Wichita Peace and Freedom Party Examiner:
Should a Muslim cultural center be built near ground zero in New York? This is the issue that won’t go away. In a way it is a non-issue but it stays in the news anyway. It was in The Wichita Eagle this Sunday. It was in an earlier article I wrote.
I also compared one of our modern issues, Gay Marriage, to going back and voting to bring slavery back. Of course there are few, if any Americans who would even want to vote on such an issue. We fought the bloodiest war in our history to bring that to an end. It wasn’t the only reason for the war, but the point remains that rights of Afro-Americans did not come easy. Anyone who has seen the dogs and water hoses turned on civil rights workers in the 1960s realizes that opposition to such change tried hard to keep it from coming. That doesn’t mean that people today want to reverse those changes.
I’ve posted pictures of lynch mobs from the 1930s and they are grim reminders of the kind of hate we are capable of. That doesn’t mean that I believe people would do that today.
Three issues I’ve written about last week, Gay marriage, Arizona's new immigration law, the Muslim cultural center planned for ground zero, all remind me that change just doesn’t come easy to this country. I don’t dispute that most of the voters oppose gay marriage, repealing Arizona’s immigration laws or that most Americans oppose the Muslim Culture center in New York.
I can’t claim to be on the winning side. But the same can be said for other forms of discrimination. There was stiff opposition the 19 amendment allowing women to vote, August 18, 1920, There was the The Indian Citizenship Act of 1924, making American Indians US Citizens for the firs time, and there was The Civil Rights Act of 1964. On the negative side we interned Japanese Americans during World War II.
All these actions took place this century and they seem to imply that prejudice is here to stay for a while. It is my hope that trying to deny the rights of gays, Moslems and Hispanics will disappear just as past injustices did. I may be on the minority side today, but I’m betting I’ll be with the majority’s side in the future.