One of the more amusing parts of being an Muslim American is that just about every day, I wake up to a ridiculous statement being shared on Facebook with armchair pundits generally going “Well if someone said it, it has to be real.”
This is the same kind of lazy logic that allowed major parts of the country to ban hiring the Irish or African-Americans for decades and spin bigoted stories that the Irish were lazy, the Africans are only savages and the newest one “that all Muslims are violent” and as of last night, Donald Trump’s hogwash allegation of “Shooting Muslims with bullets dipped in pigs blood stopped terrorism.”
Photo by Pirate Alice
You’re probably thinking at this point, “Wait, WTF, it’s Saturday, what am I reading?”
In the wee early 1900s, the United States was involved in a little remembered thing called the “Philippine-American War” where we stopped a rebellion and made the Philippines a territory and, #funfact, a Commonwealth until 1946.
Now as with all things in war, there were areas that didn’t immediately surrender with the close of the war in 1902.
Back then, the United States had a general called “Blackjack” Pershing – Ol’ Blackjack (and the Spanish who had controlled the Philippines before the United States had never been able to subdue a tribal group called the Moros who were warring tribes much like the Maori of New Zealand.
The Moros had converted to Islam and kept much of their tribal culture while adopting a new religion – this can be compared to the Mexican adoption of Christianity, where they still keep many older traditions (Day of the Dead) that pre-date the religion and sometimes conflict with the Bible. But that’s what happens when cultures adopt a new religion – it’s more complicated than an armchair pundit would like you to think.
The key here is that Trump, a man that will yell “Boycott Apple” while tweeting from an Apple iPhone (can you smell the irony), is happy to make up history to fear-monger voters.
The Moros, aside from being later converts to Islam, were also not about to let Ol’ Blackjack Pershing conquer Bud Dajo (which was a sacred mountain to them). So, long story short – Pershing made some claims threatening to use pig blood and bury Moros killed in war with pigskins – but there’s no historical proof that that happened. Further it took Pershing until almost 1913 to subdue the Moros and that cost military lives not Trump’s farcical claims and boisterous nonsense. A more detailed story is here if you care to look into the history .
Now, back to making breakfast. I really wish the Donald would stop interrupting my pancakes. I love pancakes.
Mr. Sultan is a Big Data and Counterterrorism Strategist who has worked with U.S. PeaceTech Lab, The Economist, and other corporate and government clients over the past decade. He is also a conservative Muslim pundit who is actively working to build interfaith dialogue and prevent radicalization. He has previously been in the top 30 of Top Conservatives on Twitter and is continually searching for the most perfect hamburger in America.