Here is the sensational headline from Drudge on Thursday 8/19/2010:
SHOCK POLL: 1 OUT 4 THINK OBAMA MUSLIM
The link is to a Time Magazine poll:
Yet the survey also revealed that many Americans harbor lingering animosity toward Muslims. Twenty-eight percent of voters do not believe Muslims should be eligible to sit on the U.S. Supreme Court. Nearly one third of the country thinks adherents of Islam should be barred from running for President — slightly higher than the 24% who mistakenly believe that the current occupant of the Oval Office is himself a Muslim. In all, just 47% of respondents believe Obama is a Christian; 24% declined to respond to the question or said they were unsure, and 5% believe he is neither Christian nor Muslim.
For the record, I do not think Obama is a secret Muslim. Obama calls himself a Christian, which is good enough for me. As far as his belief structure, his actions suggest he is an adherent of the religion of modern leftism, which takes a Post-Modern approach to religion, ie religious belief is something that really enlightened people have transcended and those who still believe in the conventional versions of religion are to be pitied. However, why should anyone be surprised that a quarter of the country believes he is a Muslim? What do you suppose the percentage of Muslims who believe he is a Muslim might be? How would he behave differently if he were a Muslim?
If you don't want to spend the time to read and study on the international MSM biases, you could do worse than to spend a few minutes with Richard Landes at PJTV:
Watch and learn. Richard Landes was the first person to shine a light on Pallywood; shine on brightly!
All of this is related to the current barely acknowledged COFKATGWOT (the Conflict Formerly Known As The Global War On Terror) to use Walter Russell Mead's acronym. The enemy is occasionally referred to as the Religion of Peace at the same time they are responsible for 90% of all terrorist acts in the world. Here are some headlines, and brief commentary, from the world of the RoP:
Amid mounting international attention and concern for Pakistan's future in the face of the tragedy, US officials on Wednesday called on Islamabad to abjure politics and accept India's help, including an initial $ 5 million offer it has sat on saying it is under consideration, even as it is begging for international aid.
"I think the priority is to use offers of assistance to help the Pakistani people, so we would encourage Government of Pakistan to accept that (Indian) offer," Frank Ruggiero, Deputy Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan said on Wednesday. Separately, state department spokesman P J Crowley said, "In terms of responding to a disaster, politics should play no role. You have a country (India) that's willing to help (Pakistan), and...we expect that Pakistan will accept."
Their remarks came amid a rash of reports in the Pakistani media blaming India, principally, for the massive floods, purportedly because New Delhi had deliberately diverted waters from dams in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir, and from the ones it "controlled in Afghanistan”. Some reports also charged that US was manipulating weather patterns over Pakistan. US officials dismissed the idea with incredulity.
Let me get this straight: Your economy is a basket case and 20% of your country is under water. Not only do you refuse aid from your neighbors (a gesture that could potentially be leveraged for improving relations between the two of you) but you concoct crazy theories for how India and America are causing the floods that are bedeviling you. I am reminded of a very old joke, the punchline of which was, "So, how do you make a flood?"
Then there is this lovely item:
A terrorist who heroically murdered a teenage girl.
On June 11, 2002, a Palestinian suicide terrorist walked into a restaurant in the Tel Aviv suburb of Herzliya, and detonated a bomb that killed a girl, 15-year-old Hadar Hershkovitz, and injured 16 others.
You know the rest; there is now a town square in the Palestinian Territories named after the lovely human monster who perpetrated this horror. These people do not think like you and me.
Speaking of which, a Moderate Muslim interested in healing the rift between the RoP and his neighbors would not be planning a giant in-your-face example of Muslim Supremacy for downtown New York, but most Americans appreciate that already. Both John Podhoretz and Elizabeth Scalia have reinforced something I noted a couple of weeks ago. First there is John Podhoretz:
Why there's a space for the mosquefont
The real story of the Ground Zero mosque is that the project only became feasible because of the appalling and astonishing fecklessness of the officials who were charged with the reconstruction of the site and the neighborhood all the way back in 2001.
We're just three weeks shy of the moment, nine years ago, when the landing-gear assembly from the plane that hit the South Tower smashed through the roof and two floors of 45 Park Place, which housed a Burlington Coat Factory.
Imagine that, in the weeks following, you had expressed the opinion that in nine years' time, that building would sit abandoned only 560 feet from Ground Zero -- and there would be no memorial, no museum, no nothing on the 16 acres on which the towers themselves sat.
Forget the whole question of whether there would be a mosque (or Islamic cultural center) in its place. Just imagine that you'd delivered the view that New York would so completely fail to maintain a sense of purpose regarding the salvation of Ground Zero. Imagine the scorn to which you'd have been subjected at the suggestion.
Yet here we are. Memories of the last nine years have turned Ground Zero from a site of horror, to a reminder of grief, to an occasion for ludicrous artistic posturing -- and now to something very close to parody.
Lizzie captures the psychology of our post-9/11 failure:
In just a few weeks we will be observing the 9th anniversary of the deadliest attack ever to take place on American shores. We will stare solemnly at the gaping hole of Ground Zero, and the hole will stare back at us, until it becomes clear that we are the hole, and the hole is us – politically paralyzed into stagnation; broken, sad and empty.
The crater in Lower Manhattan has become a permanent aching void, but nature abhors a vacuum and so from its empty depths something must arise. In a near-decade that “something” could have taken the form of a park, or a memorial, or a glistening new tower, and the construction of a mosque two blocks thence would have been nothing more than a reinforcement of the notion of American Exceptionalism and what Madeline Albright called The Indispensable Nation, and the narrative would have been a stirring one:
“. . . brought to her knees, Can-Do America has rebuilt and moved on; a proposed mosque two blocks from the new construction only emphasizes her broad shoulders, her self-assurance, her commitment to liberty; it demonstrates to the world the strength that America draws from her own character and constitution, and from knowing who she is . . .
All of that would have been a psychological victory over the spectre of terrorism; it would loom large in the minds of the world and a mosque built in its shadows would only be a mosque, unremarkable in a nation dedicated to freedom of religion.
Read her whole post; it should move you and infuriate you. In the end this is not about Islam or a particular Mosque; it is about us.