There really is no limit to the disappointment that one can feel when watching how quickly the Democrats will surrender their values when put under pressure by right wing loons on subjects as divisive as the lower Manhattan mosque.
The latest Democrat to throw in the towel is also one of the most surprising; Howard Dean.
Making this more repellent is that he doesn't even have the "I-want-to-get-re-elected" excuse. Today, former Reagan Solicitor General Ted Olson -- whose wife, Barbara Olson, was killed on 9/11 -- said he saw no reason for Park51 to move. And Peter Beinart, expediting his ongoing transformation from TNR Seriousness Guardian into shrill liberal blogger, today called on Democrats to -- as he put it -- "Grow a Pair" by standing up to this increasingly toxic campaign. Yet here comes Howard "I'm-from-the-Democratic-wing-of-the-Democratic Party" Dean, advocating that the vicinity of Ground Zero be turned into a Muslim-free zone because some people don't want Muslims near it. It's episodes like this which breed increasing levels of pervasive disgust and even indifference about electoral outcomes.One of the reasons I suppose that the right wing loons get away with this shit is because certain Democrats act as if they actually have a point, rather than fight the bigoted rubbish which is being thrown at them.
For the Democrats who are backing away from the building of a mosque near Ground Zero are buying into a basic lie; that it is the location of the mosque that is offensive. The truth is that the building of mosques all over America are now becoming hotly disputed issues.
Politicians are supposed to lead, not be led by the mob. Obama and Mayor Bloomberg have both stood up against the hatred and made the vital point; the United States was founded on freedom of religions. That fundamental principle either exists or it doesn't. Just as one can't be a little bit pregnant, one can't have freedom of religions to practice wherever they choose.... and then exclude two blocks away from Ground Zero.
In the last few months, Muslim groups have encountered unexpectedly intense opposition to their plans for opening mosques in Lower Manhattan, in Brooklyn and most recently in an empty convent on Staten Island.
Some opponents have cited traffic and parking concerns. But the objections have focused overwhelmingly on more intangible and volatile issues: fear of terrorism, distrust of Islam and a linkage of the two in opponents’ minds.
“Wouldn’t you agree that every terrorist, past and present, has come out of a mosque?” asked one woman who stood up Wednesday night during a civic association meeting on Staten Island to address representatives of a group that wants to convert a Roman Catholic convent into a mosque in the Midland Beach neighborhood.
“No,” began Ayman Hammous, president of the Staten Island branch of the group, the Muslim American Society — though the rest of his answer was drowned out by catcalls and boos from among the 400 people who packed the gymnasium of a community center.
Especially as mosques are being opposed hundreds of miles away from Ground Zero.
On Friday, about a dozen protesters confronted worshipers at a mosque in Bridgeport, Conn., yelling at them with a bullhorn: "Murderers!" and "Jesus hates Muslims."Even some Republicans are starting to worry that this obsession might backfire on them.
The Republicans are right to fear that this might backfire, but they are being given cover by the amount of cowardly Democrats unprepared to stand up for one of the principles on which their nation was formed.
Some Republican strategists fear the debate is a distraction from the economic issues on which Obama and the Democrats are most vulnerable. It also risks reinforcing the perception of the Republican party as intolerant of minorities, which may further damage it in states with a high proportion of Hispanic voters and alienating adherents to other minority religions.
If you can't stand up for the principles established by the founding fathers then I am honestly left wondering if there is anything these buggers will stand up for.
Even right wing loons like Hot Air are expressing astonishment at Dean's stance.
Normally I wouldn’t bore you with three mosque posts in a row but this is such a thunderbolt coming from a true-blue lefty that it won’t wait. I can’t imagine that Dean-o really believes what he’s saying here; the mosque is too much of a cause celebre on the left at this point for him to deviate for reasons of conscience. Presumably he’s simply so terrified by the polling on this issue that he’s willing to do whatever damage control he can to mitigate losses in November.