Monday, July 23, 2007

Islam in America

In its latest issue, Newsweek has run an interesting piece on American Muslims, in which writer Lisa Miller focuses on the "vulnerability" of American Muslims to prejudice and how they feel excluded from American society. This is mainly a puff piece, but I do agree that American Muslims are much more financially and academically successful than their counterparts in Europe, and they are also much more integrated into American culture and much less radical (to our credit as a nation and their credit as well for adapting into our culture). However, although Newsweek exagerrates perceived attitudes and instances of anti-Muslim behavior in the U.S., even they recognize the troubling results of a recent poll that shows that young American Muslims are susceptible to radicalization. A recent Pew study shows that:

  • 26 percent of U.S. Muslims age 18-29
    believe suicide bombings can be justified
  • 38 percent of U.S. Muslims age 18-29
    believe that Arabs did not carry out 9/11

And confirming what I've said all along, poverty and social inequality can not be used to justify terrorism or labeled as the root causes of radicalization. As Miller says:

These data, combined with the rising religious conservatism of young Muslim Americans, have led some experts to argue that differences between Europe and America have been overblown, that affluence and education do not inoculate a society against radicalization. "This idea that all those who are middle class are exempted from extremism has always been false," says Geneive Abdo, author of "Mecca and Main Street." "The leadership of the extremist movements have always been highly educated Muslims."

Suspicions about radicalization here at home can also be traced to whether U.S. Muslims see themselves as Americans first or Muslims first. Many adhere to the former, but as Newsweek discovered, there are young Muslims out there like Autri , a 21 year old pharmacy student who says about 9/11: "it sounds bad to say, but I remember thinking that I didn't care that it happened. A lot of my friends didn't care. I think it's because we're Muslim."

This disturbing reality, which even Newsweek could not ignore in its puff piece, reminds us of the need for vigilence and even greater scrutiny of Muslim youth in the U.S. Many of these youth are integrated, but they are seeking ways to rebel, and radical Islam is the prime way to rebel against parents who are fully integrated and part of U.S. mainstream society.

Mainstream, moderate Muslims such as Dr. Khaleel Mohammed of San Diego University and women's rights advocate/author Irshad Manji have been warning us about this for years. America needs to realize that suicide attacks are not confined to the land of the Tigris and Euphrates; unless we seriously start infiltrating the networks within our own country, these types of attacks will soon begin manifesting themselves on American soil

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Quigley is in!

17th District precinct committee members voted for Jill Quigley over Titus Bond by a vote of 18-12. Both candidates gave good, well-prepared speeches--Bond stressed his core principles, ties to the area, and legislative experience as an aide to Congressman Sam Graves, while Jill stressed her community involvement and activism in the local schools. Stephanie Sharp gave a speech on behalf of Quigley.

The Quigley family's questionable and controversial donations to Howard Dean and Dennis Moore were not brought up by anyone at the meeting, nor questions about Bond's recent move to Kansas from Missouri.

The controversy over the mysterious letter sent out to precinct committee people (alleging that Bond was Hispanic) was only referenced vaguely by Scott Schwab, who said he had no idea where it originated but he believed it came from across the state line, stating 'that kind of politics has no place in Kansas'.

Speaker of the House Melvin Neufeld, Majority Leader Ray Merrick, and various state reps and senators were in attendence (Kevin Yoder, Sheryl Spalding, Terrie Huntington, Ron Worley, Ben Hodge, Nick Jordan). KS National Committeeman Steve Cloud, KS GOP officials Corrie Kangas and Christian Morgan were also in attendance.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Convention to Elect Rep. Sharp's Replacement

As many of you know, Rep. Stephanie Sharp is vacating her seat. The special convention to appoint her sucessor will be held next wednesday and will be open to the public.
Jill Quigley is running for the position, and a young newcomer, 23-year old Titus Bond, will also be vying for the votes of committee members. There may be other candidates that arise on the night of the convention. I went to school with Jill's son, Andrew Quigley (a very nice and bright guy), so I knew him fairly well, although I never met his parents. Hearing from the candidates should be enlightening, as both candidates are relatively unknown and new to politics.
Here's the info for the convention:

When: Wednesday, July 18th at 7:00 p.m.
Where: Four Colonies Clubhouse #3
8100 Monrovia (1 blk West of 81st & Quivira)
Lenexa, KS 66215

Friday, July 13, 2007

KS-2 top target of NRCC

Chris Cillizza of The Washington Post recently confirmed seats that are being targeted by the NRCC as part of their ROMP (Regain Our Majority) program and KS District 2 makes the list.
You can read the whole story here.

I've provided a partial list below of currently-held Democratic seats that are being targeted, because although we have territory that will have to be defended, we also need to be on offense, and that means targeting seats currently held by the Dems. Jim Ryun's fundraising numbers for this last quarter are incredible and it demonstrates his seriousness in winning his old seat back. Lynn Jenkins is also an incredible fundraiser (her numbers should be out soon) and she would beat Boyda as well. I just hope our great Republican candidates remain civil and avoid the temptation to spend thousands of dollars attacking eachother in primary squabbling.

Democratic-held House seats being targeted by the GOP:

1. CA 11th--held by Jerry McNerney
2. FL 16th--held by Tim Mahoney (Mark Foley's old seat)
3. GA 8th--held by Jim Marshall
4. IL 8th--held by Melissa Bean
5. KS 2nd--held by Nancy Boyda
6. PA 10th--held by Chris Carney
7. TX 22--held by Nick Lampson

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Terrorism = poverty and injustice?

Moral Relativists and their leftist symphathizers have long rationalized the use of terrorism by concluding that injustice, poverty, and disempowerment are the root causes rather than a belief in a deeply-held, Islamist ideology (although wealthy terror czar Osama bin Laden and the educated British-born Muslims behind the 7/7 bombings already debunked that theory). If only they were free of their corrupt governments and had adequate housing and employment, there would be no terrorism. The recent Glasgow plot contradicts that line of thinking. British investigators have implicated physicians in the plot and are searching for four other Muslim doctors believed to be involved in the planned attacks (see Forbes article).

When will the elites wake up and realize that this ideology supercedes race, sex, and socio-economic status. Are poor, young uneducated men more susceptible? Definitely, but the common denominator here is the embrace of radical Islam, rapidly in recent years by men and women of all backgrounds and cultures. Fundamentalist Islam is the root of the problem, not poverty, and until we recognize that and demand moderate Muslims to speak up and take back control of their religion, we can expect larger and more deadly attacks to come. Unfortunately, western leaders continue to bask in sunlight of blissful ignorance and self-destructive political correctness.

Monday, July 02, 2007

The Lieberman Factor

Independent Sen. Joe Lieberman is hinting once again that his vote cannot be taken for granted.
Says Lieberman: "I'm not going to make my selection of who to support for president in '08 based on party. I'm going to choose to support whichever of the candidates I think will be the best president of the United States to protect our security against the threat of Islamist terrorism and to rebuild America's economy, health care system, environment and education system."

Lieberman made the comments on ABC’s This Week while praising McCain and Giuliani. Lieberman also said that Hillary, Obama, and Edwards are opposing the war due to the power and pull of “vested interest groups within the left.”

Lieberman has remarked that he remains open to endorsing the Republican candidate for president in ’08 and is even candid on rumors that he may join the Republican party and switch control of the Senate over to the Republicans.

"But the big issue of differentiation is on security," he says. "I want to stress that I don't have any desire or intention to leave the Democratic caucus and go to the Republican caucus. On the other hand, it's not impossible. And if it would happen, it would be around questions related to Iraq and the war on terrorism."

Look for Lieberman to be an influential factor in the ’08 race—his endorsement may help make or break the Dems in key battleground states like NH, MO, MN, WI, IA, MI, NJ, and PA.

When I was working in the Senate for Brownback, Lieberman once joked how most of his interns were Republicans (and this was before his party abandoned him). Lieberman’s principled leadership, independence, and refusal to tow the party line (Lieberman was one of the few Dems to vote for Clinton’s impeachment) demonstrated the far-left shift of the Democratic party, their inability to tolerate any dissent in their ranks, and the power wielded by a statesman who is courted by both sides.