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Free and Strong America

Friday, August 6, 2010

An Open Letter to Mayor Michael Bloomberg




Well, actually it's not really. I was forming some thoughts on the matter in response to Mayor Bloomberg's support of the construction of a large mosque in lower Manhattan, a mere stone's throw away from Ground Zero of the attacks by radical jihadists on September 11th, 2001 which destroyed the World Trade Center and killed thousands.

Like I said, I was thinking about writing an "open letter" to Mayor Bloomberg, but as anyone who is familiar with this blog can attest to, there's really nothing special about my writing ability. Oh, I suppose I could cobble together a heavily footnoted criticism of Bloomberg's teary-eyed, myopic defense of his support of such folly. However, in reading other criticisms of such a patently stupid and short-sighted attempt at cultural suicide, it became clear that others were doing a better job at it than I could ever hope to do.

R. Emmett Tyrrell, Jr. brought up a few good points in his recent article on the subject. He mentions "People would know that when thugs intoning "Allahu Akbar" have slaughtered hundreds of innocent Americans on American soil, it is inappropriate to raise a mosque nearby. The majority of Americans alive today know this. Polling indicates that with them it is a nonstarter." In a sane world such thinking would carry the day, however this is New York City that we are talking about where over 67% of registered voters are listed as being Democrats (Read- Leftist Liberals) and reality is something that is obviously a bit subjective in their eyes. Mr. Tyrrell continues...

"There is nothing irrational or bigoted about thinking that a mosque does not belong at Ground Zero or at the Pentagon or on the Pennsylvania countryside where United Flight 93 crashed (See above photo). Americans traditionally raise on such sites monuments to freedom, to courage, to the sacrifices of those lost. Now the Ruling Class wants to place a mosque at the site of September 11. It is the only time I can recall the Ruling Class ever being in favor of placing a religious manifestation anywhere. Yet in favoring this mosque, the Ruling Class does put itself squarely in opposition to the Country Class, so it does have a logic to it."

That sort of cuts to the heart of the matter, doesn't it? Not to be outdone, the best article by far that I have come across concerning this topic is by Tawfik Hamid. Mr. Hamid wrote pretty much what I was thinking of writing to Mayor Bloomberg, but he includes some thoughts on the subject that I'm certain that I would have left out. Mr. Hamid basically boils down his argument to three main points...

"Allowing the erection of a Ground Zero mosque would enable jihadists to extend their narrative of success: "First our 9/11 attacks destroyed the World Trade Center, symbol of American power, and now the mosque symbolizes Islam's rise to power within America."

How is the public to know which side is correct? ...

One test would be to ask mosque leaders to request that Saudi Arabian leaders reciprocally allow churches and synagogues to be built in their country.

A second test would be to ask questions that would clarify if the mosque's proponents are truly moderates or in fact jihadist radicals disguised as moderates. Americans who defend the building of this mosque could ask the mosque's Islamic proponents to publicly post to the media and on their websites answers to the following questions:

1. Islamic law (Shariah) states that Muslims who convert to Christianity must be killed (Redda Law), women in adulterous relationships must be stoned to death, men can beat their wives to discipline them, and homosexuals should be killed.

Are you willing to recommend that these traditional Muslim practices be banned and to condemn countries such as Saudi Arabia and Iran which accept such practices as religiously mandated?

2. Several Muslim texts declare that Jews are pigs and monkeys and that killing Jews before "end days" is a religious duty for Muslims.

Are you willing to declare that these texts must be changed and/or reinterpreted and that Islamic teaching of such anti-Semitic values must stop?

3. Muslim texts that are approved by all the schools of jurisprudence in Islam (Shafeii, Hanbali, Maleki, and Hanafi) state that Muslims must declare wars against non-Muslims to spread Islam and those they conquer must either convert to Islam, pay Jizya (a humiliating tax), or be killed.

Are you willing to declare that this belief, used in "Foutohhat Islameia," the early wars to spread Islam, and praised currently in much of the Muslim world, is un-Islamic and unacceptable?

Mosque leaders issue statements such as, "Islam is the religion of peace," "Islam respects freedom of religion," "Islam is the religion that gave them their rights," or "Islam is not anti-Semitic." Their answers to the questions above about Shariah teachings would clarify if it would be unfair to call these leaders jihadist Islamic radicals, or if in fact their statements about Islam are misleading propaganda.

Are Islamic Mosque advocates willing to declare publicly, in English and in Arabic, that their answers to these three questions are yes? If so, let the mosque proceed. If not, plans to build a shrine to Islam near the grounds of the World Trade Center are contrary to America's values [and] should be halted immediately."


I couldn't have put it any better than that if someone tried to pay me a million bucks to do so.

36 comments:

Froggie said...

The one thing that the opposition to the Mosque are forgetting, and that is the right of the individuals, under the Constitution, to build it.
As you are wont to include direct quotes in your posts, I shall offer this one from Andrew Sullivan:

"It has always seemed to me that this war against al Qaeda is a war for religious freedom, and ultimately for the separation of church and state. It is al Qaeda's psychotic conflation of politics and religion that we fight, not their religion itself. But these are very abstract things for anyone to fight for, to identify with emotionally and viscerally. And so, even when we start with good intentions and clear minds - we are fighting not Islam but Islamism, not religion but theocracy - we can soon simply drift and degenerate into more primitive associations.

What we've been watching from Palin to Gingrich is an exploitation of this human degeneracy, or in the ADL's case, sheer liberal cowardice in the face of tribalism. Even now, Gingrich and Palin fail to understand that rhetorical polarization may be good politics but it is terrible statesmanship in a war of ideas as well as physical combat. It's a long war that will only be won in the minds of most Muslims, which is why how we act remains of importance. Yes, the human psyche will make easy and common and hard-to-resist associations between a religion and an act of war by the most deranged and nihilist members of that religion.

But resisting it is what makes us decent. And to be, at a minimum, decent is, to my mind, the core aspiration of Anglo-American political morality."

There may come a day that changes will need to be made, but it is best to pick your battles wisely, and this seems not the time to engage in ammending the Constitution.

JD Curtis said...

But where is this attribute of decency on the other side to be found Froggie? Where?!

Froggie said...

JD Curtis said...
"But where is this attribute of decency on the other side to be found Froggie? Where?!"

That is a moot question at this point in time and frankly, I have far more questions than answers on the Muslim final solution. Tis a sticky wicket, my friend.

ATVLC said...

It's not like they're building a shrine to Al-Qaeda or raising a statue of Osama bin Laden. And even if they were, who cares? I always heard America was for free speech and freedom of religion.

It's not AT "Ground Zero". You can't see it from "Ground Zero" unless you have X-ray eyes. And I hear there's already a mosque closer to "Ground Zero" anyway.
Just build a new WTC on "Ground Zero" and whack a plaque on it. Stop being so afraid.

ATVLC said...

Jeez, and it's not like the Saudi men who committed the crime on Sept the 11th were doing it to spread Islam. They were doing it to get back at the USA. Being afraid or hateful is a winning result for them.
Like I said, build a new WTC and stop whimpering and get on with your lives.

JD Curtis said...

"Muslims came to America nine years ago, brutally murdered 3,000 men, women and children in the name of Allah, and yet the burden is on us, their families, their widows and children, to exhibit tolerance for Muslim insensitivity. Shame on the politicians, whose moral vanity knows no boundaries. We will fight this"

Debra Burlingame, co-founder of 9/11 Families for a Safe and Strong America and the sister of hijacked American Airlines flight 77 pilot Charles Burlingame

JD Curtis said...

"In Jerusalem, triumphant Muslims built the Al-Aqsa mosque on top of the Jews' revered Temple Mount. They transformed what had been for a thousand years the largest cathedral in Christendom, Constantinople's magnificent St. Sophia basilica, into a sprawling mosque complex. And the Moorish Ummayad dynasty in Spain, made the city of Cordoba its capital, and installed an immense mosque on the site of an ancient Christian church there.

Now, an imam in New York, who has suddenly come into $100 million from undisclosed sources, wants to build a 13-story Islamic Cultural Center adjacent to the site of Shariah's greatest triumph to date in America: Ground Zero, the place where the World Trade Center's twin towers proudly stood until they were destroyed by Shariah-adherent jihadists on September 11, 2001. It is not a coincidence that the imam, Feisal Abdul Rauf, has called his project "the Cordoba House."

Such a mosque on 9/11's hallowed ground would not only constitute a durable, symbolic taunt by our enemies about their bloody victory. In accordance with Shariah, once ground has been taken for Islam, it can never revert to the non-Muslim Dar al-Harb, literally the House of War.

In other words, the Ground Zero mosque is designed to be a permanent, in-our-face beachhead for Shariah, a platform for inspiring the triumphalist ambitions of the faithful and eroding resistence to their demands for separate and (for the moment, at least) equal treatment in America." Frank Gaffney

JD Curtis said...

"The proposed "Cordoba House" overlooking the World Trade Center site – where a group of jihadists killed over 3000 Americans and destroyed one of our most famous landmarks - is a test of the timidity, passivity and historic ignorance of American elites. For example, most of them don’t understand that “Cordoba House” is a deliberately insulting term. It refers to Cordoba, Spain – the capital of Muslim conquerors who symbolized their victory over the Christian Spaniards by transforming a church there into the world’s third-largest mosque complex.

Today, some of the Mosque’s backers insist this term is being used to "symbolize interfaith cooperation" when, in fact, every Islamist in the world recognizes Cordoba as a symbol of Islamic conquest. It is a sign of their contempt for Americans and their confidence in our historic ignorance that they would deliberately insult us this way.

...America is experiencing an Islamist cultural-political offensive designed to undermine and destroy our civilization. Sadly, too many of our elites are the willing apologists for those who would destroy them if they could.

No mosque.

No self deception.

No surrender.

The time to take a stand is now - at this site on this issue" Newt Gingrich

JD Curtis said...

Would it be fair to ask the 3 questions that Tawfik Hamid proposed to the developers before they construct the mosque?

If not, then why?

Jquip said...

There's a few ways to look at this. Legally, there's no Federal ability here as Froggie noted. Notionally, under the incorporation doctrine, there's no ability for a zoning board to say anything about it either. But at the end of the day it is a zoning issue.

As a point of social or political strategy I think this is a terrible choice for Muslims. This particular choice of construction is going to stick in the craw of New Yorkers something fierce. It has, and will continue to be, a reminder to them of who their enemy is.

Of course, if this was chosen for the sake of pulling the Muslim community tighter due the inevitable backlash then this is certainly a good choice for them.

But then I know very little about this, nor care over much. I find the Islamic culture about as desirable as that of Long Island and this seems to me to be an enemy of my enemy consideration no matter which side I prefer.

JD Curtis said...

Jeez, and it's not like the Saudi men who committed the crime on Sept the 11th were doing it to spread Islam

"Opposition to the mosque is being portrayed, as the New York Times editorial page put it, as abandoning "the principles of freedom and tolerance." But the Times makes its own tenuous grasp of reality clear as it goes on in its editorial embracing the mosque and Islamic center to say that "the attacks of Sept. 11 were not a religious event."

We can only wonder what those at the Times think was motivating the young Muslims who, while embracing their Qurans and chanting to Allah, committed suicide, taking 3,000 innocent Americans to their deaths along with them."

Link to full article

ATVLC said...

So what do you want? The government to step in and tell people when, where and to who they can pray?

Jquip said...

ATVLC: Rather it's when, where, and how. Which it already does for good or ill.

JD Curtis said...

"Equally opposed (to the Ground Zero mosque) is Stephen Suleyman Schwartz, a devout Muslim and director of the Center for Islamic Pluralism in Washington.

Schwartz notes that the spiritual leader of the Cordoba Initiative, Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, describes himself as a Sufi — a Muslim focused on Islamic mysticism and spiritual wisdom. But “building a 15-story Islamic center at ground zero isn’t something a Sufi would do," according to Schwartz, also a practitioner of Sufism. “Sufism is supposed to be based on sensitivity toward others," yet Cordoba House comes across as “grossly insensitive." He rejects Rauf’s stance that a highly visible Muslim presence at ground zero is the way to make a statement opposing what happened on 9/11. Better, in his view, is the approach of many Muslims “who hate terrorism and who have gone privately to the site and recited prayers for the dead silently and unperceived by others." Link

Froggie said...

Jquip said...
"ATVLC: Rather it's when, where, and how. Which it already does for good or ill."

No they don't, and you know it.

If you make such an absurd statement, the burden is on you for an explanation with evidence.

Jquip said...

"If you make such an absurd statement, the burden is on you for an explanation with evidence."

Nope. This time Froggie I'm going to ask you to play your own game. Since you disagree you can provide evidence to the contrary. You may start with zoning regulations. For bonus points you can look up the routine troubles that the Buddhists have had.

JD Curtis said...

Here's an example from Australia Froggie,

"The Office of the Queensland Senate Candidate for Family First, Wendy Francis, issued this media release today...

Francis said Australian values of fairness, mateship and respect need to be linked to our history and culture in order to protect the identity of the nation.

“We spend too much time trying to change our country rather than celebrate who we are and what makes Australia great.”

Mrs Francis pointed to a recent government-funded study advocating that Muslim values be taught in our schools and the continual huge costs levelled on taxpayers to accommodate the Muslim religion.

“We spend money trying to make Australians change to accommodate other cultures while in rural Australia we can’t get funding for health centres. Something is wrong and I intend to work to change this,” she said."

Read the comments. They're quite interesting. Link

ATVLC said...

Ah, Australia. It's a great place. We have a atheist woman for Prime Minister and we still have creationists teaching in our classrooms.

http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2010/08/australians_are_learning_what.php

ATVLC said...

So JD, you never answered. Do you want the government to step in and tell people when, where and to who they can pray?

ATVLC said...

Jquip: How about providing a few examples of the government stepping in and telling people when, where and to who they can pray.

Chris Mackey said...

This is my imaginary conversation between Jquip and Person X

Person X: Do you want some sort of 'Lizard People' to rule the world or something?

Imaginary Jquip: Sadly, Lizard People already rule the world.

Person X: Doubt it! Prove it!

IJquip: Nope. This time Person X I'm going to ask you to play your own game and prove Lizard People don't already rule the world.

Imaginary Jquip thinks to self: 'Phew, dodged that one!'

JD Curtis said...

Do you want the government to step in and tell people when, where and to who they can pray?

You've changed the discussion from the idea of questionable motivation for constructing a mosque near Groud Zero with shady funding and with a frontman with a checkered past to "Do you want the government to step in and tell people when, where and to who they can pray?" which is a topic for a whole other thread.

Froggie said...

Jq,

"Nope. This time Froggie I'm going to ask you to play your own game."

It is obviously you that is playing the games by making absurd statements with no explanation.
This is becomeing a habit with you.
Either you can defend your statement or not.

"Since you disagree you can provide evidence to the contrary. You may start with zoning regulations."

You are losing it, man. In response to AVLU's question, "So what do you want? The government to step in and tell people when, where and to who they can pray?", you answered,
"ATVLC: Rather it's when, where, and how. Which it already does for good or ill."

How does the government tell you when, where, and who to pray to?

That has nothing to do with zoning.
If you want to run in circles, fine. I have plenty of sane dicussions going on that I surely don't need this clap trap from you.

Froggie said...

JD Curtis said...
"Here's an example from Australia Froggie,...."

Errr, Austrailia is not only a different continent, it is a different government and has nothing to do with this discussion.

The only discussion is; is it or is it not legal for someone to build a mosque in NYC?

Froggie said...

Chris Mackey,

Bingo!

Jquip said...

ATVLC: How not who. You've enough lead from my response to Froggie if you're interested in such things.

Froggie: See here's the thing; you've a repeated habit of making absurd and patently false statements. And then requiring others to provide proof of it; which I have done on numerous occasions. So this time you get to educate yourself. Now, you're free to remain as immune to this topic as you are such banal topics as basic science; as you've previously exhibited.

Now if you find that more sane discussions involve you being both incorrect and intellectually lazy you are free to pursue those as you see fit.

Froggie said...

Jq,

It is you that claimed that the US Government tells you "when, where, and how. Which it already does for good or ill."

I merely asked you for an explanation since that is a patently false statement and instead I am met with a wall of vague circumlocutions.

Just sayin'.

Jquip said...

It is you that claimed that the US Government ...

You are the only one to mention the Federal government.

I merely asked you for an explanation since that is a patently false statement and instead I am met with a wall of vague circumlocutions.

And there's my point precisely. Googling "zoning regulations" and "church" or "buddhist" returns a plethora of information on the very fist page in both cases.

So either you've looked or you have not. If the first then you're so dedicated to your own ignorance that there's no cure. In the second you have looked and are simply dishonest.

So for future reference: Should I consider you studiously ignorant? Or ignorantly mendacious?

Chris Mackey said...

Googled "zoning regulations" and "church" or "buddhist" and the first 10 pages were about Vietnam.

Chris Mackey said...

I mean the first 10 results. I am currently in Asia though and I have a feeling Google gives you results based on your geographical location.

Chris Mackey said...

Also LOL...

"Opponent Of Cordoba House Is Building A Museum On Top Of A Muslim Cemetery In Jerusalem"

http://thinkprogress.org/2010/08/06/marvin-hier-museum/

Froggie said...

Jq,

Here is the original exchange:

ATVLC said...
So what do you want? The government to step in and tell people when, where and to who they can pray?

August 7, 2010 4:36 PM
Jquip said...
ATVLC: Rather it's when, where, and how. Which it already does for good or ill.

Zoning laws set aside land for different purposes. It had nothing to do with what I percieved the question to be about and specifically how the government, any US goverment, tells you when, or who to pray to.

If there is a zoning law that makes land residential and nothing else, no churches, for example, that means NO churches, probably also no stores or businesses, etc. That is not discrimination of religion in any way.

How does the government tell you when and who to pray to?

Froggie said...

Last sentence who- should be how.

JD Curtis said...

"How would Muslims in the Middle East react to the building of a Crusader House in the Holy Land, funded by the Vatican and built around a chapel dedicated to Pope Urban II?

Feisal Abdul Rauf, who is fronting for the project, says its purpose is healing, reconciliation, harmony. Taking him at his word, why would Imam Feisal ferociously persist when the mosque was clearly enraging the families of the fallen of 9/11 and dividing, not uniting, New York and the country.

Nor has Imam Feisal been transparent about where he will come up with the $100 million for Cordoba House, or who is behind this, or what is the need for a 13-story mosque and community center so near where the twin towers stood....

Nor has Imam Feisal been transparent about where he will come up with the $100 million for Cordoba House, or who is behind this, or what is the need for a 13-story mosque and community center so near where the twin towers stood.

As Claudia Rosett of Forbes has learned, Imam Feisal has been running the Cordoba Initiative, a charitable foundation whose total contributions over the five years ending in 2008 came to $100,000.

Yet he plans a 13-story mosque and community center that will, he says, employ 150 full-time and 500 part-time workers." Pat Buchanan

ATVLC said...

They are families of Sept 11 who are fine with the Park51 community center.
And let's not forget that there were Muslim victims of Sept 11.
What do you want done?

Jquip said...

chris: "I am currently in Asia though and I have a feeling Google gives you results based on your geographical location."

I believe it does. The Buddhist variation comes up with a host of current and closed suits over the issue on search from within the states. Love the link too, bud. Gracias.

Froggie: Go educate yourself. Particularly in regards the atheistic religion of Buddhism; they get a lot of guff on this particular issue.