Thursday, August 19, 2010

Mosque on the Hudson

the Ground Zero Mosque controversy has morphed into a political issue that I never dreamed would rise to the level of discourse that it has. It's not that I didn't think it an important issue, but I never foresaw the collateral damage that this issue would do to the president.

the initial announcement that this issue was a local one, and that they would have no comment was probably the correct course. Many disagreed and thought the president should chime in, and even I saw the 'no position' position as cowardly.

then last Friday, the President announced his support for the Ground Zero Mosque. Ok, ok, he did not really state support for it, but it sounded darn close, and that is what middle America heard. they heard, that he did not believe what they did, and that mosque should not be stopped. the crowd he was speaking to at a muslim Ramadan kickoff dinner, erupted into applause, clearly buoyed by the presidents appearance of support.

the very next day the president was back peddling. He quickly got the message out that while he was merely stating the obvious, that by law the mosque had a legal right to be built, he was not, and would not,  comment on the wisdom of building a mosque there.

Well thanks for nothing.

How transparent. Waltz in, feign support, get applause, and get back to non-committal the next day. And then! then the administration claimed that there was nothing political about the statements. What!?!?!?!? Really?!?!?!?!

So today, things get worse. and the state-run-media felt the need to ride to the aid of their anointed leader. Early AP headlines read "An Increased Number of Americans Wrongly Believe that Obama is Muslim".

My first reaction was, "wrongly? really? how do you know?". Not exactly objective reporting. the headline was the message. Reports about the poll ignore some obvious questions.

White House says Obama is Christian, prays daily
A new poll showed that nearly one in five people, or 18 percent, believe Obama is Muslim. That was up from 11 percent who said so in March 2009. The survey also showed that just 34 percent said Obama is Christian, down from 48 percent who said so last year. 
Wow? Why would that be? think. think. think. the number went up? Now, if a certain percentage of the population was just unaware of the religion he claims to profess, well that happens. they are just uninformed, and they think his muslim sounding name suggests that he is muslim, and perhaps they don't even care. that's fine. Who cares. But when the number increases, and suddenly more people think you are a muslim, something is going on. It's no longer a mistaken perception. the president's words and actions have persuaded people that he really is a muslim, despite what he says.

So of course the headline that said "An Increased Number of Americans Wrongly Believe that Obama is Muslim" had to be changed to a clarifying "White House says Obama is Christian, prays daily".

Me thinks they doth protest too much!
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