A truly pathetic aspect of this whole kerfuffle, both in NY and across the nation has been the whole “No ‘ground zero’ mosque (which by the way is not at Ground Zero) until we can build a church or synagogue in Mecca!!”
You know why it is pathetic? The group building (or hoping to build) the Islamic Community Centre on Park Place in lower Manhattan wouldn’t be allowed to build a mosque in Mecca either. Their version of Islam isn’t acceptable to the Saudi religious authorities.
So in fighting against the Islamic Community Centre in lower Manhattan, various Americans have shown themselves to be just as intolerant as those at least partially responsible for the attacks on Sept 11, 2001. I speak not of al Qaeda and its adherents, the ones who committed the crimes, but of those fundamentalist Muslims who gave the group money in the hope that al Qaeda’s teachings would inspire more people to return to the ‘real’ Islam. There was, and is much anger in the Muslim world about the actions of the US and the Western nations, most of it unjustified but still the anger is present. It has many causes but to react as so many Americans have reacted in this instance simply ‘proves’ to the fanatics and many on the fence, that the tales of American hypocrisy are true.
Far too many in the Muslim world believe that America’s words about democracy and freedom are mere propaganda, meant only to assuage the ignorant and to provide a means of controlling weaker states. Far too many see the US saying one thing and acting in a totally different fashion. Far too many see Americans blathering on about freedom of religion but then see the present example of intolerance.
The Islamic Centre on Park Place will not be built and the haters will rejoice. Then the next time, a peaceful group wishes to build a place to gather, somewhere in America, the haters will be stronger, the politicians weaker and the inexorable slide will be sped up.
The actions of politicians and the political punditry and the MSM and the bloggers in this instance, truly depress me. I had hope for a while but no longer – the haters have won. Next time, it will be easier for them. Ignorance has won. Next Time, it will be easier for the revisionists to create their history. Religious bigotry has won – the next time, it may be your religious beliefs.
True Believers(tm) tend to have few friends but many allies willing to use their hatred, ignorance and bigotry for their own reasons. As with the Tea Partiers, some who have legitimate fears and doubts, the religious bigots are being used by forces who care little about the religious aspects of the case but only about retaining or gaining power over the body politic.