we don't serve your kind in here
When I speak about Muslims and facetiously refer to the Religion of Peace on this site, it's obvious that I am talking about extremist Muslims; the militants who kill in the name of their god, the terrorists who have taken a religion and turned it into a rallying cry for death.
I've defended American Muslims here. I know quite a few; my daughter is friends with several American Muslims. I do not believe those that live in my community are terrorists or extremists. True, I sometimes take them to task for remaining silent in the face of people co-opting their religion for the sake of violence, but I do not for one minute resent the fact that any of them live here.
There was a meeting Tuesday night at the local library regarding a small mosque and school that local Muslims want to build where two rather large houses now exist. The members of the community who asked for the meeting claimed that their opposition to the construction of the mosque and school revolves around parking and traffic, and the quaility of life in the neighborhood.
The voices raised at the meeting proved otherwise.
A few East Meadow residents at the Tuesday meeting protested in moderate tones about the society's planned expansion and its tax-exempt religious status, which they said forces them to pay more than their fair share of property taxes.
But most of the meeting consisted of a barrage of angry shouts and anti-Muslim jeers directed at Rahman, his architect Hossein Alemzadeh, and his lawyer, Peter Morra. Meeting moderator Joseph Parisi, who heads the civic group, banged a gavel again and again, and shouted the audience down, to maintain order.
"Go park in Bangladesh!" one man shouted.
Some said they oppose the mosque because it would attract more Muslims to East Meadow, and they don't like Muslims, especially after last year's Sept. 11 attacks.
"A lot of people died in the name of your god. We don't kill in the name of our god," said Michelle Caio of East Meadow. About half those present cheered Caio's comments, while the rest shouted disagreement, to which she answered: "You don't want to admit it, but that's the issue. Parking's not the issue," Caio said to her neighbors. "I'm against building a mosque in the town I live in. I do not think this is the time after what happened last year."
Gina Caio, Michelle's cousin, also spoke. "We obviously don't want you here," she told Rahman. "Why would you want to be in a community that doesn't want you?"
The term "Ugly Americans" comes to mind. This is how gaps widen and this is why wars wage. Not all Muslims follow the same path as their terrorist counterparts; my angry neighbors would be wise to find other ways to voice their opinions so as not to make themselves appear to be ignorant, though it's too late for that.
When blind hatred permeates a person, there is no reasoning with them. I won't even try to speak to my neighbors about this because they are at that place where there is no turning back; they've committed themselves to blanket judgment and you cannot debate or argue successfully with people like that.
It's not so much their feelings but the way they express them that sickens me. There were so many other ways to say what they did, but they chose the path of bigoted name calling.
Just another answer to the why do they hate us question.