Greenwald has another fascinating and disturbing piece up, and in this one, he discusses the demonization of a Muslim non-profit here in the U.S. The fear and paranoia displayed by the actors in the piece is striking, especially given the realities. The fact is that Muslims make up a very small minority in this country, and an especially small one in Congress, as the piece alludes to. Plus, the actions of the group in question, the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), amount to nothing more than lobbying on behalf of American Muslims.
And why shouldn’t they? Many national security policies, whether official or unofficial, specifically target people who appear “Muslim”, i.e., of Middle-Eastern descent. And the actions of these legislators speak to why the group is necessary. Clearly these legislators represent a growing fear about the spread of Islam and though Muslims make up such a small percentage of Americans, it is the fastest growing religion in the world. Thus, these people fear and benefit, probably both politically and economically, by exaggerating the influence of Islam and mischaracterizing the tenets of the religion. And it is worth noting that it is quite probable that many view the ongoing conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan as religious crusades against the “Muslim Menace”.
I cannot help but wonder what will happen once the ongoing crusade against Islam is over. At least Muslims believe in a God and Islam is an Abrahamic religion. What will these people do with atheists? I realize that a lot of this fear stems from 9/11, but make no mistake: There is a definite religious undertone in this movement. It is only a matter of time before sights are set on a different pray of the non-Christian and/or non-believing variety.
The Republican Party surely cannot survive if they cater to the fringe far-right movement that embodies this religious fear, and others (Socialism, Obama as second-coming of Hitler, Obama a Muslim, Obama born in Kenya, etc.). Right? Then again, who knows. As bad as the Democrats have been this year, I hope they get their stuff together because I do not want to see what the GOP will do once in power again.