A letter from today's Dem-Gaz:
The Obama administration has sent Imam Feisal Rauf, at taxpayer expense, on a third trip to the Middle East to “promote religious tolerance.” This is the imam who proposes to build a community center and mosque near Ground Zero in New York.
Perhaps we should send a rabbi, a priest and a preacher to the Middle East to promote religious tolerance. Perhaps we should propose building a community center in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, where people could become acquainted with Judaism, Christianity and other major religions.
We should establish an ecumenical publishing house that would print literature in Arabic for all of the world’s major and minor religions. After all, we are only trying to promote religious tolerance.
Perhaps we should apply for building permits to place several structures opposite the Grand Mosque in Mecca. I suggest a Baptist church, a Jewish synagogue, a Jehovah’s Witness kingdom hall, a Mormon temple and Catholic and Greek Orthodox churches.
If you think some Americans are upset with the proposed mosque near Ground Zero, propose any of these projects and see how the “tolerant” Muslims respond. Sharia law forbids any religion except Islam to exist in a Muslim country. How’s that for peaceful acceptance and tolerance? Can you pronounce hypocrisy?
Yes I can pronuonce hypocrisy but I can also recongize some differences between what Imam Feisal Rauf wants to do and what you are proposing Mr. Williams.
For one thing, Rauf is a U.S. citizen. So that basically screws your comparison immediately. This isn't some foreigner trying to build some sinister Muslim brainwashing camp. The man is an American with all the freedoms that holds. Is he getting donations from Muslim countries? I'm sure he is, but haven't American citizens also sent funding to support missionaries of other faiths in Muslim countries? As Sarah Palin says, "You betcha!"
Of course I know that it's harder for missionaries in Muslim countries than for Muslims trying to spread their faith here in the U.S., but are you really trying to tell me that the religious restrictions and regulations that Muslim nations have in place are something we should emulate over here? That seems to be, while not explicitly stated, somewhat implied by your letter.
The argument that Mr. Williams makes is one I've been hearing a lot, but these all neglect one key fact: this is a U.S. citizen trying to build a religious space. The fact that many Muslims are Americans can't be stated enough, as well as the fact that Muslims perished in the WTC in the face of evil along with Christians.
Also to do with the "Ground Zero Mosque", Ron Paul has spoken out and he's as ideologically as consistent as ever, God bless him: http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20100820005843/en/Ron-Paul-Left-Demagogue-Mosque-Islam