Where Will the Line Be Drawn on Anti-Muslim Remarks?

(Crossposted on FDL Seminal)

Take Note: This post is inspired by the September 17th episode of Real Time With Bill Maher. In the show, Maher broaches the question "Do you think people like Sarah Palin and Christine O’Donnell do or don’t want a war with the Muslims? Because I think they do."

The question itself seems like it should be more of a joke than a serious question, especially coming from a comedian like Bill Maher. However, stop and think for a second what this actually means.

The religiously motivated right (i.e. Sarah Palin, Mike Huckabee, etc. The list is numerous) aren’t afraid to show their feelings about where God stands in relation to governance in this country. The bible thumpers and Evangelical Christians are quick to label this a "Christian Nation" because of our founding fathers. Those who claim this, however, generally tend to neglect the fact that not all of the founding fathers were Christian. Oh yeah…and then there’s that thing in the Bill of Rights about Freedom of Religion. This, of course, also means freedom from religion if one so chooses.

In the recent years, and especially since Barack Obama came into the mainstream picture, Muslims have been falsely branded as an enemy to Christianity (among other things). In this day and age, when a Islamic mosque/community center can’t be built near ground zero without a horrendous national uproar by people like Palin, is it really that outrageous to pose the question mentioned by Maher?  . . .

My answer to that is no. Need a more physical example? Have a look at this campaign advertisement for Renee Ellmers, Republican candidate for Congress in North Carolina (It’s important to mention that she is endorsed by holy crusader Sarah Palin herself).

(via Huffington Post)

Candidates like Ellmers are using the age-old GOP tactic of fear-based campaigning and putting a new spin to it. Post 9/11 has seen an increase in anti-Arab sentiment, and specifically targeted to the Muslim religion in general. This has opened the door for candidates to exploit the irrational fears of a gullible population in order to get more votes. Not only is Ellmers’ campaign ad an embarrassment, it’s riddled with assumptions. Playing on the token term "victory-mosques" Ellmers has falsely characterized the entire Park 51 Cordoba mosque situation. This effectively sways voters and leads them to believe these falsehoods, and thinking that a vote for the other candidate is a vote for terrorist victory.

Ellmers uses terminology suggesting that she characterizes all Muslims as terrorists. "The terrorists haven’t won, and we should tell THEM in plain English No, there will never be a mosque at Ground Zero."

This makes me think that Ellmers views the people wanting to build the Park 51 center as terrorists. To go to such great lengths to get a vote, this shows a clear lack of rationality as well as intelligence regarding the entire situation she is describing. Not only does this alienate an entire population, but it grossly misleads a whole other population.

The part of this entire controversy that is the most heartbreaking to me are the Muslims who died in the September 11 terrorist attacks and their families. Due to such a blown up controversy, the near 60 Muslim Americans that perished that day are being overshadowed by Anti-Islamic sentiment from people like Renee Ellmers and Newt Gingrich. These people are Americans too, just like the Christians, Jews, Atheists, etc. that also lost their lives on that day.

The New York Times did a story of a woman widowed on 9/11 that happened to be a Muslim. Hadidjatou Karamoko Traoré’s husband was a cook at the Windows of the World restaurant in the World Trade Center. In this excerpt she describes praying to Allah at Ground Zero.

When she prays, she calls God Allah. Mrs. Traoré, 40, says praying in the pit feels entirely natural, even if some of those standing with her — widows and widowers, parents and children — blame her religion for the destruction of that day.

“That’s not fair,” she said. “It’s not because of Allah that these buildings fell.”

Mrs. Traoré is the widow of one of roughly 60 Muslim victims — cooks, businessmen, emergency responders and airline passengers — believed to have died on 9/11. It is a group that has been little examined, and no precisely reliable count of their ranks exists. But their stories, when told, have frequently been offered as counterweights in the latest public argument over terrorism and Islam.

(Source: NYT)

"It’s not because of Allah that these buildings fell."

A statement so simple, yet so powerful. A statement that many refuse to believe. It’s time to stop this blatant hatred towards the Islamic culture and the Arab world as a whole. Generalizing an entire population because of a few radical extremists goes against what this nation was founded upon, the principles of freedom and equality for all regardless of who/what you pray to…if you do at all.

Where Will the Line Be Drawn on Anti-Muslim Remarks?

(Crossposted on FDL Seminal)

Take Note: This post is inspired by the September 17th episode of Real Time With Bill Maher. In the show, Maher broaches the question "Do you think people like Sarah Palin and Christine O’Donnell do or don’t want a war with the Muslims? Because I think they do."

The question itself seems like it should be more of a joke than a serious question, especially coming from a comedian like Bill Maher. However, stop and think for a second what this actually means.

The religiously motivated right (i.e. Sarah Palin, Mike Huckabee, etc. The list is numerous) aren’t afraid to show their feelings about where God stands in relation to governance in this country. The bible thumpers and Evangelical Christians are quick to label this a "Christian Nation" because of our founding fathers. Those who claim this, however, generally tend to neglect the fact that not all of the founding fathers were Christian. Oh yeah…and then there’s that thing in the Bill of Rights about Freedom of Religion. This, of course, also means freedom from religion if one so chooses.

In the recent years, and especially since Barack Obama came into the mainstream picture, Muslims have been falsely branded as an enemy to Christianity (among other things). In this day and age, when a Islamic mosque/community center can’t be built near ground zero without a horrendous national uproar by people like Palin, is it really that outrageous to pose the question mentioned by Maher?  . . .

My answer to that is no. Need a more physical example? Have a look at this campaign advertisement for Renee Ellmers, Republican candidate for Congress in North Carolina (It’s important to mention that she is endorsed by holy crusader Sarah Palin herself).

(via Huffington Post)

Candidates like Ellmers are using the age-old GOP tactic of fear-based campaigning and putting a new spin to it. Post 9/11 has seen an increase in anti-Arab sentiment, and specifically targeted to the Muslim religion in general. This has opened the door for candidates to exploit the irrational fears of a gullible population in order to get more votes. Not only is Ellmers’ campaign ad an embarrassment, it’s riddled with assumptions. Playing on the token term "victory-mosques" Ellmers has falsely characterized the entire Park 51 Cordoba mosque situation. This effectively sways voters and leads them to believe these falsehoods, and thinking that a vote for the other candidate is a vote for terrorist victory.

Ellmers uses terminology suggesting that she characterizes all Muslims as terrorists. "The terrorists haven’t won, and we should tell THEM in plain English No, there will never be a mosque at Ground Zero."

This makes me think that Ellmers views the people wanting to build the Park 51 center as terrorists. To go to such great lengths to get a vote, this shows a clear lack of rationality as well as intelligence regarding the entire situation she is describing. Not only does this alienate an entire population, but it grossly misleads a whole other population.

The part of this entire controversy that is the most heartbreaking to me are the Muslims who died in the September 11 terrorist attacks and their families. Due to such a blown up controversy, the near 60 Muslim Americans that perished that day are being overshadowed by Anti-Islamic sentiment from people like Renee Ellmers and Newt Gingrich. These people are Americans too, just like the Christians, Jews, Atheists, etc. that also lost their lives on that day.

The New York Times did a story of a woman widowed on 9/11 that happened to be a Muslim. Hadidjatou Karamoko Traoré’s husband was a cook at the Windows of the World restaurant in the World Trade Center. In this excerpt she describes praying to Allah at Ground Zero.

When she prays, she calls God Allah. Mrs. Traoré, 40, says praying in the pit feels entirely natural, even if some of those standing with her — widows and widowers, parents and children — blame her religion for the destruction of that day.

“That’s not fair,” she said. “It’s not because of Allah that these buildings fell.”

Mrs. Traoré is the widow of one of roughly 60 Muslim victims — cooks, businessmen, emergency responders and airline passengers — believed to have died on 9/11. It is a group that has been little examined, and no precisely reliable count of their ranks exists. But their stories, when told, have frequently been offered as counterweights in the latest public argument over terrorism and Islam.

(Source: NYT)

"It’s not because of Allah that these buildings fell."

A statement so simple, yet so powerful. A statement that many refuse to believe. It’s time to stop this blatant hatred towards the Islamic culture and the Arab world as a whole. Generalizing an entire population because of a few radical extremists goes against what this nation was founded upon, the principles of freedom and equality for all regardless of who/what you pray to…if you do at all.

Where Will the Line Be Drawn on Anti-Muslim Remarks?

(Crossposted on FDL Seminal)

Take Note: This post is inspired by the September 17th episode of Real Time With Bill Maher. In the show, Maher broaches the question "Do you think people like Sarah Palin and Christine O’Donnell do or don’t want a war with the Muslims? Because I think they do."

The question itself seems like it should be more of a joke than a serious question, especially coming from a comedian like Bill Maher. However, stop and think for a second what this actually means.

The religiously motivated right (i.e. Sarah Palin, Mike Huckabee, etc. The list is numerous) aren’t afraid to show their feelings about where God stands in relation to governance in this country. The bible thumpers and Evangelical Christians are quick to label this a "Christian Nation" because of our founding fathers. Those who claim this, however, generally tend to neglect the fact that not all of the founding fathers were Christian. Oh yeah…and then there’s that thing in the Bill of Rights about Freedom of Religion. This, of course, also means freedom from religion if one so chooses.

In the recent years, and especially since Barack Obama came into the mainstream picture, Muslims have been falsely branded as an enemy to Christianity (among other things). In this day and age, when a Islamic mosque/community center can’t be built near ground zero without a horrendous national uproar by people like Palin, is it really that outrageous to pose the question mentioned by Maher?  . . .

My answer to that is no. Need a more physical example? Have a look at this campaign advertisement for Renee Ellmers, Republican candidate for Congress in North Carolina (It’s important to mention that she is endorsed by holy crusader Sarah Palin herself).

(via Huffington Post)

Candidates like Ellmers are using the age-old GOP tactic of fear-based campaigning and putting a new spin to it. Post 9/11 has seen an increase in anti-Arab sentiment, and specifically targeted to the Muslim religion in general. This has opened the door for candidates to exploit the irrational fears of a gullible population in order to get more votes. Not only is Ellmers’ campaign ad an embarrassment, it’s riddled with assumptions. Playing on the token term "victory-mosques" Ellmers has falsely characterized the entire Park 51 Cordoba mosque situation. This effectively sways voters and leads them to believe these falsehoods, and thinking that a vote for the other candidate is a vote for terrorist victory.

Ellmers uses terminology suggesting that she characterizes all Muslims as terrorists. "The terrorists haven’t won, and we should tell THEM in plain English No, there will never be a mosque at Ground Zero."

This makes me think that Ellmers views the people wanting to build the Park 51 center as terrorists. To go to such great lengths to get a vote, this shows a clear lack of rationality as well as intelligence regarding the entire situation she is describing. Not only does this alienate an entire population, but it grossly misleads a whole other population.

The part of this entire controversy that is the most heartbreaking to me are the Muslims who died in the September 11 terrorist attacks and their families. Due to such a blown up controversy, the near 60 Muslim Americans that perished that day are being overshadowed by Anti-Islamic sentiment from people like Renee Ellmers and Newt Gingrich. These people are Americans too, just like the Christians, Jews, Atheists, etc. that also lost their lives on that day.

The New York Times did a story of a woman widowed on 9/11 that happened to be a Muslim. Hadidjatou Karamoko Traoré’s husband was a cook at the Windows of the World restaurant in the World Trade Center. In this excerpt she describes praying to Allah at Ground Zero.

When she prays, she calls God Allah. Mrs. Traoré, 40, says praying in the pit feels entirely natural, even if some of those standing with her — widows and widowers, parents and children — blame her religion for the destruction of that day.

“That’s not fair,” she said. “It’s not because of Allah that these buildings fell.”

Mrs. Traoré is the widow of one of roughly 60 Muslim victims — cooks, businessmen, emergency responders and airline passengers — believed to have died on 9/11. It is a group that has been little examined, and no precisely reliable count of their ranks exists. But their stories, when told, have frequently been offered as counterweights in the latest public argument over terrorism and Islam.

(Source: NYT)

"It’s not because of Allah that these buildings fell."

A statement so simple, yet so powerful. A statement that many refuse to believe. It’s time to stop this blatant hatred towards the Islamic culture and the Arab world as a whole. Generalizing an entire population because of a few radical extremists goes against what this nation was founded upon, the principles of freedom and equality for all regardless of who/what you pray to…if you do at all.

An Open Letter to George W. Bush: Speak Out Against Bigotry

Opposition is mounting to the "Burn a Koran Day" scheduled for September 11th in Florida. President Obama today condemned the event, urging Pastor Terry Jones to cancel. General David Petraeus said it could harm our troops,Secretary of State Hillary Clinton called it unrepresentative of Americans.Attorney General Eric Holder called it "idiotic and dangerous," and the Vatican has called the planned demonstration "outrageous and grave."

Condemning this event is a start, but it’s critical that we don’t lose sight of the big picture. There have been too many incidents of vandalism and anti-Muslim activity in recent days all over the country. 

We need our leaders to speak out against ALL of the anti-Muslim rhetoric that is pervading our political discourse. Former President George W. Bush and members of his administration spoke out for tolerance and freedom of religion during his presidency. 

They could make a difference by speaking out now. Will they?

Human Rights First launched an open letter to former President Bush last week. Here’s what we—and over 9,000 of our supporters—have to ask of the former president:

 

Dear President Bush,

 During your presidency, you stood up repeatedly against bigotry and hate and urged all Americans to do the same.

In 2002, you said, “America rejects bigotry. We reject every act of hatred against people of Arab background or Muslim faith. America values and welcomes peaceful people of all faiths—Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Sikh, Hindu, and many others. Every faith is practiced and protected here, because we are one country.”

Thank you for your leadership and your principled opposition to bigotry.

Right now, there’s a dangerous wave of intolerance sweeping the country. It began with the debate over the “Ground Zero Mosque,” but it is no longer only about an Islamic center in Manhattan. There are anti-mosque rallies taking place around the country, reports of arson and gun shots at a mosque in Tennessee, the Internet is filled with bigoted speech, and a church in Florida is planning a Koran burning on September 11th.

To stem this tide, people must speak out in favor of the American values of tolerance, diversity, and religious freedom. Your words will have added weight.

Please lend your voice to the defense of American values.

Thank you.

 

You can add your name to the letter here.  

 

 

Dear Marty, The First Amendment is Not Optional

The Anti-Mosque That Ain’t a Mosque crowd seems to be going all Sharia on America’s ass. You’d think the possibility – not the certainty mind you – of building a Muslim community center amongst the strip clubs and bars of Manhattan is a worse offense than knocking the WTC down to begin with.

We have idiots closing community centers in Kentucky ostensibly for lack of parking because according to the property owner, Muslims can’t be trusted to adhere to no parking signs. Florida’s Dove World Outreach Center, a violation of truth in advertising laws if there ever was one, is reaching out to Muslims by burning Korans. Now, New Republic editor-in-chief Marty Peretz says Muslims are unworthy of First Amendment protection, presumably regardless of whether they are citizens or not.

Marty the Magnificent Sez…
Says Marty the Magnificent, “…frankly, Muslim life is cheap, most notably to Muslims. And among those Muslims led by the Imam Rauf there is hardly one who has raised a fuss about the routine and random bloodshed that defines their brotherhood. So, yes, I wonder whether I need honor these people and pretend that they are worthy of the privileges of the First Amendment which I have in my gut the sense that they will abuse.”

Gee Marty, my gut – hell, every fiber of my being – tells me you would abuse First Amendment protections too. No, wait! You already have by suggesting the First Amendment is an option like the automatic transmission on your Ford Crown Vic. The same goes for your toxic brethren like the book burning “Doves” and the spreading community of knotheads elsewhere around the country.

Marty, can you not see the irony of exercising your First Amendment rights by saying someone else should be deprived of theirs? Screeching Doves, can you not see the same by the light of your Constitutional bonfire?

Whether Muslims “raise a fuss” is their call, not yours. To speak or not to speak are both protected rights. Besides, my gut also tells me that condemning their “brotherhood” wouldn’t make one iota of difference in your opinion.

The Lonesome Doves and Tim McVey
And Lonesome Doves, would you be burning Bibles if an inbred clan of Timothy McVey wannabes had rammed the WTC with an airplane instead? I’m an atheist and I’d be quite happy if someone burned all the holy books, regardless of whatever holier than though sect dreamt them up.

But wait! No, I wouldn’t! I believe in the First Amendment.

It isn’t optional because I despise you and what you’re saying. It isn’t optional because some lunkhead’s book isn’t as holy as you believe yours is. It isn’t optional because your gut tells you they don’t value human life. It isn’t optional because they are Muslim, Baptist, or Druid nor because some of their members were bat shit crazy and wanted to kill people for things like, gee, I dunno, disrespecting the Koran (see David Petraeus). In this country, people can say what they want and worship or not worship as they see fit – despite cockamamie faux “wars on Christmas” or people being gay in the privacy of their own homes or carbuncles on the ass of humanity who think their shit is infinitely less odoriferous than others are.

THE FIRST AMENDMENT IS NOT OPTIONAL!

…and the day it becomes so is the day we lose the privilege of calling ourselves American.

 

Cross posted at The Omnipotent Poobah Speaks!

 

 

 

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