Tue, 11 Oct 1994

`True Lies'

I am very encouraged by two articles I read in the newspapers recently. The first was by Maher Hathout and Salam al-Marayati of the Moslem Public Affairs Council in Los Angeles. (Yes, there are many Moslem Americans). In it they point out that vast difference between the humane religious precepts of Islam and the political repression which is found in too many countries run by dictators who use Islam inappropriately to oppress the people. For example, they quote the Koran (2:256) "There shall be no compulsion in religion."

The second encouraging article was a letter in The Jakarta Post by H.G. Malikmass on Oct. 7, 1994, concerning the movie True Lies. He says the villains (all action movies have villains) were identified correctly by audiences as bad guys. Their actions, not their religion, were the issue. Therefore the movie should not be banned for religious reasons.

Both these articles show at least a healthy acknowledgement of the ways that many truly evil people have tried to corrupt Islam, using it for their own nefarious political aims and contributing greatly to the animosity that unfortunately exists between Moslems and non-Moslems. Bravo!