All Things Ellie

It's like Sex and the Suburbs and 30 Rock all rolled into one…

Hate is Never Stylish

Because we’re Americans and because we live in New York State, perhaps the news that a mosque wants to open up in New York City becomes Big News. It trends on twitter. Local news stations, even like YNN, pick up coverage. It is controversial, opening up a center for peaceful prayer. Wait… is it? If a Christian or Jewish group wanted to open such a center, we wouldn’t bat an eye. If a Buddhist or Hindu group did the same thing, we’d be curious for a few moments, and then go back to our daily routines. No, the thing of it is that they are Muslims and it’s near Ground Zero. Yes, the mosque will be built as part of a 13-story community center a two blocks away from the World Trade Center site, revitalizing an old Burlington Coat Factory. (And here I thought people from Manhattan hated Big Box stores!)

I might be the only one not furious over the matter.  When I perk up in discussions about this, people look and stare at me as if I just perhaps shit on the American flag. “But the Muslims did it,” one person exclaimed at me. “It’s Ground Zero,” another provided as if that was explanation enough. For me it’s not a matter of religion, but of fundamentalism.

Let’s be honest here for a minute – there is a great big difference between the KKK and most Christians. We recognize this, and we don’t let our disdain for that hateful group to affect how we view Christians in this country. It seems impossible to get elected in this country without some ties to religion, and for a long time that was the Christian kind. If you were to do one of those SAT word analogies, it would look like this: KKK::Christianity as Al Queda::Islam. It’s not the religion that’s the problem, it’s how the religion is interpreted and turned into a device to hate and a justification for murder. And let’s be even more honest, the Muslims working at the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001 didn’t get some Islamic memo advising them to stay home from work. They went to their jobs, and yes, they died too.

Let’s look at it another way. One of my friends said it would be akin to Oklahoma City banning any church or Christian charity near the Murrah Building because McVey was Christian. It would be like blaming all Jewish people for the crucifixion of Jesus. We don’t find either of these socially acceptable, and even go so far to shun people socially who think this way. And yet it seems as if hating on Islam is the new black. It’s okay to say untrue and horrible things about Muslims and their religion and people seem to get away with it.

It’s nearly a decade after the attacks, and for some, the hurt and pain of lost loved ones might still be very fresh. But Sarah Palin didn’t lose anyone to the attacks of 9/11; she was too busy banning books from the library. She doesn’t get to appeal to Muslims world wide to drop the desire to open up a place of peace near the final resting place of 2,976 people, of whom Muslims and Arabs are surely a part of.

It’s hate, pure and simple. Once upon a time we hated Jewish people and then that became impolite. Then we hated homosexuals because they were different than us. That’s becoming inappropriate. But it’s okay to hate Muslims still, because a few misguided angry people who twisted a religion killed a couple thousand people in a highly public display. Hate of any kind is the height of bad taste.

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7 comments on “Hate is Never Stylish

  1. GenWar
    August 4, 2010

    It is also currently ok to hate fat people, strippers and smokers. #justsayin’

    • cuteellaisbold
      August 4, 2010

      No, it’s not. It’s not ok to hate anyone. I don’t even really hate the people who have hurt me personally and probably deserve it.

  2. cuteellaisbold
    August 4, 2010

    Part of the healing process is to let go of the anger towards the person who hurt you. It wasn’t THIS group who wants to build who hurt us, it was members of a similar but extreme group. We should not continue to take out our anger on the similar but extreme group on people who just want to live their lives and be productive members of our societies.

    Is it a little insensitive that they want to build there? Perhaps, but it’s not wrong.

    • Ellsbells
      August 4, 2010

      I want to say its insensitive, but I can’t get there emotionally. It’s been nine years. Nine. Like Erin said we’ve got a Shinto Shrine at the site of Pearl Harbor. Further more, at a certain point you’ve got to let things go. You’ve got to move on.

  3. Chris
    August 4, 2010

    I think you nailed it, Ellie/Cuteellaisbold. While religion is an integral part of whatever twisted philosophy these groups such as the KKK or Al Qaeda embrace, it’s unfair to condemn the entire group for the actions of the few. I mean, I’m not in favor of ANY religious construction, and if that’s what this was about, I’d agree with the opposition… but it’s not. Abe Foxman is wrong. Your grief does not entitle you to bigotry.

  4. Erin Morelli
    August 4, 2010

    I was going to write about this today, but you said it better than I could have. A friend of mine also pointed out that there is a Shinto shrine at Pearl Harbor. That too was an attack on US soil, but we had no problem putting a shrine to the religion of the people who attacked us there. People can be so hateful.

  5. Tom
    August 4, 2010

    Fact check:

    1. Sarah Palin didn’t ban any books: http://www.snopes.com/politics/palin/bannedbooks.asp

    2. The Shinto Shrine “at Pearl Harbor” is in Honolulu and was built in 1920, 21 years BEFORE the Pearl Harbor attacks: http://www.e-shrine.org/home.html

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This entry was posted on August 4, 2010 by in Uncategorized.
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