We must not let the extremists intimidate us into silence. Things like this need to be talked about in the public square.
'Let us not forget that violence does not and cannot flourish by itself; it is inevitably intertwined with lying. Between them there is the closest, the most profound and natural bond: nothing screens violence except lies, and the only way lies can hold out is by violence. Whoever has announced violence as his method must inevitably choose lies as his principle....' -- Alexander Solzhenitsyn
This is why the truth is so important. Lies ruin lives.
If you think you know someone with extreme views, what should you do? First of all I'd suggest that you talk with him (or her) and find out what they believe. (If I was concerned about my safety I'd do it with a friend in a public place.) If you have misjudged the person, you will not know if you have or not if you don't talk with them. And you certainly won't help someone with extremist views if you ignore them. Ignoring an extremist will make him more extreme; he'll stay fixed in his ways and he'll feel like he has to take more extreme measures to get through to you.
If you want to influence how an extremist thinks, talk with him. Reflect back to him what he is saying and ask penetrating questions. Yes it's difficult, but what options do we have on the individual level?
So what exactly is an extremist?
Here is my definition of an extremist and how governments should address the issue. Read on