The Pope gives a speech in which he quotes a Byzantine emporer characterizing Muhammad’s teachings as “evil and inhuman” and referring to spreading Islam “by the sword.”
Offended Muslims all over the world protest the Pope’s speech by burning the Pope in effigy; participating in violent riots; firebombing churches; wounding and killing people; calling for the Pope’s assassination; declaring jihad; and vowing to continue to fight until the entire world is ruled by Islam and all non-Muslims are forced to convert to Islam, pay a head tax and live as dhimmis, or be executed.
A few Islamic leaders and organizations condemn the threats and violence perpetrated by their brethren, but most either remain silent or openly encourage them.
Is it any wonder that non-Muslims throughout the world have become increasingly dubious of claims that Islam is a “religion of peace?”
Violent Christians are on the radical fringe of Christianity. Violent Jews are on the radical fringe of Judaism. Violent Muslims are part of maintream Islam.
Perhaps there are peaceful Muslims. If so, then there can be only two reasons why they do not speak out against the violence perpetrated by their coreligionists — either they support it, or they are afraid. There can be only two reasons why they do not put a stop to the violence — either they don’t want to, or they can’t. If those who share a religion with the people committing violence in its name are afraid, then all the more so those who do not share that religion must fear it. If those who share a religion with the people committing violence cannot make it stop, then those who do not share that religion must put a stop to it.