Prior commentary in this space castigated, in the strongest possible terms, the insanity of the proposed Quran burning in Gainesville Florida as a remembrance of 9/11. The predicted reaction in the Muslim world has, unfortunately, been borne out. We are judged by the Muslim world (this week) based on a small group in Gainesville. The Muslim world complains that we judge them based on a small group of terrorists. Contradiction?
Stupidity and willful blindness invariably leads to a dark corner of contradictions where logic breaks down and the safe harbors of mindless ideology and name calling is the remaining intellectual ammunition. True believers of all bents swat away the all too frequent contradictions with excuses, charges of an “ism” and an arrogant smirk that says “If you had a brain in your head you’d be over here with us, you know, where the: “smart” people are”, or where the “faithful” people are or where the “patriots” are, etc.
Narrow vision and exclusion of intellectual engagement seems to always fall back on the safe harbor of “we versus the “other” whoever the “other” may be. Logic falls prey to that mindset. It’s not that there are not any actual “others” it’s a question of how we arrive at the opinion and is it rational?
We now have a fresh, yet predictable, contradiction in the context of the N.Y.C. Mega Mosque. The Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC), a group of 56 Muslim nations led by Saudi Arabia and headquartered in Jeddah, has called for U.S. government intervention in Gainesville to stop the Quran burning. The OIC hopes the government will “take appropriate steps to protect the sacred religious sentiments of Muslims of America and of the Muslims across the world.”
The OIC does not; however, appear convinced that American sentiments related to the Ground Zero Mosque maintains equal relevance. That’s just Islamophobia, and it’s a right; wait, wait, give me a minute, there must be an “ism” in here somewhere.
The OIC has some experience funding mosques including a $17 Million mosque in N.Y.C. and a Muslims only apartment building. The OIC also represents some of the most repressive regimes on earth who, in many cases, will not allow as much as a footstep by a non Muslim on “sacred” lands. Religious freedoms and “rights” have, in the main, little to no place amongst the OIC constituency, at least not by our definitions. Yet, the OIC has no problem identifying those “rights” in the United States and recommending government action to insure them. Contradiction?
The OIC is vehemently opposed to anyone outside of the Muslim world so much as making a suggestion as to how the Muslim world should conduct itself. The “others” from the Muslim view have no standing based on variant cultures and belief systems. Political chauvinism of the first order; the political is governed by the religious and the religious tolerates no criticism. It is, of course, not a problem for the OIC to recommend American policy or actions related to Gainesville as long as there is no expectation of reciprocal considerations in the Muslim world. Contradiction?
The folks in opposition to the Ground Zero mosque are not demanding government intervention or “protection”. They are taking to the streets, the op-eds, the blogs and they’re talking to their neighbors. Opponents don’t deny the right to build the mosque, but question the sensitivity and wisdom of it; exactly like the OIC does in regard to “religious sentiments”.
Those troubled folks in Gainesville have the right to burn those Qurans assuming they insist on a path of comprehensive idiocy. It’s not right, it’s not smart, it’s not productive; but the right to do so is unequivocal and the government should have nothing to do with it other than to condemn it publically, as should we all.
The OIC has a right to their opinion too, no matter how inconsistent, artificial and conflicted it may be. We, on the other hand, have the right to choose between conflicting visions. We must also assume the responsibility to look beyond the surface for motives, intentions and yes, contradictions.
Thomas Sowell put it well; “The question is whether those who are planning a Ground Zero mosque want to be part of American society or just to see how much they can get away with in American society?” Evidence for the later is not insignificant.
You are exposed by the contradictions you engender!