Ron Paul to Sunshine Patriots: Stop Your Demagogy About The NYC Mosque!

Congressman Ron Paul today released the following statement on the controversy concerning the construction of an Islamic Center and Mosque in New York City:

Is the controversy over building a mosque near ground zero a grand distraction or a grand opportunity? Or is it, once again, grandiose demagoguery?

It has been said, “Nero fiddled while Rome burned.” Are we not overly preoccupied with this controversy, now being used in various ways by grandstanding politicians? It looks to me like the politicians are “fiddling while the economy burns.”

The debate should have provided the conservative defenders of property rights with a perfect example of how the right to own property also protects the 1st Amendment rights of assembly and religion by supporting the building of the mosque.

Instead, we hear lip service given to the property rights position while demanding that the need to be “sensitive” requires an all-out assault on the building of a mosque, several blocks from “ground zero.”

Just think of what might (not) have happened if the whole issue had been ignored and the national debate stuck with war, peace, and prosperity. There certainly would have been a lot less emotionalism on both sides. The fact that so much attention has been given the mosque debate, raises the question of just why and driven by whom?

In my opinion it has come from the neo-conservatives who demand continual war in the Middle East and Central Asia and are compelled to constantly justify it.

They never miss a chance to use hatred toward Muslims to rally support for the ill conceived preventative wars. A select quote from soldiers in Afghanistan and Iraq expressing concern over the mosque is pure propaganda and an affront to their bravery and sacrifice.

The claim is that we are in the Middle East to protect our liberties is misleading. To continue this charade, millions of Muslims are indicted and we are obligated to rescue them from their religious and political leaders. And, we’re supposed to believe that abusing our liberties here at home and pursuing unconstitutional wars overseas will solve our problems.

The nineteen suicide bombers didn’t come from Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan or Iran. Fifteen came from our ally Saudi Arabia, a country that harbors strong American resentment, yet we invade and occupy Iraq where no al Qaeda existed prior to 9/11.

Many fellow conservatives say they understand the property rights and 1st Amendment issues and don’t want a legal ban on building the mosque. They just want everybody to be “sensitive” and force, through public pressure, cancellation of the mosque construction.

This sentiment seems to confirm that Islam itself is to be made the issue, and radical religious Islamic views were the only reasons for 9/11. If it became known that 9/11 resulted in part from a desire to retaliate against what many Muslims saw as American aggression and occupation, the need to demonize Islam would be difficult if not impossible.

There is no doubt that a small portion of radical, angry Islamists do want to kill us but the question remains, what exactly motivates this hatred?

If Islam is further discredited by making the building of the mosque the issue, then the false justification for our wars in the Middle East will continue to be acceptable.

The justification to ban the mosque is no more rational than banning a soccer field in the same place because all the suicide bombers loved to play soccer.

Conservatives are once again, unfortunately, failing to defend private property rights, a policy we claim to cherish. In addition conservatives missed a chance to challenge the hypocrisy of the left which now claims they defend property rights of Muslims, yet rarely if ever, the property rights of American private businesses.

Defending the controversial use of property should be no more difficult than defending the 1st Amendment principle of defending controversial speech. But many conservatives and liberals do not want to diminish the hatred for Islam–the driving emotion that keeps us in the wars in the Middle East and Central Asia.

It is repeatedly said that 64% of the people, after listening to the political demagogues, don’t want the mosque to be built. What would we do if 75% of the people insist that no more Catholic churches be built in New York City? The point being is that majorities can become oppressors of minority rights as well as individual dictators. Statistics of support is irrelevant when it comes to the purpose of government in a free society—protecting liberty.

The outcry over the building of the mosque, near ground zero, implies that Islam alone was responsible for the 9/11 attacks. According to those who are condemning the building of the mosque, the nineteen suicide terrorists on 9/11 spoke for all Muslims. This is like blaming all Christians for the wars of aggression and occupation because some Christians supported the neo-conservatives’ aggressive wars.

The House Speaker is now treading on a slippery slope by demanding a Congressional investigation to find out just who is funding the mosque—a bold rejection of property rights, 1st Amendment rights, and the Rule of Law—in order to look tough against Islam.

This is all about hate and Islamaphobia.

We now have an epidemic of “sunshine patriots” on both the right and the left who are all for freedom, as long as there’s no controversy and nobody is offended.

Political demagoguery rules when truth and liberty are ignored.


  • james ladrigan

    Dr. Paul,

    I am not a fan of libertarianism, but your statement today, decrying the hate from the Conservatives, deserves appreciation, admiration and respect.

    The Constitution is not a buffet that you can pick and choose from.

    Either you support the Constitutions and the rights and freedoms it lays out or you DON’T.

    There must have been some VERY strong reason that the founding father’s made the 1st ammendment about freedom of speech and religion.

    Congratulations on your proud stance in support of the U. S. Constitution.

  • chris

    I’m not a Republican or a Conservative, but I applaud you for having the integrity to stand up for the Constitution. I’m allowed to admit it, right?

  • rick

    ron, love your basic’s but, here’s my problem with your islamophobia BS. we are at war with the holy satanic koran. people like you need to read the koran and understand it as if you were an arab billionaire. every time you shake hands with a muslim, the koran demands his hatred of your unbelieving arse. he’s smiling & friendly and plotting your demise during that handshake. bring yourself up to speed on the subject you speak. your illegal alien POTUS, was born a muslim (mombassa) and taught to be a muslim, by indonesian law. so, i’m assuming your up to speed on the islamic law of sharia, so you know of a family courts ruling to stone a girl for refusing to wed an old man, that her parents gave to him. the video shows your islamaphobia beautifully. so ron, you know that hole in the ground where WTC stood, of course you do, how bout making that a stoning pit? obama’s media companies could broadcast daily stoning’s, big ratings here, eh. i could go on for quite awhile, but i’ll stop and say, ALLAH AKBAR comes out the mouth of every muslim killer before he die’s, even the ft. hood killer screamed it. the koran is humanity’s enemy. wise up, old man.

  • Maddie

    And this is the difference between a conservative and a libertarian. Libertarians actually believe in liberty. Conservatives believe in holding power and doling out as little liberty as they can get away with.

  • Michael

    Dr. Paul,

    I may not agree with you on every issue, however, I became a fan when you came out against the war. Now, with your principled stance on the outrage against the community center – you have become my hero.

    I admire your courage to say the right thing in the name of freedom. If only more politicians thought like you…..

  • Smith Powell

    Thank you for your comments. I hope you are able to steer the discussion so that our better natures and history take place over fear mongering for cheap and ephemeral political gain. And, of course, we have been distracted from other issues.

  • Thank you, sir.

    This completely artificial “outrage” over the Islamic community center several blocks from the WTC site is nothing other than coldblooded opportunists manipulating Americans for political gain. On the one hand they are amplifying the common citizen’s fear of the unknown. On the other they are feeding the jingoism of racists who believe that the only Americans — the only people — are whites who think as they do.

    Like the majority of Americans, I take it as a self-evident given that manufactured fear is the foundation of the Republican Party, just as misinformation their principal tool. To have you, a conservative, actually speak out on the side of justice and honesty is heartening.

    Thank you and may God bless you.

  • bingoman

    Ron, you’re right on target. Nice job.

  • Kenaid

    This manufactured controversy makes us look ridiculous, and the protesters provide yet more fuel to the propaganda machines of those who DO wish us harm.

    Without the ramped up frenzy of fear and hate, the war just may have a chance to end. Then what will the Military Industrial Complex do?

    We, as a country, are better than what we see on the news. Thank you, Congressman Paul, for your concise and eloquent assessment.

  • Phil E. Drifter

    andy g, you are a dipsh!t.

  • SR Luttrell

    1) What other religion preaches “death to Israel?”
    2) Sharia law takes prescedence over local law; look at England.
    3) Nobody’s dismissing the right to build; that’s a disengenuous argument and specious, too.
    4) No one’s talking about “running the Muslims out of town.”
    5) This is NOT just a “New York issue” but an AMERICAN one! Whether or not you agree that the wars in the Middle East are Constitutional or legal, our men and women have been fighting there in answer to 9/11, my son among them. That makes it personal to me on so many levels!
    6) There are no Muslims in that area of Manhattan that require such a humonguous edifice; there are plenty of mosques ALREADY in town.
    7) You said, “What would we do if 75% of the people insist that no more Catholic churches be built in New York City?” What a ridiculous rhetorical question! NO one is saying, “No more mosques in NYC!” And, why change the number from 64% to 75%? To make a better point? Not happening.
    8) The investigation into who is funding this mosque is justifiable. If the funding of this mosque is proven to be generated by those who fund terrorism, IT SHOULD NOT BE BUILT! What’s NOT right is an investigation into who’s funding the opposition to the building of the Ground Zero Mosque.
    9) Your “small number” of radical angry Islamists who want to kill us is actually closer to 60 million around the world.

    Sorry, Ron. Lead balloon time.

  • John Henry

    Ron Paul, all members of congress and all the rest of us in America are going to have to educate ourselves quickly to the nature of Islam.

    What we need to get a firm grip on is that Islam is not just a new religion in America. It is a form of governance. Muhammad preached his new revelation in Medina and raised an army. He took Mecca by threat of force and rebuilt and proclaimed the Kaaba to be a structure holy to his religion. Within his lifetime he took control of most of Arabia and within a few years of his death his successors took Jerusalem from Byzantine Roman control and built a mosque on the site of Solomon’s temple. At the centennial of his death, his governing legacy stretched from Iberia to the Bay of Bengal. In Iberia, conquering muslims built a mosque on the foundation of a church. Conquered peoples who did not convert to Islam were stripped of freedom and dignity that all Americans would be as horrified of as we are at Talibani excesses today. Europe would be constantly on guard against Muslim aggression until it lost its Christian faith, dropped that guard in the late twentieth century, and invited Islam in. America is following suit.

    Islam is more of a governing system with an enabling religion attached than a religion with a preference for Sharia law. Sharia law strains on a foundation of Muhammad’s judgments based on his book, the Qu’ran. With a cult following who believed in the divine origin of the Qu’ran, and who believed him to be a Prophet, he wielded the absolute power that his successors, the Caliphs would use to spread and govern an empire. Muslim communities insist on following Sharia. It is inseparable from Islam. The entire system is absolutist. It abides no competition where it gains control. Witness any Islamic country today.

    The government of Saudi Arabia is an adaptation of the system. The royal family has control of their kingdom and enjoys a life style that is unknown outside other Islamic states. The Al Sabah family are the rulers and citizenry of Kuwait. In all cases non-family are the hired help. That is the picture of the Caliphate to come. A ruling elite connected by blood ruling everyone else. In such a government there is no freedom of speech, freedom of religion, freedom of economic opportunity or pursuit of happiness. Justice is derived from Sharia law which derives from the Koran. So much for separation of church and state.

    We are experiencing an invasion of this government with an enabling religion attached and almost everyone says mindlessly that we have to because we have freedom of religion and separation of church and state. People, please read our constitution! We have been told it says something it does not say. Our first amendment opens with the clause, “Congress shall make no law affecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” That statement is the first of many making up our Bill of Rights that define the limits on CENTRAL government. It is not a blanket license to practice every conceivable ritual or political ideology in the name of “religious freedom.” It prevents Congress from legislating any law affecting an establishment of religion. It does not say anything about such regulation within sovereign states. The tenth amendment redundantly and powerfully restrains the authority of Congress to the limits established in Article II section 8. The states and the people retain the right to determine what sort of communities they choose to live in. Listen to the voice of the citizenry. It is, after all the purpose of our constitution that we enjoy Justice, domestic tranquility, defense against threats from within and without, cooperation in a plan to promote the general Welfare, and the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity. It is insane to introduce any alien political\religions system with a thirteen century history of enmity toward all other cultures and religions into our own nation.

  • stephen carter

    Voted for Ron Paul in 2008. Hope to vote for him in 2012. His son Rand Paul just doesn’t get it. It’s called liberty.

  • bruce yocum

    Sir. Over the past 30 years i have felt myself compelled to vote Democrat as i personally felt that the Republican was moving too far to the right on social issues. I was raised in a solidly Republican home (i must admit that i started quite a few political arguements with my father just to get him going). I must say that my faith has been restored after reading your statement on the NYC mosque. Yours’ is a voice that we need to hear more of – from both sides. Personnally, i fear that what we are seeing now within the Republican party is a complete implosion. Will i ever be able to feel comfortable voting for a Republican again in my lifetime? God bless you.

  • Ron Paul shows—once again—that he is a man of integrity as he rails against GOP politicians for their anti-Muslim rhetoric. There is truly no politician on the planet like him. . .because in truth, he is NOT a politician at all.

    At the turn of the 20th century, Irish Catholics were distrusted, disliked, beaten, murdered and discriminated against because the populace thought that they took their “marching orders” from the Pope.

    We see how THAT worked out. THANK YOU Congressman for your light and wisdom—and your refusal to surrender the Constitution for political gain. What a class act. THNAK YOU for always putting the Nation FIRST.

  • Jane Boucher

    THANK YOU, Ron Paul for being the voice of Reason and the courage to say what you have, its so true. It took bravery for you to do this, and this kind of talk is what will heal our country, not hatred towards each other or wars. I shall remember and be grateful to you for speaking out. Jane

  • radii

    thank you for the clear and precise dismantling of the demagogues’ arguments … you revealed the anti-mosque crowd to be an emperor with no clothes

    … and of course, the same cast of characters are at the center of this campaign: the israel-first traitor neocons

  • Gaius Baltar

    Prof. John Esposito of Georgetown U, a noted scholar of Islam, in a Washington Post chat said recently that “Bin Laden would think that Imam Feisal Rauf was a traitor for condemning the 9/11 attacks and all acts of terrorism and think he was an enemy to be killed” in response to a question about what bin Laden would think about the Cordoba House.

    So we have a group of proven Muslims moderates–proven, at least, to the satisfaction of both the Bush and Obama Administrations, as well as those Christian and Jewish religious leaders who have worked with them–who want to put up a mosque that would represent Islam denouncing and rejecting bin Laden.

    But bin Laden himself cannot stop the mosque. So who comes to his rescue? Lenin aptly named them “useful idiots.” These useful idiots are doing bin Laden’s dirty work for him. Do they realize this? Probably. Do they care? Obviously not.

    Useful idiots. Hate to say this, but Lenin was right.

  • The founding principles of religious freedom, are we drawing a line specifically for Christianity? Or have we, as a nation, gone so far down the path of atheism that we no longer care or respect religion in general?

    At first I too was appalled to think a mosque would be constructed near the twin tower site. That was before I learned these people have already been in this location for the past two years. If it has been OK for them to pray at this location up until now, why should they not continue in a new facility at the same site?

    Dr Paul your commentary is right on target and I applaud your courage in speaking up in the face of this controversy.

    Naysayers, ask yourselves what will be next to be cast aside? And what if it is something near and dear to YOU, how would you react then?

    We should all cherish our rights instead of discarding them just to be “politically correct”.

  • ambergris1851

    Ron Paul just earned a good deal of respect from me. Thank you for standing up for what is constitutional, first and foremost, and for standing up for what is fair. Many of the Republicans who are taking up the “mosque issue” are doing so only because they don’t have coherent economic platforms to run on this November. Exploiting fear is the cheapest, vilest way to earn votes.

    Thank you again, sir.