If That 'Mosque' ISN'T Built, This Is No Longer America

I am opposed to the building of the "mosque" two blocks from Ground Zero.

I want it built on Ground Zero.

Why? Because I believe in an America that protects those who are the
victims of hate and prejudice. I believe in an America that says you
have the right to worship whatever God you have, wherever you want to
worship. And I believe in an America that says to the world that we are a
loving and generous people and if a bunch of murderers steal your
religion from you and use it as their excuse to kill 3,000 souls, then I
want to help you get your religion back. And I want to put it at the
spot where it was stolen from you.

There's been so much that's been said about this manufactured
controversy, I really don't want to waste any time on this day of
remembrance talking about it. But I hate bigotry and I hate liars, and
so in case you missed any of the truth that's been lost in this, let me
point out a few facts:

1. I love the Burlington Coat Factory. I've gotten some great winter
coats there at a very reasonable price. Muslims have been holding their
daily prayers there since 2009. No one ever complained about that. This
is not going to be a "mosque," it's going to be a community center. It
will have the same prayer room in it that's already there. But to even
have to assure people that "it's not going to be mosque" is so
offensive, I now wish they would just build a 111-story mosque there.
That would be better than the lame and disgusting way the developer has
left Ground Zero an empty hole until recently. The remains of over 1,100
people still haven't been found. That site is a sacred graveyard, and
to be building another monument to commerce on it is a sacrilege. Why
wasn't the entire site turned into a memorial peace park? People died
there, and many of their remains are still strewn about, all these years

2. Guess who has helped the Muslims organize their plans for this
community center? The JEWISH COMMUNITY CENTER of Manhattan! Their rabbi
has been advising them since the beginning. It's been a picture-perfect
example of the kind of world we all want to live in. Peter Stuyvessant,
New York's "founder," tried to expel the first Jews who arrived in
Manhattan. Then the Dutch said, no, that's a bit much. So then
Stuyvessant said ok, you can stay, but you cannot build a synagogue
anywhere in Manhattan. Do your stupid Friday night thing at home. The
first Jewish temple was not allowed to be built until 1730. Then there
was a revolution, and the founding fathers said this country has to be
secular -- no religious nuts or state religions. George Washington
(inaugurated around the corner from Ground Zero) wanted to make a
statement about this his very first year in office, and wrote this to American Jews:

"The citizens of the United States of America have a right to applaud
themselves for having given to mankind examples of an enlarged and
liberal policy -- a policy worthy of imitation. ...

"It is now no more that toleration is spoken of as if it were the
indulgence of one class of people that another enjoyed the exercise of
their inherent natural rights, for, happily, the Government of the
United States, which gives to bigotry no sanction, to persecution no
assistance, requires only that they who live under its protection should
demean themselves as good citizens ...

"May the children of the stock of Abraham who dwell in this land
continue to merit and enjoy the good will of the other inhabitants --
while every one shall sit in safety under his own vine and fig tree and
there shall be none to make him afraid."

3. The Imam in charge of this project is the nicest guy you'd ever want to meet. Read about his past here.

4. Around five dozen Muslims died at the World Trade Center on 9/11.
Hundreds of members of their families still grieve and suffer. The 19
killers did not care what religion anyone belonged to when they took
those lives.

5. I've never read a sadder headline in the New York Times than the one on the front page this past Monday: "American Muslims Ask, Will We Ever Belong?"
That should make all of us so ashamed that even a single one of our
fellow citizens should ever have to worry about if they "belong" here.

6. There is a McDonald's two blocks from Ground Zero. Trust me, McDonald's has killed far more people than the terrorists.

7. During an economic depression or a time of war, fascists are
extremely skilled at whipping up fear and hate and getting the working
class to blame "the other" for their troubles. Lincoln's enemies told
poor Southern whites that he was "a Catholic." FDR's opponents said he
was Jewish and called him "Jewsevelt." One in five Americans now believe
Obama is a Muslim and 41% of Republicans don't believe he was born

8. Blaming a whole group for the actions of just one of that group
is anti-American. Timothy McVeigh was Catholic. Should Oklahoma City
prohibit the building of a Catholic Church near the site of the former
federal building that McVeigh blew up?

9. Let's face it, all religions have their whackos. Catholics have
O'Reilly, Gingrich, Hannity and Clarence Thomas (in fact all five
conservatives who dominate the Supreme Court are Catholic). Protestants
have Pat Robertson and too many to list here. The Mormons have Glenn
Beck. Jews have Crazy Eddie. But we don't judge whole religions on just
the actions of their whackos. Unless they're Methodists.

10. If I should ever, God forbid, perish in a terrorist incident,
and you or some nutty group uses my death as your justification to
attack or discriminate against anyone in my name, I will come back and
haunt you worse than Linda Blair marrying Freddy Krueger and moving into
your bedroom to spawn Chucky. John Lennon was right when he asked us to
imagine a world with "nothing to kill or die for and no religion, too."
I heard Deepak Chopra this week say that "God gave humans the truth,
and the devil came and he said, 'Let's give it a name and call it
religion.' " But John Adams said it best when he wrote a sort of letter
to the future (which he called "Posterity"): "Posterity! You will never
know how much it cost the present Generation to preserve your Freedom! I
hope you will make a good use of it. If you do not, I shall repent in
Heaven that I ever took half the Pains to preserve it." I'm guessing ol'
John Adams is up there repenting nonstop right now.

Friends, we all have a responsibility NOW to make sure that Muslim
community center gets built. Once again, 70% of the country (the same
number that initially supported the Iraq War) is on the wrong side and
want the "mosque" moved. Enormous pressure has been put on the Imam to
stop his project. We have to turn this thing around. Are we going to let
the bullies and thugs win another one? Aren't you fed up by now? When
would be a good time to take our country back from the haters?

I say right now. Let's each of us make a statement by donating to the
building of this community center! It's a nonprofit, tax-exempt
organization and you can donate a dollar or ten dollars (or more) right
now through a secure pay pal account by clicking here. I will personally match the first $10,000 raised (forward your PayPal receipt to webguy@michaelmoore.com).
If each one of you reading this blog/email donated just a couple of
dollars, that would give the center over $6 million, more than what
Donald Trump has offered to buy the Imam out. C'mon everyone, let's
pitch in and help those who are being debased for simply wanting to do
something good. We could all make a huge statement of love on this
solemn day.

I lost a co-worker on 9/11. I write this today in his memory.

"The man who speaks of the enemy / Is the enemy himself."
-- Bertolt Brecht

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