Why do they hate us, part two. Or is it three. Or four?September 17, 2012 @ 8:39 am (Updated: 9:02 am - 9/17/12 )
Palestinian protesters burn a U.S. flag during a demonstration against an anti-Muslim film, in Gaza City, Friday, Sept. 14, 2012. Widespread anger across the Muslim world was expressed about a film produced in the U.S. which ridiculed Islam's Prophet Muhammad. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
Again there's a big debate over why Muslims are burning the American flag.
But what are we really seeing? Groups of angry young men who obviously have a lot of spare time burning the American flag. And groups of angry young men with a lot of spare time committing mayhem is not a Muslim phenomenon, this is a human phenomenon.
Get enough angry young men together and there will always be something that will set them off.
It ends up being the usual malcontents, but in Muslim countries with healthy economies, sanity tends to win out.
In Jakarta, Indonesia, with a huge Muslim population, the most violent demonstrators were from the ultra-conservative Islamic Defenders Front, which usually specializes in attacking transsexuals and nightclubs.
But British reporter Aubrey Belford in Jakarta said most Muslim clerics sat this one out.
"The response from most Muslim clerics here is just to ignore it, even from some conservative and otherwise quite intolerant clerics, the idea is even if you're going to go protest, don't do it violently."
Indonesian young men have jobs to go to.
What I don't understand is why so many Americans think we can somehow control this. We've already tried nation-building in two predominantly Muslim countries and we learned two things: it's expensive and it doesn't work.
As for some other magical policy to somehow spread universal trust in the US government, polls show that we Americans don't trust the US government.
A CNN poll last year pegged trust in the federal government at 15%.
I fear that we may just have to suck it up and accept that we are not universally loved.
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