Tuesday, December 8, 2015

"You Ain't No Muslim, Bruv!" And Other Rallying Cries. Do They Help?

Among those embracing the "You Ain't No Muslim, Bruv"
slogan is British Prime Minister DAvid Cameron. 
The phrase on seemingly everybody's social media lips Monday was "You ain't no Muslim, Bruv!

This came from a extremely viral video in which a bystander video'd some moron attacking innocent passersby with a knife in London's Underground. The attacker yelled some nonsense about his assault being for Syria or something.

Three people were hurt, one seriously in this attack. While cops tackled the suspect, you can hear, very clearly in the video, another bystander shouting angrily at the suspect, "You ain't no Muslim, Bruv!"

("Bruv" is the British equivalent of "Bro" in th United States.)

"You ain't no Muslim, Bruv"  instantly became a rallying cry and a top trending hashtag on Twitter. Muslims in particular embraced the slogan, as the overwhelming majority of them clearly don't think terrorist attacks are consistent with their religion, Donald Trump's opinion notwithstanding.

Among those praising the unidentified man who said "You ain't no Muslim, Bruv" was British Prime Minister David Cameran, who noted the man "said it better than I ever could," and thank the man on behalf of the nation.

Many people for many years have been stating the obvious for years, saying that jihadists aren't really Muslims, even if they think they are.

But "You ain't no Muslim, Bruv" crystalizes the sentiment more perfectly than any politician or pundit or writer could ever manage.

The phrase is an instant way for all of us to demonstrate solidarity against ISIL and its terrorist ilk.

As a practical matter, slogans don't solve problems. At least not directly. I can't imagine an ISIL jihadist hearing "You ain't no Muslim, Bruv," and saying, "Geez, that's right. I'll lay down my weapons get rid of my bombs and lead a peaceful life from now on."

But such slogans offer us cohesiveness, a way to tell the world we're speaking with one voice against terrorism.

Oh, I know here in America there is a pretty big bunch of people taking the opposite tack, coming up with more and more over the top ways to "ban" Muslims because they are "all terrorists" or something.

As President Obama pointed out in a televised address Sunday, that attitude plays directly into the hands of ISIL, which insists the West is waging a war against Islam. (So come join us at ISIL to save Islam and bomb the hell out of those sinful Westerners!)

You Ain't No Muslim, Bruv is a counterweight to ISIL's sick recruitment efforts. The slogan won't save us from terrorism, just as #Port Ouverte  or open door for refugees in France after Paris attack didn't save us from terrorist. Nor did the popular hashtag #JeSuisCharlie after January's terrorist attack on the Charlie Hebdo satirical magazine.

However, we all feel like we need to do something, even if we are, as individuals, pretty powerless to stop ISIL. But the defiant Twitter hashtags like #YouAin'tNoMuslimBruv does its small part to reject and overpower Islamic extremists.

It isn't much, but every little bit helps.

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