was just playing a rhetorical CYA. He's kinda made his obnoxious breed of Christianity part of his brand and anything that besmirches it is a threat to him. If anything, based on the context of his comments, he seemed to be trying to short circuit and prevent a conversation about how Christian beliefs can lead to some pretty damn evil actions, and that's a conversation that needs to happen.

With Obama on Muslims -- and again, I'm less sure of his motives than I am of O'Reilly's -- he SEEMS to be attempting to prevent violence and deaths. He doesn't seem to be trying to short-circuiting the discussion about how Muslim beliefs can lead to terrorist actions, which while also necessary was already very much robust and ongoing. If I'm right about his motives, then I question the efficacy of such a strategy, but if it works at curtailing violence to even some degree then I think that's worth a word game or two. And if it doesn't... well, good intentions count for something.

The underlying problem is this. The threat isn't from Islamic beliefs, specifically, or Christian beliefs, specifically, or any other religion's beliefs. The beliefs don't really matter. The root of the problem is fundamentalist extremism -- of ANY breed of religion. (Or any sort of broader ideology, such as Communism or Libertarianism.) It's one thing to hold the beliefs. It is another to attempt to impose them on others through violence, threat of violence, or governmental force. THAT is the threat.

But fighting the root of the problem -- fundamentalist extremism -- means developing a set of tools to undermine the religious faith of the extremists. Those tools could also be turned on religious faith in general, as practiced by religious moderates and liberals... and so developing that sort of tool is something that the US government will not do. (It can. It's done PR and propaganda pushes before. But it won't do it here.) Arguably, the first amendment might make the attempt illegal. (Or it might not. That would be an interesting court case.) But it wouldn't get even that far, because no President (much less any Congress) ... except MAYBE some of the Founders... has had the vision, guts, and will to go after the actual threat, and that's not likely to change any time soon. (Obama, I think, lacks the will and maybe the guts. He likes the idea of having a diversity of religious moderates and would rather strike compromises with fundamentalists than take the fight to them.)

I am increasingly of the opinion that religious faith cannot exist beyond a few individuals without producing dangerous extremist fundamentalists. This won't be all of the faithful, or even most, but I no longer think you can have one breed of religion without the other.
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05-12-2015, 12:20 PM
RE: Words matter in ISIS war. Boston Globe.
(05-12-2015 09:18 AM)Chas Wrote:  
(04-12-2015 05:16 PM)Alla Wrote:  Agreed. Bill O'Reilly and Obama have to stop to play words games.
Obama is not afraid to call bad Christians "Christians", but he will never call bad Muslims "Muslims".

When did he ever call bad Christians "Christians"? Please provide a citation.

Pretty sure Alla was referring to his speech at a prayer breakfast. But he didn't say what Alla thinks he said.




#sigh
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05-12-2015, 05:44 PM
RE: Words matter in ISIS war. Boston Globe.
Reltzik Wrote:he seemed to be trying to short circuit and prevent a conversation about how Christian beliefs can lead to some pretty damn evil actions, and that's a conversation that needs to happen.
I agree with you.
Reltzik Wrote:With Obama on Muslims -- and again, I'm less sure of his motives than I am of O'Reilly's -- he SEEMS to be attempting to prevent violence and deaths. He doesn't seem to be trying to short-circuiting the discussion about how Muslim beliefs can lead to terrorist actions, which while also necessary was already very much robust and ongoing. If I'm right about his motives, then I question the efficacy of such a strategy, but if it works at curtailing violence to even some degree then I think that's worth a word game or two. And if it doesn't... well, good intentions count for something.
That is what I believe about his(Obama's) very good intention. But I think he and us still should call evil Muslims like ISIS - radical Muslims, or radical Islamists. It will help us better to fight with ideology. Even though I believe that after we destroy ISIS it will be somebody else. People also will be afraid that if they see something suspicious they will be accused in profiling/in racism.
Also, unfortunately, no matter what we say it will be people who will start to discriminate all Muslims.
Also it will be very hard not to profile them (out of fear). Nobody wants die to from the hand of an evil man or an evil woman. We all want to die peacefully in our beds with a smile on the face.
Reltzik Wrote:The underlying problem is this. The threat isn't from Islamic beliefs, specifically, or Christian beliefs, specifically, or any other religion's beliefs. The beliefs don't really matter. The root of the problem is fundamentalist extremism -- of ANY breed of religion. (Or any sort of broader ideology, such as Communism or Libertarianism.) It's one thing to hold the beliefs. It is another to attempt to impose them on others through violence, threat of violence, or governmental force. THAT is the threat.
But if there is a belief that all infidels have to be killed then this belief is the problem. This is what radical Muslims as ISIS believe.

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