Larry O’Donnell of MSNBC used his Last Word segment last night to criticize Mitt Romney for believing in a relatively new and made up religion. His specific criticism is that Joseph Smith created the Mormon religion to explain his infidelities to his wife when he got caught cheating. Mr. O’Donnell, you just opened a door that I intend to drive a truck through; trust me on this, your comment just started a discussion that the country needs to have soon.
O’Donnell tipped his hand a little early in my opinion as he gave a preview of how the Left in America intends to discredit Romney. A not so subtle campaign of discrediting the man’s beliefs will be initiated to show that Mitt is a cult follower. Enough disinformation will be put in front of the public to create doubt about the man’s beliefs, and his intentions for governing if elected. Use a little imagination my friends and you can see where this underhanded tactic will take politics in this election cycle.
Here is my understanding of Mormons and the Mormon religion: I know there are items about their faith that appear odd to me as an outsider, and I know they have distanced themselves from practices common early in their religion. I must admit that my understanding of the religion is scant; let me explain why. I have been impressed with every Mormon I have ever met and found no reason to explore their idea of Christian worship any further.
The Mormons in my life were focused on family and community. Their actions and examples of service were enough to convince me that they were profoundly Christian in their behavior. What else did I need to know? It was not necessary for me to explore details of their religion to know that they exemplified the ideals of Christ and community.
Not once have I turned on the news and heard stories of rogue Mormon missionaries on bicycles terrorizing a neighborhood. Never have I had reason to believe that Mormons were plotting a takeover of my government. I saw examples of sacrifice, family values, leadership, and commitment to our Constitution; what more could I ask of a neighbor or fellow citizen?
But, since you opened the door Larry, and you consider yourself the final arbiter of what constitutes a religion, I would ask you to expand your analysis and line of questioning to Islam. Do you have the courage for that one Larry? Probably not. Mormons will not kill you for your ridicule and questioning of founding beliefs, but you are pretty sure that Muslims might. So Sad.
Do you have the courage to ask if Mohammed was a pedophile and murderer, and designed his religion to cover his perversions? Not a question that your peers and employers would wish for you to ask. Let’s attack the Mormon guy because it’s safe; the Mormons of the world will not explode in a collective fit of rage no matter how much you ridicule them.
Let’s pretend that you did have the courage to undertake the questioning Larry. Let’s forget about the difficult questions of religions designed to cover perversions like you suggested and let’s stick with a quick look at reality and history of actions.
Here is a preview of that discussion I said the country must have soon:
Is Islam a religion? Or is it a religion blended with dictates for governance, and expansion through submission and conquest? Does Islam meet the criteria set forth by our Founding Fathers as worthy of the protections of the First Amendment? This will be one of the most important questions ever asked in America as Islamic terror is unleashed within our borders in the future.
Did that just make you uncomfortable Larry? A day will come when our country will have to explore this concept in depth as we seek to protect ourselves from an ideology that hides behind our religious freedoms; an ideology that is destructive to our Nation.
No one has a problem with the religious aspects of Islam; just everything that comes with it when practiced in its true form. When Muslims can separate the two and discard one, they will be accepted without question. When it is only a religion, and not a culture seeking dominance over the world, it will be embraced.
But, what about that nice Muslim family living down the street? You know, the family that is just like any other family on the block. All they want is to be Americans and raise their family like Mormons and everyone else. Your are right, they are Americans living the American dream; they only want to practice the religious aspects of Islam, worshiping their god and leading their lives in peace. That family has separated themselves from the ideology within Islam, but they cannot escape the culture that has followed them.
As Muslims immigrate to countries like ours, it is to escape the brutality of how Islam is practiced in their home countries. But, the ideology that resides within their religion follows them; the ideology they worked so hard to escape grows within their new host country as their population percentages grow, and the confidence of the radicals within the ideology grows with the percentages. As percentages of populations grow, Islam has repeatedly proven itself incapable of living in harmony within the host culture. We can study history to witness centuries of conflicts that support this conclusion, or we can just look at Europe of today to know how this will play out in our future.
Whether they were born here, or emigrated from other countries, this is what Muslims in America are fighting; they will either have to fight and win this battle themselves quickly, or face isolation and vilification on a scale they have never imagined. When America is attacked again by Islamists, especially when the attacks surpass the devastation of 9-11, America will have to ask the difficult question of whether Islam is a religion, or a culture incompatible within our borders and unqualified for protection under our Constitution.
Larry O’Donnell raised the question about the Mormon faith out of his disdain for the Republican Party and Mitt Romney in particular; it was pure politics practiced at its most disgusting level. We have no reason to fear Mormons, but history and current world events tell us we have every reason to fear Islam in America if it reaches a point where it is practiced in similar fashion to countries in the Middle East.
Is it a religion, or is it an incompatible culture manifesting itself as a religion. This question will not go away, and America will be debating the issue in the future as we are attacked. Forget about political correctness, when this discussion is out in the open, brutal honesty will be required by all.
You unknowingly opened a door Larry; now that it’s open, let’s all take a peek inside.
by Jack Woodward 4/4/12