I intend to keep this short and succinct, but the neological Religion of Peace is, euphemistically speaking, not very peaceful, and has been so for the last 1400 years of its existence.
In the present, terror attacks are ramping up all over the world. From the recent massacre of nearly 150 Christian students in Kenya, to last month's attack on a museum in Tunisia that killed 19, to the barbaric brutality of ISIS, al-Shabaab, the Taliban and Boko Haram, something is seriously wrong.
Yet, there is no denying it: there are billions of peaceful Muslims around the world, who are caring, compassionate and would never slaughter some French cartoonists for caricatured depictions of Muhammad. What is going on? Are those the true Muslims, the doctor of Pakistani heritage dutifully treating his patients in the USA, or is it the mujahideen strapping on a suicide vest and blowing up hundreds of rafidhas in Yemen? Which person is representative of Islam?
The answer is: both are.
Islam, although holding on to the universal principles such as the Five Pillars (syahadan, zakat, salaat, fasting during ramadhan and pilgrimage to Mecca) and others such as tawhid (oneness of God) has had various other precepts that are basically amorphous and shifting with the times. But fundamentally, at its core, Islam is dominionist and restrictive, extremely punishing to those who commit shirk (idolatry). Try Surah 48:29 or 9:29 from the Quran for example. Unlike the Bible, which Christians can pick and choose because of the Old Covenant-New Covenant dichotomy, the Quran and the other sacred texts, the hadith, are undistilled and show what is wrong when pre-medieval religious traditions are taken as "divinely inspired" and applied to modern-day contexts.
I dont mean to say that Islam is "pure unrestricted brutality" since its obviously not.I dont deny that Islam has a rich tradition that goes back centuries, and there are very intelligent, peace-loving devout Muslims either. They did have the Islamic golden age and some very fine calligraphy and geometric design. Furthermore, there are verses in the Quran that claim there is no compulsion in religion. Well whats going on?
Turns out that the Quran was only compiled after Muhammad's death, and information gathered from various oral traditions. Muhammad did preach peace at times, but at others he openly slaughtered unbelievers.
Anyone superficially familiar with the history of Muhammad would know of his early years in Mecca, where he at first preached peacefully. He was persecuted and driven out, so he fled to Medina, where he consolidated his power.
And things changed.
He began killing poets who wrote against him. He organized caravan raids to weaken his enemies in Mecca. He killed prisoners of war (look here for a list of people Muhammad personally killed or order to kill).
He conquered Mecca and slaughtered thousands.
What the Islamists are doing around the world today, is fundamentally replicating Muhammad's warpath and such rivers of blood flow around Babylon and Jerusalem. A site ironically called the religion of peace is dedicated to cataloguing all the daily atrocities committed in the name of Islam.
I DO NOT advocate bigotry and discrimination in any way, shape and form. I have Muslim friends and will stand against any harrassment and discrimination against them. but it is important to remember that the ideology of Islam does not deserve equal treatment. There are more Christians than Muslims in the world today, yet there are significantly fewer Christian terrorist groups. Why? There are bloody groups like the LRA for example, but these groups are outnumbered by the number of Islamist groups (and the violence they commit) around the world.
Islam must be shown for what it is.