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Hallowed Ground? Really?

By The Reverend Published: August 24, 2010

Republican candidates for this fall's midterms have nothing to offer prospective voters. At least, nothing new.

Republicans want to cut taxes even further, and yet, those same Republicans have no plan for paying for the resultant huge deficit those tax cuts will continue to create. Simultaneously, Republicans midterm campaign plan is to attack Democrats unceasingly for deficit spending.

Crazy times.

Because the Republican Party is bankrupt of positive ideas for the nation.........and more tax cuts...and hypocrisy....are not, you know, very popular with angry voters........distractions are necessary.

That brings me back to the alleged controversy allegedly still raging over the Islamic Center to be built blocks away from Ground Zero. Perhaps you saw some of the crazed protesters on the teevee last night.

As I've pointed out in past blogs, many critics raise the issue of "insensitivity" when it comes to Muslim New Yorkers' plans to build a Muslim Cultural Center a long couple of blocks away from where the new One World Trade Center is being constructed as the feature building of the reclaimed Ground Zero.

In this criticism, certain New York Muslims are said to be insensitive to the feelings of 9-11 victims' families,.....insensitive to how some Americans conflate all Muslims with Bin Laden's soldiers....insensitive to, after 9 years, the raw emotions and feelings attached to Ground Zero and what happened there.

I have pointed out how our nation cannot really function if feelings, and not the rule of law, determine our course of action.

But there is a second tangential criticism by many, not just from the right this time, which describes the entire Ground Zero vicinity as "hallowed ground."

This line of argument is embraced by President Obama. He recently claimed that Ground Zero is, indeed, "hallowed ground."

I understand the thinking behind this discussion.....but I'm sorry, there is no such thing as "hallowed ground."

Dictionary.com defines the word "hallowed" like this.....

"regarded as holy; venerated; sacred"

Hallowed is a religious word. Holy, venerated, sacred....are religious words.

Even though all Americans grieved over the needless slaughter at Ground Zero, a slaughter done by religious men thinking they were carrying out a sacred act......the fact that thousands of Americans were slaughtered at Ground Zero, doesn't change the nature of the soil where the slaughter happened. It's still the same soil.

The only thing which has changed is the way Americans,....New Yorkers....think about the soil at Ground Zero.

And that leads me to today's point.

Other than the "sensitivities" argument, which is untenable in a country which governs itself by the rule of law,.....the only other widespread "debate" point concerning the Islamic Center being built is this "hallowed ground" point.

If the land, the dirt, at Ground Zero is sacred......"hallowed"....then, it is being said, Muslims going in and out of an Islamic Center complex around the corner and two blocks away from One World Trade Center, "in the shadow of Ground Zero"....would be a desecration of such holy ground.

Of course, to me, a hellbound atheist.....this is not an argument at all, it's just plain silly talk.

Just for the heck of it, however, let's take it seriously for a moment.

Right now, at Ground Zero, not a couple blocks around the corner and out of sight of Ground Zero, the One World Trade Center is under construction.

Once completed, the 104-story building will house 2.6 million sq. ft. of office space, a two-floor observation deck, skyline restaurant, retail spaces, broadcast and antenna masts, and four floors for below street-level parking, and areas for fuel storage, water tanks, and mechanical space.

"2.6 million square feet of office space" in the middle of Manhattan. Much of that office space will be leased by American financial interests, who will be doing what they normally do when they rent office space: try to make more money.

"retail spaces".....why do Americans lease "retail space?" To sell their stuff, right....to make a profit, right?

So what we have here, not 2 blocks away and around the corner from Ground Zero, but AT Ground Zero.....is the sacred, "hallowed" American practice of profit-making,....capitalism.

Apparently, exploiting office space AT Ground Zero, and for the sake of serving "mammon", isn't regarded as defiling "hallowed" soil. Serving the pursuit of the almighty dollar.....something the Bible tells readers will land them in hell....I guess in no way is being insensitive to the feelings of families who lost loved ones on the same soil.

But around the corner and two blocks down....out of sight from Ground Zero......those troublesome New York Muslims are not only being insensitive, but are also acting sacreligiously towards America's new "hallowed" ground.

Opponents of the New York Islamic Center not only do not have an "insensitive" leg to stand on in our rule-of-law nation......but where these opponents want to place that "insensitive" leg isn't sacred either.

That is, unless you believe the open pursuit of profits on the very soil 3000 Americans lost their lives makes that ground "hallowed."

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