ON THE THEORY that the less said, the better about Del. Donald H. Dwyer Jr.'s illuminating insights into theology and the American ecumenical mix, let us be as concise as possible:
Shame on Dwyer.
Shame on him for injecting a mean and incendiary spirit into the country's war anxieties, and shame on him for ducking behind his eighth-grade nephew when the going got a little rough, and shame on him for perpetuating any manner of religious stereotyping when the country needs as much calm as it can muster.
Just in time for the Christian celebration of Easter and the Jewish observance of Passover, Dwyer's contribution to the holiday season is his trashing of the faith of Islam. He did it last week, in an e-mail sent to all 187 of his legislative colleagues, calling Islam a "militaristic and violent" religion whose followers are given "clear warrant for killing those who will not comply with Islam." The paper, purportedly written by Dwyer's eighth-grade nephew and proudly distributed by Dwyer, was titled, "Is Islam Really Peaceful?"
Then, apparently indifferent to complaints by appalled colleagues - and buoyed by what he called "dozens" of e-mails and phone calls from constituents over the weekend - he reiterated his feelings during a telephone interview yesterday.
So, just to set the record straight for Dwyer: The United States is not at war with Islam - nor Islam with the United States...