I'm sure you've already seen this, but it's worth sharing:
Egypt’s majority Muslim population stuck to its word Thursday night. What had been a promise of solidarity to the weary Coptic community, was honoured, when thousands of Muslims showed up at Coptic Christmas eve mass services in churches around the country and at candle light vigils held outside.Often times, the proponents of torture will use language that demonizes all Muslim people, as will, indeed, others caught up in propaganda. I have seen and heard the words "Muslim" or "Islamic" used as synonyms for "terrorist," sometimes by people who should know better. But not only is this unjust to the sort of Muslims described above, it has the effect of placing a whole category of people into a sort of "nonperson" or depersonalized status.
From the well-known to the unknown, Muslims had offered their bodies as “human shields” for last night’s mass, making a pledge to collectively fight the threat of Islamic militants and towards an Egypt free from sectarian strife.
“We either live together, or we die together,” was the sloganeering genius of Mohamed El-Sawy, a Muslim arts tycoon whose cultural centre distributed flyers at churches in Cairo Thursday night, and who has been credited with first floating the “human shield” idea.
Among those shields were movie stars Adel Imam and Yousra, popular preacher Amr Khaled, the two sons of President Hosni Mubarak, and thousands of citizens who have said they consider the attack one on Egypt as a whole.
“This is not about us and them,” said Dalia Mustafa, a student who attended mass at Virgin Mary Church on Maraashly. “We are one. This was an attack on Egypt as a whole, and I am standing with the Copts because the only way things will change in this country is if we come together.”
Just as proponents of abortion often refer to "fetuses" or "embryos" or even "zygotes" as if these terms clearly denote someone who is less than human, so too do people at various times in history tend to depersonalize whole cultures and societies with whom they might be at war. During World War II, for instance, epithets like "Huns" and "Japs" were used to refer not only to enemy soldiers, but to everyone who had the misfortune of living in Germany or Japan; from there it was a short step to the view that there was really no such thing as a noncombatant, and that everyone within the enemy countries' borders was "fair game" for acts of war.
The brave Muslims who attended Mass with their Christian neighbors as a rebuke to the terrorists have demonstrated three important things: the kind of solidarity that all human beings should strive for with each other, the courage to reject evils being done in the name of the religion they practice, and the committment to peaceful and civil relations with all the people in their nation. We should at least have the similar courage to correct anyone who says that "the Muslims" are the problem in regard to modern-day peace efforts; the terrorists are the problem, but many Muslims are tired of being associated with the intolerant and irrational thuggery and violence that terrorists create.