A GROWING movement in Europe is explicitly anti-Muslim (click here to read more about it). This is both good news and bad news. The good news is the problems inherent in Islamic encroachment into Western democracies is being spoken about publicly. The bad news is that some of the most outspoken are white supremacists.
For those of us who are not racists but who see the growing threat of Islamic encroachment, the white supremacists are a problem. People on the other side, the multiculturalists and the Muslims and many of the most ardent anti-conservatives see anyone who speaks out against Islam or tries to educate people about Islamic doctrine as racists and white supremacists and fascists. And, in fact, there are some fascists who speak out against Islam. But we're not all fascists, of course. We're not all white supremacists. We're not all racists. Not by a long shot.
What is racism? It is an overgeneralization. It says because some members of the racial group have a particular characteristic, all members of the race have that characteristic.
The blind multiculturalists also overgeneralize when they say all people in the counterjihad movement are racists. They are making exactly the same mistake they are accusing us of making (that most of us are not making). That is, since a few of us who are working to curb Islam's prime directive are racists, then anyone who says they don't like Islamic doctrine is a racist. It's the same mistake. It's an overgeneralization.
And even those of us in the counterjihad who are not racists often make the same mistake against both Muslims and multiculturalists by thinking that all Muslims believe X, or all multiculturalists are Y.
Another example of the same mistake is "white guilt" (as it is known in America) or "post-colonial guilt" (as it is known in Europe). This guilt is being exploited by many orthodox Muslims. It makes us less able to defend ourselves, and the source of the guilt is the same mistake: Overgeneralization.
America had slaves. That was wrong. But should I feel guilty about that? I've never owned a slave or endorsed the idea. I have no idea if any of my ancestors did, either, and even if they did, it wouldn't matter. Any crime committed by an ancestor does not make me guilty. And any bad action taken by someone with the same skin color as me does not make me guilty either. This guilt — that allows orthodox Muslims to get away with things they wouldn't be able to get away with otherwise — is caused by the overgeneralization (all white people are guilty and have ammends to make).
One of the things non-Muslims dislike the most about the content of Islamic teachings is "kafir hatred," which is, of course, the same mistake again. The doctrine says Muslims are the best of people and non-Muslims are the worst of people. These are overgeneralizations.
On all sides, it's the same mistake, and it makes any productive conversation almost impossible. If you believe you do not make this mistake, I suggest to you that you're probably wrong. It is a natural mental error our brains are prone to make.
How can we get out of this mess? How can we have productive conversations about Islam with our fellow non-Muslims? How can we help school those who are against our cause? The answer is to be specific, and insist on others being specific too.
We in the counterjihad are talking about Islamic doctrine. We must make it absolutely clear that we're talking about doctrine, not people. We're talking about Islamic ideology, not Muslims. When we're talking about a Muslim, we need to speak about a particular Muslim. Our overgeneralizations usually come from talking about a group of people rather than a specific person or an ideology. Any group of people contains individuals. Any group of individuals will be different from each other, will have different levels of belief, will have different levels of commitment to the ideology, will have different understandings and familiarity with the ideology, and will have different characteristics from each other.
And we can speak specifically about Sharia law. This is a very effective way to avoid overgeneralizing.
We can also make a clear distinction between the different kinds of Muslims: Orthodox and heterodox, Jihad-embracing Muslims and Jihad-rejecting Muslims, Practicing Muslims and MINOs.
Do whatever you can to be as specific as possible and avoid overgeneralizations. We must be eternally vigilant with our own thoughts, with our own speaking and writing, and we must carefully and deliberately expose the error when others make it. And when we're pointing it out in others, we should avoid ridiculing them for making the error. The tendency to overgeneralize is a natural by-product of the brain's functional design (read more about that here) and requires constant vigilance from all of us to prevent our brains from making this error.
Overgeneralization gets in the way of good communication. It gets in the way of accurate thinking. It impairs our ability to solve problems.
Overgeneralization is the enemy of us all.