How You Know You’re a “Radical”/“Extremist”

Not sure what is meant by “radical” or “extremist”?

Is your mind clouded by moral relativism?

Are you, or is someone you know, a radical and an extremist?

Here is a simple test:

  1. Do you believe that death is the right and proper punishment for apostasy (someone leaving your faith)?
  2. Do you believe that homosexuals ought to be punished or killed?
  3. Do you believe that someone who insults your prophet ought to be punished or killed?
  4. Do you believe that women ought to be confined to the home unless in the presence of a male guardian?
  5. Do you believe that your religious law (sharia) ought to be the law of the land and replace democracy?
  6. Do you believe that Jews control the media and are largely responsible for the suffering of your in-group?

If you answered yes to one or more of these questions: you are an extremist, you are a radical!

If you believe that virtually no Muslims living in the West could possibly agree to any of these repugnant beliefs, you are a regressive leftist!

It is easy to condemn ISIS (Islamic State), Al Qaeda, and other terrorists as “radical” or “extremist”. However, many of the fundamental beliefs held by these terrorist groups are also shared by nonviolent extremists including many living here in the West.

Source: 2013 Pew Research poll: The World’s Muslims: Religion, Politics and Society
Source: 2013 Pew Research poll: The World’s Muslims: Religion, Politics and Society

For example: according to the 2013 Pew Research poll: The World’s Muslims: Religion, Politics and Society, a surprising number of Muslims hold very radical views on topics such as stoning for adultery.

In Indonesia, a country often characterized as “moderate”, more than a third of Muslims believe that the appropriate punishment for adultery is stoning to death.

By any meaningful definition of “radical” or “extreme”, stoning as punishment for adultery is radical and extreme even if those who hold this belief are not actively participating in such acts.

Perhaps your not convinced that these extreme views are common here in the West. Then put it to the test as I have. Go to a local Sunni mosque and ask an official if he (yes, always a man) will denounce the practice of capital punishment for sins such as adultery or leaving the Islamic faith. Unless it is one of the few reform minded mosques, you will the attitudes expressed in the following video to be very commonplace:

I attended a local Sunni mosque at the invitation of their outreach director that I met at an ecumenical event. He was a very pleasant and articulate gentleman. However, it didn’t take long for the conversation to get bogged down on the topics of homosexuality and death for apostasy. His homophobic diatribe was jaw-dropping! When I tried to pin him down about death for apostasy, he referred me to a website ( rather than debate me himself. An online chat about apostasy resulted in this answer:

If a Muslim apostatizes and meets the conditions of apostasy – i.e., he is of sound mind, an adult and does that of his own free will – then his blood may be shed with impunity.

Unfortunately, Islam as interpreted by many Muslims worldwide and in the West is a radical and extreme belief system that asserts itself well beyond the religious domain and into all aspects of life including the political and judicial systems. We need to be honest about the extremism that is commonplace throughout the Muslim diaspora today. Certainly not all Muslims, but certainly far more than the tiny 0.1% claimed by Barack Obama and most ignorant politicians.