That title is not what I want to be writing on the eve of the ninth anniversary of the September 11 attacks, but I can’t escape that feeling that at least in some quarters, it is accurate.
A few weeks ago a twitter post caught my attention after Governor Patterson said he could at least understand where some of the opposition to Cordoba House (the so called Ground Zero Mosque). It was something like “Sorry Gov. Patterson. Those ASSHOLES opposing have NO good reason.”
Frankly, I don’t care about the Ground Zero Mosque for three reasons:
First, it’s never going to be built. No contractors or union shops will build it with public sentiment in New York the way it is.
Second, the Island of Manhattan can sink at this point for all I care. It’d be nice if it doesn’t take that nice statute that the French gave us which is sitting on a New Jersey island nearby, but whatever. I’m not going to spend much time worrying about New York construction projects, no matter what they are.
Third, if it is ever built, it is exactly the kind of bending over backwards to show how enlightened and nuanced the good people of Manhattan are that I would expect. (I am shocked that about half of New York City residents actually oppose the mosque.)
But, I challenged the premise that there were no legitimate feelings for opposition. (The following tweets are paraphrased from memory. If you really care you can dig through my tweets and find the conversation.) “Really? You can’t think of one good reason?” A couple of exchanges followed, and no, there was absolutely no good reasons – it was all Islamaphobia. When I presented the tweeter with a story about some Islamic leaders who are opposed to Cordoba House the response was along the lines that “some people can be dug up to say anything.” I didn’t bother asking her if the Islamic leaders were unreasonable assholes as her original tweet supposed. I presumed that if 50% of New Yorkers – the residents of the bluest, most diverse city in America – were against the mosque there had to be something more than bigotry at work. (Maybe some of them are sore about the place being named after a Mosque that was converted from a cathedral following a Muslim conquest. Someone in the Islamist ranks is laughing his balls off about that.)
I use that one conversation as an example, but you don’t need to be an expert in social media or Google to find plenty of other people with the same opinions, and their point is clear: In the world of certain politically correct young cosmopolitans, we’re not allowed to have any kind of feelings about September 11, anymore other than whatever we should have for a run-of-the-mill tragedy and the guilt we should feel about it ourselves, presumably.
In the days following 9-11 we were all urged not to blame all Islamic people for the actions of a group of Islamist terrorists. And that was legitimate. What I don’t understand was how that morphed into: You aren’t allowed to feel that one Islamic person is being insensitive to the sore spot of the people of a city by building an Islamic center a few blocks from where 3,000 people, almost all of whom were not Islamic, were murdered in the name of Islam. I don’t blame all Muslims for 9-11, but one does not need to be a rocket surgeon to figure out why that might stick in the craw of some people, even if those people only blame a small segment of Muslims, too.
But no! For some people there can be no legitimate bad feelings about the project. If you are against it, why, you must be some kind of bigot.
If the 19 hijackers knew that some people didn’t want a project questioned because it was being done in the name of Islam that they’d be pretty happy about it. Seems like that is on the road to where they wanted to go as pan-Islamists.
Contrast that with the jackass in Florida who threatened to burn some Korans. How this guy commanded so much attention, I’ll never understand. The President, Secretary of State, the Pope, several probable 2012 presidential candidates, congressman, and every Tom, Dick, and Harry with a radio show, blog, or twitter account couldn’t wait to talk about that guy’s insensitivity. And for good reason. What he planned (or is still planning on?) would certainly not be helpful.
But he was threatening inanimate objects. Sure, Muslims would be insulted by their holy book being burned, but there was no pain of the memories of the death of a loved one or the trauma of an attack in their home city.
The Cordoba House and the Koran burners are two sides of the same coin. Where some people are drawing the line about what can be criticized and what may not be criticized is fairly obvious. But rather than requiring Islamic conquest to make us draw that line there by force, like at the sight of the real Cordoba Mosque, some of us are surrendering our rights to criticize anything that is related to Islam so that we can demonstrate how we are ever-so enlightened. And those people will try to drag the rest of us down the same path, mostly by yelling “Bigot!” until we give up from exhaustion.
Maybe I’m wrong, the 9-11 terrorists may not have won. But their hyper-PC, unwitting allies are trying to pull the win out for them.
And I’m sure the same people will line up below in the comment section to call me a bigot or equivalent for pointing that out. Do your worst.
Not only because your willing surrender on this issue precludes me from caring what you have to say about it, but because I know what’s in my heart and it’s not hate for anyone because of their religion, until such point where they set out to harm someone over in the name of it.
UPDATE: Also, what Frank J says.