The Insanity of Islamophobia


Pat Robertson, who has said he supports the decriminalization of  marijuana must have decided to take a drag from a joint which caused him to come up with this latest proclamation.  Notice how, with just the mere accusation Robertson’s media machine has maligned Muslims, the Muslim Brotherhood, Quick (a fast food restaurant in France), Campbells, McDonalds, Walmart, and Whole Foods among others because they offer  customers choices; menus are not being changed, things aren’t being prohibited today that were offered in days gone by, in fact beer which is on Quick’s menu in France is still available for those who drink.  Rather, a method of slaughtering meat employed on some of the meat used used for some of the food choices by these companies  is upsetting to the Islamophobes like Robertson and Pamela Gellar who talk about the fear of Islamic law taking over Europe and ostensibly America, merely because consumers are offered choices.  Usually that’s considered good business, but to racists like Robertson, et.al that’s cause to incite and inflame passions against a religious belief.  Such a jump can only be attributed to drugs and while we haven’t seen Gellar or Robertson taking them, or rather there are no pictures of them doing so, we can only assume because of their stance concerning the criminalization of drugs that drug use is  what’s  caused them to come to such far flung conclusions.

Unfortunately, we don’t know what has caused Frank Gaffney to such delirium as his latest insanity regarding a conservative PAC. Gaffney seems to think the nefarious Muslim Brotherhood has taken over the Conservative Political Action Conference, because…..are you ready for this……..there is a Muslim member, Suhail Khan a GWBush ex-staffer who represents a group, Muslims FOR America. (Look at the mindlessness of Gaffney’s opposition, decrying the participation of a group of Americans in the political process who are FOR America)  The whole goal of Gaffney, Robertson, Gellar and all the rest is to marginalize the participation of Muslims in the political process of America even when there is absolutely nothing objectionable to the aims of that participation unless such groups are under their control. In other words they want to make enemies where there aren’t any, by making their involvement illegal, and they want to instigate  bystanders in the political process into such a frenzy and hatred in order for them to accomplish this goal.   In even simpler terms, if you don’t do what they say, or agree with their program they won’t like you and threaten to do everything to make you illegal, the textbook definition of fascism.

Nothing more clearly demonstrates the mindless, racist intent of people like Gaffney and Robertson than their own senseless rants regarding people who are different than they are.  The kind of talk regarding Muslims and Islam by the likes of the Islamophobes would not be tolerated if it were applied to any other group either in the borders of America or outside of it.  Spurred by the equally insipid distribution of lies and innuendo of today’s media outlets and you have the makings of a propaganda machine that surpasses  the wildest dreams of the most fanatical government. These are troubling times.

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Terrorism


The unlawful use of force or violence against persons or property in order to coerce or intimidate a government or the civilian population in furtherance of political or social objectives.

Since the September 11th Attacks on the United States in 2001, which resulted in the destruction of the World Trade Center in New York City and severe damage to the Pentagon in Washington, D.C., the United States has changed its priorities to focus upon eradicating terrorism in the world. Terrorism involves the systematic use of terror or violence to achieve political goals. The targets of terrorism include government officials, identified individuals or groups, and innocent bystanders. In most cases terrorists seek to overthrow or destabilize an existing political regime, but totalitarian and dictatorial governments also use terror to maintain their power.

 

As clear and distinct as this definition is, it cannot but include the Israeli government as a dictatorial government that uses terrorism to maintain power, as this article in RawStory suggests.  In spite of a newly signed peace agreement with Egypt, in 1979 Israel was intimating that it would use nuclear weapons against its neighbors because somehow it feared for its existence.  We know now that was a crock….Israel then as now, has no more to fear from its neighbors than the man in the moon.  In fact, since 1973 all of Israel’s wars have been wars of aggression and expansion, not self-defense.  One could argue they have been the precursor to America’s aggression in the Mid East…a kind of good cop, bad cop play on empire and subjugation of the Middle East.

In 1980, British officials were concerned that Israel could be heading for a new conflict, despite signing a peace treaty with Egypt the year before, according to official papers released from the National Archives after being kept secret for 30 years.

“The situation in the region is deteriorating and with it Israel’s dangerous mood of isolation and defiance will grow,” warned a cable from the British embassy in Tel Aviv, dated May 4.

What Israel served to do with this threat to use nuclear weapons was to get governments to support her in her continued suppression of Palestinian statehood, in other words to achieve the political objective of denial of human rights to her Palestinian neighbors as well as forge political hegemony in the area.  Let’s not forget existential threats to Israel are no more than  political dissent that are the basis for a mature political entity, not a threatening  bullying one like Israel, which usually contribute to the improvement of the social fabric, not its elimination.  Very few but the extreme of the extreme, (and who could that be?) would dare suggest Israel not exist, but what everyone of conscience and morality should insist upon is that Israel honor the territorial integrity of its neighbors, not interfere with Palestinian statehood, cease its racist policies towards non-Jews within its borders and honor international treaties against the proliferation of nuclear weapons.  That’s the kind of discourse that countries can conduct on the world’s stage in a mature, socially and internationally acceptable manner.  Not so with the Israeli interpretation of dissent.  In its case dissent is not tolerated except from within and only within limits defined by the government.  That is called fascism.

Holiday Spirit


Fox News channel store in the airport

Image by ario_ via Flickr

Bill O’Reilly and his minions at FoxNews want Muslims to “refudiate” terrorism, and absent that they are to be suspect.  O’Reilly et.al also waged a very public campaign to out those who didn’t share the “Christmas” spirit in the same way as he did, saying absent their vociferous bellowing of “Merry Christmas” they were surreptitiously sabotaging Christmas.

Muslims on the other hand were taking a much more pro-active stance about the holidays….something you can read and see here.

Early Christmas morning, hundreds of Muslim-Americans turned out to help their Christian friends by doing the volunteer work that they would normally do. Muslims say this is a way to allow Christians to celebrate the Holiday by stepping in to provide meals to seniors and distributing toys to needy children……

Once again putting a lie to the myth generated by the pundits who are on the payroll of today’s racists/fascists media whores. Oh and speaking of myths, did you hear the one about the Justin Bieber endorsement of the Ground Zero/Park51 mosque that really wasn’t an endorsement at all??  The Islamophobes, who constantly prove themselves to be the worse America has to offer, were tricked again into showing their racist colors by falling for another satirical website that claimed Bieber said something about Park51 that he really didn’t say.  Why don’t these people just admit they have nothing but their own animus which drives them towards insanity and stop hanging excuses on things that really don’t exist?!?!

Mosque foes recently started a boycott of Bieber after he made comments in support of the mosque project in an interview with Tiger Beat, a teen fan magazine….

I was able to reach the proprietor of the site, who confirmed that the Bieber item is in fact a hoax. “[T]he fact that some people take it seriously is hilariously depressing,” he said in an e-mail.

 

Depressing indeed, and par for the course.  America, wake up.

 

GOP=Government Oppressive Prosecution



The GOP is the next thing to America’s march on towards a Gestapo.  Inspite of the fact talking heads like to tie the GOP to the Lincoln administration of the 19th century, it more closely resembles the McCarthyism of the 20th century in its approach to citizenship and social issues.  Nothing more clearly underscores that fact than this story.  Peter King, republican from New York,  is a demagogue from way back; you can read about some of his more fascist thoughts here and here.  He’s a throwback to his American predecessors, Joe McCarthy, George Wallace, and my favorite Jesse Helms and takes America back to a time when it was asked to fight in a war abroad against Germans who said and did the same kind of things King wants to do.  Notice how he even wants to break the Constitution to do it, i.e. establish a state religion and officially denigrate or delegitimize another.  Moreover, what’s this constant raising and lowering the bar that Islamophobes do?  Since when did good citizenship mean being a spy on your fellow congregants at your house of worship?  Does government demand all Catholics turn in abusive priests to the feds, or that Jewish worshipers turn in any junk bond dealer or swindler who might be robbing pension funds dry and that doing less than that means they should come under the scrutiny of the federal government, and it’s not that Muslims haven’t responded to calls for good citizenship.  The latest bomber exposed by the FBI on the west coast was first turned in to law officials by his own father….and he was ignored.  The 2009 Christmas bomber too was turned in by his dad…to no avail.  It seems scoring points only happens when the authorities play the game and not when citizens participate.  But what it does do is insure King will  be re-elected in two years from now when people will be demanding to hold the GOP responsible for the continuing economic fiasco to result due to their policies which began with the tax cut extension.

America tends to elect people who are not the least bit concerned with her interests, but only their own.  King, Gingrich, Palin, McConnell, Boehner, Cantor, et.al are all opportunists who are willing to sacrifice the good of the country to their own priorities of personal fortune and ego.  We elect them every year and this past election cycle ended with them increasing their wealth, through tax cuts and pitting the federal government against a religious minority which has until now been a peaceful and cooperative partner in good citizenship.  We get what we deserve.

Pro Libertate: Fallujah, U.S.A.


Police brutality at your door step
Vodpod videos no longer available.

Please see Will Griggs thorough, impassioned, precise and complete article on this “atrocity”  at  Pro Libertate: Fallujah, U.S.A.
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Islamophobe of the Week


The entire cast at FoxNews, or rather the Republican Television Network, can win this award because of the constant racist rhetoric they are allowed to get away with over the American airwaves.  Bill O’Reilly was owned by Whoppie Goldberg and Joy Behar who walked out on him during his appearance on their show, The View.  That confrontation appears below

 

There’s so much wrong with what he said on so many levels…..did anyone catch his dig to Behar about learning something from him….that’s after he told her to shut up.  Classy guy, eh? So O’Reilly, a Fox employee was clear why the two hosts walked out and the very next day………

Brian Kilmead, another Fox employee makes the following statement, ‘Not every Muslim is an extremist, a terrorist, but every terrorist is a Muslim…..You can’t avoid that fact. And that is ridiculous that we got to keep defining this — the people that equate Timothy McVeigh with the Al Qaeda terrorist organization, which is growing and a threat that exists.”  Of course this remark was an explicit approval of O’Reilly’s comments made on The View a day before and there we have two Fox employees engaging in racist commentary on a national platform.  I had this to say in the comments section here

The double standard is in your face…I mean Sanchez gone, Octavia Nasir gone, Helen Thomas gone. None of them were given a chance to clarify their statements which were far more harmless and not pejorative as this Fox guy’s. In his one idiotic statement, ‘Not every Muslim is an extremist, a terrorist, but every terrorist is a Muslim’ substitute any other ethnic group and tell me he would survive one hour after going off the air. Let’s see, ‘not every Jew is a terrorist but every extremist, terrorist is a Jew’…or how about ‘not every African-American is a murderer/rapist but every murderer is black’. Or how about ‘not every blond woman is dumb, but every dumb woman is a blond’ or not every Polack is stupid but every stupid person is a Polack… I mean this is like looking at or hearing an episode of Archie Bunker’s Place all over again. That Kilmead moron makes his comments because he can get away with it; his bosses let him, maybe even encourage him because it’s good for ratings and perhaps even revenue and that’s the history of our country. Whatever sells works, despite evidence to the contrary. So 94% of terrorism committed from 1980 to 2005 according to the FBI, not Fox, was done by other than Muslims gets spun into 100% with a stroke on the keyboard because those people committing 94% of terrorism resemble the folks who make the decisions at FoxNews. Amazing how that works, isn’t it?

Brian Kilmead, one of  your racist Islamophobes on the Fox channel.  Do we really want an America where we are all at one another’s throats because of the lies of people in the media.  For an excellent analysis of who’s doing what in the world of terrorism, run over to the thread here.  It’s very revealing about who is and isn’t a terrorist in the real world.

 

Do We Believe in our Principles or not?


The author of the piece excerpted below asks this and three other pertinent questions related to the debate taking place in America regarding freedom of religion especially as it applies to Muslim Americans.  The answer to this first question is conditional, based on what is described below

I got home from vacation late on Friday night and was soon asked to join in the fracas around the planned Cordoba House two blocks from Ground Zero. In less than 36 hours after getting back to Washington, I was walking into the Fox News studio on Sunday morning. Welcome home.They asked about a letter that I had just signed supporting religious freedom for Muslims. I said we should ask three simple questions:

  1. Should we as Americans be able to worship and pray when and where we choose? Haven’t we fought for that?
  2. Are American Muslims … Americans?
  3. And, for those of us who are Christians (and I am an Evangelical Christian), are we obeying the commands of Jesus to love our neighbors? Aren’t Muslims our neighbors? So what might Jesus say to this controversy?

There was a brief silence from the Fox and Friends anchors. OK, they said, but what about “sensitivity” to the families that lost loved ones in 9/11? Well, I said, 59 Muslims also died on 9/11 because of a vile, cowardly, and criminal attack by al Qaeda. Does it honor them, or their families, by somehow connecting all American Muslims to that horrible attack?

Well, thank you for joining us today Reverend, they said. Thank you, I said, but how we handle this is very important–to what it means to be Americans or what it means to be Christians.

I was ready to talk about my friends Imam Feisal Rauf and his wife, Daisy Khan, who are among the leaders of the vision to build a new community center committed to peace, interfaith dialogue, reconciliation, and bridge-building. I know them both and can testify to their long record on denouncing terrorism in the name of their religion and their consistent work for peace. Until very recently, Daisy says her main concern about the new interfaith center was whether there would be enough stroller space. Daisy called me Sunday to describe how their lives have been turned upside down. If Ground Zero is the “gaping wound” my Fox and Friends anchors described, what could be more helpful than a religious center dedicated to healing?

That morning, as I watched continued coverage, I was disappointed to hear the low level that discourse has dropped to.  The politicians who spoke to it sounded more like the people leaving nasty and false comments on YouTube videos than anyone deserving of public office. Well, it is the election season again.

This guilt-by-association “sensitivity” argument is very dangerous stuff. Millions of American Muslims are not responsible for the heinous crime of 9/11. And an imam’s desire to heal and build bridges should be a welcome thing. Exactly how far away from what places should Muslims be able to pray in America? Is there a measurement requirement that is emerging from all the other places in the country now where mosques are also being opposed?

Fundamentalism doesn’t only exist in Islam. The things someone like Pat Robertson or Jerry Falwell have said certainly are an embarrassment to other Christians — remember Robertson’s assertion that 9/11 was the judgment of God on America because of liberalism and feminism. So how about preventing fundamentalist churches that like Robertson from worshiping within 3 blocks of Ground Zero because of “sensitivity”?

How we handle this one will affect our future as a nation. Do we believe in our principles or not? Do we believe Muslims are also Americans or not? Are we an inclusive and pluralistic nation, or not?

Perhaps FoxNews that Rev. Wallis dealt with  was the network Obama was referring that is pervasive with its innuendo driven coverage of his faith?  In many people’s minds, the answer to the last two questions is a resounding no!