To be quite honest, it is sometimes embarrassing to be an American. When I look at other countries, I cannot help but to notice how brutal and barbaric America is. Most other developed nations do not wage illegal wars or invade sovereign nations. Other developed nations do not round up terror suspects and torture them. They do not order drone strikes that miss their targets and kill innocent people. They do not raid houses in the middle of the night and humiliate men in front of their families and neighbors. But the barbarism that comes with illegal wars is often unimaginable until you actually start digging into it, and the more you learn the less sense it makes. PBS FRONTLINE is my favorite eye-opener and I deeply feel that more people ought to indulge and get a better sense of America’s wars and the horrors that they create. It leaves you questioning who the real terrorists are.
One of the more recent documentaries on Frontline is about The Man Behind the Mosque. I felt this to be an extremely touching story. The short of it is that so many Americans evoke an extreme prejudice toward Muslims, so much that they stereotype ALL of Islam as being disrespectful – just complete, unyielding contempt for the entire religion, so much as to let it thwart the creation of a place of worship in one of the United States’ most forward-thinking cities, New York. They said, “No, you cannot build your place of worship here.” In New York City. In the United States of America. “The terrorists are trying to build a victory mosque.” And this guy behind the mosque is a model American, a community figure, a savvy businessman, and a total NYC character and amazing storyteller. Basically the victims of 9/11’s family members are labeling this Muslim man and the imam he selects to run the community center as bad people because they are Muslim. To the victims’ families they are no different than the terrorists. This type of thinking is not just sad, it’s just so backwards and ignorant I can’t even sympathize with their thought process.
Hate heals no wounds. I’m so disappointed by the reaction of my fellow Americans in the face of challenge. All the awful wars aside, on the home front, in light of 9/11, Americans did not rise to the occasion when better judgement was needed the most. Instead so many decided to exercise intolerance, racial and religious prejudice, and uncompromising hatred. Whatever happened to freedom of religion?