there seems to be an effort by some individuals and groups to extend forgiveness and apology to other faith groups for past harm. There also seems to be an effort to cooperate and promote understanding and peace -- both within religions and between religions. Perhaps the most remarkable development in 2007 was a letter: "A Common Word Between Us and You " issued by Muslim leaders in 43 countries to Christian leaders in the fall of 2007.
Unfortunately, many in the media give priority to negative and violent news. They use the criteria: "If it bleeds, it leads." Positive religious news does not sell many papers or significantly increase the number of viewers of TV news sources. Thus, events of this type are rarely reported in depth by the media; sometimes they are not reported at all.
The result is that religiously motivated violence saturates the airwaves, newspapers, and the Internet. Voices of moderation and cooperation are often heard. Many of the public conclude that some religions are inherently violent and have little regard for human rights.
We will assemble brief reports on such outreaches, starting in mid-2008.
Events included in this section:
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