My thoughts on radicalization
(Estimated Reading Time: ~ 10 minutes)
So I came by this survey (posted by Lorand B.) through a forwarded message and I started answering the questions. I, then, realized that the answers were somewhat worthy of being a blog-post. Since I have not been consistent with posting content on this site and I also would like any excuse to reach out to people to make them hear, listen or read what I have to say (someone’s hungry for attention), I thought of posting the answers with the questions here.
Disclaimer: The questions are not mine. As mentioned they’re by someone named Lorand B., who is working on an “…MA Dissertation that aims to explore the causes of radicalisation”.
These thoughts have been acquired by me, over the years, through reading books, listening to audio lectures and watching TV. So they might not be my thoughts at all. (What a horrible thought, that you are what you have experienced up till this moment, in time)
Here are my thoughts on radicalization:
1) In your view, what is radical/extreme?
Radical/Extreme is not giving young adults or adults the freedom to make a choice AND forcing your own mindset/culture/rules on other people.
2) What is your opinion on deviating from the norm? In other words, going against what is deemed as mainstream
It’s fine, as long as no one is harmed physically, mentally or emotionally, and as long as it doesn’t disrupt peace and harmony. How will we evolve if we don’t deviate.
3) What role do you think social media and the internet play in the process of radicalization?
They play a huge role now that the internet and social-media have become a big part of peoples’ lives. It liberalizes access to information and people, which makes them (social-media and the internet) beneficial in the right hands and dangerous in the wrong hands.
4) What do you think drives young people to join extremist/terrorist groups such as Boko Haram, ISIS, etc. ?
In a particular order: Hunger for power and wealth, hunger for sense of importance and sense of meaning, loneliness, joblessness, lack of better ideas, lack of time consuming activities, an idle mind, inappropriate upbringing and genetics.
5) What do you think are the reasons for using violence in order to achieve certain goals?
A reason for a violent act can be anything. That reason will only be important if it helps us understand and find a solution to stop or reduce the violence.
Three things come to mind:
First is the upbringing of children. Parents give their children tools to face the world. If they teach their children to react and not to respond to situations, they’ll be violent.
Second is a combination of hunger for instant gratification and hunger for power. Some people want to implement their will tomorrow or the day after that. Violence scares most of its victims because it promises loss of something valuable, your loved ones, your wealth, your life, etc. etc. Violent people firmly believe that actions speak louder than words.
Third is the mindset of victims (based on their continuous experience of violence) that makes them think and/or believe that they are weak and their actions won’t amount to anything. This point is not the victims’ fault. We shouldn’t hold it against them.