Cartoon: Muslim Ban

muslim-ban-1200

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This is another one inspired by current events (as I’m sure you’ve already figured out). The point being made – that folks favoring the Muslim ban because of terrorist attacks would never hold Christians, white people, or men to the same standard – is obvious, but sometimes it’s important to make these obvious points. (And make them again, and again, and again….)

In my first draft script, two of the panels referred to Christianity. I changed that because many Christians have been advocating for the US’s duty to help refugees, and in light of that I didn’t want to seem to be picking on Christians. So I changed one of the panels to be talking about men and mass-murder, instead. And having three different topics (four including the last panel) improves the cartoon.

Artwise, I felt it was important to get this strip out promptly, so some of the things I sometimes do (full backgrounds, nine-panel strips, etc) weren’t right for this strip. Instead, I focused on keeping the drawings loose and lively (as best as I can, anyhow – my drawings usually come out stiffer than I’d prefer). I also worked on making each of the characters from the first three panels very distinct and clear, so that they’d be recognizable as the same characters when they reappeared in the final panel.

Related: Why Trump EO is Still a Racist Muslim Ban | Informed Comment

We’ll See You in Court, 2.0: Once a Muslim Ban, Still a Muslim Ban | American Civil Liberties Union

TRANSCRIPT OF CARTOON

Panel 1
A woman with cat’s-eye glasses is anxiously explaining something.
GLASSES WOMAN: The people who murder abortion doctors don’t represent Christianity.

Panel 2
A man in a suit and tie is explaining something, looking very concerned and raising his arms for emphasis.
SUIT MAN: The white guy who shot up a Sikh temple was just one guy. We can’t tar all white people with that brush!

Panel 3
A balding man in a black t-shirt is speaking calmly, his arms crossed.
BLACK TEE MAN: Sure, about 98% of mass murders are committed by men. But the vast majority of men are nothing like that!

Panel 4
A new character, a woman with black hair and reading from a smartphone, has entered. The three characters from the first three panels are reacting with panic and yelling.
NEW WOMAN: “Police speculate that the attacker may have been Muslim–”
ALL THREE OTHER CHARACTERS YELLING: MUSLIM BAN!

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61 Responses to Cartoon: Muslim Ban

  1. 1
    RonF says:

    I think that a blanket ban on Muslims from immigrating into the U.S. might be unconstitutional and would certainly be un-American. OTOH, suspending immigration from 6 countries that are either failed states or run by people virulently opposed to the U.S. until such time as the State Department and the current Administration is satisfied that they can find a way to distinguish possible terrorists from among the people wishing to enter from those countries is a good idea.

    Yes, I know that some people see this as a stalking horse for an actual “Muslim ban”, and that there are others (possibly including some people in the current Administration) who would truly favor a ban on Muslim immigration. But that’s not what this actually is. The implementation of the previous E.O. on the matter interfered with people who had legitimate business in the U.S. and even people with visas and resident aliens (might have been some actual U.S. citizens in there, I forget). On that basis I’d say that the Trump administration showed gross incompetence *at best*. But that doesn’t invalidate the actual concept, which I think with regards to these 6 countries is fine.

  2. 2
    Jake Squid says:

    RonF,

    Does the fact that the total number of deaths from terrorism perpetrated by citizens of those 6 countries on US soil is zero effect your opinion on the importance of distinguishing possible terrorists from those countries? Or your opinion on the purpose of this executive order?

  3. 3
    Sam Cole says:

    RonF,

    You’re right that this second travel ban is marginally more likely to be legal than the first. But it’s still a cruel, pointless policy that has little, if any, legitimate national security rationale.

    I would encourage you to read this article from Ben Witte, someone who know what he’s talking about. I think he said it well:

    To be sure, the new version of the executive order will have consequences—all of them bad. It will keep large numbers of people from six countries out of the United States for no good reason. It will delay resettlement of large numbers of refugees and prevent altogether resettlement in the United States of a smaller number of refugees. As with the earlier version of the executive order, the overwhelming majority of people affected by this one will not be terrorists or even people against whom there is whiff of suspicion. The overwhelming majority of those affected, rather, will be innocent victims of horrific violence and folks who just want to come to the United States for reasons of tourism or business. It’s terrible policy that will, I suspect, have implications almost as negative for counterterrorism effectiveness as it will for this country’s moral standing and self image.

    All that said, I guess it’s finally competently drafted enough to have a sober discussion about why it’s bad policy. A stupid and harmful policy is, I’ll concede, better than a crazy and evil one. That’s… progress?

  4. 4
    Ortvin Sarapuu says:

    “until such time as the State Department and the current Administration is satisfied that they can find a way to distinguish possible terrorists from among the people wishing to enter from those countries is a good idea.”

    That’s a big ‘until’.

    In fact that looks like a recipe for an indefinite ban.

  5. 5
    JutGory says:

    Sam Cole,
    So, ALL of the consequences of the ban will be bad? Do you believe Ben Witte when he says that? It will keep people out for no good reason? Do we need a good reason? Can’t we simply say, good or bad, we are not accepting any immigrants, students, or tourists this year? Are we obligated to let people immigrate here? Whom should our immigration policy serve? Is the goal of our immigration policy to serve this country, or the rest of the world?
    -Jut

  6. 6
    Chris says:

    Man, if only national security experts from across the aisle had already told us what they think of this ban. If only they would say whether it would help or hurt our counter-terrorism efforts, or whether it will help or hurt ISIS. If only we knew whether the Department of Homeland Security found any reason for its existence. If only we knew whether Trump relied on the intelligence community in drafting it, or simply allowed it to be written by extremist bloggers.

    I guess we can only speculate.

  7. 7
    Sebastian H says:

    This is an interesting and correct parallel to draw.

    Equally correct is the insight that if you want to stop Muslim terrorism, the best bet is to normalize relations with the majority of Muslim groups in such a way that the extremists have trouble gaining traction.

    That same advice applies equally well to how to deal with violent racists and Christian communities in the US…

  8. 8
    Sam Cole says:

    Jut,

    I think all of the additional consequences are bad compared to what we have now. It’s not like the choices are “travel ban” or “open borders.” To use a wacky analogy, if someone proposed duct taping people tightly to their seats instead of using seat belts, I would say that “all of the consequences” of that are bad, even though that it would presumably be safer than riding without a seat belt.

    I think the ban will harm refugees (and visa applicants) without making people here safer.

    Unlike Trump, I don’t believe immigration is a zero sum game. So, when you ask “Whom should our immigration policy serve? Is the goal of our immigration policy to serve this country, or the rest of the world?”, I would say, at least in this context, “Thankfully, we don’t have to choose.” I think the ban serves neither.

    First, the ban obviously harms people from the six affected countries in minor (unnecessary inconvenience) and major (inability to escape violence) ways. I assume this is undisputed?

    Second, the ban almost certainly harms people here. It makes it less likely that Muslim-majority countries will cooperate with the United States (admittedly, removing Iraq ameliorates some of that). In fact, I’m not aware of any national security expert who thinks it is a good idea. It increases distrust of the government in Muslim communities (though, to be fair, that ship has probably sailed). It decreases international goodwill and our moral standing. It could harm local economies that rely on refugees or visa holders from those six countries. It hurts companies’ ability to recruit and increases transaction costs and bureaucracy for anyone who wants to bring someone from the six countries here. Banning people from Iran harms the already fragile diplomatic situation there. It’s a boon to ISIL propagandists, even though there has not yet been an official statement. And there are all sorts of smaller costs, inconveniences, and problems that it causes. To take one anecdotal example, one of my friend’s roommates is a Syrian visa holder. If his visa expires and the Trump administration declines to renew it (there’s a lot of discretion under the order), my friend will have to find someone else to help pay the rent. A small thing, yes (though not for his roommate), but there is going to be a lot of stuff like that. I don’t really have time to list all the negative consequences of the ban to the U.S., because they are legion.

    Finally, the ban will not reduce terrorism and is likely to increase it, for the reasons I laid out above (decrease in goodwill, less trust, etc.). Others have already pointed out that no one from the six affected countries has committed a deadly terrorist attack in the United States. (There are a few incidents involving non-deadly knife attacks by Somalian refugees, but (1) increased stigmatization will likely increase, not decrease, that sort of thing and (2) Somalia is just one of the six countries). Also, intuitively, why would a terrorist go through the rigorous two-year refugee vetting process when he or she could more easily obtain a visa through one of the many loopholes in the visa portion of the ban?

    In sum, yes, all of the consequences of this ban are negative when compared to the status quo. Nothing in my comment raised the question of whom our immigration policies should serve, because the travel ban harms U.S. residents and people in other parts of the world.

  9. 9
    pillsy says:

    @RonF:

    Yes, I know that some people see this as a stalking horse for an actual “Muslim ban”, and that there are others (possibly including some people in the current Administration) who would truly favor a ban on Muslim immigration.

    It seems like it should be relevant that not only would people in the current Administration truly favor a ban on Muslim immigration, they themselves view the EO as exactly this sort of stalking horse.

    @JutGory:

    Whom should our immigration policy serve? Is the goal of our immigration policy to serve this country, or the rest of the world?

    This dichotomy seems curiously irrelevant, as people advocating for this bill have yet explain how it makes our immigration policy better serve this country. The argument based on national security appears to be a total bust, and so far I’ve seen no alternative rationale.

  10. 10
    pillsy says:

    @Sebastian H:

    That same advice applies equally well to how to deal with violent racists and Christian communities in the US…

    So no drone strike on Richard Spencer?

    I think I can live with that.

  11. 11
    pillsy says:

    Also, Amp, the guy in panel two has memorably amusing hair, so I think that was a success.

  12. 12
    Tamme says:

    “Do we need a good reason? Can’t we simply say, good or bad, we are not accepting any immigrants, students, or tourists this year? Are we obligated to let people immigrate here?”

    Depends what you mean by ‘can’. Legally, yes, of course, the US has a sovereign right under international law to exclude anyone it wants, up to and including everybody, or whole groups of people.

    On the other hand, generally in a democracy we require more of policy than it simply meeting a standard of technical legality. The government also has the legal right to mandate everybody paint their front doors red, but this would be widely considered pointless, wasteful and inadvisory.

    So if you want to show that an immigration ban is good policy, you need to ask more than just “do we have the legal right to impose this policy”?

    “Whom should our immigration policy serve? Is the goal of our immigration policy to serve this country, or the rest of the world?”

    You’re assuming that a policy has to serve one or the other, and can’t serve both. Nobody would ask “Should our education policy serve parents, or children?”.

  13. 13
    Tamme says:

    “Equally correct is the insight that if you want to stop Muslim terrorism, the best bet is to normalize relations with the majority of Muslim groups in such a way that the extremists have trouble gaining traction.”

    While I’m sympathetic to what you’re saying, I think it’s Americocentric. A lot of the Islamicised violence we’re seeing has its origin in purely domestic conditions within majority Islamic countries (Egypt, Yemen, Algeria) or in international conflicts that don’t involve the US (Kashmir, Azerbaijan). Improving Islamic groups’ relationship with the USA might insulate the USA from the effects of Islamicised violence, but I doubt it will actually stop the violence itself.

  14. 14
    Mookie says:

    @RonF

    suspending immigration from 6 countries that are either failed states or run by people virulently opposed to the U.S. until such time as the State Department and the current Administration is satisfied that they can find a way to distinguish possible terrorists from among the people wishing to enter from those countries is a good idea.

    It remains to be seen if and why this would be a good idea, much less if it is at all possible to make such assurances, but of course you must know that there are more than 6 countries that, by any definition of the word, count as “failed” states, ditto countries that “oppose” the US, so that rationale has no internal logic. In light of your acknowledgement that not every immigrant is a terrorist-in-the-making (terrorism in the US, irrespective of its impetus, is overwhelming committed by people “radicalized” from within rather than from without), I don’t understand why the US would not want to embrace and provide a path towards citizenship for people who are interested in abandoning such “failed” states, who are attempting to reach the US not because they oppose it but because they deem it a friendly refuge from their own domestic terrorism and their own authoritarian governments, who are seeking the opportunity to work and raise families in a pro-capitalist country that yearns for more skilled labor, a higher birth rate, and a replenished inventory of eager tax-payers.

    I am especially puzzled by conservatives crafting anti-immigrant policies that will inevitably reject and alienate people who are much more likely to vote conservative if given the opportunity.

    Finally, you seem to be suggesting that governments are enlisting citizens to emigrate under false pretenses in order to act as mercenaries for the state via the woefully inefficient tool of mass murder. Is this a legitimate concern with a strong basis in reality?

  15. 15
    MJJ says:

    I am especially puzzled by conservatives crafting anti-immigrant policies that will inevitably reject and alienate people who are much more likely to vote conservative if given the opportunity.

    Because most of these people will not vote conservative if given the opportunity. For example, polls show Latino Americans to be more liberal than Americans as a whole on just about every issue. The idea that there are large numbers of immigrants who would be conservative except for the immigration issue, or that promoting more immigration will ingratiate the Republican Party to immigrants does not seem to be borne out by the evidence.

  16. 16
    MJJ says:

    This comic is interesting primarily because it shows such a great insight into the liberal mindset. Namely, that most liberals see themselves as the insurgents speaking truth to power to the system even though they have controlled the system for several decades.

    In reality, the media and almost the entire political class go out of their way to avoid blaming Muslims for any terrorist attack committed by people who are Muslims, but are very willing to blame white males and Christians whenever one of them commits a terrorist attack.

    After the San Bernadino and Pulse Nightclub shootings, we were chided by the media not to blame Muslims, and in fact, groups like the ACLU tried to blame conservative Christians who opposed same-sex marriage or who tried to pass legislation that said that not wanting to participate in a same-sex wedding should not result in a business being bankrupted. This, despite the fact that one of the companies associated with such politics, Chic-Fil-A, actually went to the scene of the Pulse Nightclub shooting to offer food and drink to those who were in the club and to the first responders.

    On the other hand, after the Charleston Church massacre, one of the first responses was for PayPal to blacklist the Council of Conservative Citizens, because its publishing of black-on-white crimes is one of the things that had stoked Roof’s anger. It also served as the impetus to remove Confederate flags and monuments in various areas around the country. No concern there about whether or not such an act would alienate southern whites and drive more of them to terrorism.

    For another example, look at how the Washington Post cautioned against holding Muslims responsible for the San Bernadino shootings or the Paris attacks, but was perfectly willing to hold white Americans responsible for the Charleston massacre.

    If there are double standards, the one presented in this cartoon is much less prevalent than the reverse, at least within the mainstream media and mainstream politicians.

  17. 17
    Sam Cole says:

    Legally, yes, of course, the US has a sovereign right under international law to exclude anyone it wants, up to and including everybody, or whole groups of people.

    Not to quibble, but technically this isn’t true under international law or domestic law. (There’s also this old document we found in a basement somewhere, but the Trump administration, so far, does not seem to be too concerned about that archaism.)

    Then again, the United States has, let’s just say, a mixed record of compliance with international law, and the applicability of 8 U.S.C. § 1152(a)(1) and the Establishment Clause to the revised travel ban is debatable. But it’s certainly not accurate to say that “[l]egally, yes, of course, the US has a sovereign right . . . to exclude anyone it wants.” Legally, no, practically, maybe.

  18. 18
    Jake Squid says:

    … liberals see themselves as the insurgents speaking truth to power to the system even though they have controlled the system for several decades.

    What? I had to stop reading at this point. In what way have liberals controlled the system for the last 30 to 40 years?

  19. 19
    pillsy says:

    @Jake Squid:

    Remember, getting some articles published in newspapers is a much better proxy for power than controlling Congress and the White House, and, you know, actually promulgating an EO banning Muslims [1] with San Bernadino as a justification for it.

    [1] Can we just skip the part where conservatives piss on our legs and tell us it’s raining on this one? I really like this pair of pants.

  20. 20
    Sarah says:

    I had to stop reading after this:

    … the ACLU tried to blame conservative Christians who opposed same-sex marriage or who tried to pass legislation that said that not wanting to participate in a same-sex wedding should not result in a business being bankrupted.

    That is not how I would describe the stance of a business advocating for the right to reject some nth fraction of their own customers. Unless you meant that bankruptcy would reasonably follow a mass boycott of a business that discriminated against its customers? But I don’t remember any legislation being proposed that would have banned boycotts, so I’m at a loss to explain this.

  21. 21
    Ortvin Sarapuu says:

    “Not to quibble, but technically this isn’t true under international law”

    OK, well, the US has signed up to a convention saying that it would allow refugees in. But it also has the right, if it chooses to, to withdraw from that convention.

    It’s true that right now the government seems to think it can remain compliant with the convention while still passing laws that contradict the conventions’ obligations. But that’s the way international conventions are usually discarded – not explicitly, but implicitly through conflicting laws.

    Please note just for the record I’m not saying the US -should- do that. Just that as a sovereign state, it has this right.

  22. 22
    MJJ says:

    First of all, I am thinking most specifically here of Sweet Cakes by Melissa in Oregon.

    That is not how I would describe the stance of a business advocating for the right to reject some nth fraction of their own customers.

    I am not talking about rejecting customers, just rejecting certain ceremonies; the bakery owners were perfectly willing to sell baked goods to gay people, they just did not want to bake a cake that celebrated a same-sex wedding ceremony.

    Unless you meant that bankruptcy would reasonably follow a mass boycott of a business that discriminated against its customers?

    Do you honestly not know that not baking a cake for a same-sex wedding can result in 6-figure fines?

    But I don’t remember any legislation being proposed that would have banned boycotts, so I’m at a loss to explain this.

    No one is talking about boycotts, we are talking about state-imposed fines. That’s what a lot of the “religious freedom” legislation was about, making certain that businesses that declined to participate in same-sex weddings and the like would not be put out of business by massive fines.

    Were you really unaware of these fines, or that they are what I was referring to?

    Remember, getting some articles published in newspapers is a much better proxy for power than controlling Congress and the White House, and, you know, actually promulgating an EO banning Muslims [1] with San Bernadino as a justification for it.

    [1] Can we just skip the part where conservatives piss on our legs and tell us it’s raining on this one? I really like this pair of pants.

    Can we skip the part where we pretend that history started this year? I think it is pretty difficult to deny that liberals have been in charge of the direction of our social culture for the past several decades.

  23. 23
    Ampersand says:

    MJJ:

    You’ve shifted the goalposts by about a mile.

    In your earlier post, you wrote:

    … liberals see themselves as the insurgents speaking truth to power to the system even though they have controlled the system for several decades.

    So in this version, liberals control the system, and have for decades. Since the original post was about a change in the legal system enacted by an executive order, I read this as meaning liberals control the government.

    Now you say:

    I think it is pretty difficult to deny that liberals have been in charge of the direction of our social culture for the past several decades.

    So now, instead of having “control” of “the system,” liberals are only “in charge of the direction”; and instead of “the system,” it’s “our social culture.” That’s an enormous change in what you’re claiming.

    It’s obviously true that liberals have not had control of the system – meaning government – for decades. Control has shifted back and forth between the parties, and even when the Democrats are in control, that doesn’t mean liberals have control, or that Republicans aren’t able to have an effect on what laws are passed. (For example: If it had been up to liberals, we would have gotten single payer health care, not the ACA. But liberals had to compromise both with centrist Democrats and, in some ways, with the GOP, leading to the actual law we got). So when you say liberals have controlled the system for decades, you were flat-out wrong.

    But I think it’s true that liberals have had more influence on the direction of cultural change – feminism, LGBT rights, civil rights, etc – for decades. (Although “more” influence doesn’t mean that liberals have had total control, alas, or the changes would have gone further and faster than they have.)

    * * *

    I’ve made a new thread for discussion of Wedding Cakes and Gay Weddings. Please take any further discussion of that subject there. Thanks!

  24. 24
    Jake Squid says:

    Reagan, Bush the Elder, Bush the Yunger. That’s 20 of the past 36 years. GOP control of the House for 18 of the last 36 years and 18 of the last 20 years. GOP control of the Senate for 18 of the last 36 years and 12 of the last 20 years. Majority of SCOTUS justices nominated by GOP 36 of the last 36 years (I think – correct me if I’m wrong).

    I’m flabbergasted by your claim, MJJ, and await evidence supporting your assertion. Please don’t disappoint me.

  25. 25
    pillsy says:

    @Jake Squid:

    To be scrupulously fair, the Court has been evenly split since Antonin Scalia died. The GOP then refused to let Barack Obama seat a Justice and proceeded to collide with the Russian intelligence services to ensure that, among other things, Donald Trump would get to fill that seat.

  26. 26
    Jake Squid says:

    My mistake. So cut that penultimate sentence to 35 of the last 36 years.

  27. 27
    Ampersand says:

    Focusing on “mass murders” is silly because they’re incredibly rare and the total cost is actually not that high.

    I agree. However, since the people arguing in favor of the Muslim ban do, in fact, focus on mass murders (and terrorism), it’s fair to point out that this standard is not used by them when it comes to white people, Christians, and men.

  28. 28
    gin-and-whiskey says:

    GLASSES WOMAN: The people who murder abortion doctors don’t represent Christianity.

    Sure they do, at least to some degree. And if we were considering voluntarily admitting people who seemed like they would support that; it would be a bad idea. If you’re on the “we dox abortionists using photos of rifles” mailing list that should disqualify you. Most of those folks are citizens, though. not much you can do about those. And fortunately it seems like most Christians actively oppose murdering folks. Still, this one is largely accurate.

    SUIT MAN: The white guy who shot up a Sikh temple was just one guy. We can’t tar all white people with that brush!

    Well, we–which is to say liberals and liberal groups– actually do tar white people with all sorts of brushes. This comparison might not be apt. But we should also perhaps pay a bit of attention to accuracy, while we’re at it. It’s a question of rate and proportionality: Are the 210 million white folks in the U.S. are disproportionately violent? We don’t normally go there because it would lead folks down the “analyze crime rates by race” road (which liberals avoid for various reasons,) but if you’re going to suggest it’s unfair perhaps we should look that way again.

    BLACK TEE MAN: Sure, about 98% of mass murders are committed by men. But the vast majority of men are nothing like that!

    [shrug] Men are much more criminal, relatively speaking. And unsurprisingly, we treat them as such. We jail them more. Police shoot them more often. Juries give them longer sentences than women, for similar crimes. And so on. Moreover, we do that even though men are half of the population and are obviously pretty well represented in the power structure.

    Focusing on “mass murders” is silly because they’re incredibly rare and the total cost is actually not that high.

    If you look at how people actually evaluate and respond to increased risk, it would not support the cartoon. Those populations which are feared to be higher crime/risk actually DO get treated as such, it’s just that the overall risk of mass murder in particular is so low as to be meaningless. Here, people use “terrorism” as a catchall but they’re talking about more things than blowing up skyscrapers.

    no one from the six affected countries has committed a deadly terrorist attack in the United States.

    This is not sensible.

    First of all, it takes no account of attempts, plannings, or anything which was successfully stopped. “Even though lots of men attempted rape this month, we managed to stop them all, so we don’t think men will attempt rape!” would be silly for the same reason.

    The proper analysis is whether they have supported, abetted, fomented, aided, attempted, or otherwise increased the likelihood of terrorism. It doesn’t matter whether they manage to achieve the goal.

    Second, the whole concept of terrorism tends to be that it is very rare. You might only get one major attack a decade but if it includes anything major it can be thousands. And someone will probably pull off a really lethal attack at some point–biological, nuclear, etc–which will kill tends or hundreds of thousands. The fact that we have not yet had this group commit a terrorist act does not mean that the group is not at higher risk for committing those acts. It’s hardly much data at all.

    Third, it implies that we should only care about the commission of a terrorist act. But we can also be concerned about all of the lower level stuff.

  29. 29
    Pete Patriot says:

    However, since the people arguing in favor of the Muslim ban do, in fact, focus on mass murders (and terrorism), it’s fair to point out that this standard is not used by them when it comes to white people, Christians, and men.

    Is it really a double standard? Suppose a group of ultra-Christian White Nationalist Male Chauvinists launched a series of Crusades in six Eastern European countries, and that these effectively destroyed any semblance of a functioning government in those states and reduced them to civil war. Oh, and assume they also had the avowed plan of overturning the US Constitution and replacing it with a Christian Dominion.

    Do you seriously think pro-Muslim ban supporters wouldn’t have a problem with this? We’re currently in advanced Red scare paranoia over Russia merely hacking emails, they would absolutely lose their minds.

  30. 30
    Sam Cole says:

    Is it really a double standard? Suppose a group of ultra-Christian White Nationalist Male Chauvinists launched a series of Crusades in six Eastern European countries, and that these effectively destroyed any semblance of a functioning government in those states and reduced them to civil war. Oh, and assume they also had the avowed plan of overturning the US Constitution and replacing it with a Christian Dominion.

    Your scenario is not analogous at all. Suffice it to say, the situations in the six countries (well, five, since most people agree that Iran is not a failed state) are way more complex than “Muslim fundamentalists destroyed everything.” (This is an internet comment, not a book. But I’ll just say this: You really think the violence in Syria was caused by Muslim fundamentalism? Really?)

    But even in your non-analogous scenario: yes, it would still be gravely immoral, stupid, and cruel to ban people fleeing the violence from coming into this country, especially if we relied on Christians around the world to fight back against this ultra-Christian White Nationalist Male Chauvinist group.

  31. 31
    Mookie says:

    The idea that there are large numbers of immigrants who would be conservative except for the immigration issue, or that promoting more immigration will ingratiate the Republican Party to immigrants does not seem to be borne out by the evidence.

    Incorrect. And again. From that first link:

    American-born Muslims (a group that includes many African American Muslims) tended to vote Democratic, while immigrant Muslims—a group that included many professionals, especially doctors and businessmen—leaned more Republican.

  32. 32
    Humble Talent says:

    I replied to this comic when you put it n Twitter, but I figured I’d expand it a little here.

    The difference between Christian and Muslim violence is scope.

    Christianity makes up about 70% of America’s 318 million people, or 244 million people. When a Christian murders an abortion doctor, for instance, the fraction of Christians in America who has murdered an abortion doctor is 1/244,000,000 or about 0.00000041%.

    Muslims on the other hand, account for about 3% of the American population, or 9,540,000 people, so when a self-hating gay Muslim shoots up a nightclub, or when a disgruntled Co-worker thinks it would be appropriate to behead his coworkers with his wife at a Christmas party, they represent 1/9,540,000 or 0.00001% of their population. This is still a staggeringly small percentage…. So it wouldn’t be fair to mar all Muslims with the same brush.

    But… And this is the huge but…. There are just as many Muslim mass murderers as there are Christian mass murderers. Depending on who’s numbers you use, what you want to count in on as “mass murders”, the number varies slightly, but generally they’re still close to parity. Same if you count Christian extremist violence (like bombing abortion clinics) against Muslim extremist violence. Some progressives even cite that as proof that Muslims are no more violent than Christians.

    This is sadly misinformed.

    You see… There are more than 23 Christians in America for every Muslim, so you would expect that the raw number in incidents for Christian violence would be 23 times higher than that of Muslims. It isn’t, remember: parity. That means that the average Muslim is 2300% more likely (plus or minus a couple hundred percent) than your average Christian to perform these kinds of acts. The number becomes even more stark if you record the numbers by body count (Funny aside: When left leaning outlets compile these numbers, they always use a start date after 9-11 but before the Pulse Nightclub shooting. I wonder why.)

    I’m not insinuating that this means that your average Muslim is violent. I want to be very clear: These are vanishingly small numbers, and should be treated as such. But… And this is another huge But… I think that Islam as a whole has a violence problem. Remember that American Muslims are actually more integrated and therefore have lower violence rates than their European counterparts. There’s a legitimate discussion to be had about Islam’s violence problem, and I think it’s derailed when people tout out false equivalencies and try to pretend that it doesn’t even exist.

  33. 33
    pillsy says:

    Islam may have a “violence problem”, but it’s a rather strange violence problem if you’re focused on the US, where Muslims commit a disproportionately small amount of violent crime. The focus on rare mass murders where a bunch of people die is… actually pretty dumb across the board. It’s dumb when it’s being used to justify Trump’s EO, it’s dumb when it’s being used to justify bans of expensive, scary-looking firearms that people almost never use to commit murder, and it’s dumb when it’s being used as an excuse to people suffering from mental illness. Shit, it’s dumb when it means we have to take off our fucking shoes to get on an airplane. I guess we can all be glad that Richard Reid’s failed attack didn’t involve cramming a bomb up his ass, or flying would be even worse.

    We end up talking about stuff that kills well under 1 in 1,000,000 people/year. Most people will literally not cross the street to avoid that level of risk. If you really want to make it a priority for law enforcement, you can make the case, but using these screwed-up outlier events as an excuse to deform the lives of millions of people is ridiculous, and people really need to stop doing it.

  34. 34
    Mookie says:

    Remember that American Muslims are actually more integrated and therefore have lower violence rates than their European counterparts.

    Hmm. That “therefore” is interesting. While I do wonder about the precise question being begged, “integrated” is also doing yeoman’s work. What value is integration as a metric for gauging propensity towards certain types of violence when second-, third- and fourth+ generations of non-white Americans feel, with near uniformity, alienated by the dominant culture, which in turn has a Violent Racism Problem.

    It’s probably useful to note, when comparing such acts, that there is a whole history prior to comparatively large-scale immigration of Muslims into the US where the whole of its domestic terrorism was committed by Americans of European descent practicing the Christian faith, often against Americans of color and more often against one another, whereby any one instance of violence by a Muslim suddenly, in light of this, assumes disproportionate statistical significance in an entirely different way than simply noting that there are comparatively few Muslims living in the US, fewer still who are violent criminals or terrorists.

    Gleaning from this a “violence problem” unique to Muslims requires more heavy lifting and special-pleading than attributing violence to men, full stop. Also, white communities probably have some ‘splaining to do, given the scale and scope of white-on-white violence.

    Finally, we’ve a red herring about “European Muslims,” who are overwhelmingly of European and Middle Eastern descent. In the US, this is not the case.

  35. 35
    Humble Talent says:

    pillsy says:

    March 16, 2017 at 8:40 am
    Islam may have a “violence problem”, but it’s a rather strange violence problem if you’re focused on the US, where Muslims commit a disproportionately small amount of violent crime. The focus on rare mass murders where a bunch of people die is… actually pretty dumb across the board.

    It’s… true. You have a great point. My only rebuttal is that the crimes that Muslims tend to disproportionately commit are… maybe “more offensive” is the right term, but I struggled there… Honour killings, beheading, spousal abuse, mass murder, throwing acid, rape gangs, hate crimes… What makes these crimes different isn’t JUST that they’re unusual in Western democracies, but that they’re all rooted in the kinds of things that progressives usually care about: misogyny, homophobia, religious zealotry.

    It should be hard to take seriously a movement that purports to care deeply about the plight of gay people, for instance, while purposefully ignoring the minority demographic that kills more of them in raw numbers than the group they most often protest.

  36. 36
    Humble Talent says:

    Mookie says:

    What value is integration as a metric for gauging propensity towards certain types of violence when second-, third- and fourth+ generations of non-white Americans feel, with near uniformity, alienated by the dominant culture, which in turn has a Violent Racism Problem.

    I don’t… Understand… What you’re asking here. If the question is “Does integration help the children of minority immigrants, and are they less likely to commit violence?” Then the answer is… Complicated. Books have been written on it. They’re much less likely to commit the kinds of crime I associate with Muslim extremism… Honor killings, mass murder, beheading… But violence in general? Less clear. Maybe?

    I also think your assertion that White America, specifically, has a “Violent Racism Problem” is factually inaccurate, and borderline manic. A racism problem, we could talk about, you might even be right. A violent racism problem? That’s an uphill climb to prove.

    It’s probably useful to note, when comparing such acts, that there is a whole history prior to comparatively large-scale immigration of Muslims into the US where the whole of its domestic terrorism was committed by Americans of European descent practicing the Christian faith, often against Americans of color and more often against one another

    Only if you’re trying to set up some kind of moral equivalency. While our history might be important to learn from, saying “This group is just as bad as that other group was a couple generations back.” Is patently useless. Where’s the value, except in trying to excuse the current problem away? And does it even do that? You’re comparing current Muslims to Christians in a time where American Christianity was at its worst… What do you think that says?

    whereby any one instance of violence by a Muslim suddenly, in light of this, assumes disproportionate statistical significance in an entirely different way than simply noting that there are comparatively few Muslims living in the US, fewer still who are violent criminals or terrorists.

    That’s mathematically illiterate. The fact that the Muslim population punches at the same weight class as a population 23 times it’s size is significant. Mass murder statistics always suffer from small sample sizes because of their relative rarity, but this trend continues year over year and has for decades.

    Gleaning from this a “violence problem” unique to Muslims requires more heavy lifting and special-pleading than attributing violence to men, full stop.

    What? Why? It’s the exact same math… Frequency of crime, divided by population size, and compared to the same calculation from another population. Saying something like that REEKS of partisan hackery.

    Also, white communities probably have some ‘splaining to do, given the scale and scope of white-on-white violence.

    Factually inaccurate. Violent crimes with a white victim tend to be about 10% more likely to be non-white than violent crimes with a black victim tend to be non-black. Also, white people tend to commit violent crimes at a per capita rate less than black people. There’s a whole lot of reasons for that, but there’s no universe where “white people have ‘splaining to do” that doesn’t require some other “‘splaining ” first.

    Finally, we’ve a red herring about “European Muslims,” who are overwhelmingly of European and Middle Eastern descent. In the US, this is not the case.

    I’ve never heard that cited before, but even it it’s true… What’s your point? Regardless of where they’re from, they’re more integrated and less violent. If Muslims from a certain geographical area are culturally more similar to us to make that easier… Yay?

  37. 37
    Ampersand says:

    Humble Talent, your comments seem to me to contain a lot of implied disdain for the people here on this forum who disagree with you. For example, the snide implication that lefties (including, presumably, the ones here) “purport” to care about gay people but actually don’t. Or that if someone disagrees with you about what racism is, that’s a “conspiracy theory.” This sort of passive-aggressive sneering at people who disagree with you is a consistent (although not universal) pattern in your comments.

    Please try and do better if you want to continue posting here. And if you don’t like the comment polices here, that’s totally fine, but the solution is to stop submitting comments here.

    * * *

    while purposefully ignoring the minority demographic that kills more of them in raw numbers

    Do you mean in the USA, or worldwide? And in either case, citation needed.

    [Edited to revise a bit that came out unintentionally snarky.]

  38. 38
    pillsy says:

    It’s… true. You have a great point. My only rebuttal is that the crimes that Muslims tend to disproportionately commit are… maybe “more offensive” is the right term, but I struggled there… Honour killings, beheading, spousal abuse, mass murder, throwing acid, rape gangs, hate crimes… What makes these crimes different isn’t JUST that they’re unusual in Western democracies, but that they’re all rooted in the kinds of things that progressives usually care about: misogyny, homophobia, religious zealotry.

    I’d need to see some convincing evidence that Muslims in the US are disproportionately likely to commit spousal abuse than non-Muslims. It’s a very common crime, and unlike the others, the only one that contributes significantly to overall risk of violent crime victimization.

    I’d also be very surprised to learn that, in terms of absolute numbers of victims, Muslims committed a majority of anti-LGBT hate crimes in the US.

  39. 39
    Sarah says:

    I don’t think that claim is very credible. The FBI’s 2015 hate crime statistics don’t identify offenders’ religions, but they do identify them by race (and ethnicity, but just Latino, non-Latino, or multiple/unknown, which isn’t very helpful here).

    Of 1,219 incidents motivated by sexual orientation bias and 118 motivated by gender identity bias:

    515, 38.5%, were committed by white offenders
    370, 27.7%, were committed by Black/African American offenders
    14, 1.0%, were committed by Asian, Nat. Amer., or Pac. Islander offenders
    213, 15.9%, were committed by offenders of unknown or multiple races
    225, 16.8%, offenses did not have a known offender

    So, for Muslims to have committed more than 668 anti-LGBT hate crimes in the U.S. in 2015, most of the white and/or African American offenders would have to have been Muslims, and that’s really unlikely. Even if all the unknown offenders and all known offenders with unknown race were Muslims, we’d still need more than 200 from the other groups.

    I would be interested to see statistics on hate crimes that do take into account the offender’s religion, but the FBI, at least, doesn’t appear to collect them.

    Sources
    Table breaking down the hate crime motivation by offender’s race:
    https://ucr.fbi.gov/hate-crime/2015/tables-and-data-declarations/5tabledatadecpdf

    Index for the rest of the data:
    https://ucr.fbi.gov/hate-crime/2015/resource-pages/tablesbytitle_final

    The 2014 and 2013 tables tell a similar story:
    https://ucr.fbi.gov/hate-crime/2014/tables/table-5
    https://ucr.fbi.gov/hate-crime/2013/tables/5tabledatadecpdf

  40. 40
    gin-and-whiskey says:

    pillsy says:
    March 23, 2017 at 10:32 am
    I’d also be very surprised to learn that, in terms of absolute numbers of victims, Muslims committed a majority of anti-LGBT hate crimes in the US.

    Of course they don’t. “Absolute numbers” won’t ever apply to a tiny minority.

    Islam is roughly 20% of the world population. However, Islamic-majority countries are a disproportionate %age of those countries which are anti-gay. I don’t know the answer but I would not be surprised to find out that Muslims committed a disproportionately high %age of anti-gay crimes, mostly based on facts like this:
    In 13 countries, being gay or bisexual is punishable by death. These are; Sudan, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Mauritania, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Qatar, UAE, parts of Nigeria, parts of Somalia, parts of Syria and parts of Iraq.

    Also, an incredibly high percentage of Muslims (don’t know an average but it looks north of 90%) in this Pew poll believe homosexuality is immoral.

    In fact, that whole Pew poll is fascinating. You learn things like this:

    In four of the seven countries where the question was asked in the Middle East-North Africa region, at least half of Muslims say honor killings of accused men are never justified: Jordan (81%), Morocco (64%), Tunisia (62%) and Lebanon (55%). Smaller percentages share this view in the Palestinian territories (46%), Egypt (41%) and Iraq (33%). But in only two countries in the region – Morocco (65%) and Tunisia (57%) – does a majority reject honor killings of accused women. In the other countries surveyed in the region, the percentage of Muslims who reject honor killings of women ranges
    from 45% in Lebanon to 22% in Iraq.

    Do you think the views in that poll are OK? I don’t. I don’t want to be around a lot of people who think like that, and I don’t really want to admit them into the U.S. so that they can proceed to do their best to nudge social acceptance of those views.

  41. 41
    gin-and-whiskey says:

    Muslims make up roughly 1% of the population (January 2016 estimate.)

    If Muslims commit those crimes at the same rate as the general population, they would be expected to commit ~1%, or ~13 offenses/year.

    Unlike larger groups like “whites” or “blacks,” the number of offenses for Muslims is so small that it would be highly variable in practice (IOW, you should neither be overjoyed at “6” or appalled at “26”), but 13 is the expected long term average.

    U.S. Muslims are not committing more than half of the absolute number of crimes, because that would require a 50-fold difference, either in criminality or reporting. This mostly goes to show why claims based on absolute numbers are often absurd; we should be talking about rates.

  42. 42
    Chris says:

    Humble Talent, I wouldn’t be surprised if Muslims worldwide commit the majority of anti-gay violence, given the policies of many Muslim theocracies.

    That said, I agree with those who’ve said they’d be surprised if this is the case in the U.S. or in your home country of Canada.

    The idea that it’s strange for U.S. (and Canadian) progressives to spend most of our time protesting anti-gay rhetoric, action and policies from Christians also doesn’t hold up for me. It makes perfect sense for an activist group to focus their energy on the things that most affect them, and a gay individual in the U.S. or Canada is far more likely to have their rights constrained by Christians than by Muslims, simply because of the fact that Christians make up a majority of anti-gay politicians in these countries. I expect progressives living in Muslim theocracies likely focus most of their energy on Muslim anti-gay bigots.

  43. 43
    Mookie says:

    Violent crimes with a white victim tend to be about 10% more likely to be non-white than violent crimes with a black victim tend to be non-black.

    This is, with respect, unnecessarily convoluted. We are not discussing predictions (no one mentioned ‘likelihood’) and what you write above doesn’t address, much less contradict, what I wrote. To repeat it, white victims of violence are overwhelming victimized by white offenders.

  44. 44
    pillsy says:

    @gin-and-whiskey:

    Of course they don’t. “Absolute numbers” won’t ever apply to a tiny minority.

    Well, yes, but that appeared to be Humble Talent’s claim.

    Do you think the views in that poll are OK? I don’t. I don’t want to be around a lot of people who think like that, and I don’t really want to admit them into the U.S. so that they can proceed to do their best to nudge social acceptance of those views.

    Hey, remember that time that the chief advocate of the Muslim Ban got elected President after bragging about committing sexual assault on tape?

  45. 45
    gin-and-whiskey says:

    Mookie says:
    March 24, 2017 at 3:04 am
    To repeat it, white victims of violence are overwhelming[ly] victimized by white offenders.

    Um… yeah. So what?

    Look: Air is 78% nitrogen, 20% oxygen, plus some other stuff. All of those little air-bits are bumping into each other all the time. Let’s call those bumps “violent.” To make an equivalent statement, Nitrogen victims of violence are overwhelmingly victimized by…. Nitrogen! And so are Oxygen victims! But this is entirely expected, so the only thing you can get to is a deadpan level of complete unsurprise.

    People aren’t atoms, of course. But we treat them like that for the null hypothesis. And therefore what we look for is a change from the initial expectation–like, say, if ~78% of the violence was not committed by 78% of the population.

    So for example, we could discuss why Asians are roughly 5% of the U.S. population, but are only recorded as committing** 1% of hate crimes. Or you could do the same analysis for whites, or blacks, or any other subset which has results that differ from the null hypothesis “everyone has the same risk and behavior as everyone else.”

    Those results are interesting. For another example, if everyone was evenly distributed (like molecules) then you would expect only a small minority of black/black violence (non-blacks are 85% of the U.S. population.) But in reality 77.7% of reported** black violent victims were attacked by a black offender (see p. 5, bottom left), which is of course related to segregation, population clustering, reporting**, and all sorts of other stuff.

    Anyway. There are hundreds of interesting things to discuss about crime and race and victimization. But the one you chose, which equates to a claim that “the 70% majority is mostly victimized by the 70% majority”, is not one of the interesting ones.

    **”recorded as committing” is quite probably a huge source of error, which combines reporting, access to police, police response and investigation, record-keeping, etc. I have no reason to assume it is the same for every race/race classification, and plenty of reasons to assume it is different.

  46. 46
    Humble Talent says:

    Hey Barry,

    For example, the snide implication that lefties (including, presumably, the ones here) “purport” to care about gay people but actually don’t.

    What I actually said was: “It should be hard to take seriously a movement that purports to care deeply about the plight of gay people, for instance, while purposefully ignoring the minority demographic that kills more of them in raw numbers than the group they most often protest.”

    And I will stand by that until the cows come home. Far too often, I believe, there is a fundamental insincerity to the outrage.. Most commonly on the left, but not uniquely.

    As an example… For years, Democrats fostered the BDS movement close to their bosom, and then all of a sudden, seemingly because the narrative is that Trump is a Nazi, Democrats have found a new appreciation for Jews and are on watch for Anti-Semitism.

    This wouldn’t be a bad thing… Jews are, year over year the most common victims of hate crimes in America. This is something I think we should care about… But if this is a genuine policy shift, it’s certainly a subtle one, because I haven’t seen a whole lot of declaration against even the most extreme and obvious of BDS bad apples.

    It… seems… and I could be wrong, and please feel free to demonstrate how I’m wrong, because I would love to be wrong, but it seems like this newfound Jewish appreciation is more of a weapon against Trump that a genuinely held position. And that’s problematic to me because Trump won’t be president forever, and once he’s out, maybe even before then, depending on the new outrage of the day, I have the impression that a large portion of Democrats will sink back into the habit of Jewish indifference.

    Over this last cycle, time and time again we’ve seen this happen, it’s a woman’s issue, it’s a trans issue, it’s a gay issue it’s a black issue, it’s an Jewish issue, it’s an Asian issue… The narrative pingpongs back and forth so fast that sometimes when I take a weekend off from the internet, I come back to find I’ve completely missed out on some outrage du jour. And “Miss” it is a completely accurate term, because these issues have a ridiculously quick turn over, the mileage may vary depending on how much traction the issue gets, but generally…. A week? Maybe two?

    I have a hard time believing that the people who say they care so deeply actually do, I’m exhausted sometimes just trying to keep up. But who knows? Maybe there are true believers out there. Maybe you’re one of them. Maybe all of your left-leaning readership are as well. Regardless: When talking about massive groups of people you rarely, if ever, come across true absolute conformity of thought. If you don’t think that applies to you, then assume it doesn’t.

  47. 47
    Humble Talent says:

    I’d also be very surprised to learn that, in terms of absolute numbers of victims, Muslims committed a majority of anti-LGBT hate crimes in the US.

    I specifically said “kills, in raw numbers”. and after the Pulse Nightclub shooting, it isn’t even close.

  48. 48
    Harlequin says:

    g&w:

    Do you think the views in that poll are OK? I don’t. I don’t want to be around a lot of people who think like that, and I don’t really want to admit them into the U.S. so that they can proceed to do their best to nudge social acceptance of those views.

    In my experience, the immigrants who come here are disproportionately the ones who are socially liberal; it’s one of the reasons they want to leave.

    Edit: and also, I think it’s more likely that immigrants here would have their opinions changed by exposure to the US social mores than the other way around.

  49. 49
    Humble Talent says:

    gin-and-whiskey says:

    Muslims make up roughly 1% of the population (January 2016 estimate.)

    If Muslims commit those crimes at the same rate as the general population, they would be expected to commit ~1%, or ~13 offenses/year.

    I find that statistics on religion tend to vary, and I think that’s because they tend to be self-reported, controversial and subjective. Some variation of the Bradley effect (Certain people might be embarrassed to tell the truth to a pollster, so they lie.) might be in play. I use 3% for Muslims and 70% for Christians as overly generous figures to prove my point, because even then the rates of certain crimes are horrendous. I’ve seen studies that show less than 1% as being Muslim and as high as 80% being Christian, but if I used those numbers, I think I’d have people attack my figures more than my argument.

    That said, I agree with those who’ve said they’d be surprised if this is the case in the U.S. or in your home country of Canada.

    “Violence”, or even more broadly “Hate Crime”? You’re undoubtedly right. But I said “kill” specifically, before Pulse it was close, after blew the stats right out of the water, and again… We’re talking about a very small minority that punches in the same weight class as huge majorities.

    a gay individual in the U.S. or Canada is far more likely to have their rights constrained by Christians than by Muslims, simply because of the fact that Christians make up a majority of anti-gay politicians in these countries.

    You aren’t… wrong… Especially on a policy level. But I think that the level of significance matters. I’d take a 100% chance of being denied a cake over a 0.1% chance of death any day of the week, for instance.

    To repeat it, white victims of violence are overwhelming victimized by white offenders.

    Right, and if you think about that, it’s like saying that jumping in water will usually cause you to become wet. The vast majority of “violence” in those reports are familial or acquaintance violence, and statistically we are usually related to and associate with people that look like us. Saying that 80% (plus or minus) of violence against white people is committed by a white person and 90% (plus or minus) of violence against black people is committed by a black person… shouldn’t be that surprising. What blows my mind here is the seriousness with which you treat the 80% and the the indifference with with you treat the 90%.

    Well, yes, but that appeared to be Humble Talent’s claim.

    It was… Very narrowly I pointed out that in raw numbers, Muslims have killed more gay people in America. And that’s true… It might not be particularly fair to the arguement because it relies on the outlier of The Pulse Nightclub shooting… But it’s still true. Any more than that and I’d be back to talking about per capita statistics.

  50. 50
    pillsy says:

    I specifically said “kills, in raw numbers”. and after the Pulse Nightclub shooting, it isn’t even close.

    No, you’re still going to need a citation for this, because I’m reasonably sure that at least 98 people have been murdered in anti-LGBT hate crimes in the history of the US.

  51. 51
    Ampersand says:

    It might not be particularly fair to the arguement because it relies on the outlier of The Pulse Nightclub shooting… But it’s still true.

    I’m confused by this. The fact that the Pulse shooting was committed by a grand total of one person (Omar Mateen) makes any generalization about Muslims based on that one shooting total bullshit. It makes all the arguments you’ve made here, based on that one outlier, bullshit.

    And here you seem to acknowledge that you know it’s bullshit. But you made the argument anyway. Why?

    Right now you’re acting as if your goal here is to score points, however meaningless, and without any regard for substance. But I assume that isn’t your goal, because that would be ridiculous. But I don’t understand what your goal is, or why you think these sorts of arguments serve any substantive goal.

  52. 52
    Ampersand says:

    It might not be particularly fair to the arguement because it relies on the outlier of The Pulse Nightclub shooting… But it’s still true.

    I’m confused by this. The fact that the Pulse shooting was committed by a grand total of one person (Omar Mateen) makes any generalization about Muslims based on that one shooting completely meaningless. It makes all the arguments you’ve made here, based on that one outlier, completely without substance.

    And here you seem to acknowledge that you know it’s an argument that lacks all substance. But you made the argument anyway. Why?

    Right now you’re acting as if your goal here is to score points, without regard for substance. But I assume that isn’t your goal, because that would be ridiculous. But I don’t understand what your goal is, or why you think these sorts of arguments serve any substantive goal.

  53. 53
    Humble Talent says:

    No, you’re still going to need a citation for this, because I’m reasonably sure that at least 98 people have been murdered in anti-LGBT hate crimes in the history of the US.

    I *can* cite that if you need me to. But I think that we’re talking on different levels. In the history of the US? You’re probably right. There was a lot of time between founding and today where Muslims didn’t make up even a fractional minority, and Christian attitudes towards homosexuality was even less tolerant than it is now. But I’m thinking of a more recent timeline. You go back five, ten, maybe even 20 years… The numbers climb as we get closer to today, and especially post 9-11.

  54. 54
    Jake Squid says:

    There was a lot of time between founding and today where Muslims didn’t make up even a fractional minority…

    They were certainly enough of a presence that there were essays written about “Musselmen,” contemporary to the founding, so I’m not sure what you mean by that.

  55. 55
    pillsy says:

    But I’m thinking of a more recent timeline. You go back five, ten, maybe even 20 years…

    Because obviously if we’re going to do a real comparison you would look at an average across several years…? Otherwise it’s just gaming the statistics.

  56. 56
    Harlequin says:

    More than 50 trans people have been murdered in the US since January 1, 2015, according to the list on Wikipedia (which I would assume is neither complete not 100% accurate). And not all of those, of course, were hate crimes. Still, Humble Talent, I think your statement that it “isn’t even close” is obviously false, if you really meant LGBT and not LGB.

    The statement that you’ll just pretend 3% of the US is Muslim is also quite wrong: there is uncertainty, but those statistics simply don’t miss 2/3 of the Muslim population. Christianity has significantly more uncertainty, true, but that’s because of confusion in reporting between Christian and nonreligious for people raised Christian but who no longer practice in significant ways. The minority religious groups are more stable between surveys.

    If you’re going to make statistical arguments it is helpful to include numbers and their sources (as some, but not all, participants in this conversation have been doing). Interpretation also matters; I would point out, for example, that approximately 1/4 of American Muslims are African American, and they are likely to have quite distinct statistics from recent Muslim immigrants from MENA and South/Southeast Asia (as there are also likely differences between immigrants from Morocco and Indonesia, for example).

  57. 57
    Humble Talent says:

    Sorry that it took so long to respond, I’m used to a format that gives me a notification when something I write gets a response.

    Barry asked:

    I’m confused by this. The fact that the Pulse shooting was committed by a grand total of one person (Omar Mateen) makes any generalization about Muslims based on that one shooting total bullshit. It makes all the arguments you’ve made here, based on that one outlier, bullshit.
    And here you seem to acknowledge that you know it’s bullshit. But you made the argument anyway. Why?

    I depends, I think, on the argument being put forward. My original statement was:

    “It should be hard to take seriously a movement that purports to care deeply about the plight of gay people, for instance, while purposefully ignoring the minority demographic that kills more of them in raw numbers than the group they most often protest.”

    If I were trying to use the stat to say that Muslims were more likely on a per capita basis to kill gay people, and somehow used the individual victims of Pulse to inflate that, then yeah… That would be bullshit. But this point wasn’t from the standpoint of the Muslim populations, it was from the perspective of the gay community. It probably doesn’t matter much to the victims of the Pulse shooting how many attackers there were.

    The point I was trying to make was more a commentary on the left… I honestly don’t understand the relationship between Progressives and Muslims, even Moderate Muslims can hold views that should be anathema to progressive values, especially concerning women, minorities, LGB, and Jews. The discussion got sidetracked by the stat almost immediately, and maybe I tried too hard to defend it… The point I was trying to make would have been functionally identical had I said “the minority demographic that, per capita, kills more gay people than any other.”

    Right now you’re acting as if your goal here is to score points, however meaningless, and without any regard for substance. But I assume that isn’t your goal, because that would be ridiculous. But I don’t understand what your goal is, or why you think these sorts of arguments serve any substantive goal.

    I’m not trying to ‘score’ points, I’m trying to make them. I find it… challenging to go into places that have strong communities built around beliefs that I don’t hold and throw down the gauntlet. It’s funny… Or depressing… How often communities like that have become so… insular… that they see people like me as extreme. I’m probably closer to Bill Maher on a lot of Issues than I am to Sean Hannity. Hey, maybe if you tolerate me for a while we can teach each other something.

  58. 58
    Humble Talent says:

    But I’m thinking of a more recent timeline. You go back five, ten, maybe even 20 years…

    pillsy says:

    Because obviously if we’re going to do a real comparison you would look at an average across several years…? Otherwise it’s just gaming the statistics.

    Of course you would. Look, I talk in generalities, and if I’m called I’ll dig a little deeper. Heck, sometimes I’m surprised and I’ll offer a mea culpa. Pick your timeframe, and I’ll do some digging.

    My one caveat is that it’s important to keep the timeframe relatively recent… I don’t think it’s particularly helpful or relevant to what’s happening today to go back to a time before anyone around today was alive.

  59. 59
    Humble Talent says:

    Harlequin says:

    More than 50 trans people have been murdered in the US since January 1, 2015, according to the list on Wikipedia (which I would assume is neither complete not 100% accurate). And not all of those, of course, were hate crimes. Still, Humble Talent, I think your statement that it “isn’t even close” is obviously false, if you really meant LGBT and not LGB.

    I tend to separate the LGB from the T, I think that it was useful from a support perspective to group together people who felt marginalised sexually, but from a functional standpoint, aside from some overlap where a trans person might also be gay, there’s very little overlap in issues.

    I say that generally, but it’s especially pertinent to this conversation, Islamic policy on trans people is… oddly progressive. In Iran, for instance homosexuality is illegal, and punishable by death. Being trans, however, is not… they’ll actually allow men to transition into women, and then treat those people as women. In fact, Article 20 in clause 14: “a person who has changed his/her sex can legally change their name and gender on the birth certification upon the order of court.”

    So, to be honest, I don’t think including trans people in that statistic is particularly useful.

    The statement that you’ll just pretend 3% of the US is Muslim is also quite wrong: there is uncertainty, but those statistics simply don’t miss 2/3 of the Muslim population. Christianity has significantly more uncertainty, true, but that’s because of confusion in reporting between Christian and nonreligious for people raised Christian but who no longer practice in significant ways. The minority religious groups are more stable between surveys.

    If you’re going to make statistical arguments it is helpful to include numbers and their sources (as some, but not all, participants in this conversation have been doing). Interpretation also matters; I would point out, for example, that approximately 1/4 of American Muslims are African American, and they are likely to have quite distinct statistics from recent Muslim immigrants from MENA and South/Southeast Asia (as there are also likely differences between immigrants from Morocco and Indonesia, for example).

    I’m not entirely sure what you’re saying here… Are you saying I’m being too generous in my numbers? Maybe I am. I think that so long as I’m open about the numbers I’m using, we can still have a discussion. If the Muslim population is in fact less than 1% And Christians are in fact 80%, then the math is easy, and similar rates of certain violence means that Muslims are about 8000% more likely to commit those acts of violence.

    Look… There was a study done quite a number of years ago, it was the ACE study… “Adverse Childhood Effects”. It tallied certain adverse things that could happen to a child; their parents hit eachother, their parents hit them, single parenthood, emotional neglect, food stress, ect. Then it measured ACE frequency against certain negative tendancies in adults.

    (I’m abridging this horribly, but feel free to Google it, it was a great study.)

    Anyway, they found that someone who had three or more ACE markers was 1600% more likely to be addicted to Meth as an adult. Still a small percentage of the population as a whole, but an amazingly significant statistic. I remember taking that one to one of my college instructors, who was a master in math, and after verifying that I didn’t have a reading comprehension problem, he said to me: “You don’t often see correlations a couple of hundred percentage points strong without designing a test in search of an answer… 1600% is insane.”

    Whether the number is 2300% of 8000% or even as “little” as 500%, I think this is still a legitimate conversation.

  60. 60
    Ampersand says:

    How often communities like that have become so… insular… that they see people like me as extreme.

    Look around you; you’re FAR from the only person here with views that I disagree with. For example, some of the regular comment-writers here are closer to Hannity than Maher, to put it in your terms. (And some have been here for many, many years, so if you’re assuming that I always ban people from the right, you’re mistaken.)

    If someone comes here and is like “this place is so insular!,” that strongly suggests that you’re too wrapped up in stereotypes of what you’re expecting to find here, to be able to actually observe what’s going on here. Maybe you could learn something here, and teach me something; but I think that would require you approaching this forum with less condescension.

  61. 61
    Ampersand says:

    “It should be hard to take seriously a movement that purports to care deeply about the plight of gay people, for instance, while purposefully ignoring the minority demographic that kills more of them in raw numbers than the group they most often protest.”

    If I were trying to use the stat to say that Muslims were more likely on a per capita basis to kill gay people, and somehow used the individual victims of Pulse to inflate that, then yeah… That would be bullshit. But this point wasn’t from the standpoint of the Muslim populations, it was from the perspective of the gay community. It probably doesn’t matter much to the victims of the Pulse shooting how many attackers there were.

    I really don’t think you understand the statistical question here at all.

    From the point of a lgb person trying to decide “who am I at greatest risk of being shot by?,” any statistical answer which would completely and utterly change by dropping one single outlier is not useful and should not be relied upon.

    All of your Pulse-related arguments here come down to you claiming that leftists are obligated to judge all Muslims by that single example. That’s ridiculous, and it’s a bigoted argument. (Because the argument that we should judge all of _______ by the extreme actions of a single, incredibly unrepresentative individual, is an argument for bigotry.)

    That you think your Pulse-related arguments bear any resemblance to the ACE study (which you’ve mis-remembered in a whole bunch of ways: the numbers, what was studied, and even the name of the study) shows your lack of understanding of statistics. Yes, it is possible to draw interesting conclusions from a relatively low N in some cases. But that doesn’t mean that drawing broad conclusions about Muslims from a single outlier example is justified, and you could not find a single example of either Kaiser or the CDC (the creators of the ACE study) doing such a thing.

    * * *

    Putting the Pulse shooting aside (which you would be wise to do as well), of course there’s a problem of anti-LGBT bigotry among some Muslim groups, although anti-LGBT bigotry is not unique to Muslim groups. I don’t see any contradiction between acknowledging that, and being against anti-LGBT bigotry, and also being against anti-Muslim bigotry.

    A few weeks ago, I went out to a demonstration to support a local Catholic church that had a problem with some racists. (It’s a Latinx congregation). Given that they’re a Catholic Church, I’m sure I disagree with many of them (and certainly with their international organization) about issues like LGBT rights, abortion, etc. But I still demonstrated, because I can disagree with them about these things, and still think racism against them is wrong and should be stood against. Where’s the contradiction?

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