Friday, August 13, 2010

A mosque at Ground Zero

Logic tells you that America's tolerance for and acceptance of all faiths makes the question of a mosque at Ground Zero easy to answer -- absolutely there should be one built there.

Emotion leads you to say no way.

Tonight, President Obama urged Americans to think logically, not emotionally, as he forcefully advocated for the creation of a mosque in New York.

Note that the president made his remarks on a Friday evening. I've said more than once on this blog that politicians who wish to bury a newsworthy announcement will do so on a Friday. That's because public attention turns on the weekend to family, friends and various personal events. Their interest in news is therefore put on hold for a couple of days.

The president's announcement also puts the GOP in a difficult spot -- criticize Mr. Obama and they are asked about their tolerance for all faiths (not to mention it compels the Christian conservatives to defend why their faith can be celebrated but another one cannot), but support him and the question becomes why was there such controversy about this issue.

If I were in the president's shoes, I'd have made the same announcement. Yes, I appreciate that there are those who say honoring Islam at the site where adherents of the faith deliberately killed more than 3,000 Americans is hard to justify. That's an emotional response.

But if we are to extrapolate that argument, then that means no Catholic Church can ever be built in areas where former priests once molested young men. Nor can a Japanese historical or cultural center ever be built anywhere near Pearl Harbor. And there is no way that anything relating to German history can ever be constructed near any of the awful camps where millions of Jews were killed during World War II.

My point is that a few people who opt to distort a proud religion, violate the tenets of their faith or fall prey to political idolatry and zealotry should never be allowed to hold that entire entity hostage.

In this case, America validates its support for the fantastic religion that is Islam by supporting the president.

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