Sandy Hook

Sandy Hook

Monday, August 09, 2010

We Believe In Freedom of Religion Except for Muslims

". . . even the most Americanized Muslim secretly wants to replace the Constitution with Islamic Shariah law." ". . . Islam is inherently violent and incompatible with America." "I do believe everybody has a right to freedom of religion. . . .But Islam is not about a religion. It's a political government, and it's 100 percent against our Constitution." "A mosque is not just a place for worship. . . .It's a place where war is started, where commandment to do jihad start, where incitements against non-Muslims occur. It's a place where ammunition was stored."

Ground zero protesters in New York City? No. Constructing mosques and building Muslim community centers are meeting heated opposition all over the nation and on less hallowed ground than the one in Manhatten.

Murfreesboro, Tenn.: Republican candidates for governor and Congress denounced plans for a Muslim center near a subdivision. (They were defeated in the August 5 primary.)

A group called Former Muslims United put up a billboard saying “Stop the Murfreesboro Mosque.” The group’s president is Nonie Darwish, also the founder of Arabs for Israel, who spoke against Islam in Murfreesboro at a fund-raising dinner for Christians United for Israel, an evangelical organization led by the Rev. John Hagee.
Camie Ayash, a spokeswoman for the Islamic Center of Murfreesboro, said "her group was stunned when what began as one person raising zoning questions about the new mosque evolved into mass protests with marchers waving signs about Shariah."

“A lot of Muslims came to the U.S. because they respect the Constitution,” she said. “There’s no conflict with the U.S. Constitution in Shariah law. If there were, Muslims wouldn’t be living here.”
Temecula, Calif.:: Last June, "members of a local Tea Party group took dogs and picket signs to Friday prayers at a mosque that is seeking to build a new worship center on a vacant lot nearby."

A Muslim community has been there for about 12 years and has expanded to 150 families who have outgrown their makeshift worship space in a warehouse, said Mahmoud Harmoush, the imam, a lecturer at California State University, San Bernardino. The group wants to build a 25,000-square-foot center, with space for classrooms and a playground, on a lot it bought in 2000.
Mr. Harmoush said the Muslim families had contributed to the local food bank, sent truckloads of supplies to New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, and participated in music nights and Thanksgiving events with the local interfaith council.
One activist who is against building the mosque is Tea Party member Diana Serafin.

“As a mother and a grandmother, I worry,” Ms. Serafin said. “I learned that in 20 years with the rate of the birth population, we will be overtaken by Islam, and their goal is to get people in Congress and the Supreme Court to see that Shariah is implemented. My children and grandchildren will have to live under that.”

 "I do believe everybody has a right to freedom of religion. . . .But Islam is not about a religion. It's a political government, and it's 100 percent against our Constitution."
Sheboygan, Wis.: Several Christian ministers "led a noisy fight against a Muslim group that sought permission to open a mosque in a former health food store bought by a Muslim doctor."

The conflict was settled when the Town Executive Council voted unanimously to grant a permit to use the former health food stored as a prayer space.

There are almost 2000 mosques in the United States.
A two-year study by professors at Duke's Sanford School of Public Policy and the University of North Carolina on American Muslims and terrorism concluded that contemporary mosques are actually a deterrent to the spread of militant Islam and terrorism. "It disclosed that many mosque leaders had put significant effort into countering extremism by building youth programs, sponsoring antiviolence forums and scrutinizing teachers and texts."

Feeding the resistance is a growing cottage industry of authors and bloggers — some of them former Muslims — who are invited to speak at rallies, sell their books and testify in churches. Their message is that Islam is inherently violent and incompatible with America.

But they have not gone unanswered. In each community, interfaith groups led by Protestant ministers, Catholic priests, rabbis and clergy members of other faiths have defended the mosques. Often, they have been slower to organize than the mosque opponents, but their numbers have usually been larger.
In a related article, Craine's New York reported that the new Museum of Tolerance in Manhatten opened its doors this week. Its mission is to help enlighten visitors on issues of discrimination, prejudice and social inequality.

But the museum's financial backer, the Wiesenthal Center of Los Angeles, says it cannot tolerate the planned location near Ground Zero for a mosque and Islamic community center.

Rabbi Meyer May, the Wiesenthal Center's executive director, on Thursday called the mosque's proposed location “insensitive” to the people who experienced the 9/11 attack that killed nearly 3,000 in 2001 and are still dealing with “extraordinarily painful wounds.”

“Religious freedom does not mean being insensitive...or an idiot,” said Mr. May, who led the push for the museum's New York location.
The following video is on Progressive Eruptions and illustrates the silliness and stupidity of bigotry.


  1. I have to be about this..
    I understand the feelings on both sides. The side to be on is the Right side. It's in the Constitution. Freedom of Religion. The land is privately owned, thus by Law they can build there.
    It will make us better as a Nation, to show we can do this. Sorry got to go................

  2. Love Sam.

    Now some smart aleck says he building a Muslim themed gay bar next to the same dang Mosque.

    You gotta love New York, but it's damn tiring here.

  3. I have to laugh when I hear comments like:

    "It's a political government, and it's 100 percent against our Constitution."

    This is exactly what fundamentalist Christians are trying to do. They want to turn us into a theocracy.

  4. I think this is one of the silliest arguments the right is making. Why do they believe it is only white, straight, christians have rights?

    I don't remember anything like that in the Constitution I studied.. Granted it was a long time ago... but I think I recall it enough to know. Besides, TomCat just did a review of it on his site and I don't remember reading it then either.

  5. Greeting's Ms.Leslie!

    One of the thing's I learned, especially in this 2.5 year's I spent on this internet reading blog's ... is both the left and the right, are both bigot's in way's ... many folk's dont see that, or refuse to for pop culture reason's or such. Of course ... I am not right or left, or have a religion ... or ever cared about conceptual archetype's like Jesus Christ, God, Allah, Zeus, or Peter Cotton Tail ... but certainly not against anyone believing anything they want. I agree that much is silly ... you have two extreme polarizing side's ... each believing in primitive ancient concept's of good/ evil, right/ wrong etc. Neither side in many cases can think on any other level, because they have not broke the chain's that enslave their mind's actually. It is also sad ... and can be psychologically self destructive in some way's. Both of these polarizing side's of course see themselves as alway's good/ right ... and of course their opponent as alway's evil/ wrong ... yet neither actually step's out of the box much and take's time to look at themselves and the reality that surround's them. However nice posting Ms.Leslie.

    Goodnight Leslie ....

  6. Part of this demonizing and fearmongering comes from the chance to make like superpatriot. A bigger part probably stems from plain ignorance.

    I went through a pretty good public school system and had especially good history and social studies teachers. Even so, there was litte in the curriculum about the Mideast between old Byzantium and the rise of Kemal Ataturk, creator of the modern Turkish state. Then there was some history of Palestine and its conversion to Israel, with the unpleasantness that followed. Very little else. (I learned more by taking a two-part college course on the Arab-Israeli conflict and its origins.) There was a section on the great religions where Islam got a page or so. I wouldn't be surprised if many others got less than that about Mideast history.

    In times of trouble, the vacuum of ignorance is easily filled with the rants and demonizing of fearmongers, bigots and crocks who make stuff up.

  7. Busting the multiculturalist myth of diversity bringing 'cultural enrichment'.

    Islamists are already trying to restrict and destroy our culture - see additional links under 'Cultural Jihad'.

  8. What Ranch Chimp said....

    On another note it funny to hear Bible thumpers complain about Islam when it carried the bulk in perserving classical Greek and Roman civilization while the West was in the Dark Ages.

  9. Religious intolerance is just another outlet of hate for Republicans. It's not just that they are hypocritical, hateful, anti-Constitution, anti-American, but their positions make no logical sense. Of course, bigots never make any sense. It's a wonder they get even 3% of the vote.

  10. The more things change, the more they remain the same.

    I read this over at Andrew Sullivan's blog:

    This, of course, is exactly the argument that was made about Catholicism in England (and by Locke in his famous Letter!) in the sixteen and seventeenth centuries - particularly after the Gunpowder Plot (England's foiled 9/11 of 1605). The argument was that because Catholics owed obedience to a foreign ruler, the Pope, they were not so much a religion as a cult allied to a foreign force. For the Vatican, read the House of Saud.

    It wasn't just because Catholics owed allegiance to the Pope; it was also because various popes had funded or encouraged plots to overthrow the English monarchs, and expressly forbade English Catholics from affirming even the watered down oath offered by King James that they would not seek to overthrow the English monarchy. John Donne, whose brother Henry perished in an English prison, finally abandoned the Catholicism of his family over this last issue. Which is not to condone the harsh treatment of English Catholics, but at least to recognize that it took the Vatican a long time to accept with anything like equanimity the loss of religious dominion over England, especially among Protestant nations, and that it was not above active intermeddling in English governance.

  11. This isn’t about history or the great religions of the world, neither of which these twits have any knowledge.

    This from the “Automatic Conspiracy Theory Generator” (Google it):

    “In order to understand what's really happening you need to realize that everything is controlled by an evil plan made up of secular humanists.

    “The conspirators are arrogant intellectuals and their conspiracy began with John Dewey and the creation of public education.

    “The conspirators have been responsible for many events throughout history, including the Roosevelt Administration.

    “Today, members of the conspiracy are everywhere. They can be identified only by their Godless conduct.

    “The conspirators have help from powerful elite homosexuals, and the conspiracy benefits undeserving liberals, homosexuals, and abortionists; at the expense of Christianity.

    “The conspirators want to crush God-fearing Christians, and round up and restrain resisters in the Antichrist's dungeons. They are using federal judges to establish a Godless regime.

    “In order to prepare for this, we all must read the Bible. All of this was revealed years ago by Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson. Since the media is controlled by liberal secular journalists you should get your information only from Christian Right sources.”

    I don’t think this is off-topic. It is the basis of everything these ignorant souls believe in and oppose.


  12. The republicans must use something like the Automatic Conspiracy Theory Generator to come up with their talking points. They make about as much sense.

  13. In BJ 's comment...

    The conspirators want to crush God-fearing Christians, and round up and restrain resisters in the Antichrist's dungeons. They are using federal judges to establish a Godless regime.

    “In order to prepare for this, we all must read the Bible. All of this was revealed years ago by Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson. Since the media is controlled by liberal secular journalists you should get your information only from Christian Right sources.”

    Dear God that sounds like my Fox news lovin' brother... Sad, so sad, these religious fanatics are nothing but bigots roaming our streets trying to bring on the "second coming".

    Great post Leslie!

  14. Tim: To be on the right side is to be on the side of the Constitution but it helps to know what it says.

    PEN: Interesting and a bit disgusting. But the right is not known for its class or taste.

    JC: If they turn us into a Theocracy they don't have to bother reading, understanding and abiding by the Constitution.

    Annette: I'd have a hard time believing that your knowledge of the Constitution isn't far superior to those folks on the right.

    RC: In all sincerity, I will say - rather immodestly - that my only prejudice is prejudiced people. And that should explain why I don't care for most people on the right and some of the people on the left.

    SW: I don't remember studying the Middle East until I went to college and not much then. I did take a religious history course and one in comparative religions but don't remember many of the details.

    You're right about "In times of trouble . . ." I think of Germany.

  15. Trencherbone: Obviously you and your fellow "moslom" haters have the same sexual fixations and fears toward men of darker skin that white supremacists have. This generally stems from racism and feelings of sexual inadequacy. The comments and your blog roll demonstrate that all of you are twisted and in need of serious psychiatric care.

    I have no use or patience for such misguided hate so please do not revisit my blog. This applies to your fellow travelers. In the meantime get some help, education and sexual fulfillment.

  16. Frodo has been trying to identify at least one "group" that fat, old, Southern-American Protestants have failed to identify as enemies of Jesus. There've been Communists, and Nigras, with Mackeral-snappers, and, of course, Heebs. There have also been (only good) Indians, Chinks, Slants, Wetbacks, Frogs, Limeys, and Nazis. Add in a few Holy-rollers, to go with the Canucks, and the Liberals, and you have a pretty good reason why Frodo once walked out of a Baptist Church, and never turned around.

  17. Beach: I did get a heavy dose of that in school but I'm always open to a review. The Bible thumpers probably look upon the ancient Greeks and Romans as uncivilized and ignorant.

    Shaw: Things do stay the same, don't they. There's always the persecuted and the persecutor. It can be based on religious intolerance or racial intolerance or intolerance from unnamed sources. It's been around since the beginning of time and will stay with us until the end, probably causing it - the end.

    BJ: Good ole Falwell and his ilk. Ignorant little twerps - and paranoid too.

    JC: I think there's absolutely no doubt of that.
    Ignorance comes in many guises.

    Sue: Remember though, not everyone who hates Muslims is a religious fanatic.

  18. Frodo: You sure you didn't leave out someone? I've only gone in Baptist churches for funerals.

  19. "I think this is one of the silliest arguments the right is making. Why do they believe it is only white, straight, christians have rights?"

    Annette, you left out the part about having to have parents born in this country. We have to be on guard against all Anchor Babies: They are a demographic time bomb. Once they get old enough to take over, they will enforce Anchor Baby Law and destroy the Constitution that would be a perfect document once amended to ban abortion, make English the official language, allow or require school prayer, require a balanced budget, repeal the 16th Amendment, repeal the 17th Amendment, allow certain individuals not born in the United to run president, and ban citizenship from other individuals not born in the United States.

    Come to think of it, let's take away citizenship from the powerful homosexual elite, too, so that they don't promulgate the Homosexual Agenda through Anchor Babies and force Homosexual Anchor Baby Law or Anchor Baby Homosexual Law on America.

  20. You know I keep hearing them talk about changing the 14th amendment to do away with Anchor Babies... I guess that means Michelle Malkin and Bobby Jindall will have to leave the country.. They are both Anchor babies... Jindall made the statement his parents came here and had him just so he would be an American citizen... Then they went back to India where he was raised and only came back here to go to University.

    I have never heard Malkin say anything like that, but I am sure her story is similar... So, by saying they want to change this part of the 14th... will they include the 2 babies they so love?

  21. It gets crazier and crazier.
    If anyone tries to prevent any of my or my brother's grandchildren from running for president at age 35 because one of their parents was not a US citizen at the time of their birth, they're going to have to deal with me! Anchor babies, indeed!

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  24. Tiny wonders if the radical religious right is jealous because the Muslems pray five times per day? This much prayer could make the religious elite look slack in their worship! Of course they don't practice the teachings of the Teacher they claim to follow. But that's a horse of a different color!

    Tiny, like tinlib and Frodo, walked out of the Baptist brainwashing instutition also. She was quick to stomp that damn dust off her feet and repeated the same stomping each time she went back in for funerals. The truth will set you free and you're free indeed.

    Tiny agrees that nature abhors a vacuum and the vacuum of ignorance quickly filled to overflowing with the rants, ravings, fearmongerings, prejudiceds, racists, bigots and the whole kit and kabootle.

  25. Tiny has one more comment. One Sunday when monotering the electronic preachers, she personally heard Rev. John Hagee blatently state: "All you sheet wearing people in the middle east are going to burn in hell." That just knocked the breath out of Tiny as the obvious truth hit her that Hagee had just condemned Jesus to hell because he was one of those sheet wearing people, since that is the cultural mode of dress for those desert people.

    Then she wondered how the Hagees of this country would react if one of the sheet wearing people made the same blanket statement concerning the expensive suit wearing people in this country! Boggles the mind to try to figure where these people come up with their warped judgments of other cultures.

  26. K: And let's don't forget librarians and people over 65. Maybe they could be deported to Tahiti. These people are from Mars. The support the greatest document ever written but want to rewrite it.

    Annette: Great point about Jindahl. I'll have to remember that and we'll have to do a little research on Malkin.

    Paula: Wow, I wouldn't want to get in your way! Anyway, I'm not really too worried about these yahoos getting anywhere with their obstructionism.

    Tiny: I was never a Baptist - just have family who moved from the Church of Christ to the Baptist Church because the latter is more "liberal." Don't gag on your bagel. ; ) In either case I was going to hell because I didn't worship the way they did. I'm actually kind of surprised my mom let me go to church with them at all.

    What about people who dress in sheets in this country?

  27. One thing I wanted to add here if I may Ms.Leslie. I noticed some comment's of interest when it came to the "Dark Ages" of what is now Europe etc. Alot of folk's when looking at the middle eastern region's dont look at alot of ancient Persia either, I had a fascination with the beauty of ancient Persian art for instance. But the actual start of what we consider modern civilisation actually came from this region, as well as even the art of agriculture and farming, where taking a seed for instance and planting, cropping, etc. Actually some of these societies were working with what would be termed today as ancient laser beam's(using sun beam's to go through transparent stone's, etc) even, way ahead of their time as far as study into what we may consider as technological advancement of today, when place's like Europe were actually folk's living still in shack's made of tree limb's and such, when those region's was more into stone and well engineered architecture. What changed alot of this region also was the introduction of religion, in this case islam which is actually I reckon about 400/ 500 year's newer than christianity according to the earliest sect's of christianity and islam, christianity didnt become a mainstrean force for instance until the Roman Emporer Constantine(approx 320+AD/CE) incorporated it into culture and political/ military sect's. Now ... if you look at the age comparison for instance ... look at the age of christianity and what it was like approximately 400/ 500 year's ago (back when it was the approx age of islam today) ... it was very radical, and that is also when much of the witch hunt's, conquering, inquisition's, etc went down, there was also a history centuries ago of christian's persecuting the new muslim religion's, christian's back in them day's had a pretty nasty history ... so ... I see as islam move's on in the future, it will also change alot, as time/ societal change, alway's change's and update's religion's. But you can see probably why I never been very fond of religion's period ... I mean Galileo was imprisoned for a decade by christianity for creating a telescope, and presenting a theory that we/ earth revolve around the sun , other than the bible saying the sun revolve's around us ... therefore I feel without any religion's our species as a whole would have evolved so much more rapid and less conflict's. Other than that I better shut up I reckon.

    Thank You Ms. Leslie

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  29. RC: It always amazes me how much I learn from my visitors - well, most of them anyway. RC, you have to be a prolific reader, which is more than I can say for Anon who apparently hasn't advanced beyond looking at pictures.

    Anyway, I thoroughly enjoyed this little history lesson. I;m also envious of your memory.

  30. Well, glad you enjoyed Ms.Leslie ... look into it sometime, they have quite a history in that region, lot's of fun!

  31. I just added this update to my blog, referring to my post on the NYC mosque:



    Bryan Fischer, the "Director of Issues Analysis" for the American Family Association, wrote a blog post yesterday on the AFA's site arguing that the United States should have "no more mosques, period."

    "This is for one simple reason," he writes. "Each Islamic mosque is dedicated to the overthrow of the American government."

    To which I wrote:

    "I'll make an observation: These social conservatives find no irony in accusing Mr. Obama of destroying America and trampling on the Constitution while at the same time suggesting something so antithetical to what our Constitution stands for that it would appear that Mr. Fischer has been sniffing his deoderant spray; or at the very least, he has lost what little mind he may have originally possessed."

  32. Shaw - so good. Wish I had a mind like yours. I'm sure "antithetical" is beyond the scope of his vocabulary. Excellent comment - far superior to Anon here.

  33. Of course, the easy button for the Trade Center thing is to not allow any religious symbolism or buildings or anything else there. Problem solved :)

  34. Bee: I'm not sure that I think the religious right would go for that. They want their symbols around but nobody else's.

  35. I have to admit to a certain amount of ambivalence here. I see all organized forms of religion as dangerous, and incapable of sufficient rehabilitation, so I would have to say that I'm somewhat bigoted myself. It is not without reason, of course, and I don't think I'm wrong, so I won't be apologizing.

    Having said that...... I don't think that Osama would have a bit of trouble working with Hagee, or Tony Perkins. The fact that they think the exact same way would probably be enough for them to be able to breach what amount to minor differences between them.

  36. Jolly said: "I see all organized forms of religion as dangerous"

    It's clear from your sentence that these Christian anti-Muslim bigots aren't the only ones exhibiting irrational fear of faiths different from their own.

    Beekeeper said: "Of course, the easy button for the Trade Center thing is to not allow any religious symbolism or buildings or anything else there. Problem solved :) "

    It would not apply to the situation, since the controversial mosque/center is not on the Trade Center site. It is near it.

  37. JR: I think it's a mistake to lump all organized or disorganized religions together. That's like saying all Democrats are socialists or all Republicans are racists. Even under the Christian umbrella comparing a Hagee and Perkins to, say, Katharine Jefferts Schori (presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church) is like comparing a breeze to a hurricane.

    dmarks: I think the point JR is making is that he doesn't believe in religion, period, which is his right. And perhaps you're taking Bee's comment a little too literally. The whole affair is often referred to as the WTC mosque.

  38. Blind faith is dangerous.
    You don't have to be paranoid, nor over stating the fact, that religion has demonstrated deadly violence to convert people and keep them in their church.

  39. tnlib: Good point to JR above. Let's compare the faith of Dr. King to the faith of Josef Stalin.

  40. Leslie,
    You're not dodging the tough ones! I'm Christian but don't feel the need to push my faith on others. Most Muslims I know are the same. As several posters wrote much of it is ignorance. A bit of reading shows Islam parallels Christianity in almost all aspects of the faith.

    Unfortunately Christian fundies and teabaggers pride themselves on their ignorance and are unwilling to make the effort to understand.

    You are doing your share to help.

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  42. Tom: Blind faith, blind loyalty - they're all dangerous. People who never open their minds to inquire often end up joining cults like Jim Jones' Peoples Temple.

    dmarks. A heck of a good idea. Why don't you write a blog comparing the faiths of King and Stalin?

    Oso: "Christian fundies and teabaggers pride themselves on their ignorance and are unwilling to make the effort to understand." This goes back to what Tom said about blind faith I think. These people are very insecure, not very educated - given that a college degree does not guarantee an educated person - and are very paranoid. They feel less threatened wrapping themselves in a cocoon of being told what to think and what to say.

  43. I thought Capt. Fogg had a stupendously good post on this at Swash Zone!

    We all have emotional reactions to 9/11 and everything remotely connected or related to it, but we can't think with the amygdala, that fight or flight engine; we have to think with our whole brain. That means hesitating between the impulse and the action, which isn't a strongly developed habit for reactionaries. Knee-jerk, we might all recoil from the notion of a Muslim facility at Ground Zero, but, when we remember who we are and what we strive to represent in America, things clear up nicely.

  44. Loulou: He did indeed. I was going to cross-post until I saw his piece. A little intimidation goes a long way with me. I like your analysis. I wish it were true across the board but sadly there are those who simply cannot or will not use reason.

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  46. And yes, tn, of course JR has the right to his faith. (he's not against all religions, just those that are not his own).

    "Knee-jerk, we might all recoil from the notion of a Muslim facility at Ground Zero"

    Remember again that the mosque is not at Ground Zero. Now I did not recoil at the idea of a mosque, and do not now. But I would at a mosque with a name that stands for conquest and intolerance (Cordoba) or something else that shows Islam at its worst. I have a revulsion of the extreme elements of Islam, but not any toward the religion as a whole.

  47. No, dmarks, let's not. Instead, let's compare the "faith" of John Hagee to the "faith" of Josef Stalin. I don't imagine you will, because it will be far too disturbing to you to find out just how much the two of them had in common.

    Sorry, pal, but you strike out on this one: from the Crusades to the Inquisition, to WWII, to the WTC, my fear of organized religion (which IS NOT the same thing as faith, no matter how much you want it to be) is about as far from "irrational" as you can get. Evidence is with me all the way on this one. It is absolutely insane to say that your Deity is with you on the killing of other human beings. Period. People spouting such nonsense should have been sent off to some remote island whenever they were (or are) encountered.