Fri04182014

Opinion

Another Muslim misses a flight: Who is to blame?

We are waiting for our flight when we spot two Muslim clerics in conversation in front of our gate.
 
 Linda S. Wallace

We are waiting for our flight when we spot two Muslim clerics in conversation in front of our gate. Our minds start drifting back to the terrorists attack on Sept. 11, even though we remind ourselves Islam is not the enemy.

Should we simply ignore these feelings? No, we can’t afford to rely on the timely investments of neighbors to make up for our overdrawn account. Each citizen has a duty to invest in Freedom’s Bank. Whether we invest well or wisely is our choice.

Those who invest heavily in fear might follow in the footsteps of the Delta pilot in Memphis who kicked two Muslim clerics off a flight even though they had been cleared by security. The Commercial Appeal reported last Friday that Imam Mohamed Zaghloul of the Masjid An-Noor Mosque and Imam Masoud Rahman, a previous imam of the Muslim Society of Memphis, were subjected to extra security screening at the gate, then barred from the flight.

The men cleared security at a Transportation Security Administration checkpoint and boarded their plane.

“They were screened and cleared to fly,” said TSA spokesman Jon Allen. “The decision to deny boarding was made by the airline, not TSA,” Allen said.

When democratic nations invest in fear, the parade of emergency withdrawals take a toll. They end up with paralyzing divisions, higher security costs and a loss of individual liberty – for the greater good. Purposeful investments to support liberty, on the other hand, reduce security costs by improving intelligence, collaboration and communication.

Wise citizen-investors might actively seek out a Muslim coach to help them understand Islam. They might walk over to Muslim clerics in an airport to strike up a conversation. “I am a life long learner. Would you support my growth by sharing your knowledge about your faith?”

You see, friendships allow us to see that the greater struggle isn’t between the Muslims, Jews and Christians; rather it is between the good and bad people who practice each of those religions. Each group needs to keep its own kind in check.

A democracy is secure as long as the citizens’ deposits outpace withdrawals. Every time we walk into an airport we ought to ask, “Am I a safe investor? Or are my actions putting the nation at risk?”

(Linda S. Wallace is The Cultural Coach. Read her Cultural IQ blog at http://theculturalcoach.typepad.com/cultural_iq/.)

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