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Steve Likes to Curse
Writing, comics and random thoughts from really a rather vulgar man
Why opposition to the Ground Zero mosque is wrong, and un-American 
Monday, August 2nd, 2010 | 04:38 pm [commentary, politics, religion]
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Opposition to the Cordoba House, a mosque being constructed as part of a Muslim community center two blocks from the former site of the World trade Center in New York, is driven primarily by fear and bigotry (two concepts as inseparable as Pepsi and disappointment). I made a video last week comparing the shit storm being kicked up over this mosque to resistance to a black family buying a house in a neighborhood where a group of completely different black people once committed a terrible crime. (Check the comments section on that one; Rick Rottman came up with a much better metaphor than mine, I think, though I still think the opposition to this mosque is totally illegitimate.)

Now, William Saletan calls out Republican/conservative opposition to the Cordoba House in a piece published today at Slate.com:

The stated mission of the organization behind the project, the Cordoba Initiative, is to build “interfaith tolerance and respect.” The center would include a library, gym, auditorium, and restaurant. Its purpose would be “promoting integration, tolerance of difference,” and “inter-community gatherings and cooperation.” The initiative’s chairman, Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, has denounced church burnings in Muslim countries, rejected Islamic triumphalism over Christians and Jews, and proposed to reclaim Islam from violent radicals such as Osama Bin Laden.

Despite these assurances, a stream of politicians and religious leaders has come out against the mosque. On May 14, Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., called the project “particularly offensive” because “so many Muslim leaders have failed to speak out against radical Islam, against the attacks” of 9/11. Later, as paraphrased by the Associated Press, King said “ground zero may not be an appropriate spot for this or any proposed mosque.”

Over the next month, Republicans added new arguments. They said the mosque might end up being funded by radicals. They said Rauf hadn’t condemned Hamas. They said he had faulted U.S. policies for contributing to the 9/11 attacks. But their core position predated and superseded these arguments: Muslim worshippers, keep out.

Read the entire article at Slate.com.
Tuesday, August 3rd, 2010 | 01:37 am (UTC)
Now see what you've done, Steve? I'm cringing. If I keep coming back here, my face is gonna stick like that, and its going to be all your fault!

It's going to be hard to pin bigotry on people for this one. Too many people are against it and for good reasons.

But, here's how the Slate article goes:

People that oppose the mosque oppose it for one reason and one reason only. They hate Muslims. Oh sure, they SAY they oppose it because its insensitive, but we all know they're lying. And what really gets under our skin is when these bigots say they oppose building a Mosque where 3'000 people were murdered by Islamic terrorists because its insensitive AND because it might become funded by radicals. The nerve! Who do these bigots think they are having more than one reason to oppose the worlds largest mosque, oops, I mean "community center" at Ground Zero. Listen up, you bigots out there, you can only have ONE reason to oppose the mosque, not TWO. Stop coming up with more legitimate reasons to think the idea stinks, cause your making it hard for us to call you bigots!

According to the article 52% of Americans oppose it. And if you ignore the horseshit in the Slate article, what you see is that the opposition is made up of a pretty diverse group in its own right -Hindus, Jews, Christians, (and I'm willing to bet some Athiests, just like yourself.) There's a group, I think called Muslims for Democracy that are opposed to it too.

It's just a bad idea, and at the risk of sounding like a bigot, isn't it at all possible Muslims can come up with a bad idea from time to time, just like the rest of us?
Tuesday, August 3rd, 2010 | 02:07 am (UTC)
It's only insensitive if you draw no distinction between the Muslims who are building the Cordoba House, and the Muslims who perpetrated the attacks of September 11, 2001.

And Muslims do come up with bad ideas, all the time. I'll give you one of their worst: Islam. But how silly and immoral I find their religion is irrelevant. I don't see wanting to build a mosque in New York City two blocks from Ground Zero as "an act of cultural aggression," as Newt Gingrich puts it.

And can you do me a favor and point me in the direction of your evidence that the Cordoba House is being funded by radicals and terrorist sponsors? Faisal Abdul Rauf, the imam in charge of the initiative, seems to be one of the more moderate, reasonable and ecumenical Islamic voices in the world today. I'm sure he and I would have plenty to argue about, but I see nothing in my reading on him so far to suggest he wants to topple the dome of our Capitol and replace it with a minaret.
Tuesday, August 3rd, 2010 | 02:35 am (UTC)
I don't think I said that his organization was being funded by terrorists, but I have read (and I will send you links) that so far, his organization has refused to answer questions about funding for the community center. And before you say it, I do know that he does not have to say where the money came from.
Tuesday, August 3rd, 2010 | 02:48 am (UTC)
Nor can we fairly infer from his reluctance to disclose where his funding comes from that he is taking money from radicals and terrorist sponsors, or doing any other nefarious thing.
Tuesday, August 3rd, 2010 | 03:06 am (UTC)
agreed. But nor do we have to assume its all on the up and up.

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