The August 30 issue of Time magazine asks the question, “Is America Islamophobic?” Since receiving the magazine, I have thought intensely about the question and sadly I would answer, “Yes”. In answering yes, I feel the need to explain why.

It seems that there is a significant percentage of Muslims who have been and are being radicalized. I believe that the vast majority of Muslims are peaceful, but we don’t have much exposure to them. They are scattered over America, but I have never met one. Yet the truth is that many are radical.

Islam is the only world religion that preaches death to infidels. No other religion slaughters its own. No other religion uses its young people, including women and the handicapped to blow themselves up with the vain promise of incredible rewards in heaven. No other religion has wreaked the havoc on American soil and the soil of our allies that Muslims have. American youth are being recruited to join groups committed to jihad against Western values. Islam is one of the few religions that execute those found guilty of many offenses against the Koran by the horrible practice of stoning. Islam is one of the few religions that condemn those of other religions for trying to share their religion with Muslims. There are Imams that teach hatred and violence to bring the world under their control.

These characterizations may not be true, but the information that we receive from the media make it easy to believe them. I would argue that if Christianity taught the same doctrines Americans would be Christianophobic, or if Jewish Rabbis’ taught them we would be Judeophibic. Of course there are so called Christian ministers who preach hate, but they re such a small percentage that that the number is not even a percentage point and mainstream Christians reject their teaching outright.

It would make a huge impact if moderate Muslims would make a strong stand against the barbaric practices of the radicals, but for the most part, they remain silent, thus giving the impression that they are in agreement with the radicalizing of their people.

Of course all of this upheaval has been generated by Imam Rauf’s desire to build a Community center at ground zero in New York City. No thinking American can deny that they have a right to build where ever they choose in compliance with the law. However, if Imam Rauf’s motive is to build bridges and encourage peaceful relationships he would move the Mosque to a less controversial location.

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we lived in a world where we did exactly what Jesus taught—Love God, love one another. No judgment, no condemnation, no hatred, no hunger, no homelessness, no poverty, no disease. Golly what a pipe dream.

Jack deJarnette

Jack deJarnette

I am a United Methodist Minister who in June 2008, was placed on incapacity leave due to kidney failure.  My kidneys failed due to immusuppression medications secondary to a heart transplant in 1997. The ministry is my second career having spent 12 previous years at Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta as Chief Respiratory Therapist and Technical Director of Life Support Systems at Emory University School of Medicine. I  have a wonderful wife of 45 years, two super children, and four grandchildren. My life has been exciting, challenging, and full of wonder as in my early years I was concerned with saving lives and in my later years saving souls I was graduated  from Georgia Military Academy in 1961 (Woodward Academy). I attended Emory-at-Oxford College, The University of Georgia, Georgia State University, and Emory University for postgraduate work. I received my ministry credentials through the United Methodist Church Course of Study at Emory's candler School of Theology. My Theology is primarily Wesleyan and varies with the particular topic under discussion. I refuse to be labeled either liberal or conservative. My politics are moderate embracing what I hope is the best of all parties. I have a deep love for Christ, the Church, and the United States of America. Bev (my wife) and I are deeply thankful to God for the blessings that have been showered on us throughout our lives.