Monday, July 6, 2009

What if He Were?

On the 4th of July thousands of people across the country interrupted their celebrations and plans and set out to protest the out-of-control spending. One such gathering took place in the nation’s capital. With the Capitol building looming in the background thousands did such crazy things as pledge allegiance to flag, sang the national anthem, and read from the declaration of independence. CNN estimated that 2,000 people attended, but at the protest the park police said the number was closer to 5,000. People drove several hours to attend this protest, and then spent the day enjoying the many activities and one of the nation’s best fireworks displays.

One of the nicest things about this particular group of tea parties is that the mainstream media could not blame Fox News. These were organic, grown out of frustration of an out-of-control spending spree by our federal government. These protests are organized on a very local level and paid for mainly out of donations and people lending their own equipment and time. The protests are growing in numbers and they are becoming more diverse. They are also happening in cities that come as a surprise; such as Seattle. A heavily liberal city if there ever was one, they even have a statue of Lenin in one of the suburbs.

This morning I was looking at some pictures taken by the wife of one of the speakers. I enjoy looking at the ingenuity of the signs and the t-shirts that people wear. “All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent” Thomas Jefferson. Yeah, I cling to my guns and God too, Tiny minds pass unread bills, No tax $$$ for criminals (an ACORN reference), Atlas has Shrugged, Martin Luther King was a Republican, and Read the Bill next time. Then there was one that read Impeach Owebama and the camel he road in on. This is what I feel we need to take issue with.

This is an overt reference to the President’s faith, a claim that he is really a Muslim. The question I have what if he were? Would it matter? I really don’t care. My problem with the President is his policies and his views of the world. I will admit that I have taken issue with the church he attended in Chicago. I don’t understand how the Obama’s can look anyone in the eye with a straight face and say they didn’t know that Rev. Wright is a racist.

I used to work part-time at Macy’s after my illness to pay off my debt. During that time I got to know people of the Muslim faith. Many of the people who worked at this particular store were immigrants; mainly from Africa and the Middle East. A majority of them were Muslims. Some of which were very devout. They believed in family, doing the right thing and taking personal responsibility. These are all values that as a conservative I hold near and dear to my heart and try to live by. If you look around the conservative blogosphere lately, you will hear much about the treatment of Sarah Palin. How conservative women feel that we are somehow dismissed by icon’s of the women’s movement because of our views. Isn’t this the same type of behavior? We as a nation need to find a way to look past someone’s faith, color, or gender and judge based on issues and character. The whole content of character thing talked about by Dr. King.

The tea party movement is an important one. People are standing up and voicing opposition to politics as usual, government intrusion into our lives, over-regulation, and unsustainable debt. We are fighting an uphill battle with a government that is becoming more powerful and less likely to listen to us “little folk”. The constitution is being ignored by both parties and we feel powerless to stop it. By injecting racism into the mix we are only hurting the cause.

Are we saying that a Muslim cannot be a good citizen of the US? Can they not serve this country as loyally as someone from a Judeo-Christian background? Because I don’t believe for one second that to be the case. Yes there are elements within Islam that are at war with us, but it certainly is not all of Islam. Extremism exists in all faiths and all walks of life. Two recent high profile murders were committed by men who considered themselves “good Christians”. I can guarantee you the families of those victims will disagree with that. Painting with a broad brush is always a dangerous thing. It reeks of close-mindedness and shows ignorance.

We need to be aware of the dangers of extremism that exists in the world and we need to fight against it at all times. We also need to be aware that good people come from all faiths and all different walks of life. By bringing these types of signs to the tea parties, we are just playing into the hands of Janeane Garafolo and Keith Oberman. We open ourselves up to the charges of racism and risk putting the entire movement in jeopardy.


Carl Wicklander said...

The holocaust museum shooter was not a Christian, but probably almost as anti-Christian as he was anti-Semitic. Also, Martin Luther King may have been a Republican at one time (I actually have no idea what his party affiliation was), but he was no conservative. I've actually made the argument that he was conservative myself, but I've discovered that King actually wanted racial quotas, affirmative action, and redistribution of wealth to compensate for previously-denied wages. He was more like Obama than we might like to think.

This isn't to defend racial segregation, but if we are to apply the virtuous (and obviously more well-known) part of King's message, that means messages like Obama and his camel have no constructive place at the tea parties.

Opus #6 said...

I don't really think Obama is a muslim. Maybe this is the reason I don't find the sign very offensive. Or maybe I'm too easy-going about things. It takes a lot to offend me.

You have to admit, Obama *is* courting the muslim world. For that reason alone, and because he bad-mouths Americans on foreign soil, while cozying up to dictators, I believe the camel comment is OK. Kind of highlighting his apparent favoritism of the muslim world. Like the way Obama sticks it to Israel every chance he gets. But grants Al Jazeera his very first interview as president. If he is to be envisioned riding into town on a camel, I see it because he treats different religions differently, showing apparent favoritism to Islam.

After all, they were just talking about impeaching Obama and the camel, not anything more, er, yucky.

Just a conservative girl said...

Opus, You are right about him courting the Muslim world. But he is no different than Jimmy Carter. He does the same thing and a sign using the camel reference regarding President Carter wouldn't be used. I guess my point is that we need to stop using his middle name as a slur, and making these references. He does have a different view on Islam and the problems in the middle east than say President Bush. But the reasons behind it are not because he is Muslim. It is just a world view that they are victims and we are partially responsible for it. It is a common belief in European countries as well.

Left Coast Rebel said...

I don't like the sign about the Obama Camel, I definitely would not have put it up on my blog. I don't appreciate the racist connotation involved and it doesn't help our cause. However, I am certain that this person was one of many thousands and should have been singaled out and downplayed. The theme of the Tea Parties is much bigger than a few nuts and fruits that will surely come along for the ride. I have been approached on my blog by some truly radical folks that I do not agree with - I gave them no airtime and no platform to argue from. IMO a couple of racists at the DC Tea Pary aren't even worth mentioning.Also, the swine in the media are going to paint us all with the racist brush anyway for defying the Obamanation - it's all they have. Just never give unsavory types a voice on your wonderful blog, as I never have as well!

Left Coast Rebel said...

Also, using his middle name as a slur and the drumbeat of the birth certificate are both inane and a waste of time. We have much bigger fish to fry like the government takeover of medicine. Let's keep our focus!

Euripides said...

There's no use denying that bigotry exists among the ranks of conservatives. It also exists among the ranks of the liberals. They just do a better job of blaming everyone else for their bigotry. The fact that Olbermann could take that anti-Obama/Muslim sign and create a "controversy" over it is proof of the left's success. We just need to fight as hard to pin the left down on their inconsistencies.

Purple Crayon said...

I was there too! I took pictures of a large number of signs, and I did indeed see the camel sign. I made absolutely certain NOT to take a picture of that one, however, because I do not believe that its statement reflects well on the Conservative movement or on the tea party participants.

Eloquent post.

smarty said...

Not my favorite sign and I am not excusing it by any means, but I think it is not bigotry, but complete and total distrust of this man and his minions, which he is totally responsible for.If Obama was a muslim, that would be ok, except that he denies it pre-election, yet has been bragging and playing up his muslim upbringing post-election, bowing to Saudi kings while on his world tour. At the same time he went to a church that spews hate and is grounded in marxist ideology and blames white Americans for every problem facing minorities, and now hasn't been to church since he took office, can't seem to find one... He goes to the middle east and courts the islamic crowd, downplays their responsibilities w/terrorism and ignores our main ally Israel and lays all of the responsibility and blame at their feet for the never ending violence. To really fan the flames he dismisses the very basis of our country's judeo-christian value system ("not a christian country") and inflates the number of muslims here by the millions in speeches. He is not who he says he is, he is a fallacy and a hater. So, the poster may offend some and be a bit outrageous, but it kinda does speak the truth of where he really is "coming from"! As far as winning people over and the racist label, the far left cannot be won over and that includes the media. The destruction of our economy and personal wealth, breakdown of our society, and his own arrogance will drive people to more conservative politics.

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