Islamaphobia

I’m keen to hear what you guys think about the whole ‘Ground Zero Mosque’ thing – I’d like to know what New Yorkers think and also what my Muslim readers think.

I personally think it is a bit rude. 911 was committed in the name of Islam. I hope not all Muslims have the same exteme views but I’m sick of people pretending that it had nothing to do with religion.

What really gets me is all the left wingers questioning our ‘tolerance’ towards Islam. That whacko Christian who was going to burn a bunch of Koran’s wasn’t shown much tolerance for his ‘rights’ and burning American flags seems to be a daily exercise in the Muslim world.

If the ‘Ground Zero Mosque’ goes ahead, I’m more than happy to show my tolerance despite me thinking it is in bad taste. I would like to think that the Muslim world would show me the same tolerance if I opened a gay nightclub in Saudi Arabia.

Keen to hear what you guys think.

5 thoughts on “Islamaphobia

  1. I should first of all point out that I am neither American nor Muslim – I’m s British atheist.

    The problem is that both the right to free speech and the freedom of religion are important rights that often conflict with each other. The solution is quite simply tolerance.

    The Ground Zero Mosque is neither actually at Ground Zero nor a mosque. I believe if is a few blocks away and is (or includes) an inter-faith center to encourage different religion to work together. Sounds rather less controversial now doesn’t it?

    Of course 9/11 had something to do with religion. But why should the whole of the religion still be punished for the acts of extremists 10 years later. Let us not forget that many extreme acts have been committed in the name of other religions (much of the Irish question for example).

    Our tolerance towards Islam is questioned quite simply because Islamophobia is rife post-9/11. Not everyone is islamophobic but many people remain suspicious of the whole of Islam.

    For the record I also think that Christian should have been able to burn the Quran. He wasn’t banned from doing so, he eventually chose not to after considerable public and political pressure.

    The public and politicians have the right to present their views on controversial topics. But I think there’s a considerable difference between an inter-faith centre and the burning of another religion’s holy book. Only one is an extremist promoting non-religious qualities.

    The Muslim World would not show you the same tolerance if you chose to open a gay night club in Saudi Arabia. But you are not comparing two like for like situations. The difference between the USA and Saudi Arabia doesn’t make the situations comparable. The two freedoms (free speech and religion) are not protected the same way. They should be but they’re not. Each country has to be able to decide on its own (with political pressure and persuasion) when and how it will protect fundamental rights. It is not for the West to impose it’s standards on others. We can only help and hope that other countries come to respect rights to the same level as we hope to. (I should point out that I believe Saudi Arabia is quite liberal for a Muslim country – I think there are areas where Westerners operate under different rules to the country’s own nationals).

    America protects the right to free speech and the right to religion. It’s time for America to show that the protection goes beyond mere words.

    [Quite unusual topic for the blog – no?]

  2. I am with the Brit. I live in NY. The Cultural Center, which is what it is, is for the entire community. It was conceived by an Muslim cleric who has acted as a religious ambassador under George W. Bush. He was a bridge builder. He conceived the Center as a bridge builder. The Center was approved by the Neighborhood Board that has to approve those things with input from members of the community. It was not a problem until Fox News and Rush Limbough chose to make it a problem.
    As for the burning of the Koran, it would simply have been a stupid thing to do. It would have aided the extremists in furthering their narrative that we are in a war against Islam. I think not. I think we are in a war with a few extremists who happen to be Islamists.
    And not allowing the Cultural Center to be built presents the same picture.
    Are we the tolerant people we say we are or are we just wimps.
    I’m pretty clear the only reason people are unwilling to allow it has everything to do with fear. The fear that the same thing will happen again.
    Just know that the only reason it happened the first time is because those in charge were not paying attention. They had all of the pointers but they refuse to take them seriously. That one stupid fact doesn’t make us all stupid. Or does it?

  3. I’m with you Dave.

    It’s disrespectful and inconsiderate.

    You said that you hope not all muslims are as extreme, well… I have to say that until I hear them muslim world, the muslim leaders of today, stand up and denounce the terror tactics used on 9/11 and all the other days and nights of the cowardice ways of killing in then name of islam, then I feel that they do hold the same extreme values and codes. You can’t tell me that the power of the mainstream muslim world is not strong enough to stand up and say “We will NOT tolerate this any longer” and put a stop to the extremism. They do have that power, but they don’t use it. So until that day comes, I don’t cut them any slack. They’re being irresponsible in their actions and yes, their holy book does tell them to war and kill…..in the name of Allah. So I guess that’s really where the loyalty lies.

    Don’t talk about what has happened or what has been done. It’s not about the past or what others may or may have not done before. Those are excuses to make an argument for your own cause and nothing more. This is not about what has been done in the past by others and their religions. Stop changing the channel. This is about what was done to America on September 11, in the name of islam and the name of allah.

    It’s about NOW. It’s about America and it’s about “doing the right thing”…do you think that if Christian “terrorists” flew airplanes into Mecca and Medina and destroyed the holier than thou muslim sites in the name of God, that if Christians came back and decided to build churches a block or two over from those destroyed sites, that the people of islam would tolerate it? NO. They would not.

    Building this muslim center/mosque whatever you want to call it, this close to the site where thousands of people were murdered, most of them Americans and of the Christian or Catholic faiths, is absolutely disrespectful and callous.

    No, it’s not about fear. And please, don’t try and blame the US government as “not paying attention” as the cause of the Sept 11 murders.. …… let’s make sure that the blame is placed appropriately, at the feet of islamic cowards who kill in the name of “Allah” as an excuse to murder people who disagree with their “religion”.

  4. @JDS

    Google “Muslim leaders denounce 911” and you will see that your first (main) paragraph is plainly misinformed. The first result alone (http://islam.about.com/cs/currentevents/a/9_11statements.htm) shows this.

    You say both “It’s not about the past or what others may or may have not done before” and “This is about what was done to America on September 11.” A tad hypocritical, no?

    You ask a hypothetical question about Christians attacking Mecca. I don’t know what the reaction of Islam would be. But if it were to be an untolerant reaction, does that mean we should lower ourselves to react in the same way? Two wrongs don’t make a right.

    You make the fatal mistake of assuming that all Muslims are responsible for the acts of their extremists. In that case all chrisitans are responsible for the bombings in Northern Ireland, the actions of the Tamil Tigers and the actions of the Basque separaists (I could go on).

    “let’s make sure that the blame is placed appropriately, at the feet of islamic cowards who kill in the name of “Allah” as an excuse to murder people who disagree with their “religion”.” Absolutely, I couldn’t agree more with you. Excpet I’m only blaming the extremists and their supporters, whereas you seem to be blaming a whole religion.

    Wake up to the real world! Granted you’ll find extremeists and people who want to ruin the world we live in, but they come from a variety of backgrounds. However, you’ll also find that many people of different backgrounds can (and do) co-exist very happilly.

Let me know what you are thinking mate.....