What if the headlines read … “Armed Islamic Terrorists Seize Federal Building Vowing to Kill or be Killed”? There would surely be incessant, hysterical news coverage and there would be an immediate call for military action from the right wingers (and probably impeachment of President Obama). So when gunmen in Burns, Ore. take over a federal building spouting rhetoric about “God calling them to defend their rights” and “willing to be kill or be killed” why has there been only incidental mention in the media? Could it be that these men are not considered dangerous only because they are white? Or “Christian”? Could it be because the only difference between Islamic “terrorists” who claim to be called by God to defend their rights and Christian terrorists who claim to be called by God to defend their rights (or the rights of the “unborn”) is contrived by our bias?
I suppose some might argue that Islamic terrorists have moved beyond sovereign rights to the ISIS pronounced apocryphal mission, but how is that different from group like the Branch Davidians or Evangelicals promoting a war in the Middle East to hasten the Second Coming? Maybe the truth is that we create enemies to justify the violence that fear creates in our own hearts and minds, rather than do the real work that is required to change the world: personal conversion. So maybe one question to ask is whether or not religion is an obstacle to the conversion to a peaceful world?