There has been a lot of ridiculous crap in the news lately about Muslims being to blame for basically everything wrong with the world. We have a presidential candidate talking about banning them from entering our country. I don’t want to get into any of those arguments because I think nobody’s in the mood to change their mind, but let me just do this: Dear fellow humans who happen to be Muslim: I’m sorry.
I’m a follower of Christ, and I want you to know that the Jesus I follow wouldn’t show the kind of unbridled fear and hate that are being leveled at you right now. It’s not the love that our savior taught. The love where you are my neighbor. I apologize that people who claim to follow Jesus are flying his banner and shouting at you as a religion, when most of them don’t even know any of you. Still, they are my brothers and sisters, even when they’re totally wrong. I don’t adhere to what they’re doing, but I apologize on their behalf.
I’m sorry that we’ve looked at your worst and most violent followers and assumed all of you are in some massive conspiracy to end our ‘way of life.’ And on that note, I’m sorry that we’re putting our way of life ahead of living the life that Christ outlined.
I recognize the irony of what some of us are doing. We see the horrible things that extremists are doing, and we become extremists ourselves. Maybe we’re not bombing Paris, but the way we’re treating you shows just as much disdain for human life. We’re not valuing you as fellow human beings. I know many of you are fervently fighting against the bombers and killers who destroy the innocent, and I’m sorry that my brothers and sisters in Christ don’t see that.
Please forgive us. The plain truth is most of us have never personally met anyone who is Muslim, so we’re fighting against a stereotype that we get from the news and from movies. It’s based in fear and not fact. I work with some Muslims, and they are trustworthy and intelligent people. They value my opinion, and I value theirs. The fact that they are Muslim and I’m Christian doesn’t really weigh into our relationship at all. We’re just people working together, and I wish more Christians could experience that.
I don’t know what the answer is. I think a lot of people have closed themselves off from the conversation. I need to tell you that I have not, and I know many others who feel the same way. We follow Christ, and we love others, including you.