Thursday, August 5, 2010

Taking the Bait...

...of the pundits and sowers of discord. That's what lots of conservatives seem to be doing lately with this whole mosque "near" Ground Zero "controversy." I can't believe this is even an issue. Besides just the blatant bigotry of painting the Muslims with such a broad brush...from what I've seen, the proposed Islamic Center won't be visible from the site itself. In NYC...even a couple blocks can mean the difference between radically different neighborhoods, can have hundreds of thousands of people in that area.

There are all sorts of things within basically that same radius of Ground Zero, from churches to schools to blatantly consumerist stores to (I have
read) a store that sells pornography and sex toys and an off-track betting facility!! So much for not profaning the site or being tasteful. I'm frankly much more offended that there are banks, dens of usury, closer even than the proposed center.

But then, I suppose it is a typically American response to defiantly flaunt and celebrate the very sorts of decadence and economic exploitation that got us attacked in the first place while also continuing to alienate the very culture that dared to fight back against our debauched hegemony. Just keep poking that beehive, America. But don't come crying to me when you get stung again; "Go out from her, my people."

Seriously though, jumping on this one empty symbol in some identity-politics "clash of civilizations" narrative (that really only benefits the fat cats and their politician lap dogs) is just so childish. I can't believe how many adults have descended to investing any emotion or thought into it whatsoever. This is like the Swiss banning minarets; it's just terrifying that we've reached this point. There were Muslim victims of 9/11 too! So I have to agree with the
rabbis who protested today in favor of the Cordoba Center.

Everyone else is just using the issue to score political points. Stop fighting these ridiculous proxy battles! It's like politics is just some reality game-show now, and people just root for their favorite (but basically arbitrary) team, like some sort of elaborate version of sophistic high school debate. Which is exactly the sort of complacency I think the moneyed powers-that-be want you all to have. Don't fall for it!

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