The Right Wing hates the Constitution. Period. Although they claim to be defenders of the Constitution, they want nothing more than to shred it to pieces and instate their radical Tea Party platform of no taxes, no immigrants, and no freedom.
Many prominent Republican politicians have come out against the Park 51 project in Manhattan. This brings us to the first amendment which the Republicans hates: The First Amendment.
It reads: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
The free exercise clause guarantees the religious liberty of America’s citizens. However, Chis McGreal of the Guardian notes the many Republicans coming out against the proposed community center:
Sarah Palin, the former vice presidential candidate, has been a vocal opponent of the controversial New York mosque.
Other prominent politicians have cast the net wider. Newt Gingrich, the Republican former speaker of the House of Representatives, who is thought likely to make a run for president, has warned that Muslims are attempting to impose sharia law in the US and that it poses a “mortal threat to freedom” in America.
Gingrich said that he would push for legislation to prevent states from adopting sharia law even though none are proposing it and there is no likely prospect of it happening.
Esposito said politicians’ fearmongering over Muslims was similar to exploitation of fears that the country was being swamped by a tide of illegal immigrants.
America, these are your 2012 Republican Presidential nominees. The New York Tea Party candidate for governor made similar bigoted remarks:
As governor, I will use the power of eminent domain to stop the mosque, and use the site as a war memorial instead of a monument to those who attacked our country
Eric Cantor, Republican Whip, too, came out against religious liberty for Muslims.
Charles Johnson of Little Green Footballs noted how the conservative mouthpieces Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh also oppose Muslims from setting up a community center in New York.
Beck labeled the Park51 project an â€œAllah tells me to blow up America mosque.â€
And Limbaugh, not to be outdone, mocked the idea of â€œMuslim outreachâ€ and said the Park51 builders are â€œplanting the flag of victory,â€ so they can say â€œwe won.
Founder of Redstate.com, Erick Erickson, compares the building of an Islamic community center to be equivalent to human sacrifice.
Oh â€” what about the Greater First Church of Satan wanting to do human sacrifice of a willing victim? I guess our founding principles demand the President support that too. After all, it is a religious belief and only willing participants.
Maybe it’s a bit sensationalist to say the Right Wing hates the First Amendment. It’s fair to say, though, the Right Wing hates the First Amendment when people other than themselves receive its protection.
The American Family Association, supporters of the Tea Party and Gingrich (redundant, I know), said so themselves:
Because of this subversive ideology, Muslims cannot claim religious freedom protections under the First Amendment. They are currently using First Amendment freedoms to make plans to destroy the First Amendment altogether. There is no such thing as freedom of religion in Islam, and it is sheer and utter folly for Americans to delude themselves into thinking otherwise.
What’s worse is that the bigotry and fanaticism of the Tea Party extends all over America in opposing mosques being built. Laurie Goodstein of the New York Times notes a few incidents:
In Murfreesboro, Tenn., Republican candidates have denounced plans for a large Muslim center proposed near a subdivision, and hundreds of protesters have turned out for a march and a county meeting.
In late June, in Temecula, Calif., members of a local Tea Party group took dogs and picket signs to Friday prayers at a mosque that is seeking to build a new worship center on a vacant lot nearby.
In Sheboygan, Wis., a few Christian ministers led a noisy fight against a Muslim group that sought permission to open a mosque in a former health food store bought by a Muslim doctor.
Temecula is nearly 3000 miles from Ground Zero, yet it still should not have a mosque. Opposition to the Park 51 Project has nothing do with the interests of 9/11 families (Consider these families who support the mosque and the Muslims who died in the attacks as well), but pure and simple bigotry.
Hamdan Azhar of the Christian Science Monitor makes a simple case why the Park 51 project should continue:
Similarly, there are those who say â€œdonâ€™t let those Muslims build a mosque near Ground Zero.â€ Do they realize that there are already over 100 mosques in New York City? And no, this isnâ€™t a Saudi plot to take over America â€“ the oldest was built over 70 years ago.
And then there is my generation, those who were born and raised in this country, brought up in the uniquely diverse milieu of New York. â€œThose Muslims hate our way of life,â€ we are told. Such an ignorant statement shows that some people cannot accept the simple fact that Muslims can be Americans and so many Americans can be Muslims; that Muslims can be New Yorkers and New Yorkers â€“ 800,000 of them â€“ can be Muslims.
Now that we’ve established that Conservatives would like to limit the application of the First Amendment. Let’s move on to an amendment which they want to outright revoke. Section 1 of the Fourteenth Amendment reads:
All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside.
This sounds like a reasonable amendment. America is a country of immigrants! Why who would be daft enough to oppose such an amendment? Well, look no further than the Republicans in Congress. Peter Grier of the Christian Science Monitor writes:
Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell (R) of Kentucky, Sen. Jon Kyl (R) of Arizona, Sen. Jeff Sessions (R) of Alabama, and Sen. John McCain (R) of Arizona have said they would be in favor of looking at the issue via hearings. So has House minority leader John Boehner (R) of Ohio.
These aren’t just some rogue Republican politicians. The Senate leadership, the House leadership, and the 2008 Republican Presidential Candidate all have doubts about the 14th Amendment! What’s their beef with the Amendment? Well, let someone more qualified explain:
“You see, when an illegal man and an illegal woman just love each other very much, they share a special hug…. Then nine months later the baby is born a U.S. citizen. And by immigration law, they can get their relative a green card. All t…hey have to do is wait until the child turns 21, have it petition the government, then return to Mexico for a mandatory ten-year waiting period and then, boom, they come back to steal all of our social services starting with social security because by then they’re eligible. – Stephen T. Colbert
Some Republican politicians like Louie Gohmert are quick to point out that terrorists could be planting “terror babies” that will be ready to strike in 31 years using this method. Interestingly, Republican politician Mike Huckabee opposes changes to the 14th Amendment, and, in fact, said:
The question is: Is he [child of illegal immigrant] better off going to college and becoming a neurosurgeon or a banker or whatever he might become, and becoming a taxpayer, and in the process having to apply for and achieve citizenship, or should we make him pick tomatoes? I think it’s better if he goes to college and becomes a citizen.
You know there’s something wrong when Huckabee is the voice of reason in the Republican party.
Moving on, Republicans claim to be big cutters of the government. Nothing better exemplifies their cutting than their desire to remove another part of the 14th Amendment which reads:
No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.
With the recent striking down of Prop 8, the Right is seething with hatred that gays will finally be able to marry per the equal protection clause. Okay, okay, I’m probably being sensationalist again; they don’t want to remove the 14th Amendment. Republicans just interpret it differently. Maybe gays aren’t persons? Yeah! Similar to Arroyo Toads and Coho Salmo, gays don’t deserve the protection of our laws (Well, to be fair, those toads and salmon are protected under the Endangered Species Act).
Simmi Aujla of Politico reports that Rep.Lamar Smith plans to issue a resolution condemning the Prop 8 ruling in Congress:
Reps. Lamar Smith of Texas, Michele Bachmann of Minnesota, Steve King of Iowa and John Fleming of Louisiana told reporters on Tuesday that the California federal judge who overturned Prop. 8 acted against the will of voters in striking down the state’s ban on gay marriage.
“Legalizing an alternative form of marriage dilutes a long-standing and widely accepted standard of marriage as a union between a man and woman. We should adhere to such standards rather than undertake a massive social experiment with perhaps unknown consequences,” said Smith, who is introducing a resolution condemning the ruling.
Yes, imagine the devastating consequences of legalizing gay marriage! Temperatures will rise to the hottest on record, fish will disappear from the oceans, and giant ice islands four times the size of Manhattan will break off in to the Arctic! Oh wait, all of that is happening already.
So what’s the Republican Party’s strategy in all this fear-mongering? Simply put, it’s to get the base out for the 2010 elections. Rachel Maddow explained that the Republicans are using the same Southern Strategy which involves appealing to the conservative, traditionalist nature of Republicans in that they oppose the “Other.” Electoral gains through fear, as simple as that.