Obama has, in my opinion, done the right thing and come out in favour of the mosque in lower Manhattan, acknowledging "sensitivities" surrounding the 9/11 site, but stating that Muslims have the same right to practice their religion "as anyone else".
"Our commitment to religious freedom must be unshakable," Mr Obama said.He clearly gets what's at stake here and has gone to what is at the core of this debate: Are American Muslims entitled to the same religious freedoms which are enjoyed by all other Americans?
As expected, right wing heads are exploding everywhere.
If you had any doubt who Obama stood with on 911, there can be no doubt in our minds now.The Right Scoop:
I just wonder if people are going to wake up and smell the lying Muslim that we have for a President.Weasel Zippers:
Obama spits in America’s eye…Sister Toldjah:
He doesn’t mind wee weeing on National Prayer Day, but a mosque deliberately being built near the sacred site of thousands were killed in blatant acts of naked terrorism by Islamofascists is an ‘core to the values of America.’
Now, excuse me while I throw up a little in my mouth.
3,000 souls were murdered by Islamists in the name of their political religion on 11 September 2001. Tens of thousands of innocents have perished since then -- killed in beheadings, stonings, executions, hangings, beatings, floggings, suicide bombings and more. All were murdered in the name of a political system that adopts the guise of a religion.That last comment comes the nearest to identifying what is actually at stake here. Many on the right identify Islam as the enemy.
Which is why Atlas Shrugs can now claim that we know "who Obama stood with on 9-11". She is now actually putting forward the notion that the American president is on the side of al Qaeda.
And all because he is upholding the values on which that nation was built.
The sheer insanity of the American right wing is a thing of wonder to me. It lacks any clear set of values other than tax cuts and deregulation. The dichotomy it finds itself in is best summed up by Sarah Palin:
We're all about religious tolerance. That's what makes America beautiful and free.She supports the freedom of all religions to practice wherever they choose... and then instantly tells us why Islam can't be practiced there.
Build the mosque, but down the road.
It's the perfect example of the way the current batch of Republicans seize issues which they hope to turn into wedges, and appear to have no consistent principles.
The campaign against this mosque is one of the ugliest and most odious controversies in some time. It's based purely on appeals to base fear and bigotry. There are no reasonable arguments against it, and the precedent that would be set if its construction were prevented -- equating Islam with Terrorism, implying 9/11 guilt for Muslims generally, imposing serious restrictions on core religious liberty -- are quite serious. It was Michael Bloomberg who first stood up and eloquently condemned this anti-mosque campaign for what it is, but Obama's choice to lend his voice to a vital and noble cause is a rare demonstration of principled, politically risky leadership. It's not merely a symbolic gesture, but also an important substantive stand against something quite ugly and wrong. This is an act that deserves pure praise.I join him in that. Obama deserves to be applauded for lending his voice to this defence of America's core values. Especially as he will gain no political advantage from doing so, and will possibly pay a price for speaking out for what is right.
Rep. Peter King (R-NY), an ardent opponent of the mosque, issued a statement essentially arguing that bigotry should respected and tolerated.
King said. "It is insensitive and uncaring for the Muslim community to build a mosque in the shadow of ground zero. While the Muslim community has the right to build the mosque they are abusing that right by needlessly offending so many people who have suffered so much."Yet again, that contradiction. They have a right, but to claim that right it is to abuse it. What kind of a right is that?
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