As we attempted to process the attack in Manchester and decided to give it space on our show yesterday, we were caught in a moment where words could not express the confusion we were all left to deal with. Pablo tried to say that he doesn't understand how anyone can join with people who incite terror in the name of religion. I of course did not like how that sounded and said you can't say religion and terror in the same sentence. A female listener called in and said I was "naive" because of how I felt.
As we all know, processing such a disgusting attack like the one at the Ariana Grande concert in the UK, can bring out a lot of emotions. Anger and sadness can be the first for many. Trying to understand and find reason and motivation is normally the next action. Everyone tries to deal in their way. Words, words can get in the way, but it can also CLARIFY how someone feels or how confused they are about WHO.
Thanks to a Pablo And Tati show listener, I gained the clarity I needed. Pablo did too. His email read like THIS:
Mail - Tati@iheartmedia.com
> Hi Pablo & Tati,> > I regularly listen to your show on my drive into work. I appreciate the good music and mixes y'all play. this morning you had a discussion and Pablo, you seemed to be having a hard time understanding why you got some heat for saying religion and faith in the same sentence as ISIS.> I get where you're coming from, the topic could be confusing if you're not well informed on what Islam preaches, who Muslims are, and who/what ISIS represents. I tried calling in but couldn't get through in time before heading into work.> > If you're genuinely interested in understanding the differences, here is a short explanation, and if you want to know more, we can meet up sometime for a short discussion off the air. I don't want to go on the show, but I would appreciate a better informed message coming from the show I hope to continue listening to.> > The attack in Manchester is disgusting, vile, and abhorrent. My prayers go out to the victims.> ISIS is not an "extreme" form of Islam, nor is it a collection of people misinterpreting Islam. ISIS is a perversion of Islam. ISIS is like any other terror group which uses the culture/language of their surroundings to push their political views. To say ISIS is an extreme form of Islam is to imply there is a place in Islamic teachings for what ISIS does. That is about as absurd as saying the KKK is an extreme version of Christianity. The KKK claims to be a christian organization, but we don't paint them as a group that has taken their religion too seriously. We call the KKK for what it is, a racist organization inciting hate and terrorizing minorities. ISIS is the same. In Myanmar, Buddhist monks have displaced, killed and raped over a million people of a minority group called the Rohingya. The rhetoric of the monks is also laced with references to Buddhism and they claim to be acting in the name of their religion. Would you argue the monks are practicing an extreme form of Buddhism, or would you say they happen to be Buddhists who are engaged in terrible acts, and (more likely) motivated by their local politics?> > Groups which claim to fight "in the name of" their religion are often trying to attract people through justifying their acts with religious language. Don't help them market themselves as Islamic or any acceptable variant of Islam. Referring to them as an extreme version of Islam, or a radical form of Islam helps their "marketing". ISIS represents less than 0.001% of the Muslim population. Yet, the majority of the references in the media to Islam relates to ISIS and terrorism. This is something the two of you can change on the local airwaves!> > I hope this helps clarify the points you mentioned on the radio this morning. I look forward to hearing more informed content and would love to see ya'll try to mention Muslims/Islam in contexts other than the negative. Feel free to reply back with comments/questions. -M.
Thank you M. Thank you for taking time to speak on something we are not directly associated to. I will be the first to say, if I don't know, please tell me. THANK YOU. I hope that in the coming days we all UNITE and come together to show that TERROR and those who incite it, will not stop us from loving each other and embracing our differences. I will continue to pray for us all and especially the victims, the families, the people in Manchester, everyone affected.