First of all, this is about what the conservative pundits are calling the “Ground Zero Mosque”, although it’s not at Ground Zero. Second of all, I’m not a New Yorker- I’m an ex-New Yorker. I haven’t lived in Manhattan since 1989 and the last time I worked there was like, 1998 or something and I’ve only been back once since 9/11. But since people who’ve never come within a thousand miles of the City seem to have no problem weighing in on what should be a local problem, then I guess I have a right to as well. And that opinion is: everybody, both pro-mosque and anti-mosque, are completely wrong and mostly a bunch of idiots.
Look, it’s not that religion is inherently bad…I mean, there’s some good advice in the Ten Commandments and probably some other places in the Bible, Torah, Koran and holy books of every other faith. It’s religious people that are pretty weird and the orthodox ones of any religion are the weirdest and most dangerous of all. Forget politics, money, land or even food and water- religious people start more wars, kill more people, cause more misery and trample on the rights of others far more than anyone or anything else. Been that way for millennia and shows no sign of stopping. So, for the record my position is this: the mosque/community center both should be allowed to be built and the guys who want to build it shouldn’t; not because it’s a mosque, but because until humanity can get away from religion entirely, we’ll never have peace.
By the same token, there should be no churches or synagogues built either, and not just near Ground Zero. Anywhere. I don’t care if people want to believe in a creator of some sort, or saints or miracles or floods and pillars of salt or laying on of hands or the healing power of Kinoki Foot Pads. We all have fantasies; they’re fun and nice and make us feel good sometimes when life gets us down. It’s just that we tend to go overboard and let those fantasies get outta hand. We start believing them to the point where not only are we convinced they’re true, but that everyone else who doesn’t share our beliefs is not just wrong, but that they’re also gonna suffer eternal hell-fire because of it. Worse, we believe that since they don’t share our fantasies, it’s not only okay to kill them, it’s necessary.
Burn them, bomb them, bury them in mass graves…that’s what God wants us to do. I mean, Jesus (pardon the pun), think about it, people. Get real. Who in the world would want to follow a religion or God that wants you to kill people? You’ve really gotta have something fucking wrong with you to think that. And even if there actually is a God out there somewhere that really did create everything, you’ve gotta be completely off the wall to think that you could possibly understand Him/Her/It.
Christian Fundamentalists kill doctors that perform abortions all the time and every now and toss a bomb or two at people they don’t agree with. They build armed compounds and force underage girls into marrying and having sex with scummy old guys. In the UK, people who believe exactly the same thing spiritually, but disagreed with earthly format- a pope versus a king or some such thing, sniped, bombed, burned and imprisoned each other for centuries. Here on this continent, we slaughtered tens of thousands of Natives not because they didn’t believe in God per se, but because we wanted their gold and land- the fact that they thought our God was odd just made it alright.
I could go over hundreds of instances of God-based slaughter…Hindus, Muslims, Jews, Aztecs, Mayans, probably Zoroastrians too, but quite frankly, it’s just too depressing. Religion is just too depressing…well the people who use it to commit violence or oppress others are. Which are in the case of the “Ground Zero Mosque”, the ones who are trying to stop it from being built. The Muslims that are trying to build are just wrong.
Finally, every religion is a bit schizophrenic…both in the medical sense and the informal and improper one most people use- dual personalities. All the great saints and prophets heard “voices”- that’s true schizophrenia, a chemical imbalance that causes ‘noise’ that the brain then interprets as voices to make sense of them. In the improper sense- dual personality, like Cybil- every religion instructs their followers to be both peaceful and loving towards others and at the same time smite their enemies. Love em or kill em…depends on what floats your boat, I guess.
So, all the Christians and Jews should be saying, “Sure, go ahead, build your mosque.” and every Muslim should be saying, “Nah, there’s no reason to build a mosque anywhere. Let’s just all go out to dinner, but in the interest of peace and understanding, no one order the pork chops, okay?”