Friday, August 27, 2010

A Challenge for WTC Mosque Opponents

by Russell Simmons

Wall Street Journal
August 27, 2010

We hear a lot these days about how this famous conservative, or that one over there, has nothing against Islam.

We hear that the opponents of Cordoba House, a Muslim community center planned for a site two blocks from Ground Zero, don't question the right of American Muslims to worship where they choose—that, in fact, the Newt Gingriches and Sarah Palins of this country are all about tolerance and the Constitution. They're just asking for compassion for those grieving the losses of 9/11.

Well, I'm reminded of a passage with which both Mr. Gingrich and Ms. Palin should be familiar: "You shall know them by their fruits."

In the New Testament, Jesus warns against false prophets, explaining how to judge truth-tellers from snake oil salesmen: How do they act? What are the fruits of their labors? "Do people pick grapes from thornbushes," Jesus asks, "or figs from thistles?"

If Mr. Gingrich, Ms. Palin, or any who claim their problem with the so-called "Ground Zero Mosque" is not one of religion but location want to prove themselves, I have a simple suggestion: Come with me to Tennessee. Or California. Or Wisconsin.

Because there are mosque projects on hold in all those places, too—held back by hate, pure and simple.