In the West, we can generally live freely, with a fair degree of democracy and our rights to think freely preserved. Christianity has been rendered largely spineless in its power to influence policy, and we are required to curtail it only rarely. Not so with Islam, or rather the fanatical sub section of it that continues its murderous rampage wherever it's tendrils gain traction. 132 children are now corpses thanks to the latest act of divine inspiration, and the world reels in shock in its wake. Only we shouldn't, because these bearded goons have been doing this for many years, and the only difference with yesterday is one of scale. Now I recognise that the vast majority of Muslims are peaceful, thoughtful, and fine people, yet theirs isn't the voice being heard. And I think this needs to change. I think the moderates need to step up, to influence the disenfranchised youths before they mutate into the genocidal monsters capable of walking into a school and carrying out these acts. I'm under no illusion that this is a simple fix, nor a quick one, but any change for the better will come from the inside out. Successive western governments have lit the touch paper through our own acts of aggression, and whilst on occasion these may have been justified no such policy could succeed in the long run. No, to change hearts and minds it needs to happen before these young men and women reach the point of no return, because once you pass that the fundamentalist is usually there for good. What also seems obvious is that we must not prejudice the good and kindly Muslims whilst we watch the story unfold, because that would be perhaps as destructive as any course we could take. I dislike Christianity, and I dislike Islam, but I have a lot of time and warmth for many who count among their number. But then perhaps this is the difference; the majority of us will critique the ideas, but would never seek to cause harm. Wouldn't it be lovely if we could live in a world where the free exchange of ideas came without running the risk of violent repercussion? Where all genders, all races, all creeds could settle alongside each other and just get by? Is it really such a big ask? So beyond the realm?
I hope not. I guess we can only live by positive example, rejecting violence and embracing those values which enable society to grow together. Nobody expects people to agree all the time, but surely we can foster a society that's better than the one we have today?