Thursday, June 4, 2015

Throwback Thursday: The more things change...

Nearly five years ago, in August 2010, I was very mad and I wrote a blog post expressing my anger. That post was brought back to mind this morning when a reader from somewhere happened upon it, and it showed up on my radar. 

Looking back at it, I can see why that reader might have accessed it. Five years have passed but religious tolerance has not improved in this country. We have armed thugs standing outside a mosque in Arizona trying to intimidate Muslim worshipers. The hate-filled Westboro Baptist Church of Topeka, Kansas is still in business and still spewing its venom. People like Bill Maher and Pamela Geller have a national following of admirers who hang on their every word. Fox "News," the evangelical Christian network, is still providing a slanted view of the world to their overwhelmingly "Christian" viewers. Honestly, it is hard not to despair of the country ever becoming the non-sectarian ideal envisioned by our Founders.

Here's what I wrote in 2010. Sadly, it still applies.

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More on the demagoguery regarding the building of the Muslim community center and mosque two blocks from the site of the destroyed World Trade Center in New York just because it makes me so damned mad!

Would it be an insult to the memory of the innocents who died in the Murrah Building bombing in Oklahoma City to have a Christian church built across the street from the former site of the building? After all the perpetrators of their murders were "Christian" in the same way that the perpetrators of the murders of people at the World Trade Center were "Muslim". (And let us not forget that there were innocent Muslims who died in that building as well. What about the insult to their memory?)

Should we not allow the building of Buddhist or Shinto shrines at Pearl Harbor because some of those who attacked on December 7, 1941 may have been adherents to those faiths? Would that be an insult to the memory of our citizens who died there?

And what about the insult to the memory and descendants of Native Americans who died at the hands of "Christians" in the unprovoked massacre at Wounded Knee or any one of a hundred other such sites around this country? Should Christian churches be forbidden to be built on or near those sites?

Should we not allow any more mosques to be built in this country until, in Newt Gingrich's analogy, Saudi Arabia allows synagogues and Christian churches to be built in their country? What a pass we have come to when we consider Saudi Arabia as an example that we shouldfollow in regard to religious freedom!

The truth is we have a strong and extremely vocal Christian Taliban in our country today and they are waging war against our Constitution. They do not believe in freedom of religion except as it pertains to Christians - and only some Christians at that. They do not believe in freedom of speech, except for those who agree with them. They believe that the government should not oppress its citizenry except for that part of the citizenry that wants to do anything that they do not approve of. Then they demand that the government step in and stop them. These are dangerous people and they are being used and stirred up by cynical politicians who don't give two cents for the welfare - or the Constitution - of this country but only care about retaining and enhancing their own power.

Are we going to let them get away with it? Are we going to allow them to turn this into a country which only allows the religious beliefs that they sanction to flourish? This is an outrage! Where are those in public life and the media who should be speaking out strongly against the tyranny of the demagogues?

"The only thing necessary for the triumph [of evil] is for good men to do nothing." - Edmund Burke

2 comments:

  1. You are right - if anything, things have gotten worse. I am still speechless about the airline incident of several days ago where a Muslim woman was refused an unopened can of diet soda because she might use it as a weapon - and then a neighboring passenger showed his support for the flight attendant, complete with the "f" word.

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    1. It is beyond depressing. What is wrong with people anyway? Why are they so terrified of someone who holds a slightly different belief system? And I am convinced that it is fear that is at the root of all intolerance.

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