Racism and bigotry is on the rise across the globe.
Many of the western governments won't allow building of a mosque on Muslim owned properties. Even if the central government sometimes may have no bars for such mosque constructions, the local Christian community, much given to racism and bigotry, may not permit construction of a mosque in its locality.
Such objections against mosques are called democracy here - a flawed one, obviously, by the locals that have not learned that in a liberal democracy the majoritarian views should not trample religious and cultural rights of a minority.
If you are looking for a connection with 9/11, think again. Such anti-Mosque objections are decades old. I remember the strong objections that came from local Christian community when Muslims in nearby
wanted to build a mosque nearly 25 years ago. Voorhees Township, NJ
My local Muslim community in suburban
has been struggling for years to get the necessary permit towards building a
mosque, and so is the case with many Muslim communities across today where
they are denied the right to construct a new mosque or expand an existing one
to cater to the growing needs of the community. America
Oddly, all these objections are happening in the 'land of the free' where things are supposed to be better for the minorities in comparison to other place around the globe!
Often times, the hate-mongering talk show hosts and media-made or self-acclaimed pundits serving at the altar of merchants of death and perpetual wars are responsible for spicing up racism and bigotry against Muslims. Rather than reporting news they help to create news. They twist and distort facts and feed fear and hatred to put one community against another. They would lecture us about how terrible the condition is for the women and minorities, esp. in the Muslim countries, without ever visiting such countries, let alone living there. They give a bad name to the profession of journalism.
Consider, for instance, Fox TV's Sean Hannity program where the host, a college drop-out, audaciously asked his guest to cite a Muslim country where women and minorities are respected. What an ignorant! A simple Google search could have educated him. But he did not care to do that homework, and instead opted to spread his lies and distortions.
These anti-Muslim zealots and pundits won't tell their audience that for centuries the religious minorities have co-mingled and co-existed without facing any persecution in Muslim countries and that many minorities have held high positions and even have headed the state. Many women leaders have held the top post in the Muslim majority countries like
Pakistan, Bangladesh and - some of the most
populous Muslim countries of our time. Consider, e.g., Bangladesh, which has
been ruled by two women (Sheikh Hasina and Khaleda Zia) for nearly a quarter century
since 1991 (with a small break of couple of years in 2007-2008). The speaker of
the parliament (Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury) and leaders of the two major opposition
parties (BNP and JP) are all women. The chief judge (Chief Justice S.K. Sinha)
in the highest apex court (the Supreme Court of Bangladesh) is also a
non-Muslim. As I have shown elsewhere the proportion of Hindus employed in
government jobs in Turkey Bangladesh
is much higher than their actual percentage within the overall population, and
no one is discriminated on the basis of caste or creed in . People
of all faiths are free to practice and preach their religion. Religious
holidays for all the religious communities are observed. While like many
third-world developing countries Bangladesh has her share of political
problems no one can deny her enviable records in the areas of empowering women
and minorities. Bangladesh
In contrast, in Sean Hannity's
there is neither a single Muslim Senator nor are Muslim religious holidays
observed officially. America
Hateful guys like Hannity are either unaware of the truth or cares very little about it, and as such, would rather live in their self-delusional lunatic fringe keeping their audience also half-educated or ill-informed. They are, however, adept in recycling their worst thoughts and fears, and false ideas on their audience. Since hatred, sadly, sells in our world, they have found willing patrons to patronize the sale of their deadly capsules of intolerance and hatred
Women rights and empowerment is all empty talks for them and nothing else!
Down south in
the Muslim community has been facing similar problems with mosques. The City of
ticked off plans to build the mosque in June last year but
objectors took the case to the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal
(VCAT) to argue the development would cause traffic and social
issues. VCAT dismissed those concerns, but protests have continued,
causing tension in the local community, and the city center was shut down in
August when hundreds of people gathered for counter-rallies. Greater Bendigo
Police were called in to escort
councillors from their regular meeting last month after anti-mosque protesters
began chanting and hurling abuse at them from the public
Mayor Councillor Peter Cox said the mosque would go ahead despite the ongoing protests. "Council can't change its mind on the mosque at this point in time, we made our decision 15 months ago, the decision's been upheld by VCAT, the permit's been issued," he said. "While there's a court of appeal that still has to go they can proceed with their permit at this point in time."
Rival rallies have been held in the central Victorian city of
by groups for and against the
construction of a local mosque. Today, the United Patriots Front
(UPF) held a rally, which was the second time in two months that nationalist and
far-right groups had demonstrated against the city council's approval
of a mosque in Bendigo, Victoria. Bendigo
Anti-racism groups, operating under the banner of the Bendigo Action Coalition, also marched from the city's town hall to Rosalind Park as 400 police watched on. Anti-racism activist Tashara Roberts called on those present at the rally to respect those opposite them, "even the idiots". "It is our responsibility as forward-thinking citizens to take every opportunity to educate fellow Bendigonians, and show them why we hold the beliefs that we do, and we must do so peacefully and respectfully. We must lead by example, we must show tolerance, even to the idiots."
Bendigo City Mayor Peter Cox said he did not understand why the UPF had targeted
. He said the
council had to better understand what was driving people's fears about Bendigo 's
future. "Part of the Australian constitution is that we can practice
our belief systems, however there are concerns and fears that people have, we
need to talk to those people," he said. "I really don't
understand how people can look at their TV sets in their lounge room about
terrorism around the world and link it to building a mosque in Bendigo ." Bendigo
Earlier Saturday, Victoria Police Assistant Commissioner Stephen Leane labeled the police presence in
a "major operation". There was also a heightened police presence
at other mosques across the state, including in Bendigo . Melbourne
Are the planned protests in
against mosques linked to anti-mosque protests here in the ? I won't be
surprised to find the unholy link. After all, this week, an anti-Muslim group,
which absurdly calls itself Global Rally for Humanity, has similarly
called for nationwide protests at mosques in the USA on Friday and Saturday
(Oct. 9 and 10). It asked its “patriots” across the country to set
up protests in their cities with multiple Facebook pages, and instructed
organizers to “remember to do your homework and find a local mosque in your
Though the group's Facebook page lists no contacts, the Chicago-based Center for New Community identified
activist Jon Ritzheimer, an ex-Marine and “Oath Keeper”, as the
architect of the plan. He is affiliated with the right-wing Three Percenters
militia group. He has posted several videos on YouTube promoting the
protest, according to the Montgomery-Alabama-based Southern
Poverty Law Center. He gained media attention earlier this year
for coordinating the Freedom of Speech Rally Round 2, which drew hundreds of
armed protesters and several hundred counter-protesters. Last month he threatened to arrest lawmakers who supported the
nuclear deal with Phoenix . Iran
In May, when Ritzheimer staged a heavily armed protest outside the Islamic Community Center of Phoenix, Arizona he had said he wanted to see similar rallies nationwide.
"We’ve never had this many events targeting mosques in this kind of national way," Heidi Beirich, director of the Intelligence Project at the Southern Poverty Law Center, said in a conference call earlier this week. "This is widespread in a way that these things have not been before."
Although Ritzheimer has miserably failed to rally his 'patriots' against Muslims the planned demonstrations underscore a growing anti-Islam movement in the
U.S., which has been exacerbated by rhetoric on
the presidential campaign trail and the refugee crisis in Europe.
And this is a warning sign for . If
serious the authorities should be able to easily connect the dots in finding
the masterminds behind such hateful protest rallies not just within the America but across
the globe. USA