Letters to the Editor

Kevin Smith’s commentary, ’24 Fosters Facism,’ (Jan. 22) which alleges that Muslims are unfairly portrayed as violent terrorists in today’s racist media to manufacture consent for the so-called atrocities committed by the Bush administration in the Middle East is nothing more than distorted propaganda and exaggerations intended to manufacture consent for the actual atrocities committed by Muslims against non-Muslims. He completely overlooks the fact that Muslims are not the only group that has been portrayed as villains in movies and television. For example, in the 1989 blockbuster ‘Lethal Weapon 2,’ the money-laundering, cop-killing bad guys are white Afrikaners.
So why then are Muslims and not Afrikaners being portrayed as the evildoers on ’24’? While there are regrettably instances of far-right white supremacist groups in South Africa such as the Boeremag carrying out terrorist attacks against innocent black Africans, the extent to which Afrikaner extremists have created havoc is minimal compared to the destruction and mayhem carried out by Muslim fanatics across the world. You see examples of this in the news everyday. Last year, angry mobs in the Middle East set Danish embassies on fire because some Danish cartoon about Muhammad offended them. Meanwhile, Kanye West posed as Jesus on the cover of Rolling Stone, and nary a Christian set fire to a record store selling Kanye West albums, not in Sao Paulo, not in Rome, not in Manila.
Smith’s allegation that ‘650,000 people have been murdered in Iraq since the onset of the U.S. invasion’ is spun to make the United States military look like some imperialistic force with no regard to human life. It completely skips over the fact that the vast majority of these deaths were caused by Sunni and Shi’ite fanatics who were more interested in creating bloodshed than building the democracy President George W. Bush envisioned.
Of course, the far-leftists who run the Islamic People’s Republic of Irvine don’t want you to believe any of that. Ask Chuck O’Connell, Mark LeVine or Manuel Gomez what they think, and they’ll tell you that the image of the Muslim as a violent terrorist is a bunch of B.S. made up by the neoconservatives at FOX News. They’ll try to portray Muslims as a peaceful group of people who were provoked into armed conflict by evil Western imperialists and Zionist Jews.
I believe Islam has every potential to be seen as a moderate religion along the lines of Christianity, Judaism, Hinduism and Buddhism. I hope one day Americans can walk by a mosque and not feel overwhelmed with a sense of fear. But until the jihadists stop issuing death threats towards Danish cartoonists and the militas in Iraq stop carrying out suicide bombings against innocent Iraqis just trying to make a living, how can the American media not view Islam as a violent faith?

Makena Dyer
second year
biological sciences major