Saturday, September 11, 2010

It's 9/11, again

It's been four years since I blogged about the attack(s) on the World Trade Center, and my experiences in them. Up until now I thought my last post expressed everything I wanted to say on the subject. But recent events have changed that. First, there was the controversy over the "ground zero mosque." Then there was the announced, but subsequently "suspended," Koran-burning in Florida, which has gotten itself enmeshed in the "mosque" brouhaha.

As to the former, as many others have pointed out, the proposed Islamic community center is neither at "ground zero" (a term I hate), nor is it essentially a mosque. It's a couple blocks away and around the corner from the World Trade Center site--it certainly does not overlook it, as some critics have claimed. And, while it will contain rooms where people can pray (similar to hospital chapels, I think), religious observance is not its primary purpose. It's a community center.

Disregarding the facts, some outspoken family members of those killed in the attack have opposed it, calling it disrespectful to their loved ones. (Some family members do support its construction.) The right wing media have made it an issue, and many politicians, primarily but not exclusively Republicans, have come out against it.

But even if it were a mosque, I would have no objections to placing it there. The terrorists who destroyed the Trade Center hated the freedoms America stands for, including freedom of religion. It is not disrespectful to the people who died there to have a center dedicated to the exercise of a religion--even if it's the same general religion of the people who killed them. On the contrary, it is a monument to the committment of our nation to one of our fundamental freedoms, freedoms that the terrorists were willing to commit suicide to try to destroy. The Islamic cultural center shows the world that we truly believe in the right to freedom of religion.

However, some Americans don't really believe in it. Thus we have Koran-burnings. Started by the minister of a quite small church in Florida, the planned observance of 9/11 with a book-burning has exploded into a world-wide mess. At least one person in Afghanistan has died protesting against it. A U.S. general and President Obama have spoken out in opposition to it. It's not worth getting into all the contradictory statements of the people involved, but the minister at least at one point thought he had traded his cancellation of the Koran-burning for the relocation of the Islamic cultural center. As of this writing he is planning to meet with the imam behind the center's construction. As the minister has termed Islam "of the devil," I can't imagine what they would discuss.

Needless to say, I am opposed to the burning of the Koran, or any religion's holy books. It's not that people in America don't have the right to do such things--we have freedom of speech and expression here. But we have (at least I thought we had), enough respect for the right of people to have differing beliefs that we refrain from such actions.

It's disrespectful to burn religious books. It's not disrespectful to build religion-based community centers. Those are my thoughts on the ninth anniversary of the destruction of the World Trade Center.

Thursday, September 09, 2010

U.S. Marines retake ship from thugs

U.S. Forces Free Ship From Somali Pirates

I know you've been waiting for some more TFLNs

(817): He needs to realize that there's a big difference between "I love you" and "I love your dick"

(740): So if we break up over this are you still gonna come over and do my dishes?

(785): Based on her brazillian stubble I would guess her plan had been to wait one more date before sleeping with me. Seems the plan was flexible.

(404): I don't know how it happened, one minute we were talking about Huck Finn, the next minute I was blowing him behind the corner of his apartment building.

(415): It was either a cute kinda butch tomgirl or a really fem guy. Either way, I made out with it. Bisexuality, my best friend.

(787): 1. my parents still have sex. 2. being a screamer runs in the family. 3. so much so that i can tell what number of orgasms she's on. looks like i'm stuck outside a while

(845): I have realized now that neither the top nor bottom of a bunk bed is safe for sex....

(858): Writing a love song to planned parenthood. what rhymes with "don't have AIDS"

(716): Housekeeping called in a homicide detective. Just spent an hour explaining that we had vigorous hotel vacation sex five times, even though I was having a heavy flow day. It'll definitely be what you call a memorable honeymoon.

(217): Some ambulance just rolled up to this bar and this girl just hops out of the back and walks inside

(256): you were saying "i am the vodka queen!" and then in a different voice replying to yourself "all hail the vodka queen! you are so beautiful!"

(847): You just kept screaming "You are no House!!!" at the ER doc trying to stitch your head

(850): Still bad at ganbling. Still good at dringing.

(817): I woke on the floor next to a big TV. Apparently I traded my bed for a 52 inch samsung and a box of pop tarts.

(641): Not even close. I woke up in the bed of Codys truck. Wrapped up in a sleeping bed, using a stuffed alligator as a pillow. And Alex was laying naked beside me. Not to mention I wasn't wearing the clothes I got there in.

(603): Need to stop getting stoned with this chick, I keep waking up covered in pizza sauce

(513): My own vomit just splashed me in the face. How's your day going

(334): He used my blackberry to make a voice recording of me orgasming, then set it as my ringtone while I was sleeping. I discovered this during a staff meeting this morning.

Your tax cuts at work

Gail Collins on the Koran burning

When this sort of thing happens, it is important to remember that about 5 percent of our population is and always will be totally crazy.
Full column

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Yawn headline of the day

Tri-State Jews Mark Rosh Hashanah At Sunset

JFK on the separation of church and state

I believe in an America where the separation of church and state is absolute--where no Catholic prelate would tell the President (should he be Catholic) how to act, and no Protestant minister would tell his parishoners for whom to vote...
Sen. John F. Kennedy, 9/12/60(full text)