Church in Arizona protested because it looks like a mosque
Islamophobia may have reached a point in this country where people condemn Christians that they suspect are Muslims without ever checking the facts.
In Phoenix, Arizona, a new Christian church has residents fearing that it is an Islamic mosque.
The Light of the World multidenominational church is being built just off of Interstate 10 and features a dome-like structure.
"Since the distinctive dome shape went up, church leaders said they have received phone calls from concerned neighbors who've mistaken the building for an Islamic mosque," KPHO reported.
"I heard many people, they came over and they say, 'Is this a Muslim temple?' No, it's not," church member Juan Calixto told KPNX.
"It is unfortunate that people are so intolerant to differences that they aren’t willing to see that the place of worship is not a mosque," said Tayyibah Amatullah of the Council on American-Islamic Relations’ Arizona chapter.
Church officials have hung a sign to let people know they aren't Muslim. "If you think we are different you are wrong," the sign reads. "We are building a Christian house of prayer."
"We're trying to let people know that we're Christian and our churches are modern," Uzieo Martinez, a church official told KPHO.
Officials are trying to avoid the type of backlash received by the Park51 Islamic center that is planned near Ground Zero.
The cultural center was largely ignored when The New York Times first reported about it in December 2009.
The project received wider notice in May 2010 when a community board considered the construction plans. Conservative bloggers Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer dubbed the proposed center the "Ground Zero Mosque" which started a national controversy.
"But with so many high-profile figures selling unfounded, anti-Muslim fear to the public, is it any wonder that all many Americans can see in Islam is a phantom menace?" asked Tanya Somanader at the liberal blog Think Progress.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Words fail me, is this what the world is coming to? Where even looking 'different' or in this case 'Muslim' is dangerous and can lead to harassment? This is an all to regular occurance, people looking as if they are Muslim are attacked, even though they are not. Even at the 'Ground Zero Mosque' 'protest' organized by Loony in Chief Pamela Geller this happened, two Arab Christians who turned up to protest were attacked by the crowd and had to be protected by the police. It is a sad world where hate is getting to a level that it is dangerous to stand out or look like a certain group of people, where you have to, as this Church does, hold up a sign effectively saying 'Not Muslim, please don't hurt me!'. I know you are all intelligent people and I don't have to go on for to long about the dangers this sort of thing. However, I would like to make two main points.
First of all, this rise in what can only be called tribalism, where one has to fit in and all others are 'enemies' to be hated, is extremely dangerous. I don't really need to go into to much detail, but we all know what happens when hate is allowed free range to grow. And a close freind of mine said, hate is a seed sown by someone by the devil, if it is allowed to grow then it will soon take over that person. We cannot let this hate grow.
I would also like to share something the Buddah once said:
"Words have the power to create and destroy, when they are both true and kind, they can change our world"
This is very true and it is the case with these so called blogger like Geller who are peddling their hate, and making huge profits out of it. We need to take the Buddah's words to heart, not allow our words to destroy and make the true and kind to change this world for the better. These hate mongers need to be taken to heel and stood up to. Because, as I related in the story of Martin Niemöller in an older post, who knows when these people will turn on you?
I will leave this here, it is a depressing subject and I don't want to go to much into it right now, but I think you can all see the danger we are facing.