MY THOUGHTS ON THE GROUND ZERO MOSQUE

And yes, I know it’s (current) name is NOT The Ground Zero Mosque. Officials originally decided to name the project Cordoba House.  Cordoba, Spain is a  medieval Spanish town that up until the year 711 was ruled by the Roman Empire.  However in that year (711) Cordoba was conquered by a Muslim army.  Due to the violant nature of Islam’s beginning there in Cordoba a public outcry soon rose from the (understandably) ourtaged citizens and the name of the project was then changed to that of a more generic and the seemingly acceptabl title of “Park51,” (the name to coincide with the physical address of the structure) and after all who can argue against a “Park.”

Seeing that our son-in-law, while serving as a combat army medic in Operation Enduring Freedom, was KIA by a Taliban (Muslim) sniper while saving the lives of  TWO MUSLIMS this subject has been a bit difficult for me to remain neutral.  But who says I (or anyone) has   to be neutral in anything they strongly believe in?  One of the sadest things about Buddy being KIA (besides our famly’s obvious life altering state) is that here was a caucasion man who volunteered to go to a foreign land, who was imbeded with the country’s local army, did not speak the local language (well), was of a different race, who was a Christian risking his very life to save the lives of Muslims and was shot and killed by another Muslim.

Back on track –

I will not go into all the specific particulars about this project because, honestly, it is just too difficult to determine what “facts” are truly facts.  That is not the purpose of this Blog post.  Those facts are easily ucovered.  The purpose of this Blog post is for me to state my views on this ongoing controversy… and, of course, to let everyone who wants to take the time to tell me how I am intollerant, an Islomophobe, a racist, uninformed and stupid to do so.  Goat head, I can take it.

IT’S JUST WRONG, PERIOD!

Although the property’s owners have every right under the US Constitution to expand the current Mosque at that location into their Cultural Center they do not have an obligation to do so.   I believe the first obligation of any organization is to best serve their “clients.”  Although a larger facility with many, many more amenities available to their “clients” would benefit them, Park 51’s close proximity to Ground Zero gives the project  an air of  “you must tollerate and accept us.”    That sort of “in your face” attitude (no matter what words you use or how nicely you say it with a smile) just spews of intollerance itself!

When Imam Rauf, his wife Kahn and developer Gamal were asked in a Newsweek interview why the Mosque had to be built there their collective response was, “We want to provide a counter momentum against extremism,” she said. “We want peace, and we want it where it matters most. This is where it matters most.”   Wait, wait, wait – They say here their stated purpose is “to provide a counter momentum against extremism”.  Further stating THEY want “peace and we want it where it matters most.”  “THEY” want.  “WE” want.   Apparrently it matters very little (if at all) what the citizens who were affected most by the murder of their loved ones, friends and fellow citizens want!  What WE (the Muslims) want is paramount!  Go figure.

Here is where it becomes a bit muddled for me.  I think it is easiest to understand the developer’s goal.  He wants to make money.  That is easy enough to understand.  The structure was damaged by landing gear from one of the Muslim Suicide Planes on 9/11 and he wants to sell the property to cash in on his investment.  Understandable.

However, less clear (to me) is the motivation of Rauf, Kahn and their ardent supporters.  If the true goal is PEACE then, to even the dim whitted individual, it should be clear by now that true peace in today’s emotionally and politically charged climate will not soon be found at a site so close to where Muslim Extremist Terrorist took out an entire zip code!

Seriously, where should the main focus be?  IF  the stated goal is  PEACE, should the pressing through of a (peaceful)  faith’s Constitutional Right of Religious Freedom be the paramount goal in such a painful area as this?!  OR could TRUE PEACE be better found some distance away from the proposed “Park 51” project?  And remember Rauf’s, Kahn’s and Gamal’s stated intentions, “We want to provide a counter momentum against extremism,”.  Their goal is not too better serve their “clients.”  Their goal is to provide a counter momentum against extremism.”

It is my (correct) opinion that while being so adamant and extreme in their current stance as to the Cultural Center’s location, they are failing miserably in their stated goal and purpose.

Once again it appears that there are losers on both sides of this issue.  How tragic for everyone.

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19 Responses to MY THOUGHTS ON THE GROUND ZERO MOSQUE

  1. Hayden Tompkins says:

    Michael, I have to be honest. This makes me so very sad.

    • mssc54 says:

      Hayden; I am where I am but I’m not where I’ve been. In the future I will likely be some place different.

      I have the ability to “grow” and have demonstrated that for a while.

    • Lindsey says:

      It makes me sad, too. You know how I feel about this, Michael, so I won’t delve into it again.

      But I sense a lot of anger in your words, and it makes me very very sad.

      • mssc54 says:

        I don’t think I’m angry. Really I don’t. Maybe I’m just kidding myself.

        Firm in the way I feel and convinced that I’m right but not angry.

        At least not the anger I felt 3.5 years ago.

        I know how you feel and you won’t hurt my feelings in the least if you publish them here. As long as people are respectful I don’t mind at all a robust debate.

  2. Mike Stewart says:

    Alienating those who you want to bring together is not the best way to start a “cultural center”.

    Using Iman Rauf’s logic Christians should build a “cultural center” a couple of blocks from the heart of Mecca “in an effort to provide a momentum against” Islamiphobia. I am sure proposing such a “cultural center” would not be met with the same intolerance from the Muslim community that this one has received from most Americans.

  3. melissa says:

    as i have no tv to keep up with current events, all i knew was they wanted to build the mosque there and not why…after reading this, i now know their intentions and understand better…u wanted my “opinion” on it…in the beginning i thought it was a big slap in the face to the american people that had to live through that day and the lives of our military who are now fighting because of this deadly tragedy…in reading their reasoning it doesn’t change anything for me, it just makes me more angry…THIS IS NOT A THREAT BY ME OR ANYONE IN MY LIFE, but i firmly believe if they go through with building or expanding this mosque it will be destroyed again and again because any american that doesn’t see this as a slap in the face i guess is more tolerant than i am….i was not as close to buddy as others, but if 9/11 hadn’t happened its a pretty good assumption to say we would have not “invaded” afghanistan(sp) and there would be thousands of lives saved…i’m not against war, but i am against stupidity and this in my opinion is the biggest act of stupidity i have seen in a while…

  4. mssc54 says:

    This is but one more reason why many people are suspect of Muslims.

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/08/27/2994792.htm?section=justin

    I mean if a Pathologist (who has taken an oath to “do no harm”) is linked to senior Al Qaeda…. Just which Muslims ARE we supposed to trust?!

  5. lawyerchik says:

    Gotta say, I am with you and then some on this. “Just because you can doesn’t mean you should.” Clearly, though, if the stated intent is to bring about peace, why are they not pouring all of their money into those countries controlled by Islam where there have been decades of civil war?

    Why not spend more of their money to promote tolerance and acceptance of Jewish people everywhere? Why not spend the money and make the effort to teach and train their young people to be more tolerant of the beliefs of others, instead of blowing themselves up trying to force others to accept their beliefs?

    Personally, I believe that the “real” reason for the mosque project so close to ground zero is to provide a monument to what their terrorists were able to accomplish – like a permanent marker of what they did so that they can point to it and say, “see? See what we did here?” If they succeed, my guess is that a photo of the new mosque would go on a recruiting poster.

    But that’s just me.

  6. Joy says:

    You know how I feel Michael. Last night while watching Nightline, I saw a grown man sobbing. He has to walk by this site everyday TWICE to go to work and come home and his 19 year old only child, a son, was killed that day. Now he’ll get to see all these people parading around wanting PEACE you say???????

    Just like all the others. Just because you can doesn’t mean you should and I don’t want to hear about the constitution or anything else. People who throw that word around only do it when it best suits them.

  7. Joy says:

    I guess people think we need to turn the other cheek. I can’t do that this time. It’s still to raw and too fresh in all our minds. Maybe 20 years from now we’ll all feel differently.

    Sad? I’m really sad. I’m sad for the families who lost loved ones and I’m sad for “us” as the people of the United States. What we want doesn’t seem to matter anymore. Slowly, bit by bit, our decisions are being made for us and if we don’t wake up, very soon we’ll be the ones with no rights.

    Any kind and loving person wouldn’t be pushing this in this manner. Last night on the evening news it said that 71% of those asked said they didn’t want it there and that includes many Muslims. Doesn’t that say anything? The real “peace loving” Muslims respect our pain. Those others are just trying to prove a point.

  8. stephanie (AKA) Big Momma says:

    I am having a hard time forming my opinion but I do believe this…. There is no room for for being angry or for hatred b/c that is what caused 9/11 in the first place. As Christians we are commanded to reach out to everyone including Muslims and please no one flame me but the presence of God is strong at Ground Zero and I think that if a Mosque is going to be there it won’t be the worst thing in the world b/c that could be the place where God chooses to start a worldwide revival but if we are stuck on being angry God will not move. It has the potential to turn into something positive if we let it and Michael you are so loving and kind and your opinion is very respected. =-)

    • lawyerchik1 says:

      Not a flame, Stephanie, just a brief response: while it is true that we are commanded to reach out to everyone, including Muslims, we also are to stand up for and show love to those who are hurting, including those who were victims of the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center.

      I disagree with the thought process that says that because God could choose to start a revival at the site contemplated for the mosque, that we should not oppose it or express our own feelings about the incredible insensitivity that promoting this building generates.

      God is God – He can do what He chooses. To the extent that the Muslim world is consciously opposed to His people, Israel, and that the terrorists’ attack was a step along their program to wipe God’s people (and us) off the face of the earth, I would rather oppose and condemn the proposed building project as incredibly insensitive at best (and possibly as an attempt to create a stronghold and rallying point for our enemies, at worst), than to sit back and say that because God could use it as a way to start a revival, I’m going to keep my mouth shut.

      Revivals start when people recognize their sin – their lack of conforming their thoughts and behavior to God’s standards – and turn to Him for forgiveness and repentance. It is not sin to defend our country, and it is not sin to stand against those who would destroy God’s chosen people. If it were, then God would never have commanded the Jews to utterly destroy the inhabitants of the land He gave them so many thousands of years ago.

  9. Randy 'Steam' Stevens says:

    The problem comes from looking at Islam though our Western, Christian eyes. We tend to see Islam as a religion like Christianity is a religion….just different. We’ve even been told that Christians and Muslims actually worship the same God……reinforcing our Western habit of trying to find similarities and sameness.

    It’s wrong. Islam is different. It’s not different like Presbyterians and Free Will Baptists are different. It’s different like a leopard is different from a penguin.

    I actually read the Koran. I tried to study it. I read scholarly interpretations from Muslim clerics. At the end I came to a startling conclusion. Islam is not a religion at all.

    Islam is a political system whereby the clergy can control their subjects. It is spread, not through mission work as we think of it, but by destabilizing governments, overthrowing them, seizing power and converting the populace at the tip of the spear.

    Some have accused me of sounding like I thought Islam was an inferior belief system. They were shocked when I readily agreed.

    Hate them? No. Understand them? Yes, I think I do. Trust them? Do so at your own peril.

  10. goldnsilver says:

    Why are you linking Muslims with Al Quaeda? Would you like it if African Americans claimed that you couldn’t build churches in the south because the KKK were Christians?

    This is what you are doing. By worrying that Muslims are going to build a Mosque near ground zero you are grouping them with Al Quaeda, an extremist fringe group that wears the moniker of Islam falsely.

    I guess people think we need to turn the other cheek. I can’t do that this time. It’s still to raw and too fresh in all our minds. Maybe 20 years from now we’ll all feel differently.

    This is your moment – It is your moment as a Christian to live by the rules that you espouse.

    If you don’t follow the way when its hard, then you don’t follow it at all.

    I actually read the Koran. I tried to study it. I read scholarly interpretations from Muslim clerics. At the end I came to a startling conclusion. Islam is not a religion at all.

    Islam is a political system whereby the clergy can control their subjects. It is spread, not through mission work as we think of it, but by destabilizing governments, overthrowing them, seizing power and converting the populace at the tip of the spear.

    Ok, there is so much wrong here that its mind boggling.

    You need to read more. A lot more. And read stuff that is outside of your viewpoint.

    The OT and NT could be easily accused of all the things you just slung at the Koran. Machievelli discussed the use of religion, in Catholic Italy, as a means for the state to control its subjects.

    • mssc54 says:

      “Why are you linking Muslims with Al Quaeda?”

      Although I do not have any scientific evidence I feel totally comfortable saying that more than 99% of all Al Quaeda members are Muslim. The same stats are true for those whom strap bombs around their bodies and murder innocent men women and children. The same statistics apply (maybe even higher) to those whom attack and kill publically ellected Iraqi government officials. The same statistic apply (again maybe even higher) to those whom plant car bombs or strap bombs around their torso and enter Iraqi policed stations killing local law enforcement.

      THAT’s why.

      And what about all the so called “moderate Muslims?” I can not recal EVER seeing a organized protest lead by “moderate Muslims” condeming those whom have hijacked the religion of Islam. Why is that do you suppose. I mean if they claim to be agianst it shouldn’t they be openly and publically condeming the radical Muslims for hijacking their religion?

      “Ok, there is so much wrong here that its mind boggling.”

      Okay then, can you name me another single religion (other than Islam) that has “instructed” their followers in their holy book to kill those whom do not believe the same as they do? Or that allows “honor killings” of their daughters? Or that will stone a woman for adultry but not a man? Or that their followers are promised 70 virgins for in eternity as a reward for killing the infidels? Name just one religion that does this (other than the peaceful religion of Islam). Just one.

      As for building the so called Ground Zero Mosque. “This is your moment – It is your moment as a Christian to live by the rules that you espouse.”

      There came a time when God was so annoyed by the people who were building the Tower of Babel that he “confounded their language and scattered them across the land.” In other accounts the tower was later blown over by a strong wind.

      Since I am not God I must pray that common sense and not “Ceasar’s law” prevails. If you want to persue peace with other religions why would you build such a “trophy” within 348 feet of the nearest human remains of the terrorist attack on WTC of 9/11? Makes no sense at all… if your ultimate goal is to “bridge build.” Seems more like bridge burning.

      “Machievelli discussed the use of religion, in Catholic Italy, as a means for the state to control its subjects.” The ol “they did it back then so we can do it now arguement.” Perhaps if the citizens of that day had dealt with such corruption back then things would be different today. But they did not. So because they didn’t we are too “let things slide?” That is absurd.

      • goldnsilver says:

        Although I do not have any scientific evidence I feel totally comfortable saying that more than 99% of all KKK members are Christian.

        Is it fair to associate 1.6 billion Muslims with a lunatic fringe group such as the Taliban and Al Quaeda? (a group mind you, that was set up by the Americans during the Russian/Afghanistan soviet war to help fight the russians)

        You haven’t answered my question: Would it be ok for people to judge the whole Christian religion based off the KKK?

        And what about all the so called “moderate muslims?” I can not recal EVER seeing a organized protest lead by “moderate Muslims” condeming those whom have hijacked the religion of Islam. Why is that do you suppose. I mean if they claim to be agianst it shouldn’t they be openly and publically condeming the radical Muslims for hijacking their religion?

        They’re the billions that have currently not caused any westerners harm. They are around 5% of your nation that have peacefully co-existed – except for that one lunatic on the army base. They are the moderate muslims who do preach against violence – you can look it up on the net. Here is one example:

        http://www.islamfortoday.com/terrorism.htm

        You seem to be ignoring all of these examples so that you can live in blind hate. Why don’t you go down to your local mosque and try to talk to some of them, instead of just assuming?

        Okay then, can you name me another single religion (other than Islam) that has “instructed” their followers in their holy book to kill those whom do not believe the same as they do? Or that allows “honor killings” of their daughters? Or that will stone a woman for adultry but not a man? Or that their followers are promised 70 virgins for in eternity as a reward for killing the infidels? Name just one religion that does this (other than the peaceful religion of Islam). Just one.

        I agree with you. That stuff is all really wrong and it deserves criticism. Being a woman, I am particularly bothered by their treatment of women.

        I’ll name you one other religion that has done these things: Christianity. The crusades anyone? It’s a bit like the pot calling the kettle black.

        But in that section you quoted me from (‘the mind boggling’part) I was referring to Randy’s assertion that Islam is a political system, not a true religion – so I’m not sure why your bringing up the ills of their religion when it wasn’t the subject I was replying to.

        There came a time when God was so annoyed by the people who were building the Tower of Babel that he “confounded their language and scattered them across the land.” In other accounts the tower was later blown over by a strong wind.

        Look mate, if you want to quote the OT God when it suits you to abdicate your responsibilty to follow Jesus Christ’s pacifist teachings then that’s your business. It comes across to me that your a pretty poor Christian.

        Since I am not God I must pray that common sense and not “Ceasar’s law” prevails. If you want to persue peace with other religions why would you build such a “trophy” within 348 feet of the nearest human remains of the terrorist attack on WTC of 9/11? Makes no sense at all… if your ultimate goal is to “bridge build.” Seems more like bridge burning.

        This is the crux of the issue. Building a mosque near ground zero is not burning bridges – because Islam and Al Qaeda is not one and the same. It is a very important distinction. This is the equivalent of saying that the Christians are all like the KKK.

        They’re not building a trophy. They are building a cultural centre because lots of Muslims happen to live in that area. It’s not rocket science.

        “Machievelli discussed the use of religion, in Catholic Italy, as a means for the state to control its subjects.” The ol “they did it back then so we can do it now arguement.” Perhaps if the citizens of that day had dealt with such corruption back then things would be different today. But they did not. So because they didn’t we are too “let things slide?” That is absurd.

        I was replying to Randy’s assertion that Islam is a politcal system, using an example of how Catholicism has been used for the same means.

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