Future generations will judge us harshly. Let’s hope they don’t judge us for the wrong things.
Even though it looks like all governmental bodies involved have cleared the way for construction of the Cultural Center/Mosque near the site of the 9/11 terror attack a growing segment of the general public is still very much engaged in stopping the project.
According to a Fox News report today, August 9, 2010, resistance to the construction of Mosques is growing nation wide. Right now there are approximately 1,200 Mosques in the United States and plans are under way to increase that number to 1,800 in the near term. The Fox News cameras showed clips of sizable protests all across the country as Americans become increasingly alarmed.
Naturally, critics are characterizing this opposition as “religious intolerance”. And if we can agree that Islam is a religion and not just an extremely large “cult”, there may be a point to be made along those lines. Other people’s religious beliefs along a whole spectrum often seem cult-like to an outside observer. From the burning bush to the Resurrection, from no meat on Friday to no meat at all, from full-dunk baptism to just a splash…Most in this country believe the bill for any theological errors will come due soon enough. In the meantime, why make each other miserable arguing here on earth?
But, tolerance is not something we see in Islam. Pick up a newspaper almost any day; Bali, Mumbai, Lockerbie, Fort Hood. Today it was reported that ten international medical aid workers were lined up and shot in remote Afghanistan. No amount of politically correct happy talk can smooth that over.
Americans share a healthy suspicion of the Islamic community for a host of reasons, not the least is the 9/11 Attack and the video images of the Muslim world celebrating, dancing in the streets following it. Seeing no discernable effort of the Muslim community to rid their own faith of violent fanatics, is it any wonder that the American public’s “radar” is turned on and loaded with fresh batteries? And while none of us would like to be thought of as intolerant there is a prudent need for caution with regards to the spread of a belief system that has both declared and shown itself hostile to other religions and to the West.
So, rather than go round in a circle on the question of tolerance, let’s get to the point. Here is what we want to happen:
One hundred years from now we want the American people to look back and say of us, “The early 21st Century was truly a dark time. Many American citizens were rather silly in those days. They viewed the Muslim religion with skepticism and outright suspicion. They even went so far as to hinder the construction of hundreds of much-needed Mosques and cultural centers. Yet, in the face of all this intolerance, the good Muslim people themselves cleansed their faith of dangerous fanatics, renounced the violence of their traditional justice system, embraced their new culture in the West and became a model of tolerance and understanding.” That’s what we want future generations to say.
What we don’t want future generations to say, especially historians writing centuries from now, is something like this:
“The political leadership in America was every bit as weak and frivolous as their enemies suspected. This leadership was unsure of the value of their own culture. Preferring to avoid controversy at all cost, they were willing to look the other way and distract themselves with trivial matters. Public concerns were swept aside while the country was re-populated by residents who were openly hostile to the basic tenants of their Constitutional government. Once a tipping point was reached, the Old American Republic was no more and mankind sank, as Winston Churchill stated in 1940,
“into the abyss of a new Dark Age made more sinister, and perhaps more protracted, by the lights of perverted science.”
That is what we don’t want future generations to say.