Measuring Extremism

So how many times have you heard this? Islamic State cuts off heads or they’re selling sex slaves in Africa and the apologists for Islam say, “Oh, that’s radical, that’s extreme, that’s not real Islam. I know some Muslims at work and they’re fine people; and besides that, it’s just a tiny minority that’s doing all those things.” So, in other words, “We don’t need to worry about it.”

What do they mean by extreme? Certainly cutting off heads falls in that category. But, you know there are other things that are extreme, like beating your wife, child brides, inbreeding (i.e., marrying your first cousin). Those are extreme things too. And what do all these extreme things have in common? They’re all in the Sharia. Because the killing of Kafirs (Jihad) is all in the Sharia, as well as child brides and inbreeding. So what we need to do here is to be able to measure not just radical killing, but all forms of radical ideas. In other words, we need to measure the Sharia. This has all been done for us. Pew Research has done a poll of some 38 nations, and what they did was they studied Muslims and how they feel about the Sharia. This is an in-depth study. Interestingly enough, 28% of all those Muslims who think that the Sharia should rule say that apostates should be killed. This is extreme. Killing somebody because they had a change of conscience and leave their religion—if that’s not extreme, what isn’t? And 28% is not a small minority.