A hot topic in the news these days is the building of a Mosque in New York city. Nothing noteworthy about that… Except that it is two blocks from the site of Islam’s Finest hour, Ground Zero – the place where the Twin Towers fell and nearly three thousand people died… while Muslims the world over yodeled with joy.
On the one side is a congregation of Muslims who say that this is their way of “Reaching Out” and “Building Bridges” in the community. On the other side is just about everybody else, who think that this is a Really Bad Idea.
The mosque will cost about $100M to build. Nobody knows where the money will come from, but the smart money is that it comes from Saudi Arabia – the nation that “supplied” the majority of the 9-11 terrorists. The site is currently used as an overflow prayer area for another Mosque.
The evil that was perpetrated on September the 11th has been roundly denounced by everyone in Islam. Everyone, that is, except for their highest-ranking clerics, who have remained eerily silent.
Yes, atrocities have been committed in the name of God before – but we have ‘fessed up, wised up and moved forward, If the Pope or other leaders of the Christian Faith defended the Crusades, the Inquisition or the Holocaust – or even suggested that they were anything less than evil, one could expect similar outrage. Yet the world seems to be falling over itself to be nice to Muslims.
Whenever and wherever disaster strikes, Christian charities are the first on the ground with aid and food. Muslim charities, if there are any, are unreported. Given that charity is one of the five pillars of Islam, we can only assume that the Muslim faith has a PR problem.
Please don’t give me any of that “all-religions-are-equal” crap. Christianity does not spread at gunpoint. It does not demand “repentance or death”. It does not require the killing of unbelievers, and it doesn’t require the extermination of everyone who disagrees with their viewpoint. A Christian Fundamentalist is required to die for his faith, if necessary. A Muslim Fundamentalist is encouraged to kill for his.
Christianity is, by its nature, counter cultural – it flourishes best when oppressed. Islam is mono cultural – it flourishes only in a vacuum, when all competing or dissenting voices have been silenced. The very word “Islam” after all, means “submission”.
The only parallel I could think of would be to build a Shinto Shrine at Pearl Harbor, next door to the U.S.S. Arizona Memorial. Even though it was sixty years ago, there are many today who would still be outraged. Then as now the words “Never Forget” are emblazoned across the nation’s soul.
Community Board 1 approved the building of the mosque. Methinks they will be unemployed real soon.
Bottom line: Most Muslims are ordinary peace-loving people with whom I have no quarrel, even if I happen to believe that they are wrong. We can agree to disagree on that one. But no matter which way you slice it, building a Mosque that close to the site of an abomination that was inflicted in the name of their faith cannot fail to be interpreted as anything other than a slap in the face.
If the Muslims of New York wanted to make enemies of America, this would be just the right way to do it.