An Honest Open Letter to Moderate Muslims

Huff Post: Dear fellow Muslims,

You’ve likely heard the old saying, “You can’t wake up someone pretending to be asleep.” This thoughtful proverb crossed my mind as I read new atheist Ali Rizvi’s letter, which I can only assume is addressed you and I. I can only assume as much because Rizvi has previously flip-flopped on whether a moderate Islam even exists. To him, ISIS, Taliban, and Al Qaeda represent “real” Islam, and all others are impostors. Hopefully he can clarify his position.

So ignoring his obvious contradiction and confusion for the moment — here is anhonest open letter to, my fellow Muslims, with eight points to consider.

1. The First Straw Man Argument – ISIS Are Not “Real” Muslims

Rizvi begins with a straw man argument, which indicates his willingness to engage in an actual honest debate. He states, “Does this sound familiar to you? A moderate Muslim states that ISIS is wrong, they aren’t “true” Muslims, and Islam is a religion of peace.”

Well, no, it doesn’t sound familiar. The first part is correct about ISIS being wrong — a point Rizvi admits Muslims have clearly stated. That second part about them not being “true” Muslims is the straw man. As much as Rizvi wants to pull us into the “No True Scotsman” argument — he’s wrong. In fact, an atheist asked me this precise question earlier this year and I respond thoroughly here. ISIS is wrong because Islamic teachings don’t support their actions. This is a question of factual observation, not private faith. Rizvi is welcome to provide a counter-argument to the link provided. And yes, Islam is a religion of peace and submission to the will of God.

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