A friend of mine posted the following picture on my Facebook wall recently:
The problem with the Christian -> KKK and Muslim -> ISIS analogy lies in how we define what a fundamentalist or radical is.
For a Christian that would mean looking like Jesus. For a Muslim that would mean looking like Mohammad. Some Muslims, in their devotion to Muhammad, even enter into the bathroom with the left foot because one of the Hadiths (additional teachings and sayings of Mohammad’s life) teach that he entered with his left foot and left with his right foot. Likewise the term “Christian” literally means “little Christs” and there are many places in the Bible which spell out how followers of “the Way” (another title Jesus applied to himself) should think and act.
These should help you understand how its not legitimate for people to call themselves Mohammed or Christ followers without actually following the respective founders.
Most people who legitimately consider themselves Christians and Muslims haven’t actually studied their respective founders. There are a number of lofty sayings and behaviors in Christianity that, upon further inspection, simply don’t enjoy the support of scripture. Likewise there are a number of things that many Muslims do which aren’t supported by the Koran or any of the Hadiths.
So the question to ask with respect to the meme above is whether or not ISIS is acting in accord with what we have recorded about the life and teachings of Muhammad. We should apply the same standard to the KKK.
That will settle the question of legitimacy. The next question raised by the image above is about the spread of a supposed heretical strain of teaching.
The KKK only have at most 8k members and that is spread across groups who often fight with each other about the right to claim the name (source). That’s a clear sign that the KKK’s back has been broken. Furthermore, The last act of terrorism that can be traced back to the KKK appears to be the Michael Donald lynching carried out over 3 decades ago. So given the infighting, dwindling numbers, infighting among disparate groups which all claim the mantle, it’s hard to see how the KKK is an issue or exists in any meaningful way today.
At the most the KKK of today is a glorified trolling organization. A fact backed up by Dylan Roof’s manifesto of sorts where he complained that none of the other KKK members he was in contact with took the racial superiority stuff seriously. “We have no skinheads, no real KKK, no one doing anything but talking on the internet.””
On the other side you have ISIS who, to make a long story short, are operating well within the bounds of what Muhammad taught. And statistics indicate that they are not on the decline.
In summary, the original picture above couldn’t be more wrong.