There’s a lot of argument going on about the plan to build a community center with a mosque near Ground Zero in NYC. First of all, it’s NEAR. Not AT. An important distinction – I would oppose building any singular religious center there as people from all faiths and no faiths at all died there. It is, by virtue of what happened there, a most solemn place.
Two blocks away, though – especially in the Big Apple, is comparable to a town away for the rest of the world. And, I have no problem with it. (For more on both sides click here.
Fanatical lunatic Muslims attacked the Trade Center, to the horror of all the world, including causing deep pain and embarassment to so many Muslims here who are normal, hardworking Americans just like everyone else - and who found these attacks equally tragic - like the rest of humanity. I find it a very sad sign of bigotry and intolerance to reject all members of a faith because of the actions of a few.
Not only do I not object, I believe it’s a good thing that this group of Muslims wants to do. A community center for all to use, with a mosque for their followers to use if they wish. Rather than a statement of ‘in your face hostility’ as many are claiming, I see it as a statement espousing unity with all. I believe this group’s ‘in your face’ statement is to those crazed fools within their faith – it’s a statement that they stand WITH the rest of the world against such acts.
To those who are quick to quote passages from the Koran which call for violence, I suggest they look to their Bible and note the voluminous number of passages which call for … violence! One cannot say the same calls for atrocity in the Bible don’t apply to Judeo-Christians, but in the Koran, it MUST apply to their believers. That’s just hypocritical, disingenuous and does nothing but foster hatred.
It seems most of the protest is led by one Pamela Geller, a conservative Jewish columnist from NY who actually has the audacity to tell the builders what they SHOULD be building there – a center to cut out parts of the Koran to make it palatable to her.
Unbelievable. Get out of the sun, Pamela.
"We feel it would be more appropriate maybe to build a center dedicated to expunging the Quranic texts of the violent ideology that inspired jihad, or perhaps a center to the victims of hundreds of millions of years of jihadi wars, land enslavements, cultural annihilations and mass slaughter," Geller said.
Perhaps a Judeo-Christian center which will revise the Bible to eliminate its calls for violence is also appropriate? Perhaps a World Religions Center wherein all faiths would edit their doctrinal/religious texts until any and all passages which offend any and all others are eliminated. (It would work for me!)
Regular readers know I am no fan of any religion - this dispute is a perfect example of how they cause problems; I believe just about all faiths cause vastly more harm than good. But in honesty, there IS also some good attempted by some religions, and I believe that this effort in NY is one of them.
All images as linked.
Posted in its entirety from my column here: http://www.examiner.com/examiner/x-44168-Philadelphia-Freethought-E...