Bryan Fischer
Shariah law in the U.S.: Gov. Paterson offers to make Islam the state-sponsored religion of New York
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By Bryan Fischer
August 14, 2010

When Gov. David Paterson of New York stepped into the breach to offer a resolution to the exploding controversy over building the Ground Zero mosque, he quite deliberately offered to grant Islam a favored status under New York public policy that is denied to Christian churches.

Here's what the governor said (emphasis mine): "If the sponsors were looking for property anywhere at a distance that would be such that it would accommodate a better feeling among the people who are frustrated, I would look into trying to provide them with the state property they would need."

He added some mumbo-jumbo about a competitive bidding process, but that was obviously just for show. If he wants to provide state land for a mosque, trust me, he will find a way, and his liberal friends will back him to the hilt.

Offering to provide government property for a house of worship normally would provoke howls of outrage from our hypersensitive friends on the left, who see grotesque breaches of the wall of separation between church and state even where the wall of their fevered imaginations doesn't exist.

Can you imagine the firestorm that would have erupted had the good governor offered to find state property for a Christian church? He'd have been dragged into court by the ACLU so fast it'd give him a nosebleed.

The First Amendment, remember, only prevents Congress from the "establishment" of religion, by which the Founders meant granting one Christian denomination preference in law and directing taxes to its support.

This means, of course, that states are free to "establish" a state religion if they wish, meaning they remain free to select one Christian denomination and give it official preference in law. At the time of the founding, nine of the 13 original states did in fact have an established church, that is, one Christian denomination that was the official church of that state.

Wisely, in my view, all states had abolished state establishment by 1833, but they remain constitutionally free to do so if they wish.

But our secular fundamentalist friends, with no regard for original intent, are quick to see First Amendment violations in things as benign as the Pledge of Allegiance and our national motto.

Thus it is noteworthy that the left has been strangely and totally silent on this offer by the governor of New York to give official state sponsorship and support to the religion of Islam.

The explanation? Most likely, secular fundamentalists are easy on Islam for the simple reason that they share with Islamic fundamentalists a deep and abiding hatred for America and its traditions and values.

But the Muslims behind the Ground Zero mosque turned down Gov. Paterson's offer instantaneously. They remain determined to build their monument to the great victory of Allah over the infidel on 9/11 no matter who it offends, no matter who it insults, and no matter who it provokes. Are these the actions of a religion of peace? I don't think so.

© Bryan Fischer

 

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