Jew Defends Muslim from Dumbass

The NJDC gives Dennis Prager a much deserved ass-whoopin over this demonstration of the dumb.

While the NJDC sets the history straight & addresses the constitutional “question” quite well, what struck me was this part:

The answer is obvious — Ellison is a Muslim. And whoever decides these matters, not to mention virtually every editorial page in America, is not going to offend a Muslim. In fact, many of these people argue it will be a good thing because Muslims around the world will see what an open society America is and how much Americans honor Muslims and the Koran.

This argument appeals to all those who believe that one of the greatest goals of America is to be loved by the world, and especially by Muslims because then fewer Muslims will hate us (and therefore fewer will bomb us).

Why does this get me so bad? Well, it’s because the answer really is obvious, and one really must have been believing all that right-wing propaganda for a long time to jump to an “obvious” conclusion that is so obviously wrong and far removed from decency and American values. The real reason? Because of simple, basic, respect. Because of the Golden Rule. If Dennis Prager doesn’t mind being made to swear his oath (should some incredibly backward district elect him to Congress) on a Koran, then he might be excused for wishing to ask Ellison to put his hand on a Bible. But Prager would have a hissy fit at the merest suggestion that he should have to swear on another religion’s holy book. More…

But these naive people do not appreciate that America will not change the attitude of a single American-hating Muslim by allowing Ellison to substitute the Koran for the Bible. In fact, the opposite is more likely: Ellison’s doing so will embolden Islamic extremists and make new ones, as Islamists, rightly or wrongly, see the first sign of the realization of their greatest goal — the Islamicization of America.

Maybe I am naive. Prager probably wouldn’t know naive if it walked up and smacked him on the ass (which, maybe – given his hook-line-&-sinker accetpance of far-right talking points… maybe it has), but hell… maybe I am naive. The idea, of course, is to treat people with respect because it is the right thing to do – not because you are afraid they will bomb you. But here’s where I may be naive – when you do treat people with respect, maybe you make friends. Not friends from the assholes who want to blow themselves up in your Pizza Parlor… but from their sane cousins, neighbors, whatever. Friends are good. When you have friends, you can establish some trust. You can talk to people. You can get people to understand you & you can get to understand them. Everybody figures out that everybody else is a person & whatever their differences, there are no horns growing from the heads of others. When that happens accross “enemy” cultures… there can be hope of turning back on the course to mutual self-destruction. It isn’t about changing the mind of a maniac – it is about reaching out to the “other” and building bridges of respect and trust. Then, the maniacs will be in trouble. Their own country’s police will be a little less inclined to look the other way when it is their friends and friendships that are being targeted.

Maybe that’s a little utopian. Maybe it’s unrealistic. But, I like to believe that sometimes you can do the right thing just because it’s the right thing to do.. and sometimes, it makes life better for you & everyone else, too.

No comments yet to Jew Defends Muslim from Dumbass

  • Z

    I just read Prager’s emotional plea. What bothers me the most is that he seems to think that he alone is the voice of America when he claims that America will decide what book Ellison will take an oath upon before serving in the Senate. He is clearly not speaking for the America that places such high value on the First Amendment and its jurisprudence.

    He then claims that the religious book that an American has faith in is not a personal choice, but rather a cultural choice. America (a place) = the Christian Bible and Islam (a religion) = the Koran. I thought America was the “melting pot” of the world because of its diverse cultures. I guess Prager lives in a different America than I live in. Maybe he exists in a parallel universe and just pops his head into this one every once in a while to pitch a hissy fit.

  • Buck

    “Jew defends Muslim from Dumbass”

    Perfect. For a moment there I thought Moshe Katsav had allied himself with Jalal Talabani against Bush the son.

    It took me a while to figure out what the NJDC was. How about linking to that ass-whoopin’? I would like to read it.

    If I were forced to swear on my favorite book I guess it would have to be “And the Ass Saw the Angel” by Nick Cave.

    Oh yeah, and Prager is an idiot.

  • Yeah, I guess it would be nice to fix that link – try it again now. The ass-whoopin is served!

  • Reading Prager’s comments I am again struck on how the religious right cannot get it through their skulls that there are non-Christians out there who love and value our country as much as they do.

    They simply do not believe it.

    I for one would be offended if he did use The Holy Bible, as it would be an oath on a faith he does no believe.

  • If you think Prager is an idiot you should see some of the U*U asses I know. . .

  • His comment about Ellison “emboldening” radical religious fascists is ridiculous. He doesn’t know anything about Islam. Tariq Nelson has a good post about this at his blog.

  • [...] Smijer at Tete-a-Tete and Tariq Nelson – two bloggers I read – have recently written about the controversy over Congressman-elect Keith Ellison’s request to take his oath on the Qur’an instead of the Bible. [...]

  • [...] Smijer at Tete-a-Tete and Tariq Nelson – two bloggers I read – have recently written about the controversy over Congressman-elect Keith Ellison’s request to take his oath on the Qur’an instead of the Bible. [...]

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