Monday, August 09, 2010

Marty Peretz is right. The Ground Zero mosque controversy is not about freedom of religion. Peretz is not arguing that Muslims should not be allowed to build a mosque in New York City, only that they not be allowed to build a mosque in locations where the structure might cause anger or grief to Christians or Jews. Certainly that is not too much to ask. Peretz recognizes the need to protect Muslims from the “dark places” of distraught Christians and Jews. Ideally, Muslims could live in special areas of our cities where they could freely assemble and worship together, thus avoiding any First Amendment concerns. These places could be identified by high ceremonial walls, with towering wide gates symbolizing the openness of Western culture. Of course, Muslims would remain free to visit any parts of the city they choose, within reason. And to avoid misunderstanding and conflict, the Muslims can keep the Christians and Jews locked out of their enclaves during Ramadan, and themselves safely locked inside during Christmas and Passover.

What do you have against compromise?

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