Tuesday, September 21, 2010

US Poll: Narrow majority unfavorable toward Islam

Nihad Awad, National Executive Director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, speaks at a news conference in front of the proposed Islamic center and mosque site near ground zero, Monday, Sept. 20, 2010.

Who's fault is it that people think Islam promotes violence. Fox News can't be that great. Here are some passages of the words of the man Muslims want to world to believe was the perfect example.

Muhammad told him: "Woe to you, O Abu Sufyan. Is it not time for you to realize that there is no God but the only God?" Abu Sufyan answered: "I do believe that." Muhammad then said to him: "Woe to you, O Abu Sufyan. Is it not time for you to know that I am the apostle of God?" Abu Sufyan answered: "By God, O Muhammad, of this there is doubt in my soul." The 'Abbas who was present with Muhammad told Abu Sufyan: "Woe to you! Accept Islam and testify that Muhammad is the apostle of God before your neck is cut off by the sword." Thus he professed the faith of Islam and became a Muslim."

Muhammad sent Khalid Ibn al-Walid to the tribe of the children of Haritha and told him: "Call them to accept Islam before you fight with them. If they respond, accept that from them, but if they refuse, fight them." Khalid told them: "Accept Islam and spare your life." They entered Islam by force. He brought them to Muhammad. Muhammad said to them: "Had you not accepted Islam I would have cast your heads under your feet"

Personally I think Muslims are capable of better than this.

A narrow majority of Americans hold a generally unfavorable opinion of Islam, and 45 per cent feel Islam is a religion that encourages violence, according to a new national Angus Reid Poll.

The poll found that just 24 percent of Americans agree that Islam "is a peaceful religion" with 30 percent unsure.

By contrast, only one American in 10 believes that either Christianity or Judaism "encourages violence": 80 percent agree that Christianity "is a peaceful religion" with 59 percent holding the same view of Judaism.

Americans have been hit by a barrage of anti-Islamic commentary on the airwaves of late.

Radio talk show hosts and the right-wing Fox News Channel have tirelessly used a planned Islamic cultural center near Ground Zero in New York as a vehicle to gin up public anger. Almost forgotten have been President Bush's post-9/11 characterizations of Islam as a religion of peace.

The poll of 1,024 Americans, conducted Sept. 14 and 15, showed that a vast majority (91 percent) feel they have "a good basic understanding" of Christianity's teachings and beliefs.

After that, three is a precipitous decline. Forty-three percent believe they understand Judaism's beliefs, 34 percent claim a basic understanding of Islam, 31 percent of Buddhism and 22 percent of Hinduism.

While America is an increasingly pluralistic society, the Angus Reid survey showed up its limits.

The pollster asked: "Do you personally have any friends who are followers or these religions, or not?"

The "Yes" answers for Christianity stood at 92 percent, but fell to 39 percent for Judaism, 21 percent for Island, 21 percent for Buddhism, and 14 percent for Hinduism.

Out of the religions evaluates, Islam is the only one to elicit unfavorable opinions from more than half of respondents in the poll, and the only religion to be seen as violent by a substantial number of those polled.

Seattle PI

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