The purpose of this column is to make the reader aware of current events in politics and media and to explain the facts from both sides to get a real picture of the argument instead of having message skewed through mainstream media. This is one man trying to relate to college students the hot issues of the world so as to make the information for accessible. The column will present an opinion but will do the it’s best to only use opinions supported by lines of evidence.
Patrick Olds, Opinions Editor
– Opinions Editor –
An argument consisting of asking questions of Islam is too large for a column but the last writing of this series failed to achieve an important point, the actual reason to oppose a mosque at the site of Ground Zero. The common theme among the major news outlets is one of tolerance and bigotry among the opposition, which is far from the reality.
There was an explosion of irony this past week that erupted after a minister by the name of Terry Jones in Fla. proposed the burning of many Korans. This was in response to the imam, Feisal Abdul Rauf unwillingness to move the location of the mosque away from Ground Zero. Leaders from Gen. Petraeus to President Obama to former Alaskan Gov. Sarah Palin weighed in on the topic. There wasn’t much support for this minister’s proposition even though it too is a free speech issue.
The reality of the situation was that people with common sense realized it was a terrible idea to have a public burning of a text that a large population of the world and more specifically Afghanistan, hold sacred. We are in the middle of a war that most of the goal is to attain the hearts and minds of the Afghan people. It would make our soldiers’ lives more difficult, but Mr. Jones had every right to do such a thing.
The opposition to it should have been as strong as the one opposed to the mosque but it was stronger. Hypocrisy lives in the mainstream media that covered these two stories with great detail. This is by the simple way it was covered, multiple news agencies vowed not to publicize the burning even though it was news because they saw the national concern. The media, in my opinion, was correct.
They used discretion and realized, even though constitutional, it was not a good idea.
The mosque falls into the same lap of discretion. Use what is appropriate. The media portrayed the opposition to the mosque and ignorant bigots when, in fact, they used the same common sense such as not publicizing an event that would do harm for our troops overseas.
As for supporters, they will tell you that there is a Jewish synagogue at Auschwitz, which very appropriately can and should be there. What the supporters fail to acknowledge is that, as Washington Post columnist Charles Krauthammer points out, Pope John Paul II removed a Carmelite nun convent from close to the site of Auschwitz. The answer is sensitivity and understanding. Hitler was Catholic for part of his life and the Pope decided it would just be a better idea to have the convent someplace else.
The opposition will also point out that 9/11 was perpetrated by a select few “crazies” that just so happened to be Muslim. According to Dalia Mogahed of Gallup polling, approximately seven percent of the world’s Muslim population prescribes to radical Islam. Considering the population of Muslims in the world, seven percent is pretty big. The Muslim population of the world is over a half-billion people.
At times it’s truly difficult to fathom the enemy we face as a country. Almost nine years since the Twin Towers were destroyed due to intense and steadfast enemies; we were struck at the heart. Now New York City and the rest of the United States are expected to take this “no sensitivity” appeal sitting down. If you believe in anything, believe in the power of that hallowed ground that brought the entire country together, at least for a time. This site should not be tarnished with insensitivity.