President Obama got himself embroiled in another controversy over the weekend. He doesn’t seem capable of avoiding these flareups, another indication that what is really inside him keeps popping out. In this case, it was about the proposed Ground Zero Mosque.
Speaking at the White House before about 90 Muslims in a celebration of Ramadan [wait a minute, isn’t he the same president who skipped a prayer breakfast?], he made it quite clear he favored the building of the mosque. He couched it in terms of religious freedom—he even talked glowingly of America’s founding, albeit for this purpose only—and said that Muslims had every right to build a mosque wherever they wanted.
The thing is, no one is saying they don’t have just as much right as any other religious group to erect houses of worship. That is not the argument, although the thrust of his comments would make one believe it’s the crux of the problem. You know those suspicious Americans; they’re always restricting the freedom of religion of minorities. Actually, the real threat today is against the Christian majority, but that’s a subject for another time.
Amid the storm of criticism after his comments, he did what he usually does—claim that he didn’t really say what he said. Yes, they have the right, he explained, but he wasn’t going to judge the wisdom of the decision. Right.
Speaking of rights:
The imam primarily responsible for pushing the construction of this mosque is moderate only in the sense that he hasn’t flown any airplanes into buildings. He refuses to identify Hamas as a terrorist group and has argued that America brought 9/11 on itself by its foreign policy. Even if there might be a sliver of truth in the idea that we may have overstepped at times, how does that justify the murder of 3000 people?
Yet the president seems far more concerned, and always has, with the sensitivities of Muslims than the majority of his countrymen, 70% of whom oppose this mosque being built on this site.
Where common ground can be found, so much the better. But it needs to be based on America’s heritage of constitutional government, not sharia law. Muslims, if they want to be considered American citizens, have to show respect for the Christian foundations of our society. It was Christianity that put into our law that the government cannot tell you what to believe. It was Christianity that said individuals have to come to God freely, without government coercion. Is that the Muslim way? The evidence indicates otherwise.