Saturday, August 14, 2010

Semi-Connected Thoughts on a Mosque Near Ground Zero

As a registered atheist, I don't really 'get' any religion.  When it comes to embracing a god or a set of beliefs, I'd just as soon spend that time trolling baseball statistics.  But I do get why religious freedom is important.  I get why banning a mosque, not building a mosque, is fundamentally fucked up.

And I get why supporting the right to build this particular mosque, which is quickly becoming a symbol, is important, lest mosque-banning suddenly becomes OK in a country that loves to boast about its long list of freedoms.  That is a precedent we do not need.

People get hepped up on the constitution the same way they get high on the bible.  But there's good stuff in both.  Freedom of religion is a pretty sweet notion.  The bible tells us to judge not.  Those are closely related concepts in my mind.

Muslims did not bomb the World Trade Center; fringe lunatics did.  Those kinds of people are everywhere, and they do crazy things.

Invading Iraq was terrorism.  Let's call it like it is.  The act was perpetrated by a man who repeatedly insists he is guided above all by his faith.

Building a mosque near Ground Zero could have greater healing potential than bombing the living shit out of Baghdad, imo.

My cynical side sees any rhetoric by any president as cold, calculated and political.  But I really want to see this gesture of support by Obama as strong and just leadership in the face of sharp censure by the voting public.  I'm sure if the kitchen gets too hot, he'll qualify it somehow, but for now I'm giving him a pat on the back.

Speaking of rhetoric, in the wrong hands is there any more dangerous weapon on earth?  As the spouse of a rhetorician, I'm thankful that my wife is only a little bit evil.

Every time a president concludes a speech with '...and may God bless America,' I barf in my mouth.



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