After much anticipation, the 9/11 Memorial Museum is finally opening. There’s been much hubbub about what should or should not be included in the museum, right down to the verbiage in an educational video making reference to “Islamists.”
I never gave it much thought and attributed the opposition to overly sensitive people. After all, the attackers were Muslim and by virture, Islamic. Then I read this article. It helped me put myself in the shoes of Muslims who were just as horrified by the attacks, some of whom lost friends and loved ones in the attacks.
Being a Christian, I have heard broad statements claiming “all Christians are ________” (you can fill in the blank, I’m sure you’ve heard them too… intolerant, judgmental, ignorant, misogynists. Pick one or add your own!) And I’ve been lumped into those categories by people who don’t know me, but simply assume that since I’m Christian, that’s what I must be.
Most of the people passing judgement haven’t studied the Bible in depth, but are going off of summaries, assumptions, or simply things they’ve heard about the religion. Are we doing the same thing with Muslims?
There are definitely radical elements who claim to be Christians and churches who take some things to an extreme. I don’t want them to define my Christianity to the world. What if that’s what we’re seeing in the Muslim religion?
Words have meaning and the way we string them together in a sentence makes a big difference. If you think words don’t matter, go sit in a courtroom for a day. Every word, dot, and tittle on a contract makes a difference. Sometimes ALL the difference.
There may not be a way to appease everyone concerned about this 9/11 Museum video. The fact is, the people who perpetrated and executed the attacks on 9/11 claimed to be Muslim and believed they were doing the attacks in the name of Islam. Whether or not they really were acting on their holy scriptures is way above my pay grade.
But it’s no different than learning about Christian Crusades. It’s a part of history that doesn’t seem to fit in with what my Bible teaches. Yet Christians did unspeakable things in the name of Christ to further Christianity. It’s a dark period in Christian history. But it happened. We just need to make sure it is relayed accurately.
I still haven’t heard the actual audio from the 9/11 Museum documentary, so I can’t make an informed opinion at this time as to whether or not something should be changed. But when I do, I’ll be looking at it from a little different perspective considering the points made in Dr. Faheem Younus’ article. Let me know what you think and whether or not you’ve heard the documentary firsthand.
Photo credit Jonathan Percy