Muslim Americans have a duty to "speak up, out loud" about Islamists in their communities, and not hide behind false accusations of Islamophobia, according to an op-ed by Qanta A. Ahmed, an author, physician and medical school professor, in the Christian Science Monitor. Not challenging Islamists vocally is a form of "exoneration" of their ideas and presence among moderate Muslims, she writes, and causes Muslims to "have a hand in Islam's mutilation" by the radicals.
"Denial is cozy. In its inviting comfort, we endorse causality – Islamists and their attacks are explained by alienation, psychiatric disease, disempowerment," Ahmed writes. "Neatly rationalizing our distress, we foxtrot straight into the denial of our own culpability … There, in the heart of darkness, we succeed as accessories to the erosion of our own beliefs."
There's a duty to confront the Islamists and criticize their views and actions, she adds. "Be warned. They cry 'Islamophobia!' while they suffocate only us. Just when 'Islamophobia' seeks to smother debate, we must speak up, and out loud."
This is the latest example of Ahmed's courageous stand to take back Islam from extremists. In an op-ed for the Wall Street Journal, she argued that Muslims have a historic duty to protect the society in which they live.
"According to Islamic law, Muslims are obligated to three entities: the self, God and society. This last has been overlooked too often by Muslims and their adopted societies," Ahmed wrote. "Every faithful Muslim must contribute to the preservation of justice within their society… Exposing nefarious forces at play within our community is a Muslim responsibility—the "bare minimum of faith" for every Muslim man and woman."
Ahmed has also been an outspoken critic of sanitizing martyrdom ideology and suicide bombing among radical Islamists. "When we think of martyr-suicides within a framework of 'suicide is sick' we avoid the more chilling construct of 'suicide is wrong but rational.' By assigning a sick role to the concept of suicide we are spared considerations of its morality and accompanying dilemmas," she noted in a piece for the Huffington Post. "When suicide is seen as sick it is spared a moral judgment -- instead it is seen as essentially amoral. The act is condemned but the perpetrator is not judged, because he or she was 'sick'. Suicide bombing becomes amoral, rather than immoral."