241 Comments

What Do You Think of a Mosque at Ground Zero?

I was driving to work this morning and saw a billboard titled “Remember 9/11” with an image of the collapsed World Trade Center.  In smaller print on the right, it said “”Stand up and be heard.  No mosque at ground zero.”  You can see the sign on a video at this website.

A few weeks ago on KSL, Carole Mikita interviewed a Muslim leader here in Utah.  She asked him what he thought of this idea to build a mosque near Ground Zero.  He said he thought it was a terrible idea.  He said they can build a mosque in many places, and thought it was quite insensitive for these Muslims to incite a controversy there.

As a Mormon, we have had plenty of problems with protests about churches or temples being built.  The Boston Temple was prohibited from building a steeple for quite some time because the steeple was considered too tall.  (It was eventually constructed, but the church was forced to reduce the size of the steeple.)  Many groups have protested the buildings of new temples for a variety of reasons.  My sister lives in Colorado, and 2 Mormon churches sit side by side because the owner of a subdivision refused to allow any churches to be zoned in a particularly large subdivision.  (As I recall, the owner was either a tobacco or alcohol owner that wanted to make sure no Mormon churches were built in the subdivision–so he excluded all churches.  How is this legal?)

I appreciate this Muslim leader’s pragmatism.  I too wonder why Muslims in New York aren’t more sensitive to the issue.  On the other hand, I don’t understand how any Mormon can support a ban on religious construction, given that we have had so many problems with constructing churches or temples.  As a matter of principle, I can’t see how it is constitutional to support a ban on a Muslim mosque anywhere.  What are your thoughts?

Edit on 10/3/2010

I thought it would be interesting to show photos of 2 Muslim women supporting this project.  Daisy Khan and her husband are trying to build at the controversial site.  Azar Nafisi escaped Iran’s regime, and wrote a controversial book.

I know looks can be deceiving, but I think these are the kinds of Muslims we should support.  From their speech, I could tell they want the same principles I want.  I think it is a mistake to characterize all Muslims as violent.    They were articulate Americans, and deserve the same rights you and I have.  I am more in favor of the mosque than I was earlier.  If we turn these moderate Muslims down, we further antagonize the Jihadists.  These are the people we should support.  If we can’t support these people, we hurt ourselves.

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241 comments on “What Do You Think of a Mosque at Ground Zero?

  1. MH – I never said Sharia Law caused mistreatment of women everywhere, but the list is much larger than you are portraying. There are countries where Sharia Law applies to everyone (with political exceptions) and other countries where Sharia Law only applies to Muslims. Malaysia is like this. It is predominantly Muslim and most women wear full burqas. I have been there several times and have friends that live there. I have been in cars that have been stopped and checked for car bombs near hotels where Americans stay. That is one place that I did feel very uneasy.
    This stuff is simply not as black and white as it is being pictured here.

  2. Tara, are you making a distinction between the citizens and government of Iran?

  3. MH,
    With one exception (sort of), all of the examples I gave you are sentences imposed by the Iranian regime and/or its courts. The Fatwa against Rushdie is debatable since it seems the current regime has “officially” nixed it. However, unofficially, maybe not.

  4. MH:

    re #199 (49 on previous page)

    This is as I expected. I know also a number of people who came West from Iran.

    Bear in mind that by the time a government can rig elections, it’s already too late. Candidates were only chosen from a list that had to be approved by the Council of Guardians to begin with. Anything we’d recognize as pro-Western moderates were eliminated from power decades ago.

  5. But if it is more like Iranian or Turkish or New Afghan law (we’ll see if their constitution holds after the US leaves), then I am not so concerned.

    You aren’t concerned about a theocracy being imposed on the US? You wouldn’t want a Mormon theocracy, but you aren’t concerned about a Muslim theocracy? How does that make any sense?

  6. This is America. Freedom of religion is one of the inalienable rights. Islam did not destroy the WTC . . . fanatics did, in similar fashion to all fanatical followers of any sect be it Christian, Muslim, Jew, Hindu and so forth.

    We must always practice tolerance. All religions are beautiful in essence.

  7. Tara,

    We just simply are not willing to give complete trust to any Muslim or group of Muslims who want to do something that seems very insensitive (building a mosque in the name of outreach?),

    As this is the only one of your reasons that has anything to do with location, it’s the only one we should even discuss. In regards to location, where one gets funding from matters not. What one says about the US and whether the US deserved 9/11 matters not in terms of location. The only one that has any meaning is “sensitivity” due to someone’s feelings hurt by the location of this cultural center. As you say, you don’t want to preclude Muslims from building their own buildings wherever they want…just not there. So we get right back to it. The core problem I have with your argument, and Firetag’s and Bishop Rick’s, and all those who agree with you. Your main problem for having this cultural center in this location is that you blame all of Islam for the attack. Thus a moderate group wanting to build something that may attempt to bridge the divide, you’d rather them not even attempt it because you fear the whole religion, guilt by association. Can you see why I consider such a position bigoted, ignorant, and ultimately based on fear?

    Another concern is the message that this sends to terrorists throughout the world, regardless of if the builders are radicals or moderates, because it will not matter to terrorists. Will the mosque be viewed as a victory mosque? Will this send and emboldening message to the terrorists? From what we understand, it will.

    Can you offer evidence of this claim? Because I have heard exactly the opposite. If Muslims are allowed to build a cultural center that decries the use of terrorism, how exactly will that embolden terrorists? This argument makes no sense.

    We are not conquerors. We are not out to impose our will on the world

    yeah, actually we are. Don’t even deny saying otherwise. We are definitely conquerors.

    While there may not be an outright effort to impose it on us, since such a tactic would no doubt fail, we can be sure that there will be an effort to impose it little by little, in seemingly innocuous ways, all in the name of religious tolerance and freedom. There’s a good chance we won’t even realize what is being done until it’s too late.

    That’s just utterly ridiculous.

    That is one of Satan’s most powerful approaches. If he can’t get us to do what he wants all at once, he gets us to do what he wants little by little, like with the flaxen cord, until we wake up to realize what has happened and those fine little cords have joined together to create an unbreakable rope.

    So Islam is a Satanic religion?

  8. @dennis dugan
    Islam did not destroy the WTC . . . fanatics did, in similar fashion to all fanatical followers of any sect be it Christian, Muslim, Jew, Hindu and so forth.

    Why is this always used as an excuse? There is no excuse. Not for any of these groups. It’s a pathetic attempt at deflection, like we’re supposed to say, “Oh, okay, well since everyone else did it, then we just need to shut up and accept it.”

  9. tara, it seems to me you are reading my comments with fear and emotion, rather than intellect. I do not want an islamic theocracy or mormon theocracy. I never said I did, and I am baffled where you came up with such a notion.

  10. @Dan
    As this is the only one of your reasons that has anything to do with location, it’s the only one we should even discuss.

    Why is it that nothing else matters? Why does funding not matter, since if it were funded by terrorist organizations or countries which sponsor terrorism, then it should be of much concern. That should certainly put into question Rauf’s moderate credentials. Why shouldn’t Rauf’s statements in opposition to the US matter? That could also be reason to question his moderate credentials. If there is substantial evidence to doubt Rauf’s credentials, then it could go to prove that the purpose of the project is not what it is being sold as. How could it be?

    Your main problem for having this cultural center in this location is that you blame all of Islam for the attack.

    That just isn’t true. I’ve stated repeatedly that I do not blame all of Islam for the attacks against this country or others. I blame terrorists who have attacked this country in the name of Islam. And there are no doubt Muslims in this country who masquerade as moderates to deceive us as they try to gain an advantage and try to do us more harm. Islam as a religion is not to blame. Peaceful Muslims are not to blame. Lying, conniving, terrorist Islamists are to blame.

    Thus a moderate group wanting to build something that may attempt to bridge the divide, you’d rather them not even attempt it because you fear the whole religion, guilt by association.

    I don’t trust that these are moderates. Nor do I believe that this will bridge any divide whatsoever, even if they are moderates. The location of this mosque will in no way build bridges any more than any other mosque in this country. The fact of its location will do nothing to help that cause. In fact, it will probably build more bridges elsewhere if that’s it true intent.

    Can you offer evidence of this claim? Because I have heard exactly the opposite. If Muslims are allowed to build a cultural center that decries the use of terrorism, how exactly will that embolden terrorists?

    First of all, Hamas endorses the mosque. That a terrorist organization supports a mosque that is supposed to be moderate should say something right there. It makes no sense that a moderate mosque, the stated goal of which is to strengthen the bond between Muslims and non-Muslims, thus weakening the seeds of terrorism, would in any way be endorsed by terrorists. Islamic expert Tawfik Hamid says: “Many Islamists believe that this is a sign of victory for Islam, a triumph over America. It’s a symbol of victory for Islam over the values of America.” Hamid is well acquainted with the threats from radical Islam — he was once a member of a terrorist Islamic organization along with Ayman Al-Zawahiri, who later became the second in command of al-Qaida.

    Also, from Human Events: Mayor Bloomberg, who has no interest in finding out whether Saudi money is funding the project, says that to prohibit the mosque’s construction would “betray our values and play into our enemies’ hands.” “In fact,” he said, “to cave to popular sentiment would be to hand a victory to the terrorists, and we should not stand for that.”

    The opposite is true. The Ground Zero mosque would hand the terrorists a great symbolic victory. Symbolism is very important to our enemies. It’s the reason why on 9/11 they targeted the symbols of American strength— the Twin Towers, the U.S. Capitol and the Pentagon.

    The 9/11 attacks sent a message to radical Islamists across the globe that the “Great Satan” was vulnerable and could be crippled. The Ground Zero Mosque would be viewed by jihadists as a monument to their “triumph” on that hellish day.

    It would also be a giant emblem of America’s unwillingness to come to terms with the nature of the Islamist threat we continue to face. It would thus embolden America’s enemies and put more American lives at risk.

    Another thing to consider is the fact that these so-called moderates are imitating what radical Muslims would do, by building a victory mosque. If they were truly moderates, it seems that they would not try to mirror the enemies of those they call their friends.

    I doubt that will be evidence enough for you, but I’ve tried at least.

    yeah, actually we are. Don’t even deny saying otherwise. We are definitely conquerors.

    Lest you misunderstand what I am saying, it is not to say that we don’t win wars. It is merely to say that we don’t go out seeking to conquer lands for ourselves or to bring nations under our power. I don’t consider liberating nations as conquering them either. If you want to dispute that, then do. My point is merely to say that we do not see things as the terrorists or other power-hungry nations see things, because our goals are not theirs.

    That’s just utterly ridiculous.

    What is ridiculous about a slow move toward Sharia law? It is being done in other countries, little by little. Sharia courts can be found in Canada and Australia, and throughout Europe, Sharia law is being upheld at some level.

    So Islam is a Satanic religion?

    I did not say that. But I believe that terrorists are doing Satan’s work, and so the two parallel nicely.

  11. @mh
    tara, it seems to me you are reading my comments with fear and emotion, rather than intellect. I do not want an islamic theocracy or mormon theocracy. I never said I did, and I am baffled where you came up with such a notion.

    That isn’t what I’m trying to do. You said you are not concerned about Sharia law if it is similar to Iran or Turkey. I just don’t see how you don’t view an imposition of sharia law as an imposition of a theocracy. How can it not be? You continue to make this statement about not being concerned about sharia law if it is this or that, but what does that really mean in practical terms to you? Sharia law is sharia law. It might be possible for it to be compatible with democracy, but it is still separate and has to be executed separately and then you have people living under different law, or else everyone is governed by the same law which would equate to a theocracy. Maybe I’m missing something here, but that’s how I see it.

  12. Tara,

    Why is it that nothing else matters? Why does funding not matter, since if it were funded by terrorist organizations or countries which sponsor terrorism, then it should be of much concern

    In context of location of said cultural center, whether or not funding is suspect doesn’t matter. If funding is suspect, no location would be good, right? It wouldn’t matter how close to a “sensitive” location they were, right? If they have close ties to terrorists, location wouldn’t matter, right? We wouldn’t want them to build any cultural center anywhere if they were close to terrorists, right? Thus, in the context of location, only reasons associated with that location matter.

    I don’t trust that these are moderates. Nor do I believe that this will bridge any divide whatsoever, even if they are moderates. The location of this mosque will in no way build bridges any more than any other mosque in this country

    This is well said, Tara, but not for what you think. They may attempt to create a bridge, but the other side of the abyss refuses to accept that bridge. Bigotry once again. If you refuse their bridge, who is wrong, Tara?

    First of all, Hamas endorses the mosque. That a terrorist organization supports a mosque that is supposed to be moderate should say something right there.

    Wow Tara, that NY Post piece is so full of fear, hate and bigotry. Do you really wish to be associated with such terrible people?

    Another thing to consider is the fact that these so-called moderates are imitating what radical Muslims would do, by building a victory mosque.

    you keep saying things like this and wonder why I can’t restrain myself calling your comments bigoted. “So-called”? “victory mosque?” Give up trying to portray yourself as not bigoted, Tara.

    It is merely to say that we don’t go out seeking to conquer lands for ourselves or to bring nations under our power. I don’t consider liberating nations as conquering them either. If you want to dispute that, then do. My point is merely to say that we do not see things as the terrorists or other power-hungry nations see things, because our goals are not theirs.

    Doesn’t matter if our goals are different. We’re a’conquerin’ the world. We “liberate” nations through military force, killing anyone who goes against us. We’re conquerors, Tara.

    What is ridiculous about a slow move toward Sharia law? It is being done in other countries, little by little. Sharia courts can be found in Canada and Australia, and throughout Europe, Sharia law is being upheld at some level.

    What is ridiculous is how much you are led by fear in a comment like this, Tara. You’re so afraid of Sharia Law, which indicates how little you know of it. You bring up the “evil” parts trying to paint the whole as evil. Fear, ignorance, bigotry.

    I did not say that. But I believe that terrorists are doing Satan’s work, and so the two parallel nicely.

    You’re having a tough time distinguishing between terrorists and regular Muslims who may advocate for sharia law. Thus, you’re labeling all of Islam, and its legal system (sharia law) as Satan’s work. It might be best, Tara, to just step away from the computer for a while.

  13. Tara,

    Maybe I’m missing something here, but that’s how I see it.

    Yes, you’re missing something, and you’re seeing fear.

  14. @Dan
    If funding is suspect, no location would be good, right?

    That is a valid point, but it doesn’t mean that the issue of funding isn’t valid. If it were an issue with any location, then it would still be an issue with this location. That it is an issue anywhere does not cancel it out as a reason for concern.

    Wow Tara, that NY Post piece is so full of fear, hate and bigotry. Do you really wish to be associated with such terrible people?

    Can you discredit the statement that the article alleges was made by a Hamas leader?

    you keep saying things like this and wonder why I can’t restrain myself calling your comments bigoted. “So-called”? “victory mosque?” Give up trying to portray yourself as not bigoted, Tara.

    I call them “so-called moderates” because I don’t trust that they are moderate. How does believing someone is being dishonest equate to bigotry?

    Doesn’t matter if our goals are different. We’re a’conquerin’ the world. We “liberate” nations through military force, killing anyone who goes against us.

    I am interested to know how you impose liberation on people. Please enlighten me. Freedom and Democracy are an imposition? Perhaps to those who are forced out of power, but I don’t see how this is so for those who are liberated.

    You’re so afraid of Sharia Law, which indicates how little you know of it. You bring up the “evil” parts trying to paint the whole as evil.

    Well, you criticize my ignorance of Sharia law. So please enlighten me some more as to what is good about it.

    You’re having a tough time distinguishing between terrorists and regular Muslims who may advocate for sharia law.

    No I’m not. I just have a real problem with the imposition of Sharia law, no matter how nice the people who are imposing it may be. If regular Muslims don’t want to impose it, then I have no problem with them. The issue is with the imposition, not who is specifically imposing it, and you, apparently, are unable to make that distinction.

  15. Tara,

    Your concern over sharia law is like someone from our day going back in time under the Law of Moses and shocked to see women stoned to death for adultery. You don’t decry that in Christianity or Judaism because Christians and Jews don’t practice it anymore. Not all Islamic nations that use sharia law stone women to death for adultery. Sharia Law is what regulates affairs within an Islamic country. That includes what to do with someone speeding, or the purchasing of homes, or divorces, or the organization of schools, and so on and so on. There are wise thinkers and lawyers among Muslims who study Sharia Law in order to practice it well within their state, and sometimes their perspective is quite useful. You may dislike some of the more abhorrent aspects of it, but it’s not Satanic.

  16. Tara,

    Here is a perspective you should consider. Jeffery Goldberg is someone I disagree with vehemently, but on this matter, he is definitely right.

  17. In context of location of said cultural center, whether or not funding is suspect doesn’t matter. If funding is suspect, no location would be good, right? It wouldn’t matter how close to a “sensitive” location they were, right? If they have close ties to terrorists, location wouldn’t matter, right? We wouldn’t want them to build any cultural center anywhere if they were close to terrorists, right? Thus, in the context of location, only reasons associated with that location matter.

    That is your weakest argument to date. You are intentionally ignoring the issue trying to narrow the discussion to something that doesn’t matter.

    This is well said, Tara, but not for what you think. They may attempt to create a bridge, but the other side of the abyss refuses to accept that bridge. Bigotry once again. If you refuse their bridge, who is wrong, Tara?

    Again laughable. If someone offers you a bridge you have to accept it or you are bigot? Weak.

    Wow Tara, that NY Post piece is so full of fear, hate and bigotry. Do you really wish to be associated with such terrible people?

    Another weak deflection, coupled with unfounded labels…pathetic.

    you keep saying things like this and wonder why I can’t restrain myself calling your comments bigoted. “So-called”? “victory mosque?” Give up trying to portray yourself as not bigoted, Tara.

    Dan, give up trying to portray yourself as not a dumb ass.

    Doesn’t matter if our goals are different. We’re a’conquerin’ the world. We “liberate” nations through military force, killing anyone who goes against us. We’re conquerors, Tara.

    You only see what you want to see. STOP! You are embarrassing yourself.

    What is ridiculous is how much you are led by fear in a comment like this, Tara. You’re so afraid of Sharia Law, which indicates how little you know of it. You bring up the “evil” parts trying to paint the whole as evil. Fear, ignorance, bigotry.

    You are putting words in Tara’s mouth. Stop twisting what she is saying, or better yet, just stop.

    You’re having a tough time distinguishing between terrorists and regular Muslims who may advocate for sharia law. Thus, you’re labeling all of Islam, and its legal system (sharia law) as Satan’s work. It might be best, Tara, to just step away from the computer for a while.

    Once again you are making things up. You are a trying to be a spinmeister, but you suck at it. You are fooling no one.

  18. Mormon Heretic:

    I agree it is not black as white, but I am a bit confused by your comment. You seem to have real problems with Sharia Law. If it is simply what we see in Saudi Arabia and Indonesia, then I share your concern. But if it is more like Iranian or Turkish or New Afghan law (we’ll see if their constitution holds after the US leaves), then I am not so concerned. What are we to make of your Sharia comments?

    You are right. There are two main aspects of Islam that I have a real problem with.
    1. Sharia Law
    2. The doctrine that the whole world MUST convert to Islam by any means

    Get rid of those 2 things and I would not have a single problem with Islam.

  19. Bishop Rick,

    1. Sharia Law
    2. The doctrine that the whole world MUST convert to Islam by any means
    Get rid of those 2 things and I would not have a single problem with Islam.

    Ignorance. Fear. Bigotry.

  20. I just don’t see how you don’t view an imposition of sharia law as an imposition of a theocracy.

    Tara, when Evangelicals fall all over themselves to get Mike Huckabee elected, using their churches for campaigning, isn’t this a sort of theocracy as well? Furthermore, if we hold a litmus test that a president has to hold to Christianity, isn’t that a sort of theocracy? Furthermore, when Evangelicals didn’t believe John F. Kennedy would be a good president because he might be beholden to the pope, isn’t that a sort of theocracy? Furthermore, don’t Mormons and Evangelicals believe that Jesus will head up a theocracy in the millennium?

    The difference is in degrees. You’re comfortable with an evangelical theocracy where Barack Obama or Bill Clinton give lip service to attending church. Republicans are even ok with allowing ministers such as Pat Robertson or Mike Huckabee run for office (both did very well in the primaries.) If there was a Muslim version of Pat Robertson that quoted peaceful messages from the Koran, had the economic success of Mitt Romney, and the war hero status of General Eisenhower, yet believed that Sharia Law was similar to the Sermon on the Mount, would you have a problem with that?

    The problem I see here is the intentional polarization of Sharia law=Abuse of Women; that somehow Sharia Law=Iran or Saudi Arabia. It’s the same tactic that socialism is the road to communism and book burning. It’s GROSS exaggeration. If you don’t like Sharia Law or socialism, fine. But don’t compare them to abusing women and communism. When you do that, you’ve lost all credibility with me. You’re exaggerating to make a point, and you’re no different than anti-Mormons that call Mormons polytheists. It’s a ridiculous argument and shows a gross lack of knowledge or understanding. Furthermore, it shows unwillingness to understand, and tremendous intolerance. And frankly, this polarization would not make Christ happy, IMO.

  21. Bishop Rick, thanks for the clarification, but I will pose the same question to you. There are many Muslims that claim that Islam is a religion of peace. If they repudiate the violence of the Koran in the same way the Christians repudiate mistreatement of women in the Bible, would that allay or fears? Can any Muslims be trusted, or are they all liars?

    If the Koran teaches that we should be kind to our neighbors, pray daily, do service, live the golden rule, avoid evil, (in short–the same things Jesus taught), would you have a problem with Sharia Law?

    If Muslims repudiated forced conversion the same way Christians denounce witch trials, the Inquisition, and the Crusades, would that allay your fears of Sharia Law?

  22. Dan
    Bishop Rick,

    Ignorance. Fear. Bigotry.

    That cracks me up.
    You are nothing more than a joke to me now.

  23. Mormon Heretic

    There are many Muslims that claim that Islam is a religion of peace.

    Fine, it may very well be, to that group.

    If they repudiate the violence of the Koran in the same way the Christians repudiate mistreatement of women in the Bible, would that allay or fears?

    Again, this has nothing to do with fear, but to answer your question, words are cheap. I want to see definitive action to back up those words. I haven’t seen any. If I see real action, that may sway me.

    Can any Muslims be trusted, or are they all liars?

    Of course they are not all liars, but I don’t trust anyone that I don’t know regardless of religion. That said, any person can earn my trust.

    If the Koran teaches that we should be kind to our neighbors, pray daily, do service, live the golden rule, avoid evil, (in short–the same things Jesus taught), would you have a problem with Sharia Law?

    This question is a bit disingenuous. Its as if you are trying to trick me. I know that these things are taught in the Koran, just as I know that Jihad for spreading the word of Allah is taught in the Koran.

    If Muslims repudiated forced conversion the same way Christians denounce witch trials, the Inquisition, and the Crusades, would that allay your fears of Sharia Law?

    Again, this is not about fear.
    It appears that you are trying to negotiate something here.
    “If I put lipstick on Sharia Law, will that be okay?”

    The answer is no. Sharia Law = Theocracy.
    I am against Theocracy in any human form.
    This is not about fear, its about disgust. Human-instituted Theocracy disgusts me.
    If that makes me a bigot, then everyone on both sides of this discussion is a bigot.

    And if I may, I’m not stating that Sharia Law = Abuse of Women (and I don’t think Tara is either). I’m saying that Sharia Law allows for Abuse of Women…Big difference.

    All Abrahamic religions have this in their past (key word past – as in predating Islam). Islam is still in the dark ages here. I think there are Muslims that are trying to create real reform within Islam. You want to know where they are having ZERO success? In Islamic Theocracies. Why? Because no one will support them out of fear for their lives.

    MH – this is not intentional polarization or exaggeration. Its not fair to paint Tara (or me) into that corner.

  24. MH:

    Moderate Islam has shown no capability to defeat militant Islam. Today in Iran the government seized financial control of the country’s largest private university and arrested two foreign “journalists” for trying to interview the son of the woman mentioned a few comments above under sentence of stoning.

    Civilizations seldom rise from multi-century declines without great violence that rips them to their core and separates the healthy parts from the contaminated parts. Certainly Christianity in Europe or the Mid-East didn’t. Biblical civilizations didn’t. The Mayans didn’t. Neither did the Indian or Chinese. Why is it so hard to accept that Islam, whose peak was about a millenium ago, is experiencing the same dilemma?

    Islam doesn’t need more moderates; it needs more anti-jihadists. Isn’t there some LDS folklore about what happens to those who try to be neutral in the war in heaven?

  25. @Mormon Heretic
    You are conflating a person’s religion with a theocracy. The two don’t even resemble. We’re talking about changing law here, not simply electing someone who is religious, or using churches for political purposes (which I oppose). Sharia law would require changing our laws or creating laws in tandem with our current laws in order to accommodate Sharia law. I’m not even talking about rejecting Sharia law on the basis of the brutality, although that isn’t something to ignore. I’m talking about rejecting it based on changing our laws. Why would we allow ANY religion that privilege? Yet you’ve expressed that you have no problem with that. I just want to make sure I don’t misunderstand you on that, because you’ve expressed an opposition to a Mormon theocracy. If you oppose a Mormon theocracy, but you have no problem with Sharia law in this country, then it seems you are in favor of a Muslim theocracy. If that is the case, then that seems hypocritical of you.

  26. @Dan
    Your concern over sharia law is like someone from our day going back in time under the Law of Moses and shocked to see women stoned to death for adultery.

    I understand you’re point and I’ve thought the same thing myself. I do understand that there are Muslims who practice Sharia law but without the torture and violence, much as we Christians live by the teachings and commandments of the Bible minus the violence. But a power-seeking and violent Muslim minority have not abandoned the more troublesome aspects of the law, and there’s the rub. I don’t think you can say the same thing of Christianity or Judaism.

    Sharia Law is what regulates affairs within an Islamic country. That includes what to do with someone speeding, or the purchasing of homes, or divorces, or the organization of schools, and so on and so on.

    I understand that. But why would we want to create separate laws, separate courts, separate rules for this or that to accommodate a particular religion? That would undermine the establishment clause, IMO. Not to mention, it would create a great deal of confusion and friction.

    You may dislike some of the more abhorrent aspects of it, but it’s not Satanic.

    I haven’t called the law itself Satanic. I’ve equated the IMPOSITION of it, little by little, with a TACTIC of Satan. Please notice the distinction so you don’t misunderstand and twist what I’m saying.

    Oh, and please stop wasting your time looking for Pamela Gellar hit pieces for me to read. I’ve explained my position on her to you already.

  27. Tara,

    I understand that. But why would we want to create separate laws, separate courts, separate rules for this or that to accommodate a particular religion?

    I don’t know how often this must be said to get it through your, what appears to be, thick skull! We’re NOT CREATING SHARIA LAW IN AMERICA! Anyone who says so is spreading fear, ignorance, and bigotry.

    Oh, and please stop wasting your time looking for Pamela Gellar hit pieces for me to read. I’ve explained my position on her to you already.

    hey, you’re the one saying exactly the same things she is. Know who you are associating with, Tara.

    I haven’t called the law itself Satanic. I’ve equated the IMPOSITION of it, little by little, with a TACTIC of Satan. Please notice the distinction so you don’t misunderstand and twist what I’m saying.

    So wait…if secular law starts to impose little by little Christian law into its system, that’s Satanic too? So Mormons pushing for Prop8, a little move toward Mormon theological law, is Satanic?

  28. @Bishop Rick
    Thank you for backing me up there.:)

  29. @Dan
    We’re NOT CREATING SHARIA LAW IN AMERICA!

    Then exactly what are we doing? I’ve asked for some enlightenment since I’m ignorant and you are so smart, but so far I haven’t gotten any. What is the goal of those who advocate for Sharia law here in America? Give me some practical applications, please. Speak clearly though so it can penetrate my thick, bigoted skull.

    hey, you’re the one saying exactly the same things she is. Know who you are associating with, Tara.

    Then I don’t need hit pieces directed at me. You are doing a fine job on your own.

    So Mormons pushing for Prop8, a little move toward Mormon theological law, is Satanic?

    No. That would be called maintaining the laws that we’ve lived under for many years now. How is that a slow move toward anything? And no, it isn’t Mormon theological law, it is theological law for most of the world’s religions, including Islam.

  30. I’m disappointed with the direction the comments have taken. It feels like a shouting match. Everyone seems to be taking and giving offense, and nobody seems to be listening for understanding.

    I will shut down the comments tonight. Get your final points in. This conversation has run its course, and unfortunately, I don’t think it has done any good. I’m really disappointed. It seems the respect in conversation that I strive to keep on this blog has been lost on this topic.

  31. Couldn’t agree more…and that is knowing that I’m one of those that has taken a downturn.

  32. MH – This is obviously a sensitive topic for a lot of people. Maybe we should all allow a little bit of extra tolerance for the opinions on this one. I don’t think anyone here was trying to deceive or mislead…just a lot of passionate stands.

    Personally, I learned a few things in this discussion that I didn’t know before, so in my opinion, good came from it.

    I apologize for contributing to the downturn of your blog.
    But I’m not sorry for defending Tara:)

  33. @MH
    Okay, John Dehlin.😉 jk

    I agree with Bishop Rick though. I’ve learned some things too. As far as taking offense goes, I haven’t taken offense at all except for when Dan has mislabeled us as bigots, and continues to do so ad nauseum. You’ve expressed your lack of appreciation for that, which I appreciate, yet he continues, disrespectfully so, to ignore you, as though he runs the place. I don’t care if he apologizes to me, but I do think he owes you an apology.

    As for shouting, I haven’t shouted….much, so I’m not angry in my comments, and apologize if they come across that way. Frustrated, yes, at the twisting of my words. But not really angry. I was probably more angry with the last political post I was a part of than I am with this one. It’s different now because I don’t take Dan very seriously anymore because of his pompous lack of respect and misuse of labels, so he doesn’t really anger me. He just isn’t adding anything to the discussion because he is too busy attacking. That isn’t to say that Dan couldn’t add something of value to the discussion, and I wish he would try, but I’m not sure he is even taking this discussion seriously enough to do so.

    I am sincerely trying to understand though, and I’ve asked questions that I am genuinely curious to have answered.

  34. Don’t take a bigoted position, and I won’t call your position bigoted. That’s my final word on the matter.

  35. Well, if that’s all you have to say, then I don’t mind seeing you go. Bye!

  36. MH:

    I am sorry if my passion on this issue has been unkind. But I will continue to maintain the position that the distinction between violent Islamism and moderate Islam is huge, that the former hides among and intimidates the latter, and unwillingness to recognize the magnitude of the danger the former poses only magnifies the danger to no moral good.

  37. Dan,

    If I had a blog, you would be banned from it.

    For your own good of course.
    I wouldn’t want such a fine man as yourself being exposed to all the people around you that seem to bring down the tone of a discussion…for no apparent reason other than to anger you and elevate themselves.

    I hope you have a nice day, week, year and life.
    Know that Jesus loves you.

    God Bless

    Bishop Rick

  38. I didn’t know I was going anywhere…I thought MH was going to close this thread at the end of the day. Sorry to ruin your day, Tara.:)

  39. It’s all good, Dan. I just wouldn’t miss you if you decided to leave. That’s all I was trying to say.

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