Aslan, A Lion Roars (with a big smile on his face)

Reza Aslan says we progressive thinkers need to own up to the part we’ve played in the number of wackos running for President this year. Watch a few minutes of this video and you’ll learn that many of us simply dismiss conservatives out of hand as being “low information, uneducated, even ignorant.” Aslan clearly shows that our tendency is to throw facts at our Fox News loving neighbors with a firm belief that data will convince them of the error of their ways. His point is this … the only thing that will change the way they look at ISIS, for example, is to introduce them to a Muslim. One may live just down the street from them.

And according to Aslan, we are fooling ourselves if we think conservative media aficionados represent a radical fringe. Pretty disturbingly, he points out that 100 million Americans want all Muslims to be required to carry a special ID card that will allow  police, tax assessors, grocery store clerks, and others to confirm their suspicions that this person “might be a terrorist.”

And did you know that half of all Americans fear being the victim of a terrorist incident? Aslan says that we are more likely to be struck by lightning, twice, than we are to be a victim of terrorism. Watch for a couple minutes starting at 11:00 minutes in.

Watch the video and learn how useless and ridiculous the term “terrorist” is. This made me think of the crazies who took over the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in southeastern Oregon. What came to my mind was, what if they were Native American, Latino, Black, or God forbid, Muslim?! They would have been branded “terrorists”. They wouldn’t have lasted two days, let alone two weeks! But because those so-called militia members were white, male, well-to-do, and “Christian” not only were they not called terrorists, they were handled with kid gloves.

Of course, many of us have been guilty of the knee-jerk reaction that, since many major conflicts in history were caused religious tribalism the answer is to simply get rid of religion. If you have only one minute right now to give to this video, go to 23:50 and watch to 24:50.  Aslan reminds us that was the prevailing argument of the 20th century–that with religion out of the way we would get richer, smarter, and more developed. Didn’t happen. What that brought us was Fascism, Socialism, Marxism, Maoism, Nazism, Stalinism and other anti-religious ideologies which were “responsible for the most horrific century in the history of human existence.”

I invite you to take a few minutes and watch just a bit of  this video I think you’ll be glad you did.



  1. re: “our tendency is to throw facts at our Fox News loving neighbors with a firm belief that data will convince them of the error of their ways” Facts rarely change minds. I’ve read much about this and it saddens me greatly. Michael Shermer’s book, “Why People Believe Weird Things” is one of the scariest books I’ve ever read.

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