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Religion, Terror and Hate - Are Muslims in America Becoming Second Class Citizens?: Left of Center View

One of the things that distinguishes America from many nations around the world is the freedom of religion we enjoy as residents of this nation. It is one of the core principles that our nation was founded on. Unfortunately there are a number of Americans who seem to have forgotten that. In the name of national security and righteous indignation they go to any length to make the lives of Muslims miserable.

Since September 11, 2001, Muslims in America have been the targets of hatred and violence at the hands of people who have neither experienced nor have any real working knowledge of Islam or it would seem the teachings of Jesus. These so-called champions of America and Christianity act in ways counter to the principles of both America and the church with results that only bolster the cases made by terrorists for violence against Americans. In the process innocent people simply trying to live their lives are made to suffer needlessly at the hands of people to whom they have done no wrong.

Since 2001 acts of violence towards Muslims have increased dramatically. In some cases the people attacked for being Muslim were not even of that faith. In several cases Sikhs who wear head turbans as a part of their religion have been mistaken for Muslims by violent thugs who attacked them for absolutely no reason whatsoever.

One of the most concentrated campaigns to discredit Barack Obama in the 2008 presidential campaign was one in which he was shown in native garb on a trip to Africa. In the campaign the picture was used to show how the then Senator, who is well known to be a Christian, was a secret Muslim. To this day, there are groups that spread rumors about President Obama claiming that he is in league with the terrorists and a secret Muslim. Itís kind of funny when you think about the fact that those same people never questioned George W. Bushís loyalty to the US when it is documented that on 9/11 the bin Laden family was allowed by the government under the Bush administration to fly out of the country during a time when the entire airspace over the U.S. was shut down.

Hate speech and divisiveness are the stock and trade of the manipulators. The sad thing is that when bad things happen these hate mongers leap into action and take every chance to spew their venom into the national dialogue. Sorrow and anger can lead to poor judgment and the manipulators know that so they use those most powerful of events to fuel their agendas of hate and intolerance. We as a nation need to heal the wounds of September 11, 2001. It is time to move on and put hate aside. It is not time to hold Nazi-like book burnings or attack innocent people for things they have not done. It is time to bring everyone together for the good of ALL Americans.


LJ Finstermore - World Citizen | E-mail Comments on this column. | Click icon to Digg this article

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Religion, Terror and Hate - Are Muslims in America Becoming Second Class Citizens?: Right of Center View

Now, I have no great love for Osama bin Laden or anyone that supports terrorism but I have to say as a Christian it makes me just sick what this jackass is doing down in Florida with his burn a Koran day on Saturday. I can understand sending messages to terrorists and thatís why our boys are over there taking it to them but burning books is the kind of stuff Nazis did in Germany. Jesus would not approve! I can guaran-damn-tee you that!

When Jesus told us to go forth and witness for God he did not say we should go out and disrespect the beliefs of others to do it. I will hold God in my heart until the day I die and I have accepted that Christ died for my sins so I know I will be saved. When Christ hung on the cross for our sins he prayed to God that the people who had done this to him would be forgiven for they knew not what they did. If Jesus can forgive the ones who killed him how can this charlatan go on national TV and say that he believes that Jesus would support him?

Beyond the foolishness of trying to justify ungodly acts with false witnessing there is the risk he is putting our troops at by deciding to declare to the world that September 11th is "International Burn a Koran Day" like he speaks for all Christians or Americans or something. Who the hell does this Pastor Jones think he is!?! When the commander of the American armed forces in Afghanistan tells you that you are putting lives at risk with your actions you should damned-well listen! This isnít some sort of game! There are lives at risk and your stupid stunt could put a lot of people in danger. Good Americans donít need to die for you to make some stupid point that is wrong to begin with.

The terrorists talk about us persecuting the Muslims and that gets more people to join their cause. When you do stupid stuff like this it proves their point. Burning the Koran is actually playing right into the terroristsí hands. In America we have freedom of religion, which means that people of peace should be able to worship however they please. In America we also have freedom of speech which sometimes unfortunately protects stupid things like idiots burning books for no good reason.

While I support efforts to wipe terrorists off the face of the planet, I also feel for our fellow Americans of the Muslim faith. We may not always agree but Jesus taught me to love my neighbor and not make many suffer for the actions of a few. Americans who happen to be Muslim are not our enemies. Peace loving people of any faith are not our enemies. The terrorists are our enemies and we need to remember that. If we start hurting innocents for the actions of the terrorists we are no better than them and I absolutely refuse to believe that Americans are no better than terrorists.

JT - American | E-mail Comments on this column. | Click icon to Digg this article

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