My Friend is a Muslim and He's Really Nice
Sometimes when you're talking about Islam, someone will tell you something like this: "My cousin is married to a Muslim man and he's a really great guy." And they will say it like that's the end of the argument. They pronounce it as if their statement obviously cancels and disproves everything you've said about Islam.
Here are some possible responses:
- I can see that you are defending your friend, so let me be clear that I'm not attacking your friend or anyone who calls himself a Muslim. I'm talking about Islamic doctrine. I'm talking about what a devout Muslim is supposed to do, according to Muhammad, and what millions of Muslims in fact do.
- Is he a practicing Muslim or a Muslim in name only? If he is a practicing Muslim, jihad is obligatory. But keep in mind, jihad means struggling toward the political goal of the dominance of Islamic law. Violence is only one of many ways to work toward that political goal. Also, if he is a practicing Muslim, he cannot be friends with you, according to the Qur'an. He can pretend to be your friend if it serves the goals of Islam, but if he actually feels affection for you and really considers you a friend, he is doomed to burn in hell according to the Qur'an.
- That's good (that he's a really great guy)! But the Muslims following the doctrine still need to be stopped, and one very important thing that needs to happen in order to stop them is for non-Muslims to be educated about what is in the Qur'an and the Hadith. Our fellow non-Muslims need to be made aware of the game plan of the enemies dedicated to destroying our way of life. By trying to stop people like me from educating non-Muslims about Islam, you are actually helping Islamic supremacists with their political goals.
- Maybe this Muslim's apparent goodness is only taqiyya. Another possibility is that he is simply ignorant of what his religion really requires of him. I will tell you what is in the Qur'an, but only if you promise not to tell him. We don't need any more Muslims to awaken to the requirements of their faith. Let him live in benign and peaceful ignorance.
- He's a Muslim and he's really nice? Good! It's entirely possible he does not follow the whole teachings. However, does he pay his zakat (alms)? Then he is probably contributing to Islamic supremacists who are following the whole teachings (the zakat usually goes to the local mosque, and most mosques in the U.S. are owned and run by dedicated Wahabbis). Does he pray five times a day? Does he fast for a month during Ramadan? Has he read the Qur'an? If he had to choose between Shari'a law and the U.S. Constitution, which would he choose? Do you have any idea?! Or are you simply saying your cousin is married to a Muslim with very good people skills? (Read more about the basic obligations of a Muslim.)
- The existence of a nice Muslim does not invalidate the statement that Islamic teachings advocate intolerance and violence toward non-Muslims. The fact that you know a Muslim who knows how to get along with non-Muslims does not mean he would not also advocate imposing Shari'a law on non-Muslims, and does not mean he is not actively striving toward that goal. The fact that he is really nice does not mean he repudiates the supremacist nature of Islamic teachings. The existence of a Muslim who happens to be charming does not discredit a single thing I've said.
- Is your friend an apatheist? If so, I think that's great. But I wasn't talking about people who call themselves Muslims but do not follow the doctrine. I'm talking about the actual Islamic doctrine — what it says in their holy books and what nearly all the Islamic authorities have decreed for the last 1400 years — and that is being followed faithfully by Muslims all over the world. Those who are following the teachings of the Qur'an and who faithfully follow Muhammad's example are a danger to the free world and they must be stopped.
- Muhammad Salah was a very nice man too. But he was also the leader of the worldwide military wing of Hamas, a brutal terrorist organization! (Read more about this here.)
Give some of these responses a try, and come back here to let us know what happened. Also, please let us know what other questions or statements people make that leave you temporarily tongue-tied.