Hey Shehrose, thanks for reading, and thanks for the comment!
Do you think that our main problem with Islam is that we magnify the negative aspects of it with disregard to the positives? I think it’s hard to make that case. My experience is that the mass culture and mainstream media blots out any sort of objective, critical view of Islam.
My general view is that Islam has not gone through a reformation in the same way Christianity has. Muslims in general have disproportionately high rates of violence and illiberal beliefs relative to any other major religion. And islamic texts are unique in their focus on the kafir. See work by Bill Warner for further reference.
I also do not consider myself a neoconservative — mainly because I think western countries should not have any military presence in foreign countries whatsoever.
I do think there is a line to be drawn in terms of being needlessly offensive. I don’t particularly view any word as off limits. Retard simply means “slow”. It’s a common french word. Though I can see why it is offensive to many people, kids would use it in very mean ways at public school for me.