For it is by grace you have been saved...

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Responding to the Rant

Ever say something in frustration, and later wish maybe you had put a bit more thought into it? Yesterday I posted a “rant” about the building of the mosque near Ground Zero, and while I still support all that I said; I maybe should have taken some time to phrase things a little better.

That post was spread around by some friends and acquaintances, and eventually landed in the lap of one man who saw some of the “flaws” in my arguments, which I appreciate his calling to my attention.

I don’t know him, and I hope he doesn’t mind my repeating some of his comments here, but since I’ll use no names, hopefully all will be well. Let me share his response and then use that to clarify a few of my thoughts.

He said: While even "if" our governments account of what happened on 9/11 is true, it's my understanding that this is private property and is already being used as an Islamic Center, what constitutional basis do we have for stopping them if they meet all building codes and regulations? Or what constitutional basis do we have to not be offended? Does our 1st Amendment not apply to Muslims? Or am I really missing something here? Even if 95% of the people wanted something a certain way, we are a Republic, not a Democracy. We look to the Constitution to decide what's right, wrong, allowed or not.

I’ll simply ignore the “even if our governments account of what happened is true.” Partly because maybe I’m not educated enough on the details to answer; partly because I would probably just say, “Huh? You’re joking, right?”

But on to the rest. He is absolutely right. Building a mosque on private property would indeed be a protected “right.” They are certainly protected under the 1st Amendment. To suggest that we could simply stop this because we don’t like it was wrong of me.

However, that really wasn’t what I was trying to say. It’s not just because we don’t like it; it’s because there are greater risks involved here. We regularly legislate and monitor the freedoms we enjoy to ensure that they do not infringe on the rights of others.

For example, states and communities regularly pass zoning laws which, for example, prohibit pornographic business, which do have a right to exist, from building within a certain distance of churches or schools. While not denying their rights, those rights are placed within a framework that attempts to “keep peace in the neighborhood.” This sort of thing happens all the time.

Another example. Nazis, unfortunately, have constitutionally protected rights to exist, meet, and spread their hateful propaganda. But do you really think that most government officials would allow a Nazi “cultural center” to be built next to a Jewish synagogue. Somewhere in there we would call on that “inciting a riot” kind of language that curtails even free speech.

Or maybe a more suitable example. Both the Federal government and the state of Kansas enacted legislation to keep the deplorable antics of one so-called pastor and his church from protesting within so many feet of the funerals of our fallen soldiers. Common sense shows that this offense must not be allowed.

I’m no Constitutional lawyer (obviously), but some things are just based on common sense. I liken it to Paul’s word in 1 Corinthians 6:12 where he says: "'All things are lawful for me,’ but not all things are helpful.” His point is that even though he has the freedom to do certain things, he understands that for the good of others, those freedoms must not be exercised without discretion. Our nation was built on biblical principles (whether folks admit it or not), and this is one of those principles.

Again, this writer is absolutely right. Muslims do enjoy first amendment rights as well as anyone. Our CHRISTIAN forefathers fought and died that they might enjoy that freedom (let’s see how much “free” speech folks enjoy in Muslim nations!). But common sense also dictates that this is simply not a wise course of actions. My frustration is in our leaders' lack of seeing that wisdom, and seeming to support this in the face of common sense and the overall well being of this city and our nation.

Furthermore, if one would read to the bottom of that previous post, where the ranting ends and I offer some suggestions, I would offer that those suggestions still stand. 1. Islam is a threat to this nation, and we need to wake up to it. 2. Politicians who have pledge to protect this nation from all enemies foreign and domestic, who don’t recognize this threat, make light of it, etc. do need to be replaced. And 3. the ultimate answer is still in Christ.

So I apologize for my rant suggesting that we can simply overturn Constitutional freedoms (freedoms which the Constitution Party is trying to support, after all). Yet, at the same time, let’s not put our head in the sand and pretend that this is not a well thought out ploy by Muslim folks to taunt America, to have an excuse to call conservatives “anti religious freedom,” and to take yet one more stab at our way of life.

Please feel free to comment. Discussion is always welcome, as long as in the end we all agree that I’m right! (OK, that’s a joke, people….well, mostly)


Anonymous said...

Well, I'm the one you quoted earlier. I'll give you a link that explains the first part of my statement.

For the rest, I can agree with Paul's verse 100%. That being said, the reasons Paul said it were to keep from offending non believers. Yes, the idea of a "trophy" mosque built at or near the site of conquest is VERY offensive. You have some very good points, also, about "existing" building codes. I'm not going to delve into them at the time, though.

From the initial Obama speech and the reasons he stated for allowing the mosque are to my belief, constitutional. We do not have a right not to be offended! We DO have a right to religious freedom and expression. Further reading of my original comments from the other post go on to say that it's my belief also that Obama has nefarious reasons for suddenly saying something that does not abridge our Constitution. Even a blind squirrel finds a nut once in awhile...

Make no mistake, I don't want Islam or ANY other false religion taking over this nation. I only "rights" our God gives us and the Constitution acknowledges. If their building codes are met and the plans are within city/state guidelines, we have no choice but to let them offend us. We can watch them like a hawk, also, to make sure they play inside our laws and restrictions. God's law and constitutional law TRUMPS Sharia law in this country. Period.

Scott said...

Thanks for the comment. I truly hope you're not offended by my using your previous comments. I really did appreciate your point and saw my need to clarify.

I also appreciate your commitment to Constitutional freedoms. In the end, I suppose I would rather see this mosque than the denial of those freedoms, even if it is an affront to all we hold dear.

I apologize for not including all your comments, specifically regarding Obama's motive here (I really like the "blind squirrel" comment!).

Thanks again for the comments. As I said, discussion is always good. Of course, that same free speech will also allow us to disagree at some point!

Keep up the good work, my friend. Loyalty to our Founding Father's intent for this nation will never be useless.

Dan said...

Here's another article that may prove helpful. We need to remember that Islam is more than just a religion, it is also out to dominate the world.
Thanks for your commoents.

Scott said...

Thanks for stopping by, Dan. And thanks for the link. Very good article.

Scott said...

For anyone reading this far, here's another link to see what Muslims themselves are admitting about the ill-intent of this mosque.

"The fact we Muslims know the idea behind the Ground Zero mosque is meant to be a deliberate provocation to thumb our noses at the infidel."

Read more:


A very interesting post and thanks for the follow up link.

BTW, Thank you for your recent comment on my Alcohol and the Christian post.

As always..."Alcohol" is a "hot button" issue in the Christian community.