Before President Trump delivered his Joint Address to Congress, uncertainty loomed over whether he would water down his penchant for speaking the truth about our radical Islamic adversaries.
Any reasonable person can see the common characteristic between the 9/11 hijackers, the Fort Hood jihadist, the Boston bombers, the Paris attackers, the San Bernardino couple, and the Orlando nightclub shooter, and no, it’s not that they’re all Jehovah Witnesses.
First, let’s be frank: if the term “radical Islamic terrorism” magically turns you into a jihadist, consider me unconvinced that you were a “moderate.”
Secondly, it is peaceful, Western-loving Muslims who suffer the most when political correctness shackles our ability to properly identify this enemy, particularly the young and impressionable.
Young, impressionable Muslims both here and around the globe must be cognizant of the fact that there is a particularly evil way in which Islam has been used to oppress and wreak havoc.
They need to see the catastrophic horror radical Islam can have on a society and the human spirit.
They need to know that this radicalism caused a group of young men to hijack an airliner, and fly it straight into the World Trade Center, killing themselves, and thousands of innocent civilians resultantly.
They need to know that it spawned the rise of the Islamic State and the genocide of thousands of Christians and moderate Muslims who stand in its way.
They need to know that it justifies the murder of homosexuals, women accused of adultery, and the horrific practice of female genital mutilation under Sharia Law.
Are we really supposed to believe that our use of an accurate phrase is going to be received as more egregious than these reprehensible acts by so-called “moderates?”
More to it, this type of rhetorical dilution is received not as a noble gesture by true moderates, but as a sign of weakness by our enemies, further emboldening them in their quest for our destruction.
Jihadists don’t seek an Islamic caliphate because of our willingness to label them the radicals that they are, they seek a caliphate because the Koran commands them to.
If our speech creates more terrorists, why is there so much terrorism in Islamic countries governed not by freedom of speech, but by Sharia law?
Does Boko Haram slaughter Nigerians because they use the phrase “radical Islamic terrorism?”
How about the Islamic State? Do they slaughter moderate Muslims in their path because of this phrase?
Islamic radicals did not massacre Christians in my home country of Lebanon because we labeled them radical Islamic terrorists.
They did not want me dead as a young girl for offending them with my speech, they wanted me dead because I was an infidel.
Furthermore, not only does the notion that our use of the term “Radical Islamic Terrorism” does more damage than good inaccurate, but to refrain from doing so is to surrender our most precious American commodity: freedom of expression.
Imagine all the social and political advancements that would never have succeeded had brave men and women who fought to achieve them remained silent, out of fear for how those opposing them would react.
Imagine if Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. had avoided speaking out about injustices plaguing our nation because someone told him that to do so may cause even further injustice.
Should we not have spoken out about “White Supremacy” in the Jim Crow south at the risk of alienating all whites?
We cannot allow ourselves to becomes prisoners of our enemies, who enjoy nothing more than when we submit to their will.
I, for one, didn’t immigrate to America to have some radical Islamist dictate what I can and can’t say. If using the accurate term “radical Islamic terrorism” offends you, sorry, I don’t care.
This in mind, President Trump’s willingness to explicitly label our enemy what they are during his Joint Address to Congress, which is radical Islamic terrorists, should be viewed as a victory not merely by those who voted for him, but by all those who embrace the idea of a free and tolerant society.
We’ve tried political correctness for the past 15 years as a force for defeating our adversaries, the time has come to change course.
We as Americans need to make it clear once and for all, that we will not tolerate radical Jihadists threatening our very existence, nor the politically correct dogma that enables it.
Nothing is more preciously American than freedom of speech, and we will not continue to erode it out of fear for how our radical Islamic adversaries will receive it.
Brigitte Gabriel is a terrorism analyst and a two times New York Times best-selling author of “Because They Hate” and “They Must Be Stopped”. She is the Founder and Chairman of ACT for America, the nation’s largest grassroots organization devoted to promoting national security and defeating terrorism.