I just wrote about my feelings and concerns in Mitigation Journal blog and talked on edition #186 of the podcast regarding the Mosque situation in NYC, near Ground Zero. Here is an outtake from my August 28 posting:
"From the polarization of opinion, the demonstrations, to the time when construction on the NYC Ground Zero Mosque begins and to its completion...indeed, for the duration the Islamic Center stands, it will be a target of political and public debate"...and..."I am concerned about the "actions" we may see. Gunfire at a anti-NYC Mosque protest...an explosive event at a pro-Islamic Center political speech...or a major event O.K. City style, after the NYC Mosque is built. Nobody is talking about the ability, more likely inability, to protect this Islamic Center from domestic terrorism. We're not talking about it because we can't..."My number one concern in this mosque issue is that it will become the spark that ignites domestic terrorism or the perpetration of an act of terrorism that is constructed to look like an attack on the American Muslim. I firmly believe that this issue has grown to the point of volatility and any attack or event will lead to localized (if not wide spread) civil unrest and retaliation.
On August 30, 2010, CNN U.S. is reporting on a fire at the site of a proposed mosque located in Murfeesboro, Tennessee. Calling it suspected arson, the article goes on to describe how the fire destroyed construction equipment at the site of this future Islamic Center. According to CNN officials are saying that arson...is a reasonable assumption. Despite vigils held in honor of religious freedom, the fear factor has been increased, one source mentioned in the article says "it really put fear into the community".
Yet, in another story by CNN U.S. highlights the actions of Muslims who have launched an internet advertising campaign to reinforce the point that they're Americans. The movement under the name of Park51 (www.park51.org) is intended to fight back against "the rising tide of fear-mongering". There is also a YouTube video "My Faith, My Voice" that delivers a simple, yet compelling message..."I am a Muslim...I don't want to take over this country...and I don't support terrorism". There are a number of other PSA located on the My Faith My Voice website that are worth the minute or so to view.
I am sure the Muslim community in the United States is not out "take over the country" and equally confident that the majority of Americans don't participate in fear-mongering. There are two issues here...the mosque at Ground Zero and the polarization of public opinion...that is, radicalization on both sides. There is the real danger.