She'll Show You Peace

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Memo to Carol McVey: YOU ARE DUMB.

I spend more time than I'd like in this space defending Islam, which irritates me, because I don't particularly -like- Islam. For the same reason I don't particularly like Christianity, Judaism, Scientology, Hinduism, or the rest. It's just that we, as a nation, are currently dumber about Islam than we are about any other world religion.

Which leads to a lot of crazy people doing a LOT of bigoted shit. Like all the right-wing nutjobs shitting themselves because Minneapolis' own Keith Ellison is going to be the first Muslim elected to Congress. Oh, boy, they hate that. They're just waiting for him to show up for work one day with one of those cartoon dynamite belts on. I mention it merely as an example. If you've got a strong stomach and access to Google's blog search, you can "enjoy" it for yourself.

But the thing I saw there, and I see in Carol McVey, is something that horks me off no end - the constant talking point that Islam is "not a religion of peace". This is a huge right-wing meme designed to justify hating Muslims, because parts of the Koran are violent or espouse violence. Big fucking whoop. Everyone's bullshit holy books are violent and espouse violence. That's why reasonable people adapt their religious views, following the practices they believe in and ignoring those they disagree with. Whether it's a Catholic with a condom, a Jew with a ham-and-cheese sandwich, or a Muslim congressman supporting gay rights, most followers of most religions ignore most of the really ridiculous shit.

And speaking of really ridiculous shit, Carol McVey! A substitute teacher in Gaithersburg, Maryland. Oh, wait, I'm sorry. FORMER substitute teacher. She got fired, you see, because she got arrested. And not, as you might suspect, for fucking a teenage male student. No, McVey got arrested on charges of disorderly conduct, resisting arrest, trespassing, and disrupting school activities. Which is the legal way of saying she had a complete fucking conniption. Allegedly.

You see, the high school was going to have a memorial for 9/11. And some students were rehearsing their parts. And one of these parts included the phrase "assalamu alaikum", which is Arabic for "peace be with you". And that, again allegedly, triggered a Pavlovian rant of epic proportions, no doubt spawned by a steady, five-year-plus diet of conservative talk radio. ALLEGED QUOTE TIME!

"Islam doesn't mean peace, it means killing everyone for peace... Because of you our families died in New York!"

She then allegedly stormed the assistant principal's office, demanding that another teacher, COINCIDENTALLY named Kulsum Malik, leave. Oh, and she wanted Malik's information so she could "report him", and just to be allegedly sure that everyone knew how allegedly bugfuck she was, yelled at a Hispanic teacher about not speaking to students in English.

You see what I mean? It's very difficult not to take the side of Muslims when people with non-Anglic names run the daily risk of some fuckjob just snapping and yelling at them because they hear the phrase PEACE BE WITH YOU in Arabic. These people were just going about their business, wasting students' time by having a nice little memorial service, and then WHAM! Face full of loud and crazy. You can't not sympathize with that.

And on top of it all, her name's MCVEY. You'd think sharing phonemes with the most notorious white, Christian domestic terrorist of the last two decades would be a bit less cavalier throwing around blanket accusations. But that's what crazy stupidity does - fucks with your ability to be smart and sane.