Aug 18, 2010


I ask myself, "Are there honestly people out there that believe that terrorism and Islam are the same thing?" and millions of Americans shout back, "Here we are!"

I've been kind of surprised over what a big deal the mosque planned for near Ground Zero has become. And kind of disappointed by the number of people I generally respect who have been against it. It's one thing if someone was proposing building a museum honoring the accomplishments of Al Qaeda or like...a bomb-making school. But a mosque? Really? Is there anything more symbolic of peace and healing than a place of worship?

Winner of most hilarious (though perhaps rather misinformed) argument on the matter goes to a coworker of mine who shall not be named: "Wouldn't you want a mosque next to you to make sure you're not the victim of a terrorist attack? We should put a mosque on the top floor of every skyscraper in New York to keep terrorists away; they're not going to blow up a mosque!"


Steff said...

That comment is hilarious!! Honestly, I am fine with the Mosque. It's not like they are building it ON ground zero for one... and if the land/space is for sale, it should be for sale to anyone... not anyone except for someone who wants to build a Mosque. However, and in defense of 9/11 victims, families, etc., I do see how this whole thing could be seen as just plain insensitive (not saying it's wrong, just maybe not in the best taste). Instead of making a stink about it, maybe the right thing to do on their part would have been just to find another spot. Maybe I'm wrong... Thoughts?

Erin said...

My thoughts are BUILD THE MOSQUE. Because the Muslims didn't blow up the World Trade Center. And if it says anything at all, it will say to Extremists "We don't accept you as the real thing. We know Muslims, they are part of our country, and we know you don't represent this entire group of people." I really liked this blog about it. Short but to the point.

Rachael said...

I find it ironic that the people throwing fits about the mosque are the same people who would throw bigger fits if a Christian church wanted to build somewhere and someone else told them they couldn't because it was disrespectful. The location that springs to mind is a very conservative pro-life church wanting to build on the same block as a bombed abortion clinic. Isn't the United States based in part on the idea of freedom of religion? And the Equal Opportunity laws?

Also, Thank you for bringing this up, because I've been wanting to discuss, but the last time I talked about this, I nearly got assasinated by someone I thought was open minded so I was scared :)

Trapper said...

I agree. Let's not make a stink about it and let them build their cultural center (it isn't a mosque) where they want, which happens to be about four blocks away from Ground Zero.

Andrea said...

I don't personally think it's particularly insensitive to the families of the 9/11 victims. I realize many of them are upset, so I suppose I can understand that argument, but it's due to a misunderstanding of Islam's relationship to the 9/11 attacks that I don't think should be encouraged.

The comparisons you hear...I'm sorry, but this is not like you're drawing swastikas all over the Holocaust Memorial Museum. It's more like you're opening a German restaurant down the street from the Holocaust Memorial Museum. This cultural center (thank you, Trapper...there is a mosque included, though) has only the very loosest of connections to the 9/11 hijackers.

Trev said...

To put it mathematically, Islam =\= terrorism.

....and that's all I have to say about that.


Anonymous said...

Yes, this whole thing has been making me vaguely nauseated. If I were a Muslim in America right now, I would be feelin extremely nervous about the large proportion of Americans who apparently cannot distinguish between the mainstream and the lunatic fringe (the obvious explanation to that is that they are part of a fringe themselves?).

Rach, I came up with the same church/abortion clinic analogy. I think it is much closer as an analogy than the convent/Auschwitz analogy that is being tossed around.

I would also like to point out that the community center is being built in what used to be a Burlington Coat Factory. If it wasn't going to be a community center, it would become something else, like a Abercrombie and Fitch. Isn't a place dedicated to tolerance and community more respectful than a place dedicated to consumerism? One would hope that community centers like that would actually act as a force against the radicalization of Muslim youth, something that may (or may not) be on the rise in this country.