S’POREAN CHINESE: OUR MUSLIM BROS & SIS NEED NOT APOLOGISE FOR INHUMANITY OF ISIS TERRORISTS

It is ok to not expect all moderate Muslims to condone the actions of ISIS on their FB pages each time a bombing happens. Not to sound disrespectful, this topic of – “Muslims should speak up and condone ISIS terror attacks” became popular recently after the Paris bombing, which received intensive global media coverage due to the western territory it occurred on, and prevalent fear of large scale ISIS attacks on Europe and Asia in the near future.

But, bombings and atrocities do actually happen on a frequent basis in Muslim dominated countries, and on a much larger scale. ISIS has been terrorizing their very own Muslim brothers on a frequent basis back in Syria and nearby regions. So why do we only wait till after the Paris attack? And not long before, to ask them to take ownership? Should moderate Muslims then be expected to do a Facebook post every other day since the atrocities happens on a much regular basis in these Muslim states?

It is also ok to not expect all moderate Muslims to associate the acts of ISIS to Islamic teachings.

To some, such moderate Muslims are defending Islam, making excuses e.g. Quran verses were misread by the radicals, and are not taking ownership of the real problem.

But, if you look at it from a broader perspective, there are many complex and perpetuating factors involved in, and what led to today’s ISIS reign and attacks.

Even though ISIS took roots from Islam, it has now become a well-funded, well-armed, warped terrorist ideology, not the once Islamic faith it used to be.

In fact, when moderate Muslims openly dissociate Islam from such terror acts, they are actually already denouncing ISIS.

Because by doing that, they are telling ISIS straight in the face – that what they are doing is not Islam, is not representative of Islam values and teachings, and not even worthy to be understood by any means, or to be even considered Islam in any ways.

This is already one step further than saying “what you are doing is wrong and I condone it”.

This is saying “What you’re doing is so skewed and deviated from Islam, it does not even come up in my mind, nor do I think you guys are even one bit logical, or worthy to be associated back to Islam, for me to even be able to condone it.”

If this is not blunt and forthright enough by moderate Muslims in terms of condoning the terror acts by ISIS, I don’t know what else to say.

Others might also not want to bring unneeded attention, or do not know if by speaking up, would it help or make worse the already sad situation, as their community are already perceived as “partly” responsible for the matter, and saying their piece may be deemed as inappropriate or insensitive. As such, some may choose to stay silent.

Like how some of us Singaporeans might not go down to the funeral, or write an online eulogy of LKY even though we appreciate his legacy, nor do we change our FB logo to the rainbow flag or go down to Pink Dot event even if we support the pro – LGBT movement.

It is ok to not expect all supporters of LKY to write an online eulogy or attend his funeral. They are not being irresponsible by not doing so.

It is ok to not expect all pro-LGBT supporters to change their FB picture to a rainbow flag or attend the Pink Dot event. They are not being irresponsible by not doing so.

It is also ok to not expect all moderate Muslims to condemn ISIS online, or associate ISIS back to Islam. They are not being irresponsible by not doing so.

As much as some of us see the importance of pressuring moderate Muslims in general to speak up and denounce ISIS acts as we feel they can are the ones that can change the minds of the radicals and should take ownership in doing so, neither should some from the moderate Muslim community feel pressured by others to take ownership of the matter and speak up, when they themselves do not see a need, nor contribute to, or associate Islam with, to ISIS acts.

Those who want to speak, will speak. Those who do not feel comfortable or see no need to speak, can choose not to speak either.

To end off – in our news media and even online, there are already many Muslim brothers and sisters who are ministers, religious teachers, prominent figures, and common people like us who do openly and directly condemn the actions of terrorists groups like ISIS regularly even though they are on the other side of the world, and not in any way responsible for causing the attacks. This is seen both in and out of Singapore.

One follows the religion itself, and the other though underlined by Islamic roots, has evolved into a well-funded and well-armed, warped terrorist ideology.

Like how actions of some Muslims do not represent all, neither should all Muslims be labelled as responsible for the actions of some.

As Singaporeans – let us stay united as a pluralistic nation it stands for, and not allow external forces, fear and finger pointing to divide us. Let us remind ourselves who our real enemies are.

We will stand together, together hand in hand, as one united people, Singapore, our Homeland.

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