Sunday, March 27, 2011

Dick Durbin's Cardinal Rule and Muslim Civil Rights

As a predictable yet idiotic response to Peter King's Senate hearings on Muslim radicalization, Congressman Dick Durbin (D-IL) is now calling for hearings into Muslims' civil rights.

As we're all supposed to know, Muslims have been denied such rights since the discovery of America .(Columbus's navigator was supposedly a Muslim), the founding of this country (although the pre-Columbian Indians were also supposedly Muslim, and the evidence is the clear reference to Allah in T"allah"asee, FL--I am not making that up), and their huge contributions to the space program (according to Prez O...and that's probably the reason so many astronauts are imams).

But anyway, King's hearings are held up as a disgraceful display of targeting the largely peaceful followers of the Prophet, a handful of whom may have performed TOTALLY JUSTIFIABLE violent acts. (Note: MAY have performed...they also "may" have been framed.)

So along comes Durbin and his buddies at CAIR. They've decided to root out Islamophobia in American society and squash it like a bug.

CAIR is considered an authority on civil rights as they pertain to Muslims because they claim they're the authority on civil rights as they pertain to Muslims. I know that's called "begging the question," but that involves logic, and CAIR has an adversarial relationship with reasonable thought.

They're mad because the hearings King held specifically addressed Islamic radicalization in the US.  Despite the fact that we have experienced a number of terrorist events that evolved from radicalized preachers at mosques here in this country, and despite the fact that law enforcement has long lamented the minimal support from the Muslim community in pursuing these cells (CAIR even ran a poster advising Muslims to NOT cooperate with the FBI), and despite many Muslim leaders going on record to either excuse terrorism or advocate for it, we are NOT supposed to mention any Muslim connection to terrorism.  Unless it's in the context  of "terrorists like Tim McVeigh and anti-abortion activists." (Tim McVeigh was an atheist, and I take issue with the anti-abortion smear. I too am an anti-abortion activist, as are many of my associates, and we do not condone violence and have never celebrated the bombing of abortion clinics...unlike the partiers who took to the streets of Cairo to celebrate 9/11).

So let's get a grip and narrow the focus a little: King was not talking about all Muslims--he was trying to address factors that affect Muslims who attend mosques or follow imams and then are led to commit anti-American acts. And so far, investigations into these so-called homegrown Muslim terrorists have revealed that most of them, maybe all of them, are involved with mosques that encourage violent jihad.

But Congressman Durbin and his CAIR friends are miffed.

Apparently, Durbin doesn't put much faith in the US Constitution, which guarantees civil rights for all citizens. 

Discrimination is not allowed, and that means discrimination FOR, as well as AGAINST, any given group.

Yes, there are situations that arise--and the political experiment that is American democracy is constantly maturing--where a group that may previously have been invisible is brought into the foreground and we as a society have to address that. Women in the US did not get the vote until the 20th Century, a fact that always blows my mind.

But Muslims are not in that category. They already enjoy civil rights. They CAN vote. They can own property and businesses and their kids can attend schools.  They don't have to sit in separate sections at the diner.

Or wait! They kind of are encouraged to observe segregation. But not by American custom--by MUSLIM custom.  Durbin's CAIR friends are big on gender segregation, and recommend that public schools who do not observe this should at least enforce this with gym classes and other activities. They also push religious segregation and political segregation, but you can look at CAIR's websites to see all of that.

I wonder if Durbin will call CAIR to the stand first.

He actually has some other witnesses lined up ready to testify that Muslims are constantly harrassed and belittled in American life.

One of these is Cardinal Theodore McCarrick.  McCarrick retired from leading his flock in DC, but he's come under Vatican scrutiny for a couple of reasons. He was appointed by Pope John Paul II, who was in deep denial about the pedophile scandal that has rocked the Church. One of his legacies was to install cardinals who would not be too avid in tracking down pedophiles and their protectors. Pope Benedict has worked hard to resolve this problem, and he has held many of these men accountable for what they failed to do while information about abuse emerged. McCarrick was one of the people who was called to Rome to answer some pretty difficult questions.

But McCarrick is also soft on abortion.  He has resisted, and in fact has criticized, calls to deny Communion to politicians who publicly espouse abortion rights. He claims that he, personally, is opposed to abortion, but that "dialogue" with dissenting Catholics is more important than publicly excluding them from the Catholic community.

The Vatican has been very clear on this.  While each Catholic has to answer to his or her own conscience, he or she must also be in a state of grace to receive the Host. No one expects a priest to interrogate a communicant at the altar rail, but this is a case of politicians publicly embracing abortion rights, and also adding that they intend to remain practicing Catholics. At no point, before or after receiving Communion, do they retract their statements, admit wrong, or express regret.

The priest who--knowing that up front-- then goes ahead and gives Communion to such people is in effect endorsing their stance. 

Not that integrity is seen often on Capitol Hill, but it would take a lot of backbone for a Catholic politician to either say, "I am anti-abortion," or to at least have the courage to say, "I depend on votes from pro-abortion supporters. Because I plan to publicly support abortion rights, I have excommunicated myself from the Roman Catholic Church. I cannot both support abortion AND remain a Catholic."

Unfortunately for believing Catholics, these politicians want to appear connected to a faith tradition they no longer buy into, because it's good for their careers. (Whatever happened to Hillary Clinton's statement that pro-choice politicians want to make abortion "safe, legal, and rare"? It's definitely legal, usually pretty safe, but no one--not one--pro-abortion politician has said a word about making it "rare." Interesting.)

McCarrick is supposed to be making and then enforcing Church policy, not encouraging people to engage in mortal sin--such as actively supporting the abortion industry.

McCarrick is like a vice president at a company that has a strict anti-theft policy. If the vice president sees that a theft ring is operating within the company, what is his duty? To enforce policy and get rid of the thieves, or to tell his CEO that he cannot possibly do anything because, after all, the thief may have reasons for stealing, and who is he to judge?

This is the type of person who is supporting the Durbin/CAIR initiative: a hypocrite.

Almost as hypocritical as the theme of the hearings themselves: CAIR's civil rights mean MORE rights for Muslims, not equal rights for everyone.

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