Posted by: mutantpoodle | August 17, 2010

As long as we keep the Baptists away from Veterans Cemeteries…

Do people even realize that the Ground Zero Mosque isn’t actually a mosque and isn’t actually at Ground Zero? Not that it matters.

I’m sure that Newt Gingrich, Sarah Palin, and the most cowardly Harry Reid will make sure that, as John Oliver suggested, Catholic churches are kept a safe distance away from elementary school playgrounds, and Baptists, tarred by Fred Phelps’ church, are not allowed to worship anywhere near a military cemetery.

Apparently, the first amendment is all well and good, unless someone’s precious fee-fees might get hurt.

Sigh.

UPDATE:  Sister Susan passed this link (“The Hawkers of 9/11 Porn”) along. It echoes one of my thoughts – two blocks, in New York City, is a whole other neighborhood.

E.B. White, in his essay Here is New York, noted that very phenomenon:

A woman friend of mine moved recently from one apartment to another, a distance of three blocks.  when she turned up, the day after the move, at the same grocer’s that she had patronized for years, the proprietor was in ecstasy – almost in tears – at seeing her.  “I was afraid,” he said, “now that you’ve moved away I wouldn’t be seeing you anymore.”  To him, away was three blocks, or about 750 feet.

It’s so clear that this has been ginned up by those whom Southerners, in the 1960s, would call outside agitators, except that they really ARE from places far, far away, and there is not the slightest kernel of moral justice at the heart of their – well, I guess you’d have to call it a crusade, wouldn’t you?

Just the desperate, cynical bleatings of people who talk about the constitution and yet have no concept of the humanity at its heart.

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Responses

  1. It’s really rather simple. Under our constitution, the Cordoba Corporation has a right to build any religious institution they want to as long as they pay taxes, abide by the rules and do not incite riots. Is it in good taste to build it in Lower Manhattan? It doesn’t matter. Legally they have the right to build it. It’s in “worse taste” to deny the principles of our constitution! Now, if they really wanted to mollify their opponents, they might offer to build a small memorial to 9/11 inside their Community Center. (However I’m sure they would have offered to do this already if it was an objective).

    On the flip side, I wonder how many Non-Muslims have actually read and understood the Qur’an and its commentaries. I have read the Qur’an and frankly I need to peruse it again, probably with more guidance. I do not know if there are gradients of Muslims as there are in other religions; i.e. you can be a secular or agnostic Jew and still count yourself as a Jew. Thus I do not know if most Muslims believe the aforementioned texts are literal foundations of their beliefs. If the Qur’an is indeed a “guidebook” that most Muslims believe, we should all study it…quickly. There are xenophobic segments that are disturbing, as frankly there are in all Bibles and well-known religious texts. (I do not trust fundamentalists in any religion including my own).

    So the truth is, we need to end this brewing antagonism now and learn to live together peacefully while tolerating our differences. In the meantime, classes in Comparative Religion, Ancient History and Sociology along with counseling in respect and tolerance should be de rigueur, starting in elementary school. Lord knows, we need it….

    Get over it people. There is NO RIGHT WAY to pray to God. The only right way is to make sure the pathways are clear from intolerance and institutionalized bullying of other people on their pathways….My suggestion??? Scrap the xenophobia from all religious writings and consider starting over…..

  2. I think the point is that Muslims should no more have to apologize for al qaeda than Baptists should have to apologize for Fred Phelps, or Evangelicals should be saddled with Pat Robertson. This is a ginned up nontroversy, to use one of my favorite words. The notion that people who purport to be “leaders” are fanning the flames of bigotry is just depressing.

    And you are correct that it is how some people interpret these ancient texts, and not the texts themselves, which can be most troublesome.

  3. My point was that even if the majority of Muslims supported terrorism, under our constitution they have the right to build the mosque on the site that they have chosen in Manhattan. No I do not condone terrorism. Yes I think the proximity of the mosque to Ground Zero could be distressing to victims’ families, but legally the developers have the right to build it there.

    As I have not yet made the rounds to a number of mosques, I can not honestly report what is being discussed in them, regarding how literally the majority of Muslims believe in the Koran. There is no Grand Imam who serves as a Pope. The media can be skewed and self-serving regarding potential religious propaganda. Thus it is difficult to get a reading on the international Muslim community, if they indeed have one on themselves. It is a rather large religion worldwide, without a central “government.” We like to think it is a peaceful religion that has been “hijacked.” I do not know. It does not change their right to build the mosque. The Koran supports violence. However, there is a good deal of violence in the Bibles, both “old” and new as well.

    I know about the distinctions in my religion and depending on the movement, a number of us do not literally believe in the Bible but see it as comprised of teaching parables that we are supposed to question. Assuredly all of these movements, in my religion, do not advocate violence or world control. There is a “live and let live” understanding in this doctrine and that is frankly one of the reasons I choose to associate with it. There are even honors and celebrations for righteous people of other denominations and faiths that do something worthwhile for their community as a whole. Does this also exist in the Muslim world? (There is a publicity/ press opportunity here for moderate Muslims if this is the case.)

    Islam means “submission to God” and as I understand it questioning is not encouraged, but I could be incorrect. You say the texts are ancient. True enough. Life was different when these texts were “written.” Hopefully, all believers in all religious texts have tempered the ancient literal violence and understand that we are sharing one earth. Hopefully all believers know that no group has the right to demonize the other or insist on their own religious superiority and domination, especially through violence of any kind.

    The “convert/ or be killed” stated mentality of any religious document needs to be examined and annulled. The believers of Sharia Law who would insist on its domination over other secular national constitutions, fall under this “convert/ or be killed” mentality. If this piece of the religious doctrine is indeed a basis for extremist terrorists, as I understand it, I suggest we see it for what it is. This part would be a political battle. If one considers Sharia Law a political party, then we have the full rights of the American constitution to battle this party; with our words, voting power and political process. This is a fight I would encourage, peacefully.

    In conclusion, there is a battle. We are fighting any extremist terrorist anywhere that believes in violence. We are fighting any religious law anywhere that professes supremacy and domination over our constitution which maintains separation of church and state and protects the rights of minorities. We are not necessarily, nor should we be, engaged in a battle with a religion.

    And finally, my note entreating people to “get it together” was addressed to moderate Muslims who unfortunately do need to step up to the plate now and start a dialog with the non-Muslim world. The comment was also addressed to Americans who do not see the hypocrisy in opposing the building of the mosque while claiming they support our precious Constitution.

    Thank you for the opportunity to express my views.

  4. And BTW if there is a local Imam who wants to tutor me in his faith I am interested in learning more and I am always game for a class. It seems to me we could all stand some tutoring.

  5. And in a sense all news/ controversy is ginned up. Twenty-four hour news programs bow to the rating machine too. So unless we are out there polling, I guess we always have to keep healthy skepticism as a pocket companion.

  6. ok…done…thx….


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