Muslims: We Are The New Jews
Aug 16, 2010
Dear President Obama,
I write to thank you for your support of the plans for the Park51 Islamic Cultural Center in Lower Manhattan and of religious freedom for all Americans. I know I speak for many, many Jewish leaders when I express my thanks for your support of Park51. I have worked with Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf and with Daisy Khan. I appreciate their commitment to interreligious dialogue and so, have been outspoken in my support for them. I can think of no better memorial to the Americans who gave their lives on Sept. 11, 2001, than a place of prayer, contemplation, and communal engagement.
I also deeply appreciate your standing up for our freedom of religion. It is not sufficient to assert the right to build; only the free exercise of that right is a guarantee of religious freedom. I am distressed at those who would divide America and use hatred of other Americans as a political tool. I applaud your courage at speaking out on this issue. We consider support of Park51 essential to the rights of religious expression for the Jewish community, as well.
My best wishes to you, in the hopes that you continue to serve America in helping ALL of our citizens achieve their basic rights such as healthcare, economic wellbeing, and freedom of expression and religion.
Rabbi Burt Visotzky
Appleman Professor of Midrash and Interreligious Studies
Director, Louis Finkelstein Institute for Religious and Social Studies
"First they came ..." is a famous statement attributed to Pastor Martin Niemöller (1892–1984) about the inactivity of German intellectuals following the Nazi rise to power and the purging of their chosen targets, group after group. The text expresses, in a condensed form, the understanding of history presented by Niemöller in a January 6, 1946 speech before representatives of the Confessing Church in Frankfurt.
"THEY CAME FIRST for the Communists,
and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Communist.
THEN THEY CAME for the trade unionists,
and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a trade unionist.
THEN THEY CAME for the Jews,
and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Jew.
THEN THEY CAME for me
and by that time no one was left to speak up."
...Now you can add to that list:
THEN THEY CAME for the Muslims, (USA 2010)
and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Muslim. (USA 2010)
Help donate to keep America Free...help build the Islamic Community Center 3 Blocks away from Ground Zero by the Porn Store in New York: www.cordobainitiative.org Only you can stop racism and biggotry by the Evangelical-Qaeda, Talibangelicals, and their right wing extremist allies.