All of the noise coming from the right – and through pressure, now from some on the left, begs the question – is it a good idea to deny the construction of the “Ground Zero Mosque?”
My previous position has been to state, in no uncertain terms, that it’s despicable for those who so claim to support religion and religious liberty to be so quick to attack the GZM. Now, I’m rethinking that, and asking if it could actually be a precedent to be used against all religious construction.
The GZM as proposed, after all, is more a community center than a full-blown mosque. Much more akin to a YMCA with a prayer room than a worship center. So if that can be opposed on the grounds that it is offensive to some who see it as representative of fundamentalist fervor, could not the same standard be applied elsewhere?
For example, should a church be allowed to be built within a certain distance of an abortion clinic? Christians bomb them and murder doctors, right?
How about banning any religious construction near a public school? Can’t have fundamentalists of any stripe influencing children, now can we?
If a church preaches against homosexuality, can it be allowed to exist close to where same-sex couples live? Or can it be near a gay bar?
What about pedophilia? Should there be a determined distance religions tainted by sex scandals must be required to stay away from parks and schools?
Talk about a slippery slope! When the public asks for restrictions to be placed on religious observance or construction because of what some members of that faith have done, all bets are off. Personally, I wouldn’t mind seeing all religious institutions be zoned maybe the same as strip clubs – away from schools, etc.
Can we use the ignorance and bellicose rhetoric of the religious right against them, to make America less under religious influence?
Sure, don’t allow the “Ground Zero Mosque.” Restrict zoning for all religious building, make them all prove value to the community, and impose appropriate taxes!