Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Keith Olbermann - Special Comment, Muslim Community Center

Today I'm just watching Keith Olbermann say all of the things that need to be said.

From MSNBC: Olbermann: There is no 'Ground Zero Mosque'
In a Special Comment, Countdown's Keith Olbermann explains the misnomer and danger in calling it "The Ground Zero Mosque." Olbermann clarifies the misconceptions around the community center.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

The eternity scarf - if it's not RIGHT, could it be SINISTER?

This scarf is called an "eternity scarf," since it is a continuous circle, like the sign for infinity .... hmmm, on Caprica, the infinity symbol represents terrorist monotheists. That can't be a mere coincidence, right?

Monday, August 16, 2010

Not much time to write in the past week .....

I haven't had much writing time this week, so I have fallen behind here, but I've been doing some thinking about the argument between the "a scarf is always a symbol of hate and terrorism" folks and the "wearing a scarf as anything other than a pro-Palestinian symbol is cultural appropriation" folks, and I'm not sure which ones annoy me more. They both come from the same kind of simplistic, us-versus-them, either-with-us-or-against-us mindset, so I suppose that it is no surprise that I want to defy both. So I ordered two different so-called "Israeli keffiyehs." I'll be sure to let my audience of no one know when they arrive.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

I'm calling this my "ICQ scarf"

I'm calling this one my "ICQ scarf," named after a program originally developed in Israel by Mirabilis and then purchased by AOL, because the little green flower on it reminds me of the ICQ symbol. The scarf was purchased from the TibetAsian shop in Lake Placid, NY.

After being out all day, I'm too tired for a substantive post tonight, but I will simply note that this scarf, purchased in a Tibetan goods shop in the Adirondacks, contains no Arabic script and no verses from the Koran, and that the color green does NOT always symbolize support of Hamas.

Monday, August 9, 2010

The topic for today: what faith is not

"There's no use arguing with me. Do you see my resolve face? You've seen it before. You know what it means." Willow Rosenberg (played by Alyson Hannigan), in Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

The first thing that should be obvious, but often somehow isn't: faith isn't measured by how much you hate those who do not agree with you. Hate comes from fear, and true faith is not about fear.

Extremist propaganda has always been about fear, whether it is fear of Muslims, fear of Communists, fear of blacks, fear of homosexuals, or fear of Jews.

The opening of the film "Obsession: Radical Islam's War Against the West" includes the brief disclaimer: "It's important to remember, most Muslims are peaceful and do not support terror. This is not a film about them." While lip service may be given to this concept, many immediately forget it.

My ethnic heritage is Jewish. I chose to become a Christian fifteen years ago, and there are times when I wonder why. Following a refreshingly radical Jew named Yeshua can be a very different phenomenon from being part of institutionalized Christianity.

The easy path is to accept that as a born Jew, I must be a sworn enemy of anyone who follows Islam, and must assume that anyone who follows Islam wants me dead. I choose not to slide down that easy path toward hate. We are each individuals, responsible only for our own actions, not for those of our coreligionists. Hatred and terrorism do not belong exclusively to any particular faith. Each of us may choose to define ourselves as "against" someone or something else, or as "for" something. I think I'll go with "for," not "against."

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Why I'm starting this blog

I am starting this blog because there is a misconception among some of us who support Israel that American Islamophobia does not affect the rights of other religious minorities in the United States, including Jews.

Most of us have heard the quote attributed to Martin Niemöller: "They came first for the Communists, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Communist. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a trade unionist. Then they came for the Jews, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Jew. Then they came for me and by that time no one was left to speak up."

The rights and liberties of ONE religious minority are the rights and liberties of ALL. Discriminating against Muslims is not good for the Jews, or the Jehovah's Witnesses, or the Seventh Day Adventists, or the Bahá’ís, or the Wiccans. Discrimination against ANY religious group threatens the freedom of everyone.

The photos of myself that I'll be posting with various scarves are intended as a visual aid to illustrate my point. Islamophobia has reached such ridiculous proportions that simply wearing a scarf can be perceived as complicity with terrorism. I will not be afraid to wear a scarf, and I will not be afraid to speak out against discrimination against any religious group, including Islam.

Today's post features a "Prayer of Jabez" prayer shawl.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Welcome to This is Not a Keffiyeh

Welcome to "This is Not a Keffiyeh," a blog in favor of religious freedom for everyone in the United States, including Muslims.