Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Religious Freedom

Some folks apparently believe, without saying it, that the Muslim religion attacked the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001, when in fact it was a group of rogue extremists.  Accordingly, no Muslims should be allowed to build a mosque two blocks from Ground Zero.

I ask myself this question: "Would the same brouhaha accompany a proposal to build a Christian church two blocks from the World Trade Center?"  I doubt it.  So what is the connection between the 9/11 massacre and the mosque (which, though pretty much irrelevant, I understand cannot be seen from Ground Zero and which accompanies strip joints and other establishments for which some spiritual enlightenment might be appropriate)? 

Nonsense, fed by the wacky grizzly woman, a former Speaker of the House, and others who should know better.  Let them draw their absurd analogies to countries that weren't built on principles like ours, and may those analogies come back to haunt them in any bids for public office.  As for analogies, it might be appropriate to compare a proposal to build a cathedral near the site where a priest molested young boys or a fundamentalist church near an abortion clinic bombed by a professed Christian.  In this country, I'd like to think we know better than to condemn an entire faith based on the behavior of a few miscreants.

So what if a poll says 61% of Americans oppose the proposed mosque?  That is exactly why the founders of our great country chose to establish the infrastructure they did, with checks and balances and difficult rows to hoe for Constitutional change.  Sometimes we let our emotions carry us away.  Later, when common sense returns, we're glad we had time to reconsider.

I often hear folks gripe about "not being able to pray in public schools."  Yes, we and our children may pray in public schools -- silently, wherever we want.  No, we may not coerce other people into praying in public schools.  Look at it this way.  Some day, when our child has a Muslim teacher, that teacher will not be permitted to ask the student to bow and pray with him or her.

"You sound a little irritated," says Virginia.

Well, it can be frustrating when a gaggle of senators and representatives fail to speak out because they're worried about election results.


  1. I could not agree with you more. People want religious freedom as long as it is thier own.

  2. mary pannabecker steinerAugust 30, 2010 at 11:06 AM

    I wish I could post this to my FB page, so everyone can read my thoughts. Not that I wrote this, but you were inside my head when you wrote it. And you did such a FINE job. Thank you very much, Big Brother.