The wife of the Cordoba Initiative’s Imam Rauf, Daisy Khan, said on ABC News “This Week” that those who oppose the 9/11 site mosque are guilty of “Islamophobia.” The word Islamophobia was defined several years ago by the United Nations as the act of hating or fearing all Muslims.
She added to her statement by comparing Islamophobia to anti-Semitism. According to the New York Post, she also blames the opposition on Republicans, and says the project will be a community center for everyone in the neighborhood.
Every one of her statements must be debated:
When the majority of Americans speak out against Islamic terrorism, or using this site for a mosque, it doesn’t mean we fear and hate all Muslims. What we fear and hate are acts of terrorism in the name of Islam. Opposing the mosque is about respect for the 3,000 dead who were killed by terrorists in the name of Islam.
And, are we not supposed to be afraid of terrorists when TIME Magazine features a July cover photo of a woman with her nose cut off by the Taliban for fleeing her abusive in-laws in Afghanistan?
Opposing the mosque equated with anti-Semitism:
As a person raised in a Jewish family (although I now believe in Jesus as the Messiah of both Christians and Jews), I see no comparison to anti-Semitism. I would ask Ms. Khan to understand that no faction of Jewish people has ever instilled fear in the hearts of Americans by chopping off heads on television, driving suicide trucks into restaurants filled with innocent people, or flying planes into buildings in countries that aren’t bothering them.
May we use the term “Jewishphobia” when people claim “Israel doesn’t have the right to exist?” May Christians call people “Christianphobic” for blaming all Christians for the Crusades that happened 1,000 years ago? Or when they blame all Christians for the murder of an abortion doctor by one crazy person? When people generalize all Christians as homophobic haters of gay people, are Christians allowed to label their accusers as “Christianphobic?”
Claiming that all those in opposition are Republicans:
Not true. A CNN/Opinion Research Corporation Poll found nearly 70 percent of Americans polled oppose the mosque at this site: 54 percent Democrats, 82 percent of Republicans, 70 percent Independents.
A Siena Research Institute Poll concluded that 61 percent of New Yorkers are opposed to the 9/11 location.
If the country had this many Republicans, the number of votes toward George Bush’s elections would never have been questioned; Hillary Clinton couldn’t have become Senator in New York and President Obama would not have won his election.
The Cordoba Initiative will be a center for everyone:
The project is described as an Islamic community center with a prayer space for Muslims. How is that for everyone? If we’re Islamophobic, where is their prayer space for Jewish people and the prayer space for Christians? The mosque should be a generic chapel instead, and should be called a “multi-faith” prayer space.
We are fighting terrorists from Islamic countries that are nearly completely “phobic” about allowing other religions. The U.S. Annual International Freedom Report of 2009 proves, as it did in previous years, that citizens in Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Iran and Afghanistan may be harassed, robbed of their property, jailed and executed for not being Muslims, or even being the wrong Muslim denomination.
Yet, Ms. Khan, I can assure you that most Americans would not blame all Muslims for the fact that their native countries have such laws. We are not Islamophobic. We’re still trying to figure out why a memorial building hasn’t been erected, or the Twin Towers reconstructed on the 9/11 site. This would be preferable to any religious center, no matter what faith.
“Imam’s wife won’t cave on Ground Zero mosque, blames GOP,” Jennifer Fermino, New York Post, 8/20/10.
Overwhelming Majority oppose Mosque near Ground Zero,” CNN Political Ticker, 8/11/10.
CNN Opinion Research Poll, Aug 6-10, 2010.
“Frank Rich Blames Ground Zero Mosque Opinion On Rupert Murdoch’s ‘Islamophobia Command Center’,” Noel Sheppard, Newsbusters.org, 8/22/10. (Frank Rich is with NY Times.)
“61% Oppose Muslim Cultural Center…” Siena Research Institute Poll, July-August, 2010.
United States Annual International Freedom Report, 2009.
“Mosque Imam’s wife compares hatred of Muslims in U.S. to anti-Semitism,” S.A. Miller and Jeremy Olshan, New York Post, 8/23/10.
ABC News “This Week” with Christiane Amanpour, Transcript, Karzai, Khan and Levitt – 8/15-8/22/10.
“What Happens When We Leave Afghanistan,” TIME Magazine cover photo, Afghan woman with nose cut off, July 2010.