LOPEZ: What do you consider your most important point?
AKYOL: Without freedom, there is no chance for genuine religiosity. If the “religious police” are forcing you to frequent the mosque, then they are depriving you of the chance to visit the same mosque out of your own genuine will to worship God. You should be a Muslim not because of the dictates of the state or the community, in other words, but because of the dictates of your own heart and mind. And if you decide not to be a Muslim, or to be a Muslim who sins, it is only God who can hold you responsible — and He will do that only in the afterlife.LOPEZ
: What would you say to the reader who has disagreed with you on some things we’ve discussed here?AKYOL
: Well, first of all, I would respect all of her (or his) disagreements and suspicions. But I would also urge the same reader to take a look at my book. I think it is fairly reasonable, and it really is not a boring read!
— Kathryn Jean Lopez is editor-at-large of National Review Online.