24 June 2016

Islamic faith irrelevant to Omar Mateen

The Blog

Commenting on the work of investigators looking at the attack by US citizen Omar Mateen that took the lives of a high number of LGBT people in Orlando, Florida, Beliefnet's Hesham Hassaballa argued it was nothing to do with Islam.

Investigators currently believe even the connection between the gunman and the ISIS terrorist group was nothing more than posing for publicity at best. The shooter had his own reasons for committing his crime. With extremist ideology not an important motivation for Mateen, his Islamic faith was even more irrelevant.

Nevertheless, many other commentators in the media are convinced the attack is just additional evidence to claim all Muslims are terrorists in waiting. The rhetoric of politicians such as Donald Trump is therefore likely to take a boost in popularity, as a result of the shooting.

In conclusion, Hassaballa writes, "it is becoming increasingly clear that this crime had nothing to do with terrorism and ISIS. Omar Mateen fit the typical profile of a mass shooter, and this time, he happened to be Muslim."

Many critics of western media and legal responses to mass murder sprees focus on how Middle Eastern attackers are quickly judged to be religious terrorists even if they were mentally ill, whereas white attackers are only ever judged to be mentally ill or incorrectly medicated.

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