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The Park Place (not Ground 0) Mosque not only should but MUST be built.

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Mongol Federation

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Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

The above is known as Amendment 1 - Freedom of Religion, Press, Expression; Constitution of the United States of America. To deny Muslims the right to build this mosque is, if nothing else, a gross violation of Constitutional Law. Our gov't can't establish any 1 or number of religions as official, our gov't can't establish any 1 or any or number of religions as preferred over any 1 or number of other religions and most relevant to the subject at hand, our gov't can't bar anyone from practicing their religion (no matter how much we all want to muzzle the Scientologists dry.gif).

The above alone, at least legally, should end the debate but the subject is far more complicated. America is or so we claim, to be a land of freedom, enlightenment and tolerance. America is "the city on the hill". To deny American Muslims or any American the right to worship is to forget ourselves, to abandon the ideals of the Republic and to go down a path that will lead to the end of our world honored civilization. It is a path of darkness, decay and tyranny. It is a path, that being recognized for what it was, led to the foundation of American civilization itself. To abandon this heritage is nothing less then treason.

Having noted the legal and moral flaws of the opposition, let me end with a bit of strategic thinking. We have, no matter how much we wish to forget it, caused great harm to Islamic civilization over the last century and over the past 3 decades, they've returned the favor with the vigor and zeal that would be admirable if better placed. So long as extremists on both sides reopen old wounds while throwing salt, our world shall never know peace. To allow the construction of this American mosque, in this American city on this most hollowed of American soil would be a testament not only to the ideals of our great Republic but to our commitment to peace and values of the Enlightenment. It would give us the morale and political high ground while removing the credibility 1 of the enemies greatest weapons, the propaganda that we are at war not with extremism but Islam itself. Let us defeat those who twist the word of God with honor and truth, to continue as we have is only to aid their efforts. Where is the logic in that?

Let peace and honor become our watchwords. Let us abandon the path of darkness that, blinded by fear, anger and hatred, we have mistakenly tuned down.

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MF, I think you meant to write:

What's the link between Ground Zero and Islam, anyway? If I came to the US to bomb something, claiming that I do it on behalf of the FSM, would the government, the Americans or somone else seriously believe that the problem is Pastafarianism? "Islamic Terrorist" is an oxymoron - or a nonsense at best - and getting the conversation rid of this kind of crap is the first step if we really want to hope we can get anything productive out of it.

Um, that is what I wrote. Sal seems to have mistaken the comma for a period.

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I mistook the comma for bad punctuation. If the comma wasn't there it might have been understandable. If the comma immediately followed "century" you would have successfully indicated the start of the next independent clause. However, putting the comma where you placed it indicates nothing and only causes confusion. If "over the past 3 decades" began a sentence, and you placed the comma after that, it would be correct usage, but with "and" preceding it, you should have put commas on either side of the adverbial phrase.

We have, no matter how much we wish to forget it, caused great harm to Islamic civilization over the last century and, over the past 3 decades, they've returned the favor with the vigor and zeal that would be admirable if better placed.

Or no commas at all.

Now that we've sifted through the pedantry, how about answering my question? Now revised: how have we done great harm to Islamic civilization over the last century?

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Now that we've sifted through the pedantry, how about answering my question? Now revised: how have we done great harm to Islamic civilization over the last century?

Iran? Afghanistan (the 1st time)? Creation of the Arab States (the West as a whole is at fault)?

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