It is hardly any surprise that a recently released poll in US finds that Americans are more than twice as likely to express prejudice against Muslims than they are against Christians, Jews or Buddhists. Nearly two-thirds of Americans say they have little or no knowledge of Islam. Still, a majority dislikes the faith. Day after day news regarding Islam and Muslims bring new fears to the world. The daily episodes of suicide bombers killing themselves and scores of innocent people have become a staple of the headline news. Recently in Malaysia churches have been firebombed allegedly by angry Muslims who have assumed sole proprietorship of the Arabic word Allah; their violent objection to the use of the Arabic word for God by the local Christians in their liturgy is causing tensions and also headache for the Malaysian government and their judiciary. From Egypt the news of the killing of Egyptian Copts - one of the oldest Christian communities going back to St. Mark - by the Muslims for the usual excuse that we see in similar episodes of periodic violence against minorities in many majority Muslim countries, that of desecrating the Qur'an or insulting Prophet Muhammad. Violent protests in Kenya by Muslim youth over detention of a fiery preacher from Britain, riots between Muslims and others in Nigeria over imposition of Shariah law, is yet another example of how deep the confusion among Muslims themselves about Islam is. This reflects a profound lack of confidence among Muslims who having fallen from ascendancy 200 years back have continued in a downward spiral without the end in sight. It is being increasingly argued that Muslims when they are a majority are oppressive to others and when they are a minority they are troublemakers.
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