Saturday, August 7, 2010

The Mosque

In case you missed it, Mayor Bloomberg delivered a moving speech last week defending the proposed mosque near the Trade Center. I'd quibble over the GWB-ish trope re: the terrorists wanting to take away our freedom and the firemen wanting to protect it. Poetic, but without much substance - and the point could have been made more strongly without taking the "freedom" angle, ala Nazis marching in Skokie. After all, these are our neighbors, not some beyond-the-pale element to be protected with noses firmly pinched shut in the name of the US Constitution. But the mayor's sentiment was the main thing, and it was a courageous move in light of his reported presidential ambitions.

I'm thinking about organizing a group of non-Muslims to stand in front of the mosque during its opening week to defend it against protesters and attackers. Maybe make up "Ich bin ein Muslim" placards. Would be great to see blacks, Jews, gays, women, disabled, illegals, and other minorities stand together to oppose this shameful persecution and hatred. Especially Jews.


bobjbkln said...

They do not need you standing in support in front of their completed building. Rather they need your money, especially if you have a couple of million dollars sitting around somewhere. They have no money to build the building, having so far raised only $200.00 from the public via their website. What's more, they only own half the building (it's actually two buildings with the party wall removed). They do have a lease until 2071 that allows for demolition though, but I doubt if they can use that half for equity. So I'm not sure that you or I will be capable of standing when and if they ever finish this building. But I could be wrong and there is some angel waiting in the wings.

Anonymous said...

This link is to a post from Bill Eignor, who I follow on, and I think he is right when he equates what is going on today with how Japanese Americans were treated during WWII:

Anonymous said...

I was surprised how interesting the debate over the proposed Koran burning has become, not that I want to see it go forward, nor that I want to see it stopped, but just that it really crystallizes the issues.

If you found Bloomberg moving on the downtown mosque vis a vis freedom of religion, seems like you should wade in and add a blog posting about it... it's not clear which way you'd go:

freedom of religion--freedom to burn heretical items and/or freedom to kill heretics in retaliation?; (need a semi question mark)

free expression--freedom to express yourself by burning things, freedom from fear of retaliation?

don't burn books--that's what fascists do? or just

be nice to your neighbors--it's not nice to burn other people's revered items (though that risks moving back into it either is or is not nice to open an X place of worship where some other practioners of X have committed an atrocity)

Jim Leff said...

I'm sorry, but I'm not following a single one of your arguments,

Perhaps clarify in the fresh light of morning?

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