Cornell University has just finished an interesting poll. It was reported by ABC News and gives a good indicator as to the mental health of at least 44% of Americans. (You can find the full poll here)
If is fairly frightening for a number of reasons.
basically what this poll tells us is that 44% of Americans favor limiting the rights of US citizens who practice Islam as their religion.
Now being as I am a Muslim I find this rather disturbing, but I find it even more disturbing as an American. My family has been American for a long time. On my mother's side we came from Sweden and Ireland in the mid 1800's, on my father's side we crossed the Berring land-bridge a few thousand years ago and have been here ever since. So I am about as American as they come.
Now I find that almost half of my fellow citizens want to take away my constitutional rights. Why? Because they are scared. Why are they scared? Because of a massive media campaign to turn Muslims into the Bogey Man. (Do you remember those "wolves at the door" commercials that Bush used to frighten people into voting for him)?
You would think that after all these years we as a people would have learned not to judge an entire huge cross section of people by one trait, but I guess that this is too much to hope for.
The old saying "those that do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it" really applies here.
How soon will it be before I am told that I have to put a big yellow star and crescent on my coat? How soon before we have "relocation" camps for the "Safety of the Nation"?
"Muslims" and "Christians" don't want this conflict as far as I can tell, only greedy and power hungry politicians and religious fanatics see any benefit in it.
And there is the rub, Osama bin Laden, al Qadia and the Wahabis are just the other side of the coin from George Bush, Haliburton, and the Dominionists. All both sides have given us is bloodshead, distruction and death.
As far as I am concerned Iraq is our Poland, and I see the same sorts of propaganda coming from right wing Bush supporters as was used by the Nazis to tell everyone why invading Poland was such a good thing.
So there you have it. We are just a little closer to a totalatarian government today than we were yesterday. At times like this it is good to remember the words of one of our founding fathers;
- They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.