There's been a spot of bother in the US recently about Islam and how bad it is. I haven't participated, but do find the whole idea distasteful. I've occasionally poked fun at the unwillingness of various Westerners, from President Obama down, to pretend there's nothing remotely wrong with Islam. Yet the opposite should also be obvious: a religion which has been around for 1400 years must have given countless multitudes a feeling of dignity in face of life's travails, a purpose, a succor, a harbor to retreat to in dire times and a feeling of belonging and of satisfaction in better times.
On a practical level, James Kirchick reminds us that there are entire Muslim nations who don't fit into the black-and-white template.