THE murder of a Jersey City couple and their two young daughters last week
was horrifying. And the news that the Coptic Christian family might have
been slain by Muslim fanatics is disturbing.

But it is also troubling that these reports have led some Coptic Christian
leaders to make anti-Muslim statements and ill-informed characterizations
about Islam.

We urge public officials in Jersey City and leaders of America’s Coptic
Christians to denounce this hate speech against Muslims and to plead with
people to remain calm no matter what is discovered to be the cause of these

Police are considering the possibility that Hossam Armanious and his wife
and children were killed because of heated exchanges he |had about Islam in
an Internet chat room”¦

To be sure, there are tensions. But incidents of hate and violence are the
exception, not the rule.

It’s also important to remember that Islamic terrorists do not represent
the religion or the views of most Muslims. The vast majority of the world’s
Muslims, like those of other religions, are peaceful people trying to lead
normal lives.

New Jersey Muslim leaders emphasized that point in a press conference this
week on the Armanious family killings. Islam condemns such violent acts or,
as one Muslim leader put it: “To kill one innocent is to kill the whole world.”




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