Loudounlady’s Blog

December 8, 2009

The minaret issue

Filed under: Uncategorized — loudounlady @ 6:40 pm

I’ve been chewing over this minaret issue for a little while.

To be honest, it came as a bit of a shock to me. I knew that there were tensions between Muslim immigrant populations and Europe’s majorities – Ross Douthat gives a quick summary of the issue (not sure how long that link will last since it’s NY Times). But to those of us who have not been following those tensions very closely, this seems rather intolerant compared to the Europe we thought of before. Of course, it is too simple to just label this as intolerant, but the appearance is there, at least.

Foreign Policy tackles the question, “Would Americans Vote to Ban Minarets?” I’m not convinced that we would – even though, as the article points at, Americans have largely negative attitudes toward Muslims. We have something else, though: one of the principles that we are founded on is freedom of religion – I believe that Americans are far too sensitive (in a positive way) to the issue of religious oppression to allow something like this to happen. That combined with our strong belief in the freedom of speech makes the likelihood of a ‘minaret ban’ only possible, I think, on the local level, and even then it would be rare.

I have not tried to find out if any towns in the United States have a minaret ban – I assume it would have hit the news by now. This will be in the back of my mind for a little while.

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