According to Republican Presidential candidate Herman Cain, who is actually doing quite well by the way, American communities “have the right to [ban a mosque]” if they want to. In Cain’s view, “That’s not discriminating based upon their particular religion. There is an aspect of them building that mosque that doesn’t get talked about. And the people in the community know what it is and they’re talking about it.”
Uh huh. Now, substitute the word “synagogue” or “church” in there, and see how it sounds. Let’s try it: “American communities have the right to ban a synagogue…people in the community know what it is and they’re talking about it.” Or, “American communities have the right to ban a church…people in the community know what it is and they’re talking about it.”
Not cool, huh? In the first case, it’s blatant anti-Jewish bigotry. In the second case, it’s blatant anti-Christian bigotry. So, what’s the difference when Cain talks about mosques? Or how about when two Republican presidential candidates, including one front runner, sign a pledge calling for “Rejection of Sharia Islam and all other anti-woman, anti-human rights forms of totalitarian control.” Of course, as educated people know, there’s no such think as “Sharia Islam,” but there is such a thing as “Sharia,” “the code of conduct or religious law of Islam.” That’s just like the Talmud and/or Torah for Jews; or possibly Canon Law for Roman Catholics (“a fully developed legal system, with all the necessary elements: courts, lawyers, judges, a fully articulated legal code and principles of legal interpretation.”), etc. So, per Herman Cain, should we ban “Talmudic Law” or “Canonical Law,” while we’re at it?
Look, it’s fine for Herman Cain or Michele Bachmann or Rick Santorum if they want to be bigots. It’s even fine, in this country, for them to spout those bigoted views every chance they get. What I do NOT think is fine is for a significant percentage of Republicans to support one or more of those candidates for President of the United States. That is deeply, deeply disturbing, as it’s the antithesis of everything it means to be an American. WTF, did these people all skip K-12?